To the Person Who Wants to Be Great “Someday”

This post was sponsored by Nature Valley as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central.

When I ran my first marathon in May, I was overwhelmed by the support, encouragement, and congratulations I received in the days leading up to and following the big day. Our world really can be full of kindness and joy and I felt every bit of it!

Run Happy

Amongst the congratulations, I also heard many people say, “You’re making me want to run a marathon someday!” These statements made me excited because I would love for more people to find a love for running and accomplish a huge goal like running a marathon or race of any distance. But I couldn’t ignore the “someday” part of their comments.

Here’s the deal: when we see people doing great things – writing a book, running a race, going on a grand adventure – we think these things are out of our reach at the moment. Since we can’t do them right now, we tuck these things away in our “someday” file, never sharing them with someone else. Most of the time, our “someday” dreams of greatness never happen.

How do we fix this? How do we move past “someday” and towards being great right here, right now?

First of all, I needed someone to tell me that I didn’t have to wait to pursue my dream. A marathon slowly worked its way on to my bucket list, but making it a reality seemed so far off until my husband said, “I know you can do this.” I didn’t full believe in myself, but he spoke those words and I suddenly couldn’t wait to prove him right.


There is power in our words. You never know when your encouragement, like my husband’s, will be the catalyst to someone else doing something amazing. Be the one to encourage someone else to pursue their dreams and surround yourself with people who will do the same for you!

Secondly, my idea of “greatness” needed to change. Being great doesn’t magically happen in an instant. The reason “someday” often stays “someday” is because we don’t see the greatness in getting started on our dreams. I would have never been able to run a marathon unless I took that first step on the first day of the Couch to 5K program four years earlier. That first run/walk didn’t feel so great, but when I look back, it really was. Committing to a program, getting started, and putting in the work IS being great.


For those who dream of running a marathon, I say, “Get out there and run!” 1 mile, 3 miles, 10 miles – every mile is another closer to your dream. The first step is just as great and important as achieving the dream and the latter wouldn’t happen without the former!

This is what I want you to know: you don’t have to wait to be great. You can be great out there today. Your great will definitely look different than someone else’s, but it is just as great. Go get it.

When you do take that first step of greatness, please tell me, because I want to cheer you on!

General Mills Nature Valley® and Facebook are partnering together to give you the opportunity to speak words of encouragement and support to that important person in your life looking to tackle a huge challenge or chase a dream. Nature Valley focuses on giving you the energy to do great things and now they want you to pass on those good vibes! It’s super easy – just visit their Facebook page to find our how to send a positive, encouraging video to your loved one! If you need some extra inspiration, check out this awesome video from Nature Valley!

You can also get involved in this movement by sharing supportive messages on social media with the hashtag #BeGreatOutThere. Wouldn’t it be awesome to see our timelines and feeds filled with words of encouragement?

Nature Valley also wants to share some of there wholesome goodness with you – just print this coupon to save on your next Nature Valley purchase! The Hubby and I have gone gluten-free lately and I was pleasantly surprised to find some yummy gluten-free options from Nature Valley. The Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Protein Bars are amazing!

Nature Valley Gluten Free

You can get connected with Nature Valley and the #BeGreatOutThere movement on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, but let’s get the encouragement started right here!

Who has inspired you to #BeGreatOutThere?

Who could you encourage to #BeGreatOutThere right now?

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I Ran a Marathon

I ran my first marathon on Saturday.

It was not at all what I expected and I mean that in the best way possible.

The panic and fear didn’t really set in until the week of the marathon. Every negative scenario that could ever happen in a marathon was on a loop in my head – bad weather, nobody to run with, intestinal problems, leg cramps, hitting the wall and not getting past it, the race being canceled, and a million more horrible ideas. The forecast for Saturday was not helping at all – high of 82º and sunny, also known as a marathoner’s worst nightmare. Hot = BAD. We had a nice long drive on the way up for me to really freak out about all the “what ifs.”

