12 in 2012

My 25 before 25 felt really overwhelming when it began – it’s hard to keep track of 25 things all at once. Thankfully, I finished stronger than I thought, here’s the breakdown …
  • Host my own photo shoot of Jemma for her monthly birthdays  
  • Write my birth story – you can read it here :) 
  • Find a new TV series to watch via Netflix – Jemma and I watched Veronica Mars during my maternity leave, since we’ve cancelled Netflix, but now I’m watching Once Upon a Time and LOVE this series
  • Read a “just for fun” book – I read and LOVED all 3 of The Hunger Games books
  • Paint a piece of furniture – Dominic, inspired by me, painted a doll crib that we are giving Jemma for Christmas. I’ll feature it in a Homemade Christmas soon!
  • Find a new favorite place in our hometown – We found an great little park within walking distance of our house
  • Sew my own version of Baby Legs – they weren’t super successful, but I did it :)
  • Finish framing and hanging pictures at our new house
  • Clean the garage … enough to park in it – This happened a few times … but, it is ready for a cleaning again, yikes!
  • Read 12 Hours by 12 Weeks with Dominic and sleep train our baby – Ended up not being a good fit for us, co-sleeping on the other hand has been a lifesaver!
  • Host my first blog giveaway
  • Begin tracking our family’s geneology – hopped onto My Heritage and got a great start on this
  • Pack a Christmas box through Operation Christmas Child – we managed to pack 2, one for a 2-4 year old girl and another for a 12-14 year old girl
  • Decorate my front porch with a large potted plant
  •  Cut our grocery budget by 10%it’s turned out to be even more. This month I’m feeding the fam on just $225.
  • Buy a family-size car … without credit or a loan
  • Sacrifice something for the betterment of my family – I gave up my iPhone last winter for a Pantech something-or-other. It was crap, so I went back to the iPhone which I adore. So I would say I have given up sleep alot this year. It betters my family since Jem is cared for in the wee hours of the night and Dominic gets sleep so he can make it through the day at work. Now we have found a pretty good routine where Jem sleeps through the night, most nights. Except for when she is cutting teeth. Then, no one sleeps :(
  • Be the best wife and mama I can be! – trying each and every day :)  

And, what didn’t happen …

  • Re-start the Recipe Project of 2010 – this evolved, and I’m getting quite close to finishing my Tastebook which is close to the original plan
  • Learn how to can fruit next summer – This has moved to a 2012 goal
  • Plan our first “family of 3” road trip – didn’t happen
  • Visit Crater Lake – officially scratched of the list
  • Go to a fitness (yoga, pilates, etc.) class – Does it count that I bought a Groupon for a 6-month yoga class?
  • Make homemade biscottitotally forgot about this one
  • Become more diligent in my daily devotions – This didn’t happen, and yes, I feel guilty about it

So, with all this info from the last year. I’ve decided to make a shorter, more purposeful list for 2012. I’m calling it 12 in 2012 and would love for you to join in too! It’s kind of perfect because 12 is a manageable number, there are 12 months in a year and goals keep me productive, and that is such a good thing :)

Here’s my official 12 in 2012!

