Posts Tagged ‘New Year’

Trash Your Goals: You’re Going Too Fast

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012


If you set too many goals for yourself, your life will be like a fast train, where you look out at the beautiful scenery, but it’s just a blur. Soon you want to slow down the train, but you don’t want to lose momentum.

It’s like you’ve set yourself a pace that is impossible to maintain. If you don’t slow down, the train will continue picking up speed until it crashes.

Even if the train doesn’t crash, do you really want your life to be a blur? Wouldn’t it be better to have one to three goals that are actually biblical, and scrap the rest? To heck with productivity, if you are an overachiever who can’t savor life. If you fall into this category, scrap all your goals and decide to live this next year by living in the moment and abiding in Christ. Get off the train, feel the cool grass between your toes, and have a lovely picnic with your family. Metaphorically speaking.

If you insist on being highly productive, consider this: Even if you’re productive and accomplishing tons, what does it matter? Unless it’s exactly, precisely in the center of the will of God, your “accomplishments” will have no lasting impact and will be for nothing.

Why is your life going at such a frantic, crazy pace? Is there a reason? Did God actually lead you to do each thing that you are doing? Or do you just live a blurry life because you can’t say no to anything, so you’re stuck with too many commitments that God never led you into?

If you set goals for yourself that you never reach, maybe you are setting the wrong goals. I know a woman who set herself the goal of losing 100 pounds last year. Do you think she reached her goal, especially considering that she was doing a bazillion other things? No, she did not. I set myself the goal of losing 17 pounds, and as much as I’ve exercised this year (more than ever in my life), I did NOT meet my goal. So was the goal worth having? I say yes. Because it made me a healthier person, and my husband noticed and smiled. I also felt prompted by God to do this, and it has helped my marriage.

So I must stop for a second and say that the only exception to scrapping your goals (besides abiding in Christ) is weight loss and fitness. If you’re putting effort into maintaining the body that God has given you because it’s the temple of the Holy Spirit, and you want to have more energy, anything you do towards this end is not wasted. Even if you gain the weight back later, it’s not wasted that you exercised today, because today you have more energy to pour into life, so it was worth it today.

Some people think you should set your goals high and shoot for the stars. If your goals are too low, then you will never achieve anything big. People, goals are not promises. Do you realize that? Goals are something to put up above and ahead of you, so that you know where you’re going. Please consult God when making goals. Why waste a lot of time on something that wasn’t God’s goal? Then who is glorified? No one really. It’s just time wasted.

New Year’s Eve (First Night Spokane)

Monday, January 2nd, 2012


On New Year’s Eve, my husband and I went to an event called “First Night Spokane.” Even though we’ve lived here for 11 years, this is the first time we’ve gone. Many events, demonstrations, concerts, and shows take place in the downtown area, with fireworks to finish off the evening. You can get in to all the events for free if you have a button (which costs $12). The event lasts six hours.

We might take our kids next year, because there were pottery throwing demonstrations, wool weaving, crown-making, ice sculpting, and chain-mail making. The children’s museum was also open. And children 10 and under go free with a buttoned adult.


My husband and I started the evening by riding on an antique carousel. I realized that everything was blurry, and my husband handed me my new glasses. Even though most people consider a carousel to be a slow ride pointlessly going in circles like our lives, I really love the exquisite detail of each horse. I’ve always loved carousels because of the ornate artwork.


Ice sculpting took place outside. Since the theme for this year was dinosaurs, the men were carving the ice into dinosaurs, fossils, and dragons. My favorite was the Loch Ness Monster. There was also an ice slide with colorful lights embedded on the inside, which children were sliding down.

We listened to a violin player who added drums and other sounds to his violin music. Other buildings contained bands which played salsa or blues or rock. People were dancing, and I looked sweetly at my husband, and he rolled his eyes.


Suddenly we were hungry, so we went to a Chinese restaurant that my husband had been wanting to check out. We split a salad and a main meal, which was delicious. The lanterns hung on the ceiling were gorgeous and added to the ambiance.

Closer to midnight, we were randomly walking around. We went to the crown-making place, and the materials on the long tables looked like they had been hit by a tornado. My husband tried to cut a piece of lace for me, because I wanted a bookmark, and the scissors were so cheap that they didn’t cut. Then they just snapped in half. My husband and I backed away from the table, whistling a tune, so as not to be noticed.

One good thing about the evening is that policemen and guards were sprinkled like salt and pepper all over, so you felt safe. Only about a third of the people were inebriated. The others had children with them, with bags under their eyes, looking tired rather than inebriated.


We counted down to midnight, and fireworks lit up the sky in magnificent splashes of color. “Happy New Year!” I shouted to my husband, grabbing his face and kissing him. Unfortunately I was so cold, my depth perception was off because of my new glasses, and my teeth were chattering, so I accidentally bit his lip. (It wasn’t hard.) “Ow,” he said, instead of wishing me a Happy New Year, and we skipped off like kids to the car. It was a lovely evening.

Silly Gold Crowns

Sunday, January 1st, 2012


Gold crowns are super easy to make. Get yourself some gold paper, and cut it into a strip the thickness of a crown. Cut it along the top in a zig-zag. Then staple it together. You’re done. It took you less than 5 minutes.

If you want to print out your crown on card stock paper, you can download your crown here. Go ahead and print two of them, and staple the four pieces together, the size of your child’s head.

If you want to decorate it more, use whatever you have in your art supplies. One of my sons used fancy toothpicks that look like fireworks all around his crown. (They were left over from the Fourth of July.) You can staple or tape it on. I fished some red Christmas tinsel out of the trash, and we hot glued that on. He glued some buttons on, too, and some gold rope along the bottom.


My daughter glued fake jewels onto her crown with white school glue. She wanted to put pom-poms at the top of each peak of her crown, so I put hot glue on it, and she stuck the ball at the top of each one. We put some gold trim on the bottom, and we found some bees. (I think my mother gave me some fake bees one day, and I threw them into the art supplies.)


My goofy son put large google eyes on his crown, and a moustache. An orange feather was hot glued to the front, along with small jingle bells in a random pattern. (He wanted his crown to make noise when he moved.) Fake jewels, more feathers, and fancy Fourth of July toothpicks rounded out his goofy crown.


My oldest son always complicates things. He made an orange umbrella completely out of paper. He folded a boingy orange thing off the side and re-enforced it with a popsicle stick. He hot glued jewels to it, and a plastic spring from a broken toy. (Yes, I salvage cool stuff off broken toys before tossing them in the trash.)

Behold, our fabulous crowns. Easy, fun, and goofy.


Poppers, Crazy String, and Funny Hats

Saturday, January 1st, 2011

Pictures of poppers, crazy string, and funny hats as we celebrate the New Year: