Friday, December 29, 2017

Ideas for the new year.

My RushLittles chatbooks series

With only 3 days until the New Year, I thought I would share some of my favorite year-long habits/projects/ideas. Not so much goals as they are projects or activities, these are all useful things to start and keep working on for the next year. What are you setting out to do? Do you have any little projects you work on each year? I know I'm missing lots of good stuff from this list like organized, minimizing, creating, etc. Give me all your tips!

1SE: My favorite discovery of 2017! Have you seen this fun app? Such a great way to document your family and your year. It seems insignificant at first (1 second movie clips are so short!), but they add up and are so cool to look back on. The app is inexpensive and really easy to use. If you forget a day (or 10!) you can easily import a video from a different day. I love it! (See some of my 1SE videos from the year here)

Project life: I may be super behind on mine, but I really do love Project Life books. When I'm on my game, I print a large set of photos each month (Shutterfly and Snapfish always have good deals for 4x6 prints) and then put them in the photo sleeves. I wrote more about that here! (There's also a handy app you can use to make it all even easier and digital- I'm just a sucker for printed photos in photo sleeves)

chatbooks: Clearly I love photos! This year I discovered Chatbooks and how easy it is to create an ongoing book series. I use a unique hashtag on my Instagram photos of the boys and then Chatbooks pulls those specific photos to create a book. Once the book has 60 photos, it ships to me. SO easy. I can go in an edit (I leave all my captions out and choose 5 pictures to have printed in addition to the book). You can see some of my Chatbooks here!

Organize photos: While we're talking about photos, I should say that being more organized with mine is my goal for 2018. Anyone have a million photos (digital and printed) that you just don't know what to do with?! I plan to buy this guide from Nancy Ray (I hear amazing things about her tips!), finally figure out how to use the external hard drive I bought 3 years ago (anyone want to help me with that?!), and use some of Valerie's tips.

Yearly Bible reading plan: Hands down, this is my favorite yearly habit. Have you ever read the Bible in its entirety? It's one of those things worth doing once, and then over and over again. You can find endless plans and tools for reading through the Bible in a year, and I've found that using the YouVersion app on my phone is the easiest. It's free and already on my phone, so it didn't take much work to get started. I use a chronological plan (my favorite one builds in one grace day each week!). It tracks my progress for me and, if I don't have my actual Bible with me for any reason I can read straight in the app. I talk more about why I love this discipline here! Even better? Find a friend to do it along with you to help with accountability and encouragement.

Gratitude journal: Tons of research shows that practicing thanksgiving has positive impacts on every aspect of health (physical, emotional, mental, etc). Whether you pick up a cute notebook at Target, a cute one from a small business (I like the customizable ones from May Designs!) or download this adorable free Best of My Days pack for free- it's a really easy way to make sure the new year is intentional and focused on the right things.

monthly photo spot: One of my favorites, Shannan Martin, takes a photo each month in the same spot on her neighborhood. Its a cool way to see how things change and how they stay the same. I always love clicking through her hashtag!

make a book list: I set out to read 26 books in 2017 and, to my surprise, I nearly doubled that! Having a specific reading goal made me more intentional about it and it's been a fun thing to 'work' on. A quick google search with give you lots of lists of the best books to read right now- and you can find some of what I read in 2017 here, here, and here.

Word for the year: you've heard of this, right? It's not a new concept, but way more practical than making resolutions for the new year. This handy site can help you pick a word to focus on this year!

What are you working on in 2018? I'm always looking for fun new things to try!

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