Pre Race Jitters

The Fargo Marathon is unique in a lot of ways. First of all, it starts and ends in a dome. This is GREAT for chilly mornings when you would normally be shivering at the start line, and it is really cool to run into the dome to cross the finish line with everyone watching from the stands. Fargo also has participants from all 50 states and a large Canadian presence, so the race starts with the singing of both the Canadian and American national anthems. The race also starts with a prayer (I TOTALLY needed that) and the finisher medals have this inscribed on the back:

Let us run with perseverance the race that is before us. -Hebrews 12:1

The Hubby and I dropped off our bags at gear check, then walked hand-in-hand to the floor of the FargoDome. He gave me one last kiss after I found my pacer and headed up closer to the front (where the fast people are). I knew I needed The Hubby’s hand leading me to the start because he has been my #1 supporter through my entire running journey and has believed in me 100% as I trained for this marathon, even when I had no faith in myself at all.


As my hubby taught me, so much of running a marathon is mental. I knew I would need to be focusing outside of myself most of the race to not let my mind get the best of me. This is one of the main reasons I decided to join a pace group – not because I really wanted to finish in 4:15, but because I wanted to be with other people who had approximately the same pace as me.

Once in the starting corral, I quickly found a few other women who were running this marathon with a similar mindset. There were four women I ran and talked with throughout the race. They were a huge help in calming my nerves before the start and quickly found many things in common besides being crazy enough to run 26.2 miles! One had flown in from California and was running her second marathon. Another was a medical student from my hometown in South Dakota, and another was a mom from Omaha who shares my love for the Run Like a Mother community.

Because the internet is a crazy, awesome place, I was introduced to Andrea by my friend Crystal. Crystal knew I would be running my first full in Fargo and saw Andrea mention the same thing. We found each other at the start and had the best time running 15 miles together. I was lost in great conversation with her and the miles just clicked by. I am super thankful for those 15 miles because I know they kept me from freaking out about the warm weather and many miles that still lie ahead.

Between mile 15 and 16, I ended up on my own. I was so terribly worried about this very thing happening, but I was in such a good mood that it didn’t phase me like I thought it would. Here’s the thing that I REALLY didn’t expect for my first marathon: I couldn’t stop smiling.

Run Happy

The whole race, I had a goofy smile plastered on my face. I can only give you two reasons for that smile in the middle one of the most grueling things you can put your body through:

  1. I had been training so hard for this day and it was finally here. I was actually running a marathon, not just thinking and worrying about running a marathon. This brought me so much relief.
  2. The joy of the Lord. You know those things you just can’t explain? That’s what this felt like. I had prayed that God would help me enjoy the race no matter what happened. I wanted the memories of my first marathon to be joyful ones and God answered that prayer abundantly.

I received so many comments in the last ten miles about how happy I looked and that is exactly how I felt.

Thumbs Up

The race was not without its struggles. During mile 17, without anyone to talk to, I started to think too much about how my body felt and how many miles were left. Bad idea. Thankfully, I had a plan in place ahead of time for just such a struggle. I was running this marathon to raise awareness and financial support for The Mercy House, a maternity home in Kenya. Although I wasn’t wearing my “Miles for Mercy” shirt (because it was WAY too hot), I knew I wanted to pray for the women and children at The Mercy House and all those responsible for its existence and continued service. For the next two miles straight, I prayed for the founders, the staff, the supporters, pregnant moms, new moms, and moms transitioning to a new way of life.

Those two miles were both extremely meaningful and important to me, getting me through what could have been a very rough patch. That time of prayer led me right up to mile marker 20. The mile marker I had been so scared to face. My longest run during training was 20 miles, so every step after that mile marker would be the longest I had ever run. TERRIFYING. Except it wasn’t. On race day, I passed mile marker 20 and felt invincible because I could feel God with me. My joy was still bubbling over.

The last 6.2 miles were also amazing thanks to the spectators. Fargo really comes out to support all of the runners. I especially love running through the neighborhoods: people out on their lawns, music playing, funny and inspiring signs, kids giving high fives. The atmosphere is always so great, but I had two new favorite things this year.

