Tuesday, February 1, 2011

More Resolutions and the Use-It-Up Challenge

It is February 1st, but it kind of feels like January 1st for me. Even though January had some fantastic highlights (see posts below), it was a bit of a drag for the most part. I spent the majority of my time on the couch or in my bed, and as much as I wanted to do things, I had no energy to begin.

So here I am feeling energetic and ready for the new year, one month late. In honor of this event, I want to add to my resolutions.

First of all, I want to be better about the relationships in my life. I wish there was a more specific way to phrase that, but that's all I have for now. I guess what I mean is this: God has placed many people in my life, and I want to view their being in my life as a gift and purpose from Him. It may mean I need to spend more time with a person or spend more time in prayer for that person. It may mean I need to have a better balance between the things I do for myself and the things I do for others. I'm not quite sure, but I do know this: When I am empty or worn down spiritually, I have very little to give anywhere else. No matter what, then, I know that I won't be able to give if my cup isn't full, and the only way it is full is if I am in communion with the Lord.

This leads to my second resolution. I want to spend more time with the Lord, and I want to continue and deepen a daily time reading Scripture. Last year, I used a one-year Bible, and I really enjoyed it, but it would sometimes get stressful when I would skip a couple of days (or weeks...) and scramble to "make up" what I missed. This year, I want to focus on less Scripture but more time with it, so Kelly's gift of a Psalter to me was actually quite perfect to help me do that.

Third, and this one is a little less heavy, I am going to embark on my own challenge, what I am calling the "Use-it-Up Challenge." Since Robby and I had to move to a tighter budget living on one salary instead of two, I have become very aware of how frivolous my spending was and still can be. Many times I don't even know what I have before I rush off to the store to buy something new and what I perceive to be needed.

So, this year, I want to be aware of my home inventory, and this includes everything from face wash to stationary to craft supplies to canned goods to freezer meals. This means a lot of things, of course. I am going to need to be organized to know what I have. I'm going to need to go through those drawers and cabinets that are full of stuff and see what is usable by me or someone else, what can be salvaged through a craft or project, what is just plain garbage, and what should be put somewhere else.

Furthermore, I am going to have to adjust my thinking, which often is reflected in the way I cook and shop. Do I really need to shop as if I am preparing for Y2K, or can I remember that I have two stores within a mile from me which I can get to in three minutes if I need an item for dinner? If the recipe calls for specific ingredients, can I use what I know and have to make it still work instead of spending money on yet another pantry item that will sit on my shelf for months? This also will prevent me from throwing out food that went bad because I didn't use it in time, a very sad effect of over-shopping.

Finally, I'm going to need to use my resources around me even if they're not in my home! I have many stylish girlfriends and three adorable sisters, so if I am desperate for a new top, I need to borrow something! This actually can work for a lot of things.

Whew! That was exhausting just to write, but I don't want to be discouraged already, so I'll just tell myself that writing it was harder than doing it will be. (Humor me, please.) Thanks February, for granting me another New Year's Day!

3 comments:

  1. I am a big fan of the "use it up challenge" since I am always trying to save more money. I am currently in the process of using EVERYTHING in my freezer before I buy more.

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  2. Love it! I am trying to use up all of my shampoo and conditioners! I have a REALLY bad habit of buying new when the other are only half empty which means I have about 8 different kinds in my shower :)

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  3. ooh i love this :) i used to be terrible with money, and it caused a lot of pain in our marriage b/c i married someone who used a budget (what's that?!) and was very good with money. i started meal planning, and now i am proud to say i stay within my monthly budget AND rarely throw food out. my bible study just had someone come talk to us about this and it was SO HELPFUL!! i can definitely share what i learned (maybe i should blog about it)...let me know if you want some help! oooh and have you discovered the blog madebyrae? absolutely adorable ideas/patterns for everything from dresses to kids clothes and purses. it made me think of you :)

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