July felt like the essence of summer. There was an entire month that had nothing to do with school, unlike June where we were wrapping up the school year and August where we begin again.
July was the month of family vacation and house projects and VBS. The high school graduate moved out for the month, leaving an empty space to work on for the youngest brother. In addition to the yearly goals, I set house project goals that were mostly accomplished ~ at least the most important ones.
Moving right along. . .
- Spiritual ~ Maintain daily quiet time and prayer, following current Bible reading plan. Journal responses and thoughts that result from that time. Spend time in stillness. Read one faith-based book/month.
Bible reading has stayed on track, moving me into Ezra and Acts. Journaling is a bit sparse, though. Lots of books are being read. I will count To Be Told by Dan Allender here.
- Family ~ Connect with Steve intentionally each week on a heart-level. Risk sharing something scary or overwhelming inside of me with him during that time. Connect with at least one child intentionally each week. Keep track. Make the most of one~on~one impromptu moments that arise with the children. Keep track.
Summer connection has been fun. Vacation offered many opportunities for various one-on-one moments. Steve and I continue date night informally each week, but there have been some formal dates added in there. We were able to get dinner out one evening and also grab coffee at the coffee shop a few times.
I connected with Coco over her room painting project.
There were also other projects accomplished with the kids that offered us one-on-one time together. Lots of sorting and decluttering and organizing and caring for pets together.
- Social ~ Connect with at least one friend for coffee or conversation time each week. Say yes to fun. Make an effort to have people over to the house again starting with once/month. Adult kids and their guests are a bonus and not part of this number!
Creeping along, this happened. There was much that DIDN’T happen, as well. There are not enough hours in the day or days in the month. So to those who I tried to make grand summer plans with that didn’t happen, I am sorry. Thank you for grace.
There was time with my youngest sister and her family.
There was yes to fun on vacation!
- Physical ~ Do 20 minutes of yoga at least five times a week. Longer or more times is a bonus. Improve flexibility in my down dog. Practice presence on the mat. Consider walking Dewey as an opportunity to get exercise and fresh air and not an annoying burden built into my already full day!
I walked Dewey A LOT this summer. Many times. Yoga, not so much. I really need to be better, as my body can tell when I slack off. The aging process is not kind.
- Teaching ~ Organize my teaching materials and office space. Write an encouraging note to one student/week recognizing individuality and strengths.
I am writing this post the night before back to school. Enough said there. Go around again!
- Personal Development ~ Pursue the Allender Center’s Lay Counseling Certificate. Read one book per month related to personal growth.
In June I wrote the following:
By next month, I hope to have all of the reading complete and the first plane ticket booked. I also hope to have a space on my computer devoted to writing out my first assignment.
I have my first plane ticket booked and the first assignment ready to send in. This month I read The Drama of the Gifted Child by Alice Miller.
- Ministry ~ Attend Stephen Ministry meetings regularly. Participate actively. Return to worship team rotation at least once per cycle.
With the light summer schedule, I was surprised by leadership with the opportunity to do phone supervision for Stephen Ministry in July. That was such a gift, since it fell during VBS week. I was not on worship team until August. More about that next month!
- Financial ~ Take intentional time with Steve to go over the family finances and budget and grow in understanding of our financial goals together.
Summer offered more time for me to help with keeping track of money. We are making progress together. I jumped in to helping balance the checkbook again.
- Writing ~ Schedule intentional time each week to write and work on the blog. Submit one Red Tent post for consideration each month.
I wrote and published seven blog posts during July. Most of my free time was spent on house projects trying to get lots of painting finished. What time left to write was mostly spent on personal work not being shared in this space. My Red Tent submission that didn’t run in July was posted here.
So here July’s goals are being recapped the night before I greet my students for the 2016-2017 school year. My summer flew by. To those who kept reading and following and encouraging me in the quiet spaces, thank you. You are the ones who remind me that you are there reading when I wonder if I should keep writing. You show up in just the right moment, and I am blessed!