Planning for #2012

What do you most want to accomplish next year?

This year I’d like to get my organization running full-time. One of the problems I’ve had in the past is that I focus my attention on multiple big projects at once and I get burned out. This year, rather than being overly ambitious I am only focusing on that one major goal and the deadline I have set for myself is July of 2012. This organization is important because it will transform the lives of young people.

We will be results oriented and our bottom line – rather than money – will be measurable and observable changes in behavior in the young people that we serve. Our organization will be fiscally responsible, and we will document everything (so that our success can be replicated and our challenges can be avoided by other organizations). By December 31, 2012, we will have experienced unprecedented growth, we will have secured stable & consistent funding (via grants and individual donations) and we will have hosted several successful events and programs.

#Reverb11 is a reflection tool. Please see more info here brought to us by Kandice Washington Cole: Kandice Washington Cole also happens to be one of my besties! I love her prompts!

Thinking About 2011…

My favorite superheroine Storm & her husband T’Challa (a.k.a. “The Black Panther”)

What are your going to treat yourself to more of next year?

I’m going to treat myself to more scrapbooking! I was on the once per month plan in 2011. I’m going to get on the once a week plan in 2012!
What was your A-ha moment or greatest lesson you learned this year?

My A-ha moment for 2011 was that I am/(we) are not entitled to anything. For some reason we assume that if we make good choices, have integrity, have faith – we are somehow entitled to something – a good life, favor, happiness. Not so much. God doesn’t owe us anything. People don’t owe us anything. The good things that happen to us are blessings that have little to do with our behavior or our attitude. The bad things that happen to us are also blessings because they are an example of God’s mercy – as long as we are breathing.
What new friendships/relationships emerged this year?

I found someone just as passionate about scrapbooking as me (maybe even more than me) so we  get together regularly to scrapbook together. I hope to find more of those people to hang out with.

What was sacred to you this year?

My marriage and my family was sacred to me this year.
How did you stand up for yourself this year?

I said no clearly, regularly and often. People used to be able to guilt trip me into doing things. Now, if something doesn’t fall in line with my values I can easily turn it down. It took a looooooong time for me to get to that place!

Relationship To Technology?

What was your relationship to technology this year? How do you want to change that relationship next year?

My relationship to technology was interesting. My family decided to do something interesting – cut off the cable. We realized that we weren’t really watching it because we were rarely home, but it also was one of our most expensive bills! What happened was wonderful – we started using our time in productive ways. We do have Netflix which we use to watch movies, and we are also big fans of Hulu & OVGuide which we use to watch our favorite TV shows. The thing about our relationship to technology is that we are no longer spending hours in front of the TV. When we do watch TV programs we are very targeted in the time that we spend doing it.

Now the internet for me is an entirely different thing. I wasn’t as addicted to Twitter this year as I was in 2010, but I was addicted to Facebook. So addicted in fact that I get Facebook updates on my phone *blush*. I’m also addicted to surfing the internet (particularly pinterest). Next year I would like to limit my social networking/pinterest/google reading to one hour per day AND THAT’S IT! I’m also going to turn off the automatic update on my cell phone and only use my phone for making phone calls & checking e-mail.

I want to do something a bit “old school” next year, and start using a timer for certain things. I will literally set a timer for the time that I want to spend on a task and stick to it strictly. Technology didn’t rule my life this year as much as it has in the past. I actually enjoy going “off the grid.”

#Reverb11 is a reflection tool. Please see more info here brought to us by Kandice Washington Cole: Kandice Washington Cole also happens to be one of my besties! I love her prompts!

Reflecting on 2011

#Reverb11 is a reflection tool. Please see more info here brought to us by Kandice Washington Cole: Kandice Washington Cole also happens to be one of my besties! I love her prompts!

What motto emerged from this year?

“Abundance flows into my life in surprising and miraculous ways every day.” – Cheryl Richardson

Picked up that lovely gem from Oprah’s Life Class and have been repeating it almost daily since.

What unexpected person, experience, etc came into your life this year? How did you respond to it?

There was someone who didn’t have my or my family’s best interest at heart that came into my life. Rather than feeding into the negativity or drama, I simply ignored the individual. When it comes to some things, the best response is to avoid “feeding” it or giving it attention. I did that in this case and “poof” the individual & all the drama disappeared!
What was your favorite guilty pleasure?

I don’t even have to say anything, let me just show you a picture! I only bought the small size.

Set a timer for 5 minutes and describe your experience this year.

