Zucchini Spaghetti and Meatballs

So I’ve tried spaghetti squash in the past, and in my opinion spaghetti squash is rather bland.But, I’ve heard wonderful things about zucchini noodles as an alternative to traditional pasta. I will admit I that recently purchased a Veggie Spiral Peeler and have been dying to try it out. This recipe was the perfect excuse to do so….

Zucchini Spaghetti & Meatballs - Island Girl on A Farm. A grain-free, gluten free alternative to traditional spaghetti and meatballs

Zucchini Spaghetti & Meatballs…a healthy, clean eating, grain-free alternative to the traditional recipe. Trade in your pasta noodles and canned pasta sauce for this wholesome, homemade recipe. Skip the breadcrumbs in favor of almond flour or ground almonds when prepping your meatballs.

This recipe requires a bit of multi-tasking because in addition to making the zucchini noodles, we’re cooking the meatballs and sauce separately before combining them together. So put on your favorite music (or podcast), make sure its nap time for the kids, and get into kitchen ninja mode!

I just recently put this recipe together using variations of some of my favorites, and I just absolutely loved the way it turned out. 

Let’s do a quick recipe overview so you know what you’re getting into here :

Zucchnini Noodles – 5 Minutes

I used a Paderno Spiral Veggie Slicer ( affiliate link) to make the zucchini noodles. A bit of an investment at $36, but I anticipate I will get a lot of use out of it and it will save me some time trying to do this manually( no, thank you!). When you’re done, set the zucchini noodles aside, no further cooking required.

Zucchini Spaghetti & Meatballs - from Island Girl on A Farm. We make zucchini noodles and combine them with grain free meatballs and the best-ever homemade marinara sauce for a healthy, clean eating alternative to traditional meatballs and spaghetti.
Zucchini Noodles

Meatballs – 35 Minutes or Less

We combine grass-fed beef, garlic, ground almonds or almond flour, coriander, mint, cumin and cinnamon and a few other ingredients to give these meatballs a bit of a Mediterranean flare.The combination of cinnamon, cumin and mint makes for quite the flavor.

Once all ingredients are combined we shape them into about 20 2-inch size balls.

We cook the meatballs in a large frying pan with olive oil and a bit of water to keep the moisture in.

Zucchini Spaghetti & Meatballs - from Island Girl on A Farm. We make zucchini noodles and combine them with grain free meatballs and the best-ever homemade marinara sauce for a healthy, clean eating alternative to traditional meatballs and spaghetti.

Marinara Tomato Sauce – 15 Minutes or Less

This tomato sauce is the easiest, best-tasting spaghetti sauce I’ve ever had. The first time I tried this recipe I couldn’t believe how delicious this sauce was it was and how simple it is to make! Three ingredients – yep three ingredients. Olive oil, fresh garlic and whole-peeled diced tomatoes. Well 5 ingredients –  if you include the salt and pepper :-).

People, after you’ve had this you will never want to go back to buying the canned pasta sauce – ever. Besides, lord knows what other ingredients are hiding in commercially made pasta sauce( I shudder to think!)

Zucchini Spaghetti & Meatballs - from Island Girl on A Farm. We make zucchini noodles and combine them with grain free meatballs and the best-ever homemade marinara sauce for a healthy, clean eating alternative to traditional meatballs and spaghetti.

We heat the olive oil, crush the garlic cloves with a large kitchen knife and saute the garlic cloves until they are a nice golden brown. Then we add the whole peeled tomatoes and cook that for a few minutes until the sauce has thickened. We add the rest of the olive oil, turn the heat up and use a wooden spoon to smash the tomatoes so the juices flow. Cook until the oil turns red and -boom! Done.

Zucchini Spaghetti & Meatballs - from Island Girl on A Farm. We make zucchini noodles and combine them with grain free meatballs and the best-ever homemade marinara sauce for a healthy, clean eating alternative to traditional meatballs and spaghetti.

After everything is cooked, I combined the meatballs and marinara sauce together and served over my zucchini noodles.

Zucchini Spaghetti & Meatballs - from Island Girl on A Farm. We make zucchini noodles and combine them with grain free meatballs and the best-ever homemade marinara sauce for a healthy, clean eating alternative to traditional meatballs and spaghetti.