In the later miles of the marathon, there were official water stops, but there were also lots of unofficial water and fuel stations. I took some Kleenex from a spectator early on (lifesaver) and I grabbed an orange slice to suck on twice in the last six miles. Those orange slices were GLORIOUS. Sticky, but delicious. And the stickiness wasn’t a big problem thanks to my most favorite thing from the local spectators: WATER.

Fargo residents, thank you for turning on your sprinklers and hoses and setting up misters at the curb. I’m sure your water bill from that day will be insanely high, but myself and every other runner around me just loved you for it. Oh, and my favorite, the group of kids with water guns who (with my permission) absolutely drenched me sometime after mile 20. Kids, I love you.

A lot of things happened in those last few miles and I can’t remember exactly when they happened. Miles 21 through 25 are a bit of a blur. One of the most uncomfortable moments was somewhere between mile 22 and 24 when I dumped water over my head and ended up with salt from sweat in my eyes! It took me a good mile before my eyes weren’t stinging or blurry at all, but that water sure felt good on my head!

People have asked me if I “hit the wall” and the answer is yes, but it wasn’t as bad as it could have been. I’m not sure why, but it could have been because I walked through every water station through the whole race, kept myself fueled with my Honey Stinger chews, and made sure I didn’t let my thoughts go negative. My legs started to feel heavier, but there was never a point where I thought I couldn’t keep going. Praise the Lord for that! 

Then it was there in front of me: the FargoDome, with lots of people lining the way and the glorious finish line waiting inside. I was grinning from ear to ear, but I also felt the emotion start to well up, especially as I passed mile marker 26. Just .2 to go. I also knew from watching my husband finish this marathon three times that there would be a camera just outside of the dome filming runners and showing us up on the big screen inside the dome so our friends and family would know we were coming.

I entered the FargoDome with no one else around me. I’ve never been alone entering the dome or crossing a race finish line. It was surreal. I spotted my best friend amongst all the other spectators before the finish line. She had finished the marathon relay an hour before me and was snapping pictures and cheering me on. As if I wasn’t joyful enough already, this made me smile even bigger.

Crossing the Line

Just a few steps later, I crossed the finish line of my first marathon with a time of 4:21:28.

VictoryBW Finish

As I crossed, I heard my husband yelling my name and saw him with the biggest smile on his face. The tears came quickly. I sobbed behind my sunglasses, but they were all tears of joy. I walked right over to him for biggest hug, kiss, and congratulations. He was beaming with pride and I was overflowing with joy and gratitude.

Getting the Medal 2 Getting the Medal 1

I had to keep walking or I might have fallen over from exhaustion. I also had to keep walking to get my medal, get to my husband and friend, and get to the food! My medal around my neck, my favorite people next to me, a banana in my hand, I left the floor of the FargoDome as a marathoner – tired and sore and a little bit in disbelief of what I had just accomplished, but overwhelmingly happy and so extremely thankful.

Three Musketeers Post Race Blog

I’ll save those thanks for another post because this is already the LONGEST BLOG POST I’VE EVER WRITTEN (appropriate since this is the longest I’ve ever run!), but I had to process all the feelings and remember every moment of the biggest accomplishment of my life. If you read this all the way to the end, you deserve a medal, too.


I ran a marathon and, call me crazy, but I can’t wait to do it again.

Official Finisher Photo

Marathon finisher. Boom.

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Miles for Mercy + My First Marathon

I haven’t mentioned it much around here, but I’m running my first marathon this year.

I started training in February, the race is in May, and I already have a million thoughts about the process. This weekend I ran 17 miles – my longest run yet – which meant I also had almost three hours by myself to think. That’s a lot of thoughts!


I’m going to try to write more about the marathon training journey here each week because I don’t want to forget what all of it felt like, but I wanted to start with one of the things keeping me motivated and a way for you to join me in the journey!

