Scary and Exciting (Going sharpie public with my 2013 goals)

Hiya!  You’ll notice that things look a bit different around here today.  Well, that’s because the site is undergoing a facelift and we’re in the middle of construction.  So, what you’re seeing now is a place filler, a small glimpse into the new site that the amazing Hannah Beasley is cooking up, which I can’t wait to show you, truly.

So onward we go:

PicMonkey Collage- goals

This past summer my husband Kel had a meeting with a pastor who had also, interestingly enough, taught my senior capstone class in college.  Kel mentioned this fact over hamburgers and my former prof. had struggled to remember me, he finally said: “You mean the girl with the planner?”

Yes, it’s true, my trademark accessory in college was my planner. I rarely went anywhere without it, in fact I worked at the planner store in the mall where I was a certified productivity consultant.

I was so into planning, in fact, that Kel included it in his wedding vows: “I vow to be more organized because I’m amazed at how much you accomplish with your little planner.”

Oh planner girl, how I miss you, you were so put together and organized, lists flowed from your brain and you checked them off efficiently.  Where did you go?

I still buy planners or refills each year, but I rarely stick to them like I used to.  I just can’t find the right system and so much of our life is unscheduled and repetitive.

Kel’s and the kid’s schedules are very repetitive from week to week. Kids have preschool on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. Kel has worship on Tuesday nights, Basketball on Wednesdays etc.

It’s been tough going from the professional with a plan to the mom in yoga pants whose life seems to revolve around everyone else’s needs.  It’s taught me a lot about sacrifice and grace, I’m sure most stay-at-home parents can relate to this.

Nevertheless it’s time to re-think things and put some systems and strategies in place around here, because “those who fail to plan, plan to fail” right?

And on this note I’d like to share my goals for the year with you, do you mind?

I’ve had them kicking around for a month now but I was too scared to go public with them.  But, my friend Anne of Modern Mrs Darcy has been acting as an unofficial mentor to me lately and her recent post updating her 2013 goals convinced me that I really need to put my goals on paper, or blog.

Because if I share them with you guys I’m so much more likely to own them, right?  So here they are, in Sharpie:

Physical / Health

Run a 5 K– I come from a family of distance runners and I’ve always longed to be “hardcore”enough to run a marathon.  Everyone has to start somewhere and so at this point I plan on running the Oklahoma Memorial Marathon 5k.  I’m using the couch to 5k training plan to train for it.

Workout 4 days a week – I find that when I’m getting proper nutrition and exercise my depressive / anxious tendencies almost disappear and productivity skyrockets.  I’ll be training for my 5k 3 days a week and I’d like to throw in two extra strength training workouts as well.

Mental / Reading

Watch less TV– Ideally I will be reading twice as many books per month as the amount of hours I average watching TV each day, which I’m tracking.  I know this sounds like a crazy formula but I it makes sense in my head.  Along these lines, we are canceling cable this month and turning in our DVR… hold me.

Read 1 nonfiction book per month, 2 Novels per month and 3 Autobiographies over the course of the year- This year I not only want to get my reading up, I want to diversify. This is why I’m committing to the nonfiction books and autobiographies, Novels are easy for me but I want to stretch myself.


Complete 4 YouVersion reading plans this year- I’ve started about a dozen reading plans and never officially finished one yet (shameful.) This year I’d like to finish every one I start, but for now I’m shooting for 4.

Trust– This is not only my word for the year but the overarching concept in my heart right now.  After the dark seasons I’ve gone through, I need to make a journey back to trust and intimacy with God.  Way more about that here


Send more handwritten notes and handmade gifts –  I’m done bashing the internet, it’s given me more than it’s taken away at this point. Still, I want to take those relationships to a more tangible level by sending handmade cards and gifts.  This will apply to all my friendships, more cards in mailboxes!  Because, mailboxes don’t contain enough good surprises these days.  (I’ve already sent out two gifts this year)

Have a real date night with Kel every week (mostly at home) – Our schedules are sadly misaligned at this point. Kel is a college pastor, which means he works most weeknights.  I’m an at home mom of preschoolers, which means I’m up early and worn out by 8:30.  So we need to be more intentional about connection and quality time.  This will mostly include date nights at home, without TV.  Although there may be a good old fashioned movie date here and there, but they only count if we’re on the same couch.

Writing / Blog

Guest post at least 13 times at 13 different places in 2013. If you have any ideas or would like to chat about a guest post, please let me know.

Start a new, regular weekly feature on the blog-  This kicks off next Monday and it will be called “Mom Hacks.”  It will be a Monday feature where we can discuss different ideas and concepts to make life with kids easier. And who doesn’t want that? I’m going to be asking for guests to share their “hacks” as well.