Mmmmm…..now on to the recipe:

[yumprint-recipe id=’7′]And there you have it! A bit of a longer recipe post but you’ll feel so accomplished and definitely be a clean eating kitchen ninja when you’re done. I would love to hear your thoughts and questions in the comments below.

Homemade Larabars in Less Than 10 Minutes

When I was transitioning to the clean eating lifestyle in 2012, one of my biggest challenges was finding healthy snacks in between meals. I first started eating Luna bars but those bars contain sugars and after a while I couldn’t eat them without getting sick.

And then a friend told me about Larabars. Oh my goodness I do love Larabars …

  • They are a great, healthy and delicious snack in between meals or even as an add on to your lunch or breakfast.
  • For me, they have been a lifesaver when I’m out and about running errands and needed something to munch on. 
  • Most Larabars contain less that 5 ingredients, and they are all ingredients I can pronounce! My favorite Larabar – Peanut Butter Cookie – only has peanuts, sea salt and dates.

I have always wanted to make my own Larabars. Even though my local Fred Meyer has them for $1 each( Amazon and VitaCost sell for a $1.25 each), it was starting to get expensive because…well…I would eat one everyday( they’re just so gooood) and it’s such a great grab and go snack. Especially when you have two little fireballs of energy( I mean boys) that you have to chase after.

Homemade larabars in less then 10 minutes. A delicious, healthy, gluten free snack using only 3 ingredients. Combine peanuts, cranberries and Medjool dates in your food procesor, shape into bars and that's it!

 

So I finally buckled down this week. Did some research and experimenting…and oh my goodness did I come up with a great Homemade Larabar recipe that will probably save me( and hopefully you) some money at the grocery store!

Not only does this recipe take less than 10 minutes to make, but it only has 3 ingredients – peanuts, cranberries and dates. That’s it! Nothing more, nothing less.

You’ll want to get raw and unsalted peanuts, dried and unsweetened cranberries and Medjool dates are just the best dates ever. The peanuts and cranberries you can get from the bulk food section at your local grocery store and the Medjool dates I picked up from Costco. A good food processor is also helpful too!

Originally when I made this the first time, I started with only peanuts and cranberries and some sea salt. The sea salt is totally optional.

Homemade Larabars in Less than 10 Minutes - Island Girl on A Farm.com

After combining just the peanuts and cranberries, the mixture wasn’t “gooey” enough to shape into bars, so I  deseeded and added the Medjool dates.

Homemade Larabars in Less than 10 MInutes - Island Girl on A Farm

Much better!

Homemade Larabars in Less than 10 Minutes - Island Girl on A Far

Shape them into rectangular bars

Homemade Larabars in Less than 10 minutes - Island Girl on A Farm

And you’re done! This mix should make about 6-7 rectangular bars, or if you wanted you could shape them into balls ( my youngest son liked them a lot!). Store them in the fridge for up to two weeks – although I would be very surprised indeed if they lasted that long.

[yumprint-recipe id=’5′]Yum yum…I shared some with my mother-in-law and she loved them so much she asked me to buy the ingredients to make a batch amount for her snack stash!

What are some of your favorite variations of Larabar recipes? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

Note: There are affiliate disclosures in this post. At no cost to you, I receive a small commission for any purchases you make from clicking on these links. Helps me to keep things running around here, and I only recommend products that I personally love and use.  Click here for my full disclosure policy.

Books Make A Difference

For a few years in my childhood my mother owned a boutique and right next to that boutique was a bookstore. My mom would pick us up from school and take us back to her store. I was so excited because instead of helping my mom or doing homework like I was supposed to, I would go to the bookstore, find a corner (with the permission of the shop owner, of course) and just escape into the amazing world of books. I read as many books as I could get my hands on, for hours on end until they had to ask me to leave because the store was closing.

Starting Young: Books Can Make a Difference - Island Girl on a Farm

 

It’s no secret amongst my friends and family members that I am a bookworm. I love to read and consider myself blessed to be living in an age where information is so readily available.I remembered as a child always having my head in a book, on long road trips and even at parties and family gatherings. English Literature and Creative Writing were two of my favorite classes in school.

