Here goes it – settin’ the bar for 2014:

Read to Juliette every day.  It’s my dream that one day Jules will be a reader like her dad and me, that she’ll appreciate the magic of a good story.  I hope that we’ll spend Sunday afternoons snuggled up on the couch together with our books, that eventually we’ll even share book recommendations and call each other to gab about the great novels we just finished (yeah, I’m flashing waaaay forward here, but it’s a fun thought).  So I’m planting the seed now, and our reading time has become one of the best parts of my day.  Juliette will snuggle into my lap and look at illustrations while I tell her about Clifford the Big Red Dog’s shenanigans, and she’ll help me flip the pages and maybe even smile a little at my exuberant animal sounds.  I am so looking forward to keeping this resolution for several years to come.

Limit all non-essential purchases to things that I truly love.  This applies to clothes, toys, home decor, pretty much anything not on my grocery or Target shopping lists.  Quell the voice inside of me that whispers things like “but it’s such a good deal” or “it will fit eventually” or “no one can have too many boots”.  I’m convinced that we already have an obscene amount of stuff crammed into our closets – there’s no sense in adding to the excess with items I don’t fully appreciate.  To keep myself honest, I’m keeping a log of all my want-but-don’t-need purchases.  It will be interesting to look back on it at the end of the year and evaluate the quality of the stuff I bought.

Limit my time on Facebook (check it no more than once a day).  Since I’ve been on maternity leave, and since I’ve had “idle” hours to pass each day while Juliette nurses, my iPhone has nearly melded into the palm of my hand.  I quickly fell into the following feeding-time routine: get the baby settled, grab my phone, check Facebook, check Instagram, check email, check Feedly, and then maybe check Facebook again, just in case someone posted something new in the past ten minutes.  Some days I caught myself reading the same status updates a dozen times.  That little “f” icon had become the ultimate time-sucking vortex.  I thought about going cold turkey and getting off Facebook completely, but dang, I really do love the little glimpses into the lives of those friends and family that I don’t otherwise hear from, so instead I’m cutting back, checking it only once a day for a quick rundown of the latest posts.  My hope is that I’ll fill my newfound free time with books, with real news stories, with quiet moments where I just shut my eyes and revel in the goodness of this special time with Juliette.

Get back into a regular exercise rhythm (walk/run at least 365 miles this year)*.  Now that Juliette is almost four months old, I don’t believe the “I just had a baby” excuse is legit anymore – it’s time for me to get my butt in gear (and back into those skinny jeans)!  My hope is that I’ll walk or jog at least three times a week, and I’ll be tracking my progress on Runkeeper.

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*My new favorite exercise partner.  But is she cheering me on, or laughing at my huffing and puffing?

Let’s do this.