bucket list

2018: Goals & Game Plans

Raise your hand if you have no idea where this year went. Between a new time zone and unlimited warm weather, my internal schedule is off. However, I do have a fresh new planner that starts on Monday, so it’s time to set some goals for 2018.

As I mentioned in the past, I’m not a big fan of resolutions. I do, however, have a few things I need to accomplish in the upcoming year.


This was on my list for last year, and I do believe I have started to simplify my life a bit, but there is more work to do. Between decluttering, finishing unpacking and getting ahold on what’s important, this will be a priority starting on January 1.

How? For once, I have a clear cut action plan thanks to Emily Ley’s “A Simplified Life.” Starting on Monday, I’ll work through my pantry (which aligns with another goal for the year), followed by my under-stairs storage and closet.

Focus on a Healthy Lifestyle

I hit a breaking point in early November. I was diagnosed with PCOS, bringing to light what I already knew – I have to take care of myself better.

How? Starting January 2, I’m going to begin Whole30. I did a quick Whole13 in November, but it quickly derailed with visitors and holidays approaching. I got a good sense of the program, though, and will be partnering with neighbors and coworkers to get ideas and support. I also downloaded the Couch to 5K app again. I haven’t signed up for an event, but I need a way to enjoy this beautiful weather while my friends and family suffer through snow and ice.

Invest in my Business

Do I have a business? Maybe. I have a blog. I have a portfolio. I have a business page on Facebook. Most importantly, I have a defined skill set that can benefit others.

How? I set a goal for myself to write 15 blog posts in 2018, in addition to signing 4 new clients. It’s a lofty goal, but a little hustle will go a long way. Plus, I already have 10 topic ideas in a note for myself on my iPhone.

Financial Freedom

Fun fact: moving cross-country isn’t cheap. I have my fair share of credit card debt, but I’m committed to clearing it out this year.

How? To start, I signed up with Trim, a bot that negotiates your bills for you. They saved me $360 over the year in a matter of hours! I am also working a second job, where all income is going directly to my bills. From a savings perspective, I’m obsessed with Digit. The app connects directly to my bank account and pulls out small amounts each day for a separate savings account. You can set goals (such as Christmas gifts or your best friends wedding), which makes it SO easy to prepare for the inevitable.

Be sure to follow along on Facebook and Instagram to see these goals in progress, and share your goals for 2018 in the comments below!


Last Minute Christmas Gifts For All

This post contains affiliate links.

Surprise – CHRISTMAS IS IN 10 DAYS. This short timeframe means many retailers have already passed the “guaranteed by Christmas” shipping deadlines, and do you really want to go to the mall this time of year? (Answer: NEVER) Luckily, Amazon still offers two day shipping, which means you can procrastinate  decide between gifts through Friday, Dec. 22.

Now the question becomes, what do you need to add to your cart, why, and who it fits best. Don’t worry – I’ve got you covered.

Taylor Swift, Reputation

I’m sorry, the old Taylor can’t come to the phone right now. Why? Because she’s making more amazing music. This album lives up to the hype, with jams like End Game featuring Future and Ed Sheeren, and classics, like the acoustic New Years’ Day. 

WHO DO I GIVE IT TO: Your sister, your best girlfriends, yourself. Every female on your list under the age of 40 should be a Swiftie.  

Emily Ley, A Simplified Life

This book is not only a beautiful coffee table read, but a practical guide for clearing the clutter out of your life, both physically and mentally. Emily Ley, creator of the Simplified Planner, is a god-fearing business woman who tells it like it is, and makes it EASY, which is key heading into the holiday season. Real talk – I’ve bought three of these, including a Kindle version for myself!

“Never, ever feel guilty about taking care of yourself. Whoever told you that self-care was not okay, or that you should prioritize yourself last, lied.” – Emily Ley

WHO DO I GIVE IT TO: Your mom, your grandma, your aunts, your church group.

National Lampoon’s Vacation Box Set on BluRay

There are two guarantees at Christmas: someone will fall asleep after dinner, and we will watch National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. It’s not only a classic – it’s a part of a larger collection of classics, including National Lampoon’s Vacation (who didn’t want to visit Wally World as a kid?), National Lampoon’s Vegas Vacation, and National Lampoon’s European Vacation. Just ignore the fact that Rusty and Audrey change in every single movie.

WHO DO I GIVE IT TO: Your dad, your best guy friend, your older brother

Amazon Echo

Can we admit that voice-activated technology is just the newest version of the clapper? Regardless, it’s pretty damn cool to be able to turn on your Christmas lights, play a Spotify playlist and order another pack of tape just by speaking out loud.

WHO DO I GIVE IT TO: Your husband, your younger brother, anyone who has ever answered a technology question for you

Zippy Paws 

Anyone else have a dog who destroys every toy that touches his mouth? My 20 & 25-pound dachshund mixes absolutely LOVE the Zippy Paws hide and seek collection. The carrier provides an option for interactive play (it’s hilarious to see them stick their snouts in the tree!), the characters are small enough to carry around all day, and have just enough stuffing to keep them happy for the long-run.

WHO DO I GIVE IT TO: Your dog, duh.

Wine Socks

The perfect compliment to an evening of Netflix and Malbec.

WHO DO I GIVE IT TO: Your secret santa, your drinking buddy

What’s on your Christmas list this year? Let me know!