Welcome to our little corner of the internet! We are a husband and wife photography team based out of Pittsburgh, and we specialize in wedding and engagement photography! Here you will find just about everything you need to know about us and our most recent work! Thanks for stopping by!
It’s no secret that I am very much a goal-oriented individual. I get excited about making lists, setting goals, and working my way through them. So, as you can imagine, the start to a new year gets me ALL kinds of excited to dream up goals for the year to come. For several years now I have followed Lara Casey’s blog setting series and steps and absolutely love the intentionality of how she encourages people to set goals. It’s more than chasing perfection (which we all know is never attainable) and creating a to-do lists – it’s about seeking real change and a better YOU. She has you go through steps like looking back at the past year and writing down what worked and what didn’t work, what we want to say “yes” to in the new year and what we want to say “no” to, and ultimately coming up with a list of goals accompanied with a WHY behind each goal. So, after a lot of time processing and writing down everything on my heart, let’s take a look at what I want my 2018 to look like!
(P.S. Here is the link to Lara’s blog where you can find all of her goal setting posts – you won’t regret it!)
Here’s a look at my over-arching, personal goals for 2018 and the why behind them…
Continue to seek spiritual growth and biblical literacy
Last year was the most I have been in God’s word, ever. I started getting up before the kids to read my bible and really dive into the truth and goodness that is God’s word, and it was incredibly rewarding. So, it’s a goal again for this year to continue getting in the word every day. I want to learn – and retain what I’m learning – through scripture memorization and prayer.
Why: I want to know God’s love letter for us. I want to deepen my understanding of who God is and fill my heart up with His word so that I am aligning my life with the truth of God and not with the things of this world.
– Get up before the kids
– Have a plan (I just started a new in-depth study through Romans that I am really excited about)
– Print out bible verses and leave around house for memorization (would love to have a new verse each week, but 1-2/month might be more realistic)
– Set aside time to pray and use this prayer journal (this past year I did a lot of reading and studying, but I missed consistent time in prayer and I’m really hoping to change that this year)
– Let go out of control and let God lead – this could honestly fall into a goal on it’s own, but I’m determined to let God lead me more this year as I grow in my walk with Him
Encouraging Words: “Blessed is the man whose…delight is in the law of the Lord and on His law he meditates day and night” Psalm 1:1-2
Cultivate a life of gratitude and contentment
Why: Everything we have is a gift from Him. Anytime I am not seeking a life of gratitude and contentment, I am saying that what He has given us is not enough. I want my focus to be on Him, not on the things of this world.
– Keep a gratitude journal (I’m actually planning on using this – I’ve had it for several years, but have never used it so I’m going to start writing something I am grateful for each day)
– Stop complaining. “Complaints are clues. They reveal to us the places in our hearts where we don’t trust in God’s goodness or His power” – Lara Casey
– Reevaluate budget – less for me, more for others
– Avoid random trips to stores and senseless online shopping
Encouraging Words: “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” 1 Timothy 6:6-12
Cultivate a loving, fun, life-giving home
Why: I want my kids to grow up in a home that exudes love and joy and laughter and grace – after all, the home is where their hearts are shaped! I want them to know that joy comes from celebrating what God has given us, and I want them to see Him at work in our home. I want Mike, the kids and anyone who comes into our home to feel loved and accepted.
– Set aside quality time with each of the kids and Mike each month (through monthly date nights with mike and a monthly outing with each kid – doesn’t have to be extravagant, but a way to ensure each kid is feeling loved and seen)
– Start teaching Emily the fruit of the Spirit – what better way to have a life-giving home than seeking to fill it with the fruit of the Spirit – the characteristics of the One who gave us life!
– Come up with what traditions and celebrations we are wanting to make a big deal of in our family, and come up with at least 5 ways we can turn some of the mundane routines of life into fun, joyful celebrations.
– Less phone time – more face to face time
– Seek opportunities to invite others into our home and love them well
Encouraging Words: “All people need a place where their roots can grow deep and they always feel like they belong and have a loving refuge. And all people need a place that gives wings to their dreams, nurturing possibilities of who they might become.” – Sally Clarkson
Take More Personal Photos
Why: I want to be documenting the silly, messy, every day, real life of our little family more. It’s become more and more clear with each passing month just how fast these kiddos are growing up, and I want to have pictures to go with the stories and memories of these early years.
– Leave camera out on the counter
– Take the camera with me when we go out (it’s become such a habit to just use my phone, and while I am incredibly thankful for my phone camera, there are just some moments I want to be captured with my real camera)
– Keep up with editing personal photos and backing up iPhone photos to the computer to organize and categorize monthly
Encouraging Words: “Taking an image, freezing a moment, reveals how rich reality truly is.” – Anonymous
Read 10 books
Why: I want to continue learning! Between reading and listening to podcasts this past year I have learned so much and still have so many books on my list to read!
– Dedicate time to read 1 chapter/day 5 days a week
– Listen to more books through Overdrive (a free app where you can borrow audio books from your library) and Audible
Encouraging Words: “To know wisdom and instruction, to understand words of insight, to receive instruction in wise dealing, in righteousness, justice, and equity; to give prudence to the simple, knowledge and discretion to the youth— Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance, to understand a proverb and a saying, the words of the wise and their riddles. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.” Proverbs 1:2-7
My 2018 Reading List:
Parenting: 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family
Ministry of Motherhood
Mission of Motherhood
Life Giving Home
Dance Stand Run
She Reads Truth
Grace Based Discipline
A Simplified Life
Along with these goals listed above, I have specific personal and business goals that I am working on. I will be sharing those each month through my monthly goal series on the blog, but these overarching goals are the things I am most striving for in 2018. I want to look back at the end of the year and see growth in each of these areas of my life!
How about you? Do you set goals for the New Year? I’d love to hear what you are striving for in 2018! Comment below so I can send you a little encouragement!