I am so happy to see another week of the 2021-2022 school year come to a close. Two more stand between me and summer vacation. It’s Friday and I’m excited to join in on the Five Minute Friday writerly fun. This week our prompt is Vision.
Five months into the year and I want to take some time to reflect. So far in 2022 the days have been long, but the weeks have been short. At the beginning of the year I cast a vision for myself in my bullet journal and set an intention for the year to live with “passion and drive”.
The vision I started the year with has expanded in five months.
I’ve worked with clients on novels, short stories, blogs, letters, academic papers, social media profiles, and more. With each client I am building confidence and expertise in the field.
Each month I send out a newsletter to update those who want to know how this vision and business is growing. The newsletter starts with a letter to my readers and provides updates on my business as well as my blog. If you want to join the FREE subscription and receive those monthly newsletters, subsribe here:
Another way the vision is expanding is through Patreon, a website dedicated to helping creative small businesses interact with customers and clients by providing exclusive content. You can join my Patreon page to receive free monthly edits, a monthly short story, creative content, and more.
This vision for The Ameri Brit Mom continues to grow and I am so happy to have readers and fans like you to support my dream. Thank you so much for stopping by and I would be delighted if you would consider a way to partner with me and my vision during the second half of 2022.
As I prepare to cross another week off of the 2022 calendar, I am excited to join fellow writers for yet another Five Minute Friday post. This is a weekly link-up where a community of writers agree to spend five minutes crafting pieces all inspired by the same prompt. This week our prompt is: Commit.
A few weeks ago, when 2022 was in the future and we had not yet faced the trials of the past six weeks, I set out to write some goals for the new year. It’s become an annual tradition for me focus on what I want to reflect on throughout the year ahead and I commit to a word or phrase that becomes my mantra for the next 365 days.
In 2022, I am committed to Passion and Drive.
While pursuing my graduate degree over the past several years, I neglected my own passions and desires. I knew that when I started that program it would cost me time that I had previously set aside for my passions. Knowing that the sacrifice of my passions was temporary, I allowed myself to push through with little regard for the things that cause me to alight with passion.
Things like developing my craft, reading, pursuing publication for my manuscripts, working out, and building my community of writers became less of a priority while I focused on the pursuit of my studies.
I am six weeks into my new adventure.
My commitment to chase my passions is fueled by a drive of someone who cares deeply for their personal growth and for helping others to do the same. I am committed to my passions by setting goals, rebranding this blog, pursuing publication for my manuscripts, creating a community of supporters, and offering Writing and Editing Services.
If you want to join this journey into passion and growth please consider signing up for the FREE subscription to The Ameri Brit Mom. I’ll send you a monthly email with updates and ideas for chasing your own passions with drive.
Wow! Is anyone else completely blown away that 2021 is just about over? There were times when it felt never ending, but also times when the dates dropped off the calendar so quickly. I will be adding a few miniposts these next couple of days to talk about my 2021 goals and reflecting on the past 365 days, but today I have a fun post for you–so let’s jump in and see how I set up my 2022 Bullet Journal.
First, a disclaimer. I did not originate any of the ideas or terms used in this post. I am a HUGE fan of Youtube Bullet Journal channels and find so much inspiration from artists like Amanda Rach Lee, Caitlin’s Corner, The Plant Based Bride, Julianne Doodles and Shayda Campbell. In fact, I did a shout out to these five women a few months back. Check that out here!
Supplies: For this year’s bullet journal setup, I used…
Crayola Super Tips (Periwinkle, Light Gray, and Charcoal)
Of all the journals I have used in the past the Amanda Rach Lee notebooks are my favorite because the paper quality is fantastic. The pages do not bleed through or ghost. They are also a bright white which makes covering mistakes so much easier than off-white pages.
The color scheme I chose for this setup is Periwinkle. For the past couple of years I have used the Pantone Color of the Year as a base to make all of the first pages in the journal feel connected. The accent colors I used were a light gray and a charcoal gray. The title page is full of Amanda Rach Lee doodles which I colored in my color scheme. I love the way this page turned out.
