I've chosen a word of the year for the last three years and always look forward to selecting my word/theme of the year. It's a fun tradition that I am happy to keep up with. I usually keep a running list of potential words on my phone in the month of December. Then I think it over, pray about it and select a word that will give my coming year some direction.
My past words of the year have been:
I became a mom, put my teaching career on hold to be a stay at home mom
and we moved from UT to AR for my husband's job
We moved from AR to MS, I was still learning the ropes of being a mom
and wanted to be successful in a new state
We were settling into life in Mississippi and my plan was to fully embrace our new city and enjoy everything it had to offer. I joined Bible studies, church groups, made friend and LOVED living in Jackson. I laugh when I go back and read this ENJOY post because I had no idea what the Lord had in store for my family. MY plan was to enjoy our new city, our new life and have a really comfortable, easy year. I did just that for several months and we had a wonderful run in Mississippi. God turned things upside down for us in the best way and Kevin was offered his dream job back in our home state of Indiana. We sold our house in 19 days, moved from MS to IN and started a new life in a new city mid year. His plan was far better than my own and it's amazing to look back and see how God perfectly aligned things to happen for us. We ended up pregnant after struggling to conceive and found ourselves really enjoying our life in a completely different way than we'd planned.
My word of the year for 2016 is INVITE.
It's exhausting to live in our fourth new city in four years and I want to work hard this year to INVITE new opportunities into our life. My goal is not to fill our days with stuff, rather it's to get comfortable in our city and make things feel like home for us. I'd like to make the most of our days filling them with meaningful things and opportunities where we can all grow.
INVITE ourselves to churches until we find a church home.
INVITE new friends to our house and to meet up instead of waiting for an invitation. Initiate these play dates instead of waiting for someone to ask us.
Say yes to fun INVITATIONS that come our way.
Take others up on INVITATIONS they've extended to get to know us better
even if that means we're the new people in the group or go to an event where we barely know anyone. Work hard to make new friends and find people to connect with in our area.
INVITE good routines into our daily life - Bible reading, exercise, reading for fun, healthy eating and getting out and about to explore our new city. Encourage each other to make these positive things a priority.
INVITE family and friends to come and visit us.
INVITE others to help us as we transition to a family of 4 in the Spring.
I'm a pretty independent person so asking for help is not something I am good at.
ASK for help when life gets challenging.
INVITE Kevin on dates even if that means I plan something for after Olive goes to bed. Surprise him with a babysitter occasionally or INVITE him to a lunch date to break up a busy week.
Look for opportunities in the community to INVITE ourselves to - free programs for kids, festivals, moms groups and learning opportunities.
INVITE ourselves to a Bible Study or Sunday School class when we do find a church.
Look for toddler friendly activities and INVITE ourselves to them - story time, music classes, park play dates and more. I'm just figuring out where to find event options so I'd like to be proactive and get us involved.
INVITE ourselves to fun events at the country club to make friends.
Extend special INVITATIONS to Olive to help with her transition as a big sister. I'm hoping that making one on one time a priority with her will help with the transition to adding another child to the family. She's excited to be a big sister, loves talking about her baby brother on the way and I want to make sure she still feels loved, adored and special with all the changes that'll come her way.
INVITE family to help us with house hunting.
INVITE ourselves to rest when we need it instead of feeling pressure to go all the time. Make our family a priority and balance new things with comfortable things so we don't run ourselves ragged. That'll mean days at home, days of regular routines mixed in with the fun INVITATIONS. My hope is that we can come up with a good balance in the new year.
I'm looking forward to INVITING new things into our life this year with the hopes of making new friends, settling into our new city and making things feel like home.
Have you chosen one little word for 2016?
I'd love to hear what word or phrase you've chosen to be the theme of your year.
I'm guest blogging over at Abiding In Grace today for Sarah's One Little Word Series. She's featuring different bloggers all month long so head over to her blog to read what others are choosing for their one little word for 2016. She wrote all about her one little word RUN yesterday.