  1. Tastebook. Complete my Tastebook by March (and actually order it); continue adding to it as we discover new recipes that we love.
  2. Summer canning. The last few summers my mom and 2 sisters have canned a ton of summer produce. I’ve always been working an unable to participate, but this year, I’m in! I’m hoping to can up a storm – especially our family’s famous spaghetti sauce!
  3. Complete foster to adopt training. I feel nervous setting this as a goal because I know this is going to be an emotional process, but I’m truly excited to start and can’t wait to share the journey this year.
  4. Read 6 books. Unfortunately, 12 is a little too daunting and I really want to meet this goal. So, I’m aiming for 6. Any recommendations?
  5. Green my life. There are so many things I’m hoping to do to become more green, but my specific goal is to add more green into our diets. I’m planning give green smoothies a try and I want to make kale chips. Any other “green” recipes you love?
  6. Thrift more. I’m not talking thrifting for fun, although, I plan to continue that. I really want to start thrifting things we actually need. You know, a little delayed gratification. Rather than running to Target when something comes up, I’m hoping to head to Goodwill.
  7.  Start yoga. I’ve got the Groupon, now I just need to activate it and I’ll be on my way to a 6 month yoga membership! We’ve also partnered with Lazy Lizards Yoga to try out yoga at home as a mama/daughter activity.
  8. Fashion blog posts. I’ve lost my fashion zen since being home. It’s not gone – it’s just buried in my closet. I’m planning to start a monthly fashion post recapping some of my favorite outfits from the past and present.
  9. Make my own soap. In a recent Sunday Confessional, I mentioned that I couponed like crazy for a bit and ended up with a ton of beauty products. We’ve been slowly using them up and I think they’ll all be gone sometime this year. When that happens I was to make my own soap from this recipe
  10.  La Leche League leadership. Although breastfeeding has ended for Jemma and I :( I’m still very passionate about supporting other mama’s in their breastfeeding experience. This goal, might be a little bit of a stretch, especially if I dive into foster training, but I’d really like to become a La Leche League Leader, or at least an assistant. This might be complicated if we move, but it’s something I want to get started.
  11. Quilt. I bought a jellyroll with my birthday gift card and an anxious to turn it into an adorable quilt for Miss Jemma!
  12. Date night. The days and weeks fly by without Dominic and I setting aside a special evening just for us. A monthly date night seems to be the perfect idea to re-connect and enjoy each other’s company. You know, without picking Cheerios off the floor or singing songs while we wait for our meal to arrive.

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        1. Hannah Barnhorn says

          The Birth House: A Novel (Amy McKay) was a great novel (about a midwife/midwife in training in Canada around the start of WWI); short read: Saving CeeCee Honeycutt: A Novel ( Beth Hoffman) – I am not done but so far it is a great read; Anything by Sarah Addison Allen (The Peach Keeper,The Girl who Chased the Moon) are all wonderful reads

        2. ThatMamaGretchen says

          I keep hearing good things about The Birth House – it's on my list!________________________________From: Disqus <>To: thatmamagretchen@gmail.comSent: Tuesday, December 27, 2011 1:21 PMSubject: [thatmamagretchen] Re: That Mama Gretchen: 12 in 2012Disqus generic email template

        3. Jennifer Lang says

          This is a great idea, I'm definitely going to do this too!

        4. says

          Thanks for the inspiration! I grabbed a button and am playing along with you. My husband and I were talking before I read your post, and we have the goal of thrifting more too. Here's to a new year. Good luck with your list! :)

        5. says

          I like the idea of 12 goals in the 12 months of 2012! But, after thinking a bit about your approach, I've decided to forgo all goals, resolutions, and etc. for the new year. With a baby on the way in February or March, who knows what my life will be in just a few weeks?

        6. Shannon Hillinger says

          Try Birthmarked by Caragh M. O'Brien. It's a post apocalyptic teen novel about a young midwife. There's a sequel, but I haven't read it yet.

        7. hobomama says

          I'm so impressed and inspired. I'm itching to try quilting, too! And I was just thinking about the whole fashion thing, which for me is a postpartum body conundrum.

        8. ThatMamaGretchen says

          You should try out some fashion posts too – I bet tons of mamas would love to encourage you through your postpartum clothing ups and downs. We've all been there! ________________________________From: Disqus <>To: thatmamagretchen@gmail.comSent: Friday, December 30, 2011 11:42 PMSubject: [thatmamagretchen] Re: That Mama Gretchen: 12 in 2012Disqus generic email template

        9. ThatMamaGretchen says

          That's a great plan :) Just focus on loving that baby!________________________________From: Disqus <>To: thatmamagretchen@gmail.comSent: Wednesday, December 28, 2011 6:05 PMSubject: [thatmamagretchen] Re: That Mama Gretchen: 12 in 2012Disqus generic email template

        10. Calliekackley says

          Love it Gretchen! You inspire me to set more goals!

        11. says

          I just finished mine and grabbed a button! Good thing it's for all of 2012, since it is almost February and all. This was fun! I also bought a yoga coupon on Groupon, although it's not for 6 months. It's within walking distance to our house, so I HAVE to go! I'm really interested in knowing more about the LLL leadership. I feel the same way you do about encouraging women who want to breastfeed, especially twin moms! I'll have to look into it.

        12. ThatMamaGretchen says

          I'll have to email you the info I've gathered about LLL leadership. You would be such an asset with your twin knowledge!

        13. Christina Andrews says

          This is such a good idea! And your goals are so wonderful from the soap to fostering/adoption. Wow! You are going to have an awesome year!! :)