2022 Words of the Year
At the beginning of each year I like to choose words of the year that reflect my intentions and hopes for the next twelve months. This year I am focusing on the words Drive and Passion. This is a page dedicated to those words and how I plan to enter 2022 with drive for the things I am most passionate about.
Because I like to split my goals up into two categories, I used the entire spread for the writing of my goals in 2022. On one side I wrote out my personal goals which include fitness and family and on the other page I wrote out my work-related goals which include blogging, business, and reading. When I complete this page, I will write out a measurable goal for each category.
Grid Spacing and Wishlists
When I sit down to create a new spread I often refer to this page to help me divide my pages equally. I used a mix of Amanda Rach Lee and the Plant Based Bride’s methods on how to set up this page. If you like to make sure that things are lined up I would recommend checking out their explanations on their channels.
Beside my Grid Spacing mock-up I created a place for a personal wishlist as well as a place to record gifts that I give to others. Both of these lists come in handy when someone asks what I want for my birthday or when I’m struggling to come up with gift ideas for others. Also, because I have kept a gift list in my journals over the years, I like to look back and see what I’ve given people in the past to make sure I don’t repeat gifts or to simply reminisce.
Future Log 2022
One of the most tedious spreads to create, yet most aesthetically pleasing is the annual Future Log. This is a “dump” space for all upcoming events or appointments. The bullet journal concept focuses on month-to-month planning and so the Future Log is helpful for events or appointments that may be a few months out.
Because I have so many ideas for The Ameri Brit Mom in 2022, I dedicated a page to brainstorming my brand ideas.
Books of 2022
This is a spread to track the books that I read in 2022. One of my goals is to read and review at least two books per month. What I have created with this page is just a skeleton. I plan to put a picture of the cover of each book that I finish on the provided squares and so for now there are just placeholders waiting to be filled.
Quarter 1 Goals Tracker
I am a goal-oriented individual and so when I set goals at the beginning of a new year I truly intend to fulfill those goals and to track my progress. I’ve found that breaking each goal down into small steps helps me to make sure that by the end of the year I have realized all the goals I established in January. This is a page for breaking down my goals for the first three months of the year.
Tracking my health and symptoms is very important to me and so I like to create an easy place for me to log all things related to physical health.
Thanks for taking a look at my 2022 Bullet Journal setup. I really enjoy taking time at the end of each year to reflect on previous journals and planning how my new notebook will serve me in the coming year.
In 2022, there are BIG things coming to The Ameri Brit Mom. Make sure that you join the subscription list to be the first to know what’s going on. You can join the subscription in the margin or by clicking below.
This week the topic for the Five Minute Friday link-up post is here. What is a link-up? Essentially a link-up is when you join other bloggers and write on a similar topic. You share your blog posts with one another and begin conversations via a host site. You can head over to Kate Motaung’s page to check out other entries from inspired bloggers. Here’s my five minutes of uninterrupted, unedited writing on this week’s topic:
Here is where I come to relax. When I need a moment to myself I sit down and pull out my laptop and begin reading and writing away. I can get so distracted in life and so worn out, but when I sit down and take a minute to write what’s on my heart everything seems to calm down.
Here is where I am bold. I take bold steps forward on this blog. I step out and try new things. I’m vulnerable and honest. Not that I’m not these things in real life, but for me, it’s easier to be bold with a community that is FOR you like all of my dear readers.
Here is where I dream. On this page you will find many of my dreams. Some of them have been set into motion while others have not yet come to pass. It’s a place where I can share my passions and work on them at the same time. This page is ever-changing as I get closer and closer to the dreams that God has placed in my heart. I’m evolving in more areas of my life beyond just simply writing. God is shaping me through this writing and helping me to achieve goals not only set by me, but also by Him.
Here is home.
Thank you to all of you who have been HERE and who support me. Life is busy and I know your lives, like mine, are pulled in all sorts of directions, but thank you for making time to visit here.
