The 19 for 2019 list

Here’s my list of 19 for 2019. The “19 for 2019” is an idea Gretchen Rubin started last year on her Happier Podcast. Her 18 for 2018 can be read here.

The idea is to make a list of things you want to get done in the calendar year. The rules seem a bit arbitrary, so I’ve included some easy things on my list.

Since sharing my “dessert free” goal, I received a few questions, so I will list out all 19 here with a little bit more detail. And I will provide updates in future posts.

​Updated on 12/28/2019.

1. Dessert Free – no desserts

I will not be having any desserts in 2019. You can read more about this in the post here. Eating any dessert like food as a snack is also not allowed. Yes, I am making up my own rules!

​Update: ​I made it to about mid June with no desserts giving it to pressure of others. I also found that instead of eating desserts I ate more of other types of junky food (chips, fast food, etc.). ​​​

2. Lose enough weight to be able to wear my wedding rings without having resizing them.

You can see a picture of the problem in the dessert free post. Due to swelling, using coconut oil, I had to remove my rings last summer. I didn’t go to the doctor for it. The swelling went away, but now my rings won’t slide onto my finger! I’ve gained about 25 pounds since getting married, so it’s time to lose of that weight!

Update: ​I did not lose weight (or at least did not keep it off!). ​​​

3. Go to Samaria, MI

Samaria is not far from where I live. When we get off an exit of a major highway, my home is to the West. Samaria is to the East. We got married in 2002 and I don’t recall ever going east! The idea with this one is to add a little bit of adventure to our lives.

Update: ​This was the first item completed as we did it on 1-5-2019. There was not much to see there.​​​

4. Visit a Michigan State Park that we haven’t been to

Michigan has more than 700 state parks. Each year we pay the extra $10 to have the state park pass on our license plates. We’ve only gone to the state parks within 30 minutes of our home and to the Holland State Park.

Update: ​In June, we went to the start park in Monroe, MI. It’s on Lake Erie and has a nice beach, it was a hot day so we didn’t stay long. Also, we had a flat tire on the way and arrived about 2 hours later than planned.

19 for 2019 list

5. Go somewhere on a bus

I may be doing this one alone as Ted doesn’t seem interested! I saw the Ann Arbor, MI bus station when I was in downtown Ann Arbor for a holiday dinner. Going on a bus seems like something fun to do!

Update: ​I didn’t take a bus trip, I looked into it and was discouraged by the amount of extra time it takes to get somewhere on a bus vs traveling by car! ​​​​​​

6. Blog more/write more

I want to write consistently this year. This is my fourth blog (the other 3 are listed at the bottom of the home page). In the previous year, I’ve gone weeks at a time without writing anything new! My goal for this year is writing at least 15 minutes every day.

I also tallied up how many blog posts I wrote this year, so that I will know if I do more this year than last year.

Update: ​I kept blogging but not consistently! I wrote less on the blogs in 2019, than 2018. My failure point was not making writing a consistent habit. ​​​​​​

7. Increase Side Hustle Income

Having some extra income on the side has been wonderful! It helps pay for cat food and extras for the cats. This year, I want to use it to help with #11.

Update: ​This happened and I feel so blessed and thankful with how things have worked out. ​​​

8. Eat a non-scratchy vegetable every day

I want to have veggies at every meal but that was going to be too much of a stretch for me to do every day from the start. So, for now, I will be doing one a day.

Update: ​Probably did this. I didn’t track it everyday. ​​​

9. Pray for someone every day

In a sermon a few months ago, the pastor asked something like “If God answered all your prayers from the last week, who would come to know Jesus as their Savior”? I felt convicted. What’s the point of being a Christian if you aren’t praying for others?

Update: ​Probably did not do this ​everyday. Again, I didn’t have a great system for tracking, so I lost track.

10. Open an investment account

Seems like I should have one by now! This will be a non-retirement account.

Update: ​​Done – I opened an account with Vanguard in October 2019.