That passion to read and learn continues today in my adult life. Books make a difference, as they have shaped who I am with respect to the various roles I play in my life – wife, blogger, business owner and most definitely mother.

I was fortunate enough to marry a man who loves to read as much as I do, even though our tastes in books are quite different.  When we became parents, we both agreed that reading to our children would become a part of our parenting routine. We were blessed to have a great head start on this by receiving many, many books from friends and family before and after the birth of our two sons.

 Books are a daily part of our lives and they have contributed to a wonderful and special relationship with our children. We started reading to our sons when they were about 7 or 8 months old, old enough to sit up. We read to them in the morning, in the afternoon before naptime, and at nighttime before they got to bed. It is a special bonding time that is peaceful, calm and uninterrupted with our children.

 They both love to read and it is wonderful to see how much they learn from reading. Our oldest can recite the words of an entire book – Little Blue Truck – from memory because of how many times we’ve read it to him. He’s learnt his ABCs, numbers, colors and shapes all from reading. One night when our youngest was 15 months old, I picked out a random book about numbers and counting. He absolutely loved it and would ask for it repeatedly at naptime and bedtime. Three months later on our family vacation in Florida, he surprised us all by counting to ten as he was walking down the stairs! I had no idea that he even count. He too knows his ABCs, can count up to 13 and is learning words, colors and shapes.

Island Girl on a Farm
My sons and I reading Finding Nemo before bedtime.

 

There is nothing that gives us greater joy that to snuggle with our kids at naptime and at night time and read their favorite books with them.  We can tell they love it too – if we ever tried to put them to bed without reading at least one book – oh my do they protest indeed! It does not go over well.

Specific books that have helped me as a Mom

 The No Cry Sleep SolutionWhen my oldest was born, I had no idea what I was doing and he wouldn’t sleep. He would only take 30-minute naps and would wake up every 2-3 hours at night. I was utterly exhausted and could barely function.

 Of course, being the bookworm that I am, I turned to books for help and came across this gem.  I learnt so much from this book about how babies sleep and the importance of establishing a nighttime routine. This book served as the catalyst for our daily naptime/nighttime readings. I am continually recommending this book to my friends who mention their kids aren’t sleeping well.

The Sleep Easy SolutionAnother great book that teaches parents about babies, nighttime routine and sleep.

Favorite Books from James and Dominic

How have books made a difference in your life in in your role as a parent? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below :).

Note: There are affiliate disclosures in this post. At no cost to you, I receive a small commission for any purchases you make from clicking on these links. Helps me to keep things running around here, and I only recommend products that I personally love and use.  Click here for my full disclosure policy.

 

 

 

The Best Ever Grain Free Crackers

I might have to start cheating on my Larabars with these crackers as my new go-to snacks – ok maybe not cheat but add them to my snack arsenal.

Once again, I have to give credit to my friend Vanessa for introducing these absolutely A-mazing delectables into my life. Is it possible that a gluten-free,grain-free,dairy-free and sugar-free snack can be so delicious AND healthy at the same time?

I tried 3 different variations of this recipe, and so I’m posting the one that, in my opinion, turned out and tasted the best. I’ll share the other two variations in the recipe notes so you can try it for yourself. 

But I digress….

Grain Free Crackers - Island Girl on A Farm. This is a fantastic clean eating snack that is dairy,grain,sugar and gluten free. The fresh rosemary adds a delightful and sensational tease on the taste buds. Great alternative to traditional crackers.

Quick Overview:

You’ll need: rosemary, almond flour, raw shelled sunflower seeds, dried unsweetened cranberries, olive oil, sea salt, chia seeds and hemp seeds

Combine all ingredients in your food processor or mixer until formed into a dough, then form dough into a ball.

Grain Free Crackers from IslandGirlonAFarm.com. Dairy, sugar, grain and gluten free crackers. A delicious alternative to traditional crackers

Place dough between either two pieces of parchment paper or use a baking mat and parchment paper. I love and recommend the Silpat silicone baking mat. Using a rolling pin, roll out dough to 1/8 inch thickness.