Mercy House, a maternity home in Kenya, has been close to my heart since it first opened several years ago. I was a reader of Kristen’s (the founder) blog and, through her writing and photos, she took us along as girls were rescued, buildings were purchased, babies were born, and God showed up through it all. My heart is stirred each time we hear of a new girl in the house or a new baby being born. This is life and beauty out of a hard place, which makes it even more beautiful.

I’ve shared the story here before many times and now I want to take your involvement one step further! This marathon I will be running will not be just about me. I’m running for Mercy House and I need your donations!


Here’s the deal:

I want to raise $10 for every mile of the marathon for a total of $262! I’m setting small goals along the way with my training, so let’s do the same with our fundraising goals!

I have signed up for several shorter races leading up to the Fargo Marathon on May 21. My first is a 10-mile race this weekend. I’m looking for TEN people to donate any amount before my race on Saturday morning! Will you be one of those TEN?! Just click below or head over to my fundraising page to get started!

Fundraising Websites – Crowdrise
When you donate, you are supporting the amazing work of Mercy House, but I want to help you get even more involved. As a donor, I will email you a specific prayer request for the ministry that I will also be praying for during my race. 26.2 miles means 27 different people and needs to pray for along the way!

So many others are taking on this #MilesforMercy challenge, as well. In fact, most of them have already finished their races and I’m feeling a little alone on the tail end of the challenge, so I need you with me cheering me on and making a difference for the women and children of Mercy House! Let’s do this together!

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May Goals

I have included affiliate links below. When you purchase through these links, I may receive a small commission. Thank you for supporting this site and our sponsorship of our Compassion child, Samson!

It’s Sunday night as I write this and I couldn’t let another day of May go by without focusing on goals – the ones I met in April, the ones I didn’t meet in April, and the ones I’m ready to tackle in May. April was a month that felt a little like it was spiraling out of control, especially towards the end, and several things on my to-do list were left undone. I need these goals – with grace, of course (thank you for that, Tiny Twig!) – to keep me moving forward, not in circles!

Here’s what happened with my April goals…


15-mile long run – Funny story, but I actually ran a SIXTEEN mile run! I still can’t believe it. Half marathon is this weekend! See May goal for more…

The newsletter, seriously – Um, I did work on it. I did. Launching it just got lost in those circles I mentioned above…

Get outside – We’ve been getting out there – walks, playing ball, watching storms and bunnies and soaking up some sunshine!

Keep on reading – I was a reading rock star to start the month, but I let it slide later in the month. I missed it. This is why reading will always be at the top of my goals list each month! Here are the books I DID finish in April…


Moving forward…

May Goals


Read (finish) three books – I’m currently in the middle of Heart Sisters by Natalie Snapp and Blind Spots by Collin Hansen, so those are both at the top of my list to finish. The second book of Lisa T. Bergren’s Remnants series will be my first fiction read for this month – can’t wait to dive in!

Half marathon PR – I almost didn’t write this one. I didn’t want to put it out there and then not get my PR and deal with that disappointment publicly…forget that. I want to PR at my half this weekend. There. I said it. I’m giving it my all and I won’t be ashamed if I don’t make it!

Finish the homeschool year well – We’re wrapping up school this month and I don’t want our school year to just fade off into the summer. I’m working on focus, finishing up subjects, and celebrating another year done! We’ll be doing a zoology focus the rest of this month as the unit is on bugs and, well, it is spring in Nebraska so we have plenty to study in person!

Focus on friendship – I have really great friends, but we’re kind of spread out, busy with kids and work and all the things and it’s easy to let the friend thing fall by the way. Not this month. I have fun girls’ nights planned, a road trip with The Hubby + a best friend, and my mind is stirring with other ways to reconnect with and bless the lovely ladies in my life!

Celebrate 12 years of marriage – We got married on the last day of the month of May 12 years ago! TWELVE! We’re currently plotting to do something to really celebrate – we just don’t know what yet. My goal is to make this celebration happen and make it fabulous because I love my man and this life we have together!

