Intentionally January

1 Feb

image from chasing vivid dreams

Let’s see, one month ago I was waxing poetic about all the things I wanted to do to make 2012 the year of living intentionally. I thought today, on this first day of February 2012, would be a good time to look back on the month before through the lens of being intentional. Let’s see how we did, shall we?

Pursuing the Lord’s heart like I did when I first loved Him.

I did ok on this one. Instead of just skimming over my daily verse and thinking “oh, that’s nice,” I started saying a prayer about that verse. Usually that God help me to apply it to my day, or let me understand Him better through His word. Not a bad start, but I could have done better.

Moving into a season of greater spiritual and emotional intimacy with my husband.

This one went well, I feel. (Will have to check with A. and see what he thinks.) A is neck-deep into tax season, and traditionally this time of year we are never at our best, intimacy-wise. But remember my idea for building intimacy through wine and cheese? We’ve kept it going, every night A is home for dinner and we don’t have to rush out the door, which usually means 2-4 nights a week. On Sunday we were doing our big grocery run for the week, and I started tallying up what portion of our food budget we spent on wine and cheese. It wasn’t obscene, but definitely more than we’d usually spend just to have a little luxury. I said as much to A on our drive home, to which he replied, “yeah, but you know? I see it as an investment it us. It’s not really spending money on food, we’re spending money to bring us closer together, which we really need right now. Plus, it’s cheaper than going out to dinner.” True dat, my love, true dat.

Moving forward with the ministry God’s put in front of me.

Yeah, this one I haven’t paid much attention to this month, except to worry about how much I’m not doing, and time is slipping away. This month will be better.

Making the most of the relationships I have, and taking time to nurture them.

I haven’t done much with this one either, though now that I think about it, how would I measure this? I did well with A, as noted above, but I don’t know about my other relationships. Do my dogs count? Truth be told, one of the hardest things to deal with as I work through S.A.D. is feeling distinctly anti-social. It’s hard, because I’m a very social person. I’ve really appreciated how a lot of my girlfriends and sister have made a point of reaching out to me, and I’ve loved going out when they suggest it, but it has sometimes been hard for me to make that phone call. So I haven’t been proactive about making active time to nurture my relationships outside of A.
Wait! I’ve got a success! (Little stream of consciousness here.) My friends all seem to have a lot going on in their lives right now, and in January I’ve felt more of a burden to pray for all of them than I have in a long time. They might not know about it, or be able to see it, but right now when my time and emotional resources are limited, I’ve been praying. And truth be told, I feel like I love them and appreciate them more now for doing it.

Tackling some of the harder things on The List, especially the ones that scare me.

As I’ve said, January didn’t see me cross anything off my list. I am working on learning the guitar, and have started a teeny-tiny dream fund, but no actual crossings yet. I’m hopeful for February.

Having more people over for dinner, and not letting time/stress/money get in the way of my love of being a hostess.

Done! We had A’s bff from work and his wife over for dinner. They brought wine, she baked my favorite cookies ever, my chicken was dry (per usual), but we had a great time. It was the first time I’ve felt a little hangover in awhile, let me tell you. Accountants, man, they be crazy! There was a time in the not-too-distant past that having one couple over for dinner in a month would have been a step down for us. But looking back on 2011 (which will forever be known as The Year Suck) we really didn’t have people over. So one this month is a step in the right direction. Yay, Team Aylesworth!

Finding ways beyond words to show people that I love them.

I’m going to defer to my note on praying for people on this one. And my successful implementation of wine and cheese nights with A. Oh, and yesterday I picked up a bag of gummy bears for A while I was at the store. (They’re his favorite, and I’ve never seen them carried at Trader Joes. All of a sudden, there they were! Get while the gettin’s good, I say.)

Buying locally as much as possible.

This has been a mixed bag. I just put a temporary hold on our CSA order, as I’m not cooking as often or as much as I have been, and it was starting to be a waste. But I continue to seek out local veggies at the store (again, SO BLESSED to live in California!), buy from local dairy farmers, and I just found an egg supplier who is local as well for year-round egg buying. Score! (Come summertime I buy eggs from my friend Danielle, our church’s very own urban farmer, if she has enough. You don’t get much more local than that!)

Finding fun, creative ways to get together with friends that don’t revolve around food.

I had two FWF dates this month. BOO-yah!

Reading challenging, empowering, quality books instead of solely feeding my brain a mental fast food diet of chick-lit.

Hmm, let’s see. What have I been reading this month? Not a whole lot, unfortunately, the newest issues of Relevant and Runners World aside. I finally picked up The Man Who Ate Everything. Loved The Night Circus. Finished Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me (And Other Concerns) and The Handmaid’s Tale. There were two chick-lit books thrown into the mix as well that I don’t really remember (mental fast food indeed), so three chick-lit, three non? I’ll call that a win.

Putting my health first and making the time to exercise.

I went out four times, which is better than my previous month’s score of zero. Still working on shaking of my sense of inertia courtesy of S.A.D, and I hurt my foot somehow. It’s really quite the mystery. I have a doctor’s appointment on Friday if it doesn’t feel better by them. For now I’m walking on my toes on my left foot.

All in all, I’m going to say not bad. This year isn’t about doing everything all the time. No one can do that, especially me. I’d exhaust myself trying, and drive myself crazy thinking about all I’m not accomplishing instead of focusing on my successes. No, I can’t do everything, no matter how much I’d like to. But I want to do something, and cataloging my journey towards being intentional is part of my being intentional; I know myself, and if I didn’t purposefully take a look at how I’m doing I’d get nothing done. So now I know what I’ve done and what I want to work on next. Less of a check list, more of a status check on my journey thus far.

If you had a resolution or a word for 2012, how’s it going? I’d love to hear! Leave a comment or link to a blog post you’ve written on this below.

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8 Responses to “Intentionally January”

  1. katieleigh February 1, 2012 at 7:38 am #

    Well done! You’ve made a good start on so many things. And I, for one, appreciate the prayers.

    The word I chose this year was “shift,” and my WORD, things are shifting – but not because I’m choosing to shift them. I’m hoping this month will be better.

    • Christy A. February 1, 2012 at 9:56 am #

      I hope it will be, too. And the prayers are my pleasure. ;)

  2. Cara Olsen February 1, 2012 at 9:40 am #

    Christy!

    I love that you lay it all out, making it very easy to identify where you are succeeding and where you might need to pour a little more effort into. Truly, it’s hard to see where you can improve if you don’t have a method for keeping track. Way to be diligent!

    From the looks of your list, you are doing extremely well staying dedicated to many of these. Of all of them, I believe the one where you talk of emotional intimacy with your husband struck me the most. Your A sounds very much like my M (Yes, I actually refer to him as M to nearly everyone — at least in text and e-mail) and I just love his response to the larger than normal grocery bill.

    “yeah, but you know? I see it as an investment it us. It’s not really spending money on food, we’re spending money to bring us closer together, which we really need right now. Plus, it’s cheaper than going out to dinner.”

    Can I get an “Amen!”

    Blessings!

    • Christy A. February 1, 2012 at 10:38 am #

      Amen! Tee hee, you crack me up. :)

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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    [...] year of living intentionally is a bit overdue. If you want to see how 2012 is going so far, January’s wrap-up is here, February’s here. So, on to [...]

  3. Intentionally March « Bigger in Real Life - May 10, 2012

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