Five on Friday | Personal Goals for 2015

1. Read 12 new books (1 per month)

I love to read.  Love, love love it!  When I started law school, I pretty much stopped reading for fun.  Yes, I've read books here and there but nothing like I used to and definitely not 12 books a year.  So that is my first goal for this year: read one book a month for all twelve months.

I started Gone Girl when I was home for Christmas and am still trucking through it (its great, just need to make more time for reading) so I'm counting that for January!

2. Plan at least one date night a month

This is pretty self-explanatory.  We can get so caught up with work and volunteer activities and life that we forget to live it WITH each other.  It might not be much but at least one night a month I want to do something with Chris that is just the two of us, spending time with each other.

3. Take one picture a day all year

You may have seen on Instagram that I've started this goal already, though I've already skipped a few days!  Oops!  But I'm not letting that stop me.  It might not turn out perfect but it will be fun!  Follow along with my hashtag #365kgm2015

4. Build an emergency fund/savings account

I am terrible at saving money.  Most of the time, I have no idea what I would do if a major unexpected expense came up.  I don't like that feeling at all.  I haven't taken that Financial Peace University class (though I want to!) but I know that one of the first steps is to establish a savings account for emergencies.  So that is the goal for this year.  And if I can pay down some debt in the process, that will be awesome too!


This is my biggest goal for this year.  I am way over-extended.  I need to determine which activities I'm most passionate about and give 100% to those activities instead of being over-committed and not being able to give my full attention to anything.  I want to be purposeful in the choices that I make and enjoy the life I'm living.  I'm not exactly sure what life is going to look like at the end of the year but I know it will be less crowded.



Healthy New Years Resolution Options & A Giveaway!

Thanks to Weight Watchers, General Mills and Publix for sponsoring today's post

I'm sure I'm like most people and start off each new year with a goal to be healthier and to lose weight. Recently I've found that I lose more weight and feel better over the entire course of the day when I clean up my diet and eat better food.  So this year, I've set out to accomplish my goal by doing just that.  And lets be honest here, there's no way I'm getting up early to go for a run when it is in the single digits outside!

Coming up with tasty, healthy and easy meal options is hard!  Usually the easiest things to cook are the most processed and the more healthy options are either bland or way too complicated for me to tackle after work.  One easy way to add flavor and diversity to my meals is with Weight Watchers-endorsed products such as Yoplait Greek 100 Calorie Yogurt, Progresso Light Soups, Yoplait Light Fat Free Yogurt, Green Giant Frozen Boxed and Canned Vegetables.  Weight Watchers-endorsed products make it easy to serve up lighter, smarter recipe and menu options to kick off the new year right.

One of my favorite easy weeknight meals just got a lot easier with Weight Watchers endorsed Green Giant vegetables,

My favorite weeknight meal is marinated baked chicken with broccoli and sweet potatoes.  

The Grill Mates seasonings are such great, easy marinades.  The favorite of mine and Chris' is the Zesty Herb.  All you do to prepare the marinade is mix the seasoning with water, white vinegar and oil.  Let the chicken breasts marinate in the seasoning for 3-4 hours then bake the chicken breasts at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

My favorite way to cook sweet potatoes is to cube them, coat them in olive oil, garlic salt and pepper, and bake them on a cookie sheet at 350 degrees for an hour, stirring every 15 minutes.  

Finally, the last part of the meal is the easiest.  The Green Giant vegetables are prepared by cutting a slit in the pouch and microwaving the pouch for 6 1/2 minutes.

There you have it! A super easy recipe to help you stay on track with your New Years Resolutions! You can find all the Weight Watchers-endorsed products at Publix,  Eating healthy doesn't have to be expensive either.  

Go here to print there paper coupons to take to any store with you:

Save $.40 when you buy SIX CUPS any variety Yoplait® Yogurt
Save $1.00 when you buy FIVE CUPS any variety Yoplait® Greek or Yoplait® Greek 100 yogurt
Save $0.80 when you buy 4 any variety Green Giant® Frozen Boxed Vegetables

Publix is currently offering these Direct to Card coupons: 

Save $1 when you buy 4 Progresso™ products (excludes Progresso™ Pasta Bowl)
Save $.40 when you buy SIX CUPS any variety Yoplait® Yogurt
Save $1.00 when you buy FIVE CUPS any variety Yoplait® Greek or Yoplait® Greek 100 yogurt
Save $0.80 when you buy 4 any variety Green Giant® Frozen Boxed Vegetables

Additionally, the following offers are available at your local Publix store from 1/1 to 1/7: 

Green Giant 4-packs: BOGO
Green Giant Frozen Vegetables: BOGO
Progresso Soups: BOGO

I am also excited to be able to giveaway a great gift basket from General Mills. It will include some great things like salad tongs, a dressing emulsifier, and salad shears. All perfect things to help lighten up your meals this year.  Just enter using the rafflecopter below and I will choose a winner next week!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

How are you staying on track with your New Years Resolutions?


Blog Goals for 2015

Now that 2015 is officially here, many of us are thinking about what we would like this new year to look like.  One of my biggest personal goals is to be more purposeful and intentional with the way I use my time.  To do this, I have been evaluating my current projects and where I want to spend my time.  I want to make sure that everything I am devoting time to is contributing something positive to my life, even if its just something that does nothing other than make me happy.  This blog of mine is one of those things that makes me happy so I thought it would be a good idea to set a few goals for myself and this space.

Blog at least one time per week

The second half of 2014 proved to be a blogging dry spell for me.  Sometimes I would go weeks and weeks without posting.  Hopefully I'll be posting multiple times per week but, at the very least, I don't want to let a single week go by this year without posting.

Sponsor at least one blog a month

I really want to dedicate time and effort to growing and developing my corner of the interwebs this year and cultivate a little community here. To do that I have to connect with people each and every day. I would love to have the money to sponsor every single other blog out there but I think the goal of one a month is a healthy place to start.

Start offering sponsor packages again

This year I will finally update my media kit (hello! can you say outdated?!) and start offering sponsorship packages again.  As much as I want to develop this little space of mine, I want to help y'all develop your spaces and business too!  If you have ideas for what you would like to see in sponsorship packages, send your ideas my way!

Attend more local blogger meet-ups this year

There are a couple of local blogger groups in the Triangle.  I want to be better about dedicating time to go to these events and making new friends!  My goal is to go to at least one every 3 months.

Engage more

This amazing blogging community is what keeps me coming back to the keyboard whenever I can which is why I want to engage with this community more.  Not only do I want to promote my own posts more but I want to engage with my readers and with the bloggers behind the blogs that I love to read. Social media is a wonderful tool and I want to utilize all my social media platforms more this year to get to know y'all even better!