Your turn: what goals did you accomplish last month? What are you hoping to accomplish this month?


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April Goals

I have included affiliate links below. When you purchase through these links, I may receive a small commission. Thank you for supporting this site and our sponsorship of our Compassion child, Samson!

Getting a bit of a late start on posting goals for this month, but that won’t stop me! March was kind of crazy, so I need my April goals to give me direction and a big push!

Here’s what happened with my March goals…


Finish three books – I actually finished more than three books! I was a reading machine this month! Books I finished in March:

Celebrate my favorite March days – Check, check, check! Two birthdays and St. Patrick’s Day were celebrated well!

Launch a fun new project – We got this MOB Society project going and are tweaking it to make it even better right now. It will be public this week!

Run 90+ miles and keep pushing through training – 125.2 miles. That’s right, I totally crushed my goal and had my highest mileage month ever!

Get my OWN newsletter going – It just didn’t happen…moving it to this month!

Be present – Removing Facebook and Twitter from my phone really helped with this goal! I felt like I was offline more this past month than I had been in a long time. I also chose to write less on the blog and not stress about it. As a result, I have lots more to write about now! I’m not sure if I’ll put those apps back on my phone – I like how it felt these past few months!

And now for this month…



15-mile long run – This Sunday. Pray for me.

The newsletter, seriously – I WILL get this done this month.

Get outside – We are all SO MUCH happier when we spend time in the fresh air. The boys actually want to get outside more this year, so my goal is to join them, even if I just take my book or writing work with me!

Keep on reading – My list of books to read + finish this month:

Your turn: what goals did you accomplish last month? What are you hoping to accomplish this month?

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March Goals

I have included affiliate links below. When you purchase through these links, I may receive a small commission. Thank you for supporting this site and our sponsorship of our Compassion child, Samson!


Ok, I just had to get that out there.

A new month means a new set of goals and time to check in on the goals I set for last month! Who else is finding goal-setting to be more fun and encouraging than you thought it could be? Like Hayley says, it’s not about striving or perfection – it’s about having “goals with grace.” The grace really does make all the difference. Let’s take a look at last month…


Finish TWO books from my Joy Book List – I finished and loved The Antelope in the Living Room. I laughed out loud so many times that I may have gotten a few weird looks from my son at basketball practice. I had planned on finishing In This House, We Will Giggle, but I’ve discovered it is not a book to read through quickly. I’m enjoying it so much and trying to implement the ideas in our home as I read! I’ll have more to share on this book next month! In February, I also finished The Fringe Hours, The Nesting Place, and both Divergent & Insurgent.

Try a new restaurant with The Hubby for date night – Well, we had grand plans to try this new restaurant…but it was all booked for the weekend we had a babysitter. So, we went to our favorite place instead and had a lovely Valentine’s Day!

Run 80+ miles and start half marathon training – 91.8 miles – boom! Half-marathon training has started and new shoes are being broken in!

Focus on home atmosphere – Work in progress, but I did get a bunch of decluttering done thanks to my parents coming down to visit! Reading The Nesting Place got me thinking more about home in decor, function, and feel. I’m not a natural at decorating, but this book really inspired me in so many ways!

And on to this month…



Finish three books – 1 from my Joy Book List, 1 fiction book, and 1 extra book yet to be determined! I’ll be continuing In This House as mentioned above as well as starting Yes, Please. I will also read Allegiant to finish up the Divergent series. I have a GIGANTIC list of books to start after I’m done with these!

Celebrate my favorite March days – March has always been my favorite month thanks to my birthday and St. Patrick’s Day, and then our youngest decided to be born eight days late so he could have a March birthday, too! We are going to party it up this month, starting with Dr. Seuss’s birthday today!


Launch a fun new project – Lots of great things are happening behind the scenes over at The MOB Society and I can’t wait until these projects start launching! If you are a boy mom, make sure you’re plugged in with The BoyRaiser newsletter to get in on all the fun and join our fabulous Facebook community!