Grain Free Crackers - Island Girl on a Farm

Once dough is rolled out completely, use a pizza cutter to cut dough into rectangles, squares or any other shape your heart desires :). Transfer baking mat or parchment paper to a baking tray or cookie sheet and bake away for 15 minutes! Keeping scrolling to get the full recipe. Yummm…

Grain Free Crackers - Island Girl on A Farm

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Extra Tips:

  • Almond flour  can be purchased at your local grocery store in the nutrition section, online or sometimes in the bulk food section
  • Same thing applies for coconut flour
  • If you are dying to make this recipe right away and don’t have fresh rosemary, you can always substitute for 1 tsp dried rosemary – but the fresh rosemary is what really gives these crackers their delightful taste.

Warning, these can be addictive( as I reach for my 5th cracker while enjoying a cup of green tea.) You may need to make a double(or triple) batch of these because sharing doesn’t come so easy…I warned you 🙂

I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below, and if you tried any of the variations I suggested.

Note: There are affiliate disclosures in this post. At no cost to you, I receive a small commission for any purchases you make from clicking on these links. Helps me to keep things running around here, and I only recommend products that I personally love and use.  Click here for my full disclosure policy.

Zucchini Breakfast Waffles

I have to thank my friend Vanessa for sharing this wonderful recipe with me. Until this entered my world, my breakfast had been limited to oatmeal, my spinach feta cheese omelette and a few other pancake recipes.

Zucchini Breakfast Waffles - Island Girl on a Farm.com

Zucchini breakfast waffles are clean eating, delicious and healthy. They are also a grain-free, sugar-free and gluten-free alternative to traditional waffles. I’m sure if you didn’t have a waffle maker that you could use this recipe to make zucchini pancakes and it would out turn out just as good.

We start by combining grated zucchini with eggs, coconut milk, coconut oil. Then we add coconut and almond flour, along with “pumpkin pie” spices( cinnamon, nutmeg and ground ginger) for a nice, thick consistency.

Clean Eating Zucchini Breakfast Waffles - IslandGirlonaFarm.com

Scoop mixture onto the waffle iron, bake until done…Voila!

Tip: Make this ahead of time the day before and refrigerate or freeze them. Pop them into the toaster and eat them as is or top with raw organic honey, coconut oil, maple syrup or your favorite sugar-free jam.

Clean Eating Zucchini Breakfast Waffles - IslandGirlonAFarm.com

 

Ok now onto some Deeelicious Zucchini Breakfast Waffles. Is your mouth watering yet?

 

[yumprint-recipe id=’3′]Top with coconut oil, honey, or your favorite sugar-free jam and you are good to go.

It would absolutely make my day if you left a comment about this recipe :). Even better if you tried this yourself and can testify to how delicious they are.

Quinoa Cilantro Salad

Mmmm…quinoa. Mmmm cilantro. Quinoa+cilantro=Happiness for my taste buds( and yours too!)

Whenever I happen to be near my neighbourhood New Seasons or Whole Foods, I always try to get a small container of their quinoa salads because they are so deeeelicious! I have tried and failed many a times to replicate these salads -until this weekend(yaay!)

I wasn’t really having any luck finding any good recipes that combined quinoa and cilantro well, so I started experimenting until I found a combination that turned out perfect. I bought this salad to the family Easter dinner last night and it was definitely a hit – so I figured I would continue to spread the love here on the blog :).

I came across Tabbouleh salads recipes and I love love love the combination of ingredients. Fresh, tasty and nutritious veggies and all-natural ingredients. Doesn’t bet any better than this people.

If you’re wondering, Tabbouleh is traditionally a Mediterranean salad made with bulgar, parsley and a combination of various veggies. I swapped out bulgar and parsley for quinoa and cilantro to make some kitchen magic happen. The dressing is a fantastic mixture of lemon juice, garlic, olive oil and low-sodium soy sauce. 

Hey Guess What? This recipe is paleo,vegan,vegetarian and clean eating-friendly! How often does THAT happen?

Ok here we go:

Quinia Cilantro Salad, Quinoa Cilantro Tabbouleh Salad - IslandGirlonaFarm.com

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Tips & Notes:

  • Salad is served best cold or at room temperature
  • Prep this salad in the morning and then have it for lunch or as a side for dinner in the evening
  • You should absolutely try that divine salad dressing on your other salads!
  • The low-sodium soy sauce is the only thing that would contain gluten in this recipe. If want to make it gluten free, substitute the soy sauce for Tamari (link to Amazon). Also check your local health food store.