This week the topic for the Five Minute Friday link-up post is ten. What is a link-up? Essentially a link-up is when you join other bloggers and write on a similar topic. You share your blog posts with one another and begin conversations via a host site. You can head over to Kate Motaung’s page to check out other entries from inspired bloggers. Here’s my five minutes of uninterrupted, unedited writing on this week’s topic:
Ten years ago I was a crazy and stupid fifteen year old. I spent a majority of my time running and training for cross-country and track. I was obsessed. Among other things, I spent my life focused on me and my independent progress through life and pursuit of my own short term goals. I had little regard for my long term future and lived fully in the moment.
There is a lot that I had yet to learn at fifteen, but there are some things I did to help set me up for a successful, healthy lifestyle. I made sure that exercise was a part of my daily routine. I ran a minimum of three miles a day with some days running upwards of eight or nine miles. I ate fairly well, and maintained a steady, healthy weight.
At fifteen I was a new Christian. I began setting the foundation for my faith at that age and did so by attending a church and youth group regularly. I plugged myself in to a fellowship of believers around the same age as myself and I set myself up for success in this area in the future. Ten years later I am involved in the church we belong to and have plugged my family in to a cLife group at our church which is a group that meets in homes weekly.
As I look to the future me I have some long term goals for myself. In ten years I will be thirty-five. Here are ten goals for the next ten years!:
1. to be happily married as we celebrate our 14th anniversary
2. to gain wisdom and patience as I prepare to raise a teenager (Ari will be nearly 13)
3. to have one or two additional children
4. to maintain a steady workout routine of three or more days a week
5. to earn my Master’s Degree
6. to submit a manuscript to a publishing company and get published!
7. to raise my children to be involved in church and to give them opportunities to encounter Jesus for themselves
8. to travel to Italy or France (or both!)
9. to go on a cruise
10. to visit the west coast of America
I think it is a great practice to reflect on and set goals. My goals are constantly evolving as I change and progress as an individual. I try to evaluate my long term goals every New Year. I look at the progress I’ve made toward each goal and how I can better achieve the results I’m seeking for myself.
What do you hope to accomplish in the next ten years?
Recently, I have been contacted by a company called ETB Fit. They had a couple of questions for me so I will share some of those responses in this post.
What foods do you eat pre workout?
I think it is really important to eat healthy. Not only for the sake of getting the most out of your workout, but for your overall health. I’ve experienced the side effects of eating a diet high in fat and oils and it is not worth it. It caused a lot of illness and pain in my life that was unnecessary. For me personally I like to eat bananas before a workout because they help prevent cramping as well as other natural energy producing fruits and grains (Cliff Bars, peanuts, Cheerios…etc)
What do you listen to during your workout?
I am a book nerd. I read or write during every spare moment I get and even during the times I should be doing something else. When it comes to working out I like to find an audio book on my iPhone and listen as I exercise. I put in my earbuds and push play. Most recently I listened to the book, We Were Liars while using the elliptical. It was fantastic and it kept me feeling balanced. I didn’t have the feeling like I was missing out on one thing I loved because I chose to do another that day. I’m a busy mom and I hate feeling like I have to choose between reading, writing, or working out each day. That;s why I enjoy pairing audio books with working out.
How do you switch up certain routines daily/weekly to stay motivated?
In my planner I set up a system of alternation. Some days I set aside for running and others I work out on the elliptical. Occassionally I throw in days where I do work out videos and build strength. It all depends on what I am focusing on at the time which all comes back to the goals I set for myself. When it comes to working out it is crucial to constantly write goals for yourself. For me, if I don’t have short and long term goals to focus on I’m less likely to be motivated to do the working out.
What do you eat or do after your workout to make sure you got the most out of your workout?
I tend to wrap up a workout with a cold bottle of Gatorade. I have hypoglycemia and tend to lose a lot of blood sugar during a good workout so replenishing with water alone can leave me a little light headed for a couple of hours and can lead to head aches as well.
As a working mother it is so easy to lose focus on myself and take care of my own body. For a very long time I put myself on the back burner and worried more about giving my child healthy foods and exercise and less about my own dietary and fitness needs. It’s been a journey of ups and downs, but I am finally at a place where I feel okay with what I look like. I would still love to get into better shape, and my new goals should help me do that. If you have any of your own fitness rituals or routines that you would like to share please do so below in the comment box.