Run 90+ miles and keep pushing through training – To tell you the truth, I wasn’t even going to sign up for any half marathons this year…but I just couldn’t stay away. I’ll be running a half as one of my long runs with a friend in April, but the actual race I’m training for is in early May. I’m working like I’m going for a new PR, but we’ll see how everything goes when race day comes!

Get my OWN newsletter going – I’ve put this off for long enough because I want it to be JUST RIGHT, but March is my month to launch the newsletter I’ve been working on! Watch for a sign-up announcement {with giveaway} coming very soon! And since I put it in my goals, IT WILL HAPPEN.

Be present – Whoever I’m with, that’s where I want to be. I have lots of thoughts on this topic, but I’m going to leave the goal at those two simple words and see what God does with it this month!


What are your top goals for this month?


I’m linking up with Hayley at The Tiny Twig for her monthly Goals with Grace post! Check it out to be inspired and share your own goals! And share your own goals here in the comments or link to your post so I can visit!

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February Goals

I have included affiliate links below. When you purchase through these links, I may receive a small commission. Thank you for supporting this site and our sponsorship of our Compassion child, Samson!

This starting of a new month with purpose and goals is really growing on me! And last month, I found myself coming back to these goals over and over again, not as an obsession, but as motivation. And it really worked to help me press forward when I needed the push. What can I say – accountability works for me, whether it’s checking in with friends or a blog post like this one! So here we go…


First, here’s how my goals from last month went…


  • Read 1 book from my Joy Book List – I finished Bossypants by Tina Fey and it made laugh out loud every time I picked it up. There’s more language than some of you might care for, but as a fan of Tina and 30 Rock, I thoroughly enjoyed it! I also started In This House, We Will Giggle by Courtney DeFeo from my Joy Book List. In total, I finished FIVE books in January, including Bossypants, Own Your Life, Treasuring Christ When Your Hands Are Full, and the last two books of the River of Time series – Bourne & Tributary and Deluge.
  • 2 date nights with my man – We had a great date night going to see Into the Woods and eating way too much popcorn. We didn’t have another date “night,” but we did get to go with one of our best friends to Kansas City for the day for a race! Which leads me to…
  • Run 70+ miles, including a 10K PR – Well over 70 miles – 90.42 to be exact – AND a 10K PR this month! I ran a 56:44 at the Groundhog Run in Kansas City, an underground race like none other I have done! That beat my old PR by almost three minutes!
  • Drink 64oz+ of water each day – This has become a full-blown habit for me and I know I am healthier overall because of it!
  • Set office hours for online work – Much, much better. Still working out the best hours for work during the day, but I’m also more able to compartmentalize than I was before.
  • 1 family game night a week – Beat the Parents is our new favorite, but the boys also love Puppyopoly and Qwirkle!

And on to next month…


  • Finish TWO books from my Joy Book List – I mentioned I’ve already started In This House, We Will Giggle, so that is book #1. I plan on FINALLY reading The Antelope in the Living Room by Melanie Shankle this month as book #2!
  • Try a new restaurant with The Hubby for date night – We received a generous gift card to a super fancy restaurant in town, so we are making it happen this month!
  • Run 80+ miles and start half marathon training – It’s that time of year again! 12 week training plan means getting started February 16th! Anybody else training for a spring race?
  • Focus on home atmosphere – January was a good month, but it also felt hectic and cluttered. As we’re heading into the months of getting ready to move, I want more than ever slow down and simplify with our hearts and our stuff. I read some great stuff in Sally Clarkson’s Own Your Life that has me inspired in this area!

I’m seeing a trend in my goal-setting that lines up well with my strengths…I might have to write a little more about this since I hadn’t noticed it until now! Have you done the StrengthsFinder test yet?

I’m linking up with Hayley at The Tiny Twig for her monthly Goals with Grace post! Check it out to be inspired and share your own goals! And share your own goals here in the comments or link to your post so I can visit!