So what do you think? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below,and please tell me if you tried it or have your own variation of this recipe.

This post contains affiliate links. At no cost to you I receive a small commission if you make a purchase – helps me to keep things running around here so I can continue to provide helpful content. I only endorse products that I love and use myself, and am happy to pass on information that is valuable to my readers.

 

Clean Eating Macaroni & Cheese

Clean Eating Macaroni and Cheese ? Say what ???

Chef Fabio Viviani said it right when he called Mac N Cheese America’s “comfort food.” We all know that this delicious dish, which is a staple in many households is probably not the healthiest of options, but boy it sure tastes good! Now that I follow a clean eating lifestyle, many of the the traditional Mac N Cheese recipes, including my own, were off the table ( awww man!)

What’s a girl to do with all that white pasta and the rather excessive amounts of dairy?

ENTER:

Clean Eating Mac N Cheese. A recipe by Island Girl on a Farm

Yep. I was absolutely determined to find a way to “clean up” this household staple because it is one of my favorite recipes to make. Whenever we host parties or holiday dinners at our house, you can bet you will find this dish among the options. I’ve made it so many times that I practically have it memorized.

After some tweaking here and there, I was able to whip up this “cleaner eating” version of macaroni and cheese recipe. I say “cleaner” because there is still some dairy in this recipe, primarily in the cheddar cheese. Should you be having this for dinner every night ? Probably not. You know the rule, everything in moderation here.

Here’s what I love about this recipe:

  • It tastes awesome 
  • It’s a healthier, lower-dairy alternative – no butter, eggs or multiple cheeses
  • It beats the processed stuff that comes in a box any day. Honestly, I was never a fan to begin with. I will take homemade macaroni and cheese over Mac’ N Cheese in a box any day, any where, anytime.
  • You can make this gluten free( see below recipe for details)

Allright, Chrissy I get it…gimme the recipe – sorry just trying to build the momentum..here you go 🙂

[gmc_recipe 163] 

To make this gluten free:

 

Obviously you can tell we really enjoy this dish…

Clean Eating Mac N Cheese by Island Girl on a Farm

So what do you think ? What other ways can you make clean eating Mac N Cheese ? Leave a comment below!

Note: There are affiliate disclosures in this post. At no cost to you, I receive a small commission for any purchases you may make from clicking on these links. Click here for my full disclosure policy. 

Coconut Banana Kale Smoothie – No Protein Powder Required

I love smoothies. I have them for breakfast, as snack or with my dinner, depending on my mood. I’m always experimenting with different fruits, veggies and other ingredients to get the best flavor and the healthiest option possible.

I’ve recently gotten into green smoothies by adding kale, spinach, swiss chard and even avocados to some of my smoothies. Raw greens – especially kale – can have a sharp, bitter taste initially so I usually try and add a natural sweetner ( such as fruit) to offset that bitter taste.

I came up with a combo recently while we were snowed in that I just love! Four ingredients, dairy-free and an excellent source of protein via kale –  no protein powder required! So without further ado, one Coconut Banana Kale Smoothie coming right up( is your mouth watering yet?)

Coconut Banana Kale Smoothie - Recipes by Island Girl on A Farm

You’ll need: kale, coconut vanilla milk, a banana and chia seeds.

Coconut Banana Kale Smoothie. No protein powder required. Recipes by Island Girl on A Farm

[yumprint-recipe id=’1′]Extra Bonus – this is toddler-friendly! Even Domy loved it and kept asking for more :)!

Coconut Banana Kale Smoothie. No protein powder required. Recipes by Island Girl on A Farm

Thanks for reading? What are some of your favorite green smoothies?

It’s All About Perspective

A reflection from the night before….

As I am writing this, I am in bed – utterly exhausted. Today has definitely been one of those days where I’ve had to “suck it up” as a mom.

Somewhere somehow my oldest son James contracted some type of stomach bug( or maybe it’s the stomach flu) and threw up not once, but three times today. Not exactly what I was hoping for.

But then I stopped and thought about the circumstances surrounding all three incidents, and realized – it could have been worse.

1st Incident :

At home, it was a small amount and it was somewhat near the toilet. Can’t complain too much, he’s only 3 years old.