Home and Family

Create workable, grace-filled, systems to keep things running smoother– This will include things like a cleaning schedule, a weekly planning meeting with Kel and a set “ideal” morning routine.  Although systems make things run smoother, I don’t want them to run us,  this is where the grace comes in.

Implement sticker charts for the kids– My kids love structure but there are some essentials getting lost along the way, like picking up legos and brushing teeth.  So in the upcoming weeks I will be gathering info on sticker charts and figuring out what will work best for us.

Be Liberal with Candles– This one sounds funny but I’ve always been a candle hoarder, only lighting them for special occasions or guests.  Yet, I’m finding that a scented candle flickering on the mantle makes me glow inside, so I want to loosen the grip on the candles and light up at my leisure.


Continue my efforts to “Dress For the Day I want”- There are a few bloggers that got me started on this concept, but it originated with Dear Abbey Leigh.  This idea is so simple, and life changing:  Dress for the day you want to have, not the one that’s trying to have you.  The more I do this, the better I feel about life.

Read Hayley Morgan’s No Brainer Wardrobe and apply that knowledge to my closet- check it out, ’nuff said.

Keep my Toenails cute– This one sounds silly but I feel so much better about my life when my nails are shapely and polished.  Plus if I don’t, people might die, allow me to explain: A few nights back while I was mopping the kitchen, I bent down to pick up a stray baby carrot, slipped and stabbed my hand… with my big toenail.  That’s right, I accidentally gouged my own hand with my own foot and drew blood because my toes were THAT gross.  So this goal is about self care but also ensure that I don’t accidentally stab Kel in his sleep.

Okay guys, those are my goals.  I will update you every once in a while as to how they’re coming along.  If you’ have sage advice on any of my endeavors, do share.

What are a few of your goals for 2013?  Have you been bold enough to go public with them?


  • Caris Adel

    I think you need my address then, haha.
    I love the new look. The yellow is so cheerful and gorgeous pic up top!!
    I like that idea of dress for the day you want. I’ve noticed that is so true. And here I sit in my pajamas still. The life hacks sounds like a great series. And I’m always up for hosting guest posts!!

    • Leanne Penny

      I would love to Guest Post for you friend! Email me and let me know what you’re thinking!

      • Caris Adel

        I have absolutely no idea – anything that would fit in with my blog, which is a pretty wide spectrum. Pretty easy to relate image of God stuff to lots of things!

  • Rebecca

    First, the new look is an amazing! I love the personal touches.
    Second, good for you for sharing your goals. Doesn’t it make them so much more real? I bet you will stick to them even better now that they’re out there.
    Third, I saw this a while ago and thought of you. Maybe you showed it to me or maybe I just saw it in pinterest-land, but it’s a printable planner designed for a blogger. (I still like to enable greatness in people and organizations… don’t you?)

    Fourth, miss you friend!!

    • Leanne Penny

      Ugh, I miss you too! I am all about checking that out, systems baby! We enable greatness naturally though, dontcha think? 😉

  • Mark Allman


    I smiled when I clicked on your planner store link and it took me to Franklin Covey. I have for a number of years taught Franklin Covey’s time management course for my employer and also at a couple of local community colleges. I would be happy to share with you some of the best ideas I have dealing with planning if you like. It has had the most effect on both my work career and private work of anything I have studied or any class I have taken. I wish you well on your goals!

    • Leanne Penny

      Love it Mark! I took those classes too and even taught a few at colleges as well. I knew there was a reason I liked you :)

    • leannepenny

      Thanks! I took those classes too and even taught a few to college kids as well. I knew there’s a reason I liked you :)

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  • Jamie Kocur

    I would LOVE to have you guest post at my blog if you’re ever interested. :)

    • leannepenny

      Yes! I will, let’s email again about this. I think it was me who dropped the ball here.

  • Anne Bogel

    I just lit a candle–because I’m prone to be stingy with mine, too–so I had to pop back over here and tell you. And tell you how much I love your sharpie-official goals. Here’s to a great year!

    You were the “girl with the planner”? I never would have guessed. 😉

    • leannepenny

      Okay so is this sarcasm? Because I really do feel like I come across as a flake lately 😉

  • Tanya Marlow

    I like these goals! Especially the reading one – like you, fiction is just easier for me than non-fiction.

    Nice to hang out here- came via Mark Allman’s recommendation

  • Addie Zierman

    Love your goals. Also? I’m dying that you worked at a planner store. So funny and also awesome. (Just bought a new planner at Target yesterday…because it was $3.98 on clearance, and nothing says “take back your life!” like a brand-spanking-new planner!)

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