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My Focus + Goals for 2015

You already know about my #1 goal for 2015: to live life with more joy.

I know that is very general, but I work well with general goals. They give me direction and don’t feel like an expectation I can’t meet. Specific goals only motivate me when there is grace involved, which is why I love my friend Hayley’s monthly series, “Goals with Grace.”

I, like Hayley, need goals to keep me from get distracted and running off in a million different directions. My yearly goals are all somewhat broad, with the exception of the ones involving running. These goals, however, are easy for me to focus on and that is just what I need. I want goals that push me, but also encourage me at the same time.

I’ve also adopted a new philosophy when it comes to attacking my goals. I saw this quote on Instagram from my friends at Cross Training Couture and I am ALL ABOUT IT:

Instead of saying,-Lord, I don't know

“Lord, I can’t wait to see how YOU do this!” That phrase fills me with so much hope because it reminds me that none of this is accomplished in my own strength. It is only by His power and grace that I live and breathe and do anything, including reaching goals.

On to my list…


  1. Live with joy
  2. Fun + romance in marriage
  3. Time management + stewardship
  4. Whole body health
  5. Preparing the boys for move + transition
  6. Clean up + clean out
  7. Embrace ministry
  8. Love well

I changed the word “goals” to “focus” up there because that is a more accurate description of my list. This is what I’m focusing on and all of my monthly goals will come from the inspiration on this list.

My January goals look more specific than my yearly focus and that is intentional. I struggle with big, huge long-term goals and finishing them well, so I’ll stick to goals that I can tackle for a month. Short-term goals within a long-term focus – that’s my operating mode!


  • Read 1 book from my Joy Book List
  • 2 date nights with my man
  • Run 70+ miles, including a 10K PR
  • Drink 64oz+ of water each day
  • Set office hours for online work
  • 1 family game night a week

My trusty Day Designer is helping me stay on track with my schedule + to-do lists. It has been the best planner to help me break big goals in to manageable pieces and real daily action. I don’t know how I would function without it. And I’m working on establishing my healthy habits by tracking them with my Fitbit, particularly water intake.

So, this is what I’m thinking as we start the new year! I would love to know what goals you have for this year and/or this month! Share a few in the comments so we can encourage one another! 

And check out more amazing goal-setters on Hayley’s link-up!

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September Goals

Just popping in quick to go over my goals for this next month! Life happens and I know these won’t all turn out exactly as I think they will, but this is how I’m moving forward! “Goals with Grace” is what Hayley calls it – making a plan, but knowing there is grace for how it all plays out! Don’t you just love that?

First, here were my goals for August and how they turned out…

Read two books – I read or started Speak by Nish Weiseth, Interrupted by Jen Hatmaker, and Bourne by Lisa T. Bergren in August. It was a busy month, but I still snuck in a little reading time here and there!

Run 60+ miles – 56.45 miles…oh so close. I had to push my last long run of the month back two days because of scheduling conflicts – that would have added 12 more on and put me over 60, but oh well!

Two dates with The Hubby – We only had one, but it was lots of fun – Guardians of the Galaxy on $5 movie night with free popcorn in reclining loungers!

Focus during homeschool – Working on it. I get very easily distracted when the boys are taking a long time to get their work done.

Write from the heart – I was able to write a lot more this month – some for fun and some from the heart. I feel like I’ve got a little bit of my blogging groove back which was the whole point!

Time with God FIRST in my day – SO much better. Not grabbing my phone to check social media first thing in the morning. Not getting caught up in emails before I spend time in the Word. This totally affects my perspective for the day!

September Goals

And now my September goals…

Finish and share my capsule wardrobe series – See tomorrow’s post for the beginning of it all!

Set up a podcast – Not a Home with the Boys podcast, but I’m really excited about this!

Move forward with the next steps for The MOB Society – I started a new series there today and we have a whole lot behind-the-scenes goodness happening!

More water, more veggies – These are my main health goals right now. Fall makes me want warm drinks and comfort foods, so I need to be very deliberate about drinking enough water and eating lots of vegetables!

