It's probably a good thing that my new year's resolution is not to quit procrastinating considering I haven't blogged in awhile and am just now getting to the cliche New Year's post ;) I have been wanting to write, but have had Alan's family visiting for New Year's, so time was spent with them and not on the computer. However, it's probably a good thing because it gave me a little more time to think about what to write.
In our Christmas letter I talked about the Gerling year-in-review, so no point in reflecting on the previous year too much, other than to say that while it started out hard (see 'Cold Winter's Night' post), it ended with many blessings. Instead, I'd rather focus on the year to come, hopes, goals, thoughts. I have to say, and I even questioned Alan, that I don't know that I believe in new year's resolutions. If there's something so pressing/life changing that you've finally decided to make that change, then why wait for the new year to do it?? Same goes for regrets-if there's something you regret-work on that now, don't wait till the new year to reflect back and say, "Gee, I wish I would/wouldn't have..."
With that said, here are a few things I do look forward to this year, a few things I want to work on/improve and other thoughts for 2010. Oh, and one other thought-my new year's resolutions are less resolutions/lists and more prayers. So here goes:
1. I praise God for the gift of Isaac that was given to us in the last days of 2009! What a joy he is in our lives. I pray that this first year with him in our lives is a special, life-changing time. I ask for guidance in raising our son, even in these earliest of days (and of course especially the tween/teen years!). I need to remember Psalm 86...'slow to anger' ;) and focus on patience while learning how to be a good mom and wife for Isaac and Alan.
2. Recently, and I mean since bringing Isaac home, we've begun not watching TV. It didn't necessarily start out as such, but more so evolved considering every waking minute Isaac was asleep we were literally trying to not be awake either! We noticed that when we focused on getting rest, then doing chores and keeping up with the house, things seemed to stay in pretty good order. And now that Isaac's getting into a schedule, we're finding a few little moments of quiet time in the evenings for reading/private devotion/family devotion/music and talk time between Alan and I. When the TV is off, we seem to focus on what's more important. So, while we're still going to watch movies from time to time (and the occassional Gilmore Girls of course!), we'll be cancelling our cable, or at least the 15 remaining channels we still get ;). So, we'll see how this goes for 2010.
3. To continue with part of #2-time between Alan and I: Alan started this, and I love it and hope to keep it up. We used to make dinner together and talk about our day, but then sit in front of the TV to eat. Yeah, it did feel good considering we were both exhausted from our days and it felt good to have a brain-dead activity like watching TV, but that meant it was cutting out of family time. So, Alan took it upon himself that the first day we brought Isaac home we started eating lunch at dinner together at the table, not starting without the other person, and praying before our meals. I love this quality time to talk with my husband and have his full attention. Oh, and a cool part: he lights candles for dinner too ;)
4. I feel a pattern here....continuing with #2 and #3: I pray for our marriage. I pray this year we may grow in our marriage as never before. We took a class (shout-out to the Smith's!!) at church called 'Love and Respect' based on the book by the same name within the first few weeks of our marriage, and it was such a great foundation for us. I pray this year that we can continue to focus on making our marriage a priority and not secondary to parenting/work/extra activities.
5. Ok, less marriage, more personal: I want to use this year to grow spiritually (closer to God) and intellectually, meaning I rarely take time to study and learn anymore, and I used to love to. I used to challenge myself with books and music, and now with photography, but I've found that I've stopped wanting to learn more and am just content with what I already know. Why stop now though? I have a craving to begin reading again-everything from John Piper to Jane Austin. I've also realized that pumping takes up a lot of time, so...why not multitask!!
On the grow spiritually part: It's not so much that I don't pray now, but I want to grow in my prayer time with God. I need to spend more time in prayer for others, and less focus on always me, me, me. I pray that this year I can remember to, in every decision, think of Him first and consider how what I'm doing/saying/acting is glorfying to Him.
6. Practice Random Acts of Kindness: I'd like to, this year, hopefully attempt to do a better job of putting others first. I realize that many times...most of the time...way too often I put myself before others, even before serving my husband. In an attempt to work on that, I want to try doing more random acts of kindness-not for the praise it would bring me for doing it, but for the fact that it'd mean considering someone else before myself.
Ok, so I'm sure I could go on and on about things I hope to improve on this year, but that's the short list for now. I know I had other things for that list, but this sleep deprivation has crept into my brain and sucked it of all memory for the time being ;).
Although it's belated, I wish everyone a safe and healthy 2010.