11. Reduce mortgage by at least 1/2

Lifestyle creep and increasing the number of cats we care for, means we haven’t paid off our mortgage yet! With dual income and no kids, we had planned to pay it off in 15 years. That didn’t happen since I took out a 25 year loan. #7 will help with this.

Update: ​​​​Yes, I am happy to report that thanks to the blog income, this happened. And we should have the balance paid off in 2020.

12. Get a massage!

I’ve gotten recommendations for places to get a massage more than once but haven’t followed through. This is the year!

Update: ​​​​​I had a massaged on February 4th a​​​​​​​​​nd then 2 or 3 more later in the year. I love them and recommend them for self-care.

Heidi's cat Taco sitting on the piano

Heidi’s cat Taco sitting on the piano

13. Practice piano and organ every day

My current piano teacher says I am to practice every day. My progress in the past has been slower than desired, and I wasn’t practicing every day. So, we will see how every day practice works out.

Update: ​​​​This did not happen. I “broke the chain” of daily practice when my cat, Kilala, died in April and I was too sad to practice.

14. Ride my bike in spring and summer

Last year, I didn’t ride my bike once! This year I am going to ride it. Part of the problem last year, was having too much stuff stored in front of it in the garage. So this year I will make access to the bike easier.

Update: ​​​​​Nope! This one should have been easy, but didn’t happen as still felt too inconvenient to move the stuff in front of it. ​​​

15. Eat out at a restaurant we have never been to at once a month

There are so many restaurants to go to and we get into a rut of choosing the same places. This year we will be intentional to try out different places.

Update: ​​​​​ This was fun. In September, we did not go to a new restaurant, bu​​​​​​t we did try more than one new place in other months.

16. Try out time scheduling

Time scheduling is concept from the book Deep Work. The idea is to write down on paper what you are going to do during the day. Then you will limit or not allow any interruptions when working on certain projects (the deep work).  I want to try this out to see if it will help me stick to a consistent schedule for writing and music practice.

​Update: ​ I didn’t try this out. ​​​

 17. Read Bible Every day

I want to increase my knowledge of the Bible. I’ve read the entire Bible in a year once by following a reading plan. But sometimes I was just rushing through it to get it done for the day.

Update: ​Probably did not do this ​everyday. Again, I didn’t have a great system for tracking, so I lost track.

18. Get a new couch

We’ve wanted a new couch for a while. So, this will be an easy one for 2019.

​Update: ​No new couch yet! The reason is because the roof leaked in February and then we had to wait and see if the fix worked as it only leaks with very specific weather conditions. And then it leaked again in the fall. So, we are still in the “wait and see” mode with the roof as if the most recent fix didn’t work, we will need a much more expensive redesign of the roof. So, it seems like the couch can wait. ​​​

Heidi on the couch with the cats

Heidi on the couch with the cats

19. Increase in person social contact

I am an introvert and would be fine staying home with the cats most of the time. I like people and getting to know people better. This year, I will be attempting to have more dinners or lunches with more people.

Update: ​​I am not sure if I did this or not. If I tracked it then I was afraid it was going to be more like a transaction or doing it to add to my count which may have changed my motivation.

For the 19 for 2019 that are every day goals, I’m using a calendar to track if I do the goal each day. There are 5 of them – Write, Pray, Veggies, Bible, and Music Practice. This will also work as a visual tool to help me not “break the chain”. 

​Update: ​A cat vomitted on my daily tracking calendar so I stopped using it. ​​​​​​

What are your goals for 2019?

4 thoughts on “The 19 for 2019 list”

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  1. I like the picture of you on couch with the cats. You looked very relaxed.

    Some places have day trips on a bus. Sometimes through Horizons Travel there is a day trip to Shipshewana. Ted doesn’t need to go to something like that.

    Eating out is fun. I hear never eating out for a year aids weight loss.
    We all can probably improve eating habits but it is hard to do that.

    Always super great to pay off any loan early and also have an investment while doing it.


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