2011 for me was a year of great loss, but also a year of great inspiration. There have been some things kind of “incubating” in and around me for a while, and 2011 was the year that I decided to bring some of that into fruition. I was very intentional about many of my goals. I made a decision that I needed to start scrapbooking more, so I found a partner and started physically going out to crops (scrapbooking meet-ups/parties). It was like vision – action. Vision – action. All year. Next year though instead of just vision – action, I’d like to change that second verb to execution. Actions are dope, they are baby steps, but I want to land as many balls into the hoop as possible next year.2011 was also a year of acknowledging several things that I had been in denial about. It felt good to recognize and own those things and I’m hoping to do better in 2012. I also realized how strong of a support network I have, and that someone is always watching (even if that someone is just God). The two major events in my life in 2011 were my husband’s city council campaign and our creation & loss of our first baby together. I feel like I loss a lot in 2011, but only to experience great abundance in 2012.
What moment in your life was filled with beauty?

One of my coworkers surprised me with a very sweet personal message and two books by Pema Chodron to read. When I saw that Amazon box, I knew i hadn’t ordered anything but words are the most powerful/long-lasting thing you can ever give someone. I feel so honored.

What are 12 things you can eliminate from this year? How do you plan on doing that?

1. [Unhealthy] Fast Food – I plan on keeping snacks and fruit with me in case I get hungry and preparing my meals at home.

2. Overflowing laundry – With three people in my house we have a ton of laundry & it seems like it’s never done. I plan to wash three loads every other day in order to stay on top of it.

3. Overflowing e-mail inbox – I don’t delete. Especially junk or spam mail. I want to get in the habit of cleaning out my e-mail once per week.

4. Complaining – I want to spend more time highlighting the blessings in my life rather than complaining about the bad things. If there are some things that need to change, I want to take the necessary steps to make those changes. I plan to keep a gratitude journal and update it daily.

5. Unprinted photos – In order to help with scrapbooking I plan to upload and print my photos at least bi-weekly so that they can be scrapbooked more easily.

6. Random meals – I’d really like to start making & sticking to meal plans. I feel like this will save money but it also ensures healthy meals for me & my family. It’s too much to plan 3 meals per day, but I would like to start with dinner.

7. Not exercising – I’ve lost 18 pounds. I’d like to lose another 20 – 30 before June. I plan to exercise 3 days per week and incorporate some stretching so that I can be more limber. If I can keep up my home routine for 6 months, my reward will be a gym membership or personal trainer in the summer!

8. Not drinking enough water – Would like to start each day with a glass of water before drinking anything else & hopefully finish it before I leave for the day. Will increase as time goes on.

9. Not enough girlfriend time – I love my girls. I’d like to spend more time with my besties as well as cultivate some new friendships 🙂

10. Worrying – I worry too much. When I feel like worrying, I will say or write a prayer and release whatever it is I’m worrying about.

11. Bad nails – I hate bad nails. I will get a manicure every 2 weeks (or paint my nails myself in crisis situations lol).

12. Sausage stuffed schedule – Sometimes I just have too much going on. I can be too ambitious and it stresses me out. Rather than trying to accomplish everything at once I’m going to focus on smaller goals and one – two supersized goals for the entire year. That’s it!

If you’re not reverbing, it’s not too late! Join in on the challenge!


Regular Publication Schedule

Hey Lovelies!!!

I’ve decided to have a regular publication schedule. Starting Monday, you can come visit this site for a feature article (or two or three). The first two feature articles are entitled “Emotional Vomiting” and “Black Women Had the Highest Voter Turnout in 2008.” The feature articles will always be highly reflective, personal and inspirational.  I chose Mondays because Monday is my least favorite day of the week. It’s my own personal way of turning lemons into yummy lemonade. Feel free to comment, question, or challenge me. I love speaking to you! I will be posting other thoughts, updates and images throughout the week, but for the “meat & potatoes” come by on Mondays please and let me know you’re reading. Your comments inspire me!

Caption: The restaurant in the Lincoln Park Area of Chicago where me & one of my besties got lost 🙂

#Reverb11 is a reflection tool. Please see more info here brought to us by Kandice Washington Cole: Kandice Washington Cole also happens to be one of my besties! I love her prompts!

Describe a moment when you laughed your ass off.

This video still makes me cry laughing This Beyonce fan goes in on Keri Hilson and says, “YOU STRANGER!”

What brought you to tears?

Losing my little angel on December 9, 2011 😦

What was your scariest moment?

When my husband got diagnosed with diabetes. He checked in the same day he was about to go into a diabetic coma. His blood sugar was too high!

Did you have a profound spiritual experience? How did your spirituality shift this year?

My husband was traveling for work and we were on the phone at about 1 am. After we got off the phone, I heard someone call my name and it told me to go & take a pregnancy test. We had been trying to conceive (TTC) all summer and I was starting to get discouraged. Lo & behold that pregnancy test was positive! I couldn’t even sleep because I was so excited!

What was your most memorable travel experience?

One of my best friends and I were on our way to Costco. On the way there we decided to stop and have lunch at one of my favorite restaurants that she had never eaten at. We had good girl conversation and the food (especially the salad bar) was delish! I love taking detours!