I am taking a new step in this whole world of blogging. For about a month I’ve been researching link-ups and how they are valuable in growing your blogging community. Essentially a link-up is when you join other bloggers and write on a similar topic. You share your blog posts with one another and begin conversations via a host site. After the idea of joining a link-up was decided upon I sifted through so many groups and topics that closely resembled my blog personality. I settled on a link-up called Five Minute Fridays. From what I can tell this link-up values faith and writing. Two things that speak so much to my soul. Each week the host of the link up (Kate Motaung) posts a topic and those joining the link-up write for five minutes on that topic. I’m really excited to get going in my first ever link-up. I hope to meet many new bloggers who share my passion for both writing and faith. Blogging is such a blessing and has taught me to be courageous in so many aspects of my life. So without further adieu…my first link-up:
When I was younger I used to dream of this. I remember closing my eyes and picturing the life I have now. I wanted to be happily married with a family I’m crazy about and doing something I love for a living. For so many years I worked so hard to achieve those things for myself and here I am. Life is better than anything I could have ever imagined.
My husband is a great guy who keeps me laughing and on my toes at all times. He may get a little crazy about basketball sometimes, but let’s face it his passion for his dreams push me toward my own. He is a great dad who is always supportive and present. I love having the same schedule so that we can be so active together in the life of our daughter.
In my early dreams I don’t know that I would have thought I’d be a mother of an almost three year old by my twenty-fifth birthday, but sometimes God’s plan is better than my own. I can’t imagine life without my inquisitive and fun-loving toddler. She makes me smile and adds a little more purpose to each day.
I recently finished my fourth year in my current teaching position. I’ve been so richly blessed in this profession and I’ve grown and developed so much in that short amount of time.
Some days I know that I lose sight of my dreams. I get hung up on the day-to-day mundane tasks and forget that this is the life I waited, trained, and studied for. The last thing I do every night is take a look at these dreams that I’ve accomplished and I say a little prayer of gratitude. Life is nothing if we can’t dream. And dreaming is believing that you can do it. At times, my dreams go unrealized, but that’s when I remember that God is a bigger dreamer than me. Sometimes those dreams line up and other times I have to trust that His are better than mine. It’s such a blessing to reflect and see in hindsight how God was dreaming divinely even when I couldn’t understand it.
Happy Birthday to me. Today I turn 25. A quarter of a century has passed since the beginning of my existence. I’ve come so far and achieved so many of my goals for myself over the past year. (This blog is a fruit of some of my previous goals.) I am looking forward to spending this day with my family. My husband has been out of town all week (and missed our anniversary), but luckily he’s back in time to celebrate today with me. Since our anniversary and my birthday are within the same week we have started our tradition of celebrating them separately. With our anniversary we do a date night just my husband and I. With my birthday the plans include something more family friendly. As long as the weather cooperates we will be heading to the Columbus Zoo today for some family fun in the sun.
My mom’s birthday was yesterday and we re-established an old tradition. When I lived at home we used to do a brunch/lunch on her birthday to celebrate both of our big days. It hasn’t happened in a while so we decided to re-establish this idea this year. Over a month ago I made reservations at Cooper’s Hawk Winery at Easton in Columbus in anticipation for our birthday lunch.
Overall, I am very thankful this year on my birthday. I’m thankful to have my husband back after being gone for the week in Washington DC.
I’m thankful for my daughter who is so kind, intelligent, and beautiful.
I’m also thankful to begin my summer vacation with lovely weather.
Some of my goals for 25:
1. Continue working on my blog and sending out writing to publishers monthly. Also, in the writing field finishing a manuscript.
2. Running a 5k
3. Creating and following through with a health and fitness plan
4. Teaching a creative honors course designed by myself which features exploratory learning
I have finally done it. I have sent off some of my writing to publishers!
For so long I have had a goal of one day publishing some of my writing and today I woke up and decided it would happen. I’m starting smaller and sending short articles out to some of my favorite magazines and online journals in hopes of someone taking a chance with me. I don’t have much beyond this blog to use as a reference, but I am confident that someone somewhere will find what I have to say relevant to them.