Declutter living spaces and bedrooms – We just have too much stuff. TOO MUCH.

Spend more time silent before the Lord – There has been too much noise, too much doing, too much striving lately. I need some stillness and quiet with God to recharge for what He has next for me.

I think that’s it for September! I didn’t set a mileage goal, but I am running a half marathon this month! And dates are a priority as well, but we have a BUSY month of traveling and activities, so we’ll have to see what we can squeeze in!

What are YOUR goals for September?


Check out Hayley’s “Goals with Grace” and many other lovely goal-setters at her link-up!

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June Goals

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June Goals

I love accountability, so here I go, posting my June goals for all to see! There is something about making it public that adds to the motivation and I can always use an extra push!

I also feel like I’m in a place where life is just ready to burst out of me. Remember my word for the year? Vitality. And that bud in the picture above? That’s how I feel – ready to bloom with possibility! I’m putting goals in place to help this forward momentum have some direction. It’s really exciting and fun and just a tad scary…but that’s really the best combination of feelings!

Her’s my check-in from last month…

May Goals

1. Run another half marathon – check! And with a PR, too!

2. Read 4 books – check! Follow my Pinterest board to see what I’ve been reading this year! SO many good ones!

3. 2 date nights with The Hubby – 1 for 2…unless…Does race weekend without the kids count?! We had a fabulous date last weekend with a really yummy dinner, Captain America: Winter Soldier, and lots of yummy popcorn!

4. Paperwork purge – Um, not as much as I would have liked. Can’t check this off in good conscience.

5. 6am wakeup – nope. Double J has been waking up several times in the night {what is with that?!} and this mama will take every ounce of sleep she can get! And this is not on my June goals because I’m not sure what I want my goal wakeup time to be anymore!

6. Pray daily for my guys – check! I keep going back through Praying for Boys over and over again for my sons. For The Hubby, I love Kathi Lipp’s Praying God’s Word for Your Husband!


June Goals

1. Read 3 books – I’m going for two fiction and one non-fiction this month! I have several on my list, so I hope to read more, but this is my goal!

2. Learn more about podcasting – I am super giddy about learning this new skill and using it for ministry! Watch for details early this fall!

3. Clean out the school room – You guys, I can’t even tell you how bad it is. It’s not functional AT ALL. It needs major decluttering and and rethinking so we can all use it, even if just as proper storage for all our school books and supplies.

4. Plan and host Little J’s 6th birthday party – We’re alternating years for big parties, so this is his year! Tossing around a few ideas in my head, but I need to just settle on one and get to planning!

5. Don’t freak about Big J going to camp – Breathe, Erin. He is SUPER excited and it will all be ok…

6. Take a risk in home decoratingThe Nester is doing her best to make me brave in this area. I want to spruce things up, make it more creative, more inspiring, more welcoming, more US. I also picked Young House Love for some extra inspiration.

7. Keep up the good eating habits I’ve established with the 21 Day Fix…with grace – The eating plan during during the 21 Day Fix is not meant to be kept up for longer than three weeks, but the focus on more real foods and portion control as been GREAT for me. I’m hoping to keep a good eating plan on a regular basis with room for fun indulgences here and there!

8. Make a big decision with The Hubby about our future -Prayers, please, people. All good things, but I’d finding myself praying the words of “Oceans” a LOT lately as we pray and seek God’s will. I’ll share when I can!

9. Spend 60 minutes outside every day with the kids – We started this at the end of May and it might be my favorite goal of the month! I’ve got a whole bunch of activities planned and lots of free time for them to just be boys!

Honestly, I have several other goals in my head, but I think I need to keep the list at this for now so I don’t get overwhelmed or discouraged! Nine goals is still a lot, but some of them aren’t new, so that helps it seem more manageable!

The Tiny Twig

I’m joining Hayley’s Goals with Grace link-up – why don’t you, too?!

What are your goals for June?


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