I set a goal that I would focus on sending out writing samples to five publishers each month and my prayer is that God will put my writing in the hands of someone who will see value in it. One reason I have not done this before now is because I’ve been fearful that I haven’t reached writing perfection, but the more I read and the more I study the writing field the more I realize there is no such thing. (If there were, then the need for editors wouldn’t be there.) I know that if I waited for perfection I would never end up sending out a manuscript or article to any publisher. Fear of failure is crippling, but this is an act of victory over fear on my part.
So today in a moment of ambition and prayer I made my first submissions in commitment to my goal. Please join me in prayer that a goal of mine may someday be realized and that God’s gift of writing to me may somehow reach people in a way that it never has before. I will keep you updated as I hear from publishers with both good and bad news. I anticipate that the road to publishing is paved with rejection, but my prayer is that despite the numerous rejections I am bound to receive that God will align my path with the right organization for using me as His tool.
Thanks for reading my blog and joining me as I pray for God’s will.
What a lovely alliteration that I feared may never again be reality for this momma.
This year I have resolved to return to an old pastime, the art of running. In school I was a competitive runner. I’ve raced anywhere between 400 meters to 13.1 miles. I have many accomplishments from my younger years like:
1 mile League champion in track
4 time Regional Qualifier in Cross Country
2 time Ohio State Qualifier in Cross Country
2 time Half-marathon runner (sub 2 hour times)
and I have run or placed in probably over twenty non-school affiliated road races.
These are things I am very proud of, but they are also things I do not often speak about. They are a reminder to me about how I’ve allowed myself to fall out of shape and how I’ve been incapable of keeping a constant workout routine over the years. I have not competed in any type of racing atmosphere since I got married. Work and adulthood have gotten in the way of continuing a hobby I once enjoyed. The first year of teaching is the hardest, and I found it really hard to keep a routine of any sort in my life. I feel like after that year ended I continued to let work become my excuse. And then there was a baby.
It took me months after the delivery of my daughter to get my body back and to retain the ability to exercise in a vigorous manner. It was probably nine months or so before I even tried to do an isolated run here and there. The idea of exercise and finding time with a newborn was overwhelming so I didn’t try very hard at making it happen.
But I am done with making excuses. Yes, I am busy. Yes, I am tired often. Yes, I am out of shape, but when a workout can be completed in twenty minutes or less there is really no excuse.
When it came to setting some New Years Resolutions (2015) I had two things I wanted to accomplish: 1. Publish some of my writings and actively participate in the writing community and 2. Run a 5k. Over the past few months I have been semi-committed to that second goal. It’s been a terrible winter and running outside has been next to impossible, but I have maintained my fitness through various indoor workouts such as walking the long halls at my school, elliptical training, and cardio/core workout videos (Jillian Michaels). I’ve written on here before about my progress in those areas, but it is now time to update on my outdoor running stats!
Well, so far there isn’t too much to update you on. There have been a few days hit or miss that the weather has been decent enough for an outdoor running endeavor. Last week before my allergies acted up I ran for twenty minutes in my neighborhood. I felt out of shape and sore for the next few days. On Sunday of this week I woke up to beautiful weather and a huge desire to get outdoors and push myself. I ended up running 3.1 miles through my town/neighborhood in just under 28:00. Now this isn’t ideal, but it is progress toward my goal nonetheless.
The weather has been very bipolar this week. Last night when I wanted to do a run it was snowing…so I did a quick, but intense elliptical circuit. Today, my plan? Another couple of miles outdoors. It’s 46 degrees Fahrenheit we will see how it goes.
Anywho…keep me accountable, blogging community. I would love to see myself complete a 5k or two this summer in times around 24 minutes. In order to get there I know I have a lot of stamina and consistency to build. 2015 is all about reaching goals for me so I hope to see myself back on the road racing away soon. I’m not aiming to become a super-runner or anything, but I would like to see myself return to a love of mine. The art of RUNNING.