2nd Incident:

Driving on the way home, all over himself, the carseat and the car. We were still 20 minutes away from home when it happened.  Not sure why I thought it would be a good idea to venture out after the 1st incident – still scratching my head over that one.

However, I am grateful that I had wipes, a change of clothes and plastic bags to help clean everything up as best as I could. I’m also glad it was daylight and I was able to pull over safely to take care of everything. Changing a 3 year old in the dark on the freeway would not have gone over very well for either one of us.

I am grateful that both boys went down for their naps at the same time so I could clean the car and get everything that had gotten in the line of fire ( carseat and clothing)  in the laundry. A glass of wine would have also been a good idea.

3rd Incident:

At home again, this time at the dinner table. We did not make it to the bathroom.

I am grateful that our youngest son spent the night with Grandma & Grandpa

I am grateful that my husband decided to come home early from work that night ( he wasn’t feeling very well either.) He was able to help to clean up James so that I could clean… well, everything else. No need to go into details.

I am grateful that this was an atypical Wednesday evening – normally I am with both boys all day long until 8:30 at night. Not sure how well I would have handled the 3rd incident otherwise.

Not the most glamourous of days in the world of motherhood, but given everything that happened, the glass was definitely half-full for me today.

It’s all about perspective, right?

What do you think?

 

My Goals for 2014

At the end of 2012 when I sat down to plan out 2013, I had this epic, amazing plan that looked just plain fantastic on paper. I had all these elaborate goals, and I even had them categorized into personal, business and financial. I had 24 personal goals, 13 professional goals and 7 financial goals, for a whopping total of 44 goals that my over-achieving, type-A personality was hell-bent on accomplishing in 2013.

Did I have a great year? Absolutely. 2013 was Amazing. Fantastic. Awesome. Wonderful. Phenomenal – throw in any other synonym you can think of but you get the general idea. For me, being the Lonestar Island Girl in Oregon( minus my “baby” sister who is a graduating senior from college this year – aah!) the amount of family time I got this past year has put me on Cloud Nine.

Did I get to put a check mark next to all 44 goals ? Absolutely not. That right there was a Big.Fat.Epic Fail. It looked so beautiful on paper I almost framed it…

FAIL-1

Guess how many of the 44 goals I actually managed to accomplish in 2013? 10. Yep – 10 out of 44 equals 22.7%. Epic Fail.

Why?

I have no one to blame but myself for setting unrealistic expectations and therefor setting myself up for failure. I read these awesome books and these great blog posts for goal setting and accomplishment ( think S.M.A.R.T. goals here) and what happens? My ever-active brain goes into overdrive and suddenly I think I’m SuperMom and of course I can overcommit and get this done!

In reality I am a WAHM and I have two very young, active little boys that keep me quite busy not to mention these things called laundry, friends, cooking, sleep, housework and bills that occasionally require my attention. Add the husband to that list too.

This year I am cranking it way down (like 100 notches) and keeping it simple and realistic. I have so much that I want to accomplish but I am finding more and more that if I just take things slow, and focus on one thing at a time ( with consistency and intentionality) then it will get done and get done well instead of half-butt well.

Instead of this massive brainstorming session where I locked myself in a room with two cups of coffee for two hours, I just asked myself two questions:

  •  “What do I really want to spend my time doing this year?”
  • “What are some things that I know I need to get done but having been putting off?” (Light bulb!)

And within 30 minutes I came up with my simplified 2014 Goals:

2014Goals

1. Declutter and simplify my life and our house – clothes,email, paperwork, toys, books and everything else.

2. Consistently do a monthly budget and consistently track our expenses.

3. Save towards buying a newer car by the end of the year.The Subaru isn’t doing so great these days.

4. Consistently do a weekly menu plan that supports our grocery budget and clean eating lifestyle.

5. To start my personal blog (this blog that you’re reading) and stick with blogging at least twice a month. I want to do more( like once per week) but I know that’s unrealistic right now.

6. Taking the time to learn and increase my web design skills so that I can grow my web design business.

7. Read 5 of the gazillion books in my Kindle account ( darn those free daily Kindle deals!) and take action from them by the end of the year.

8. Be more intentional about recording and displaying family photos and events. This year I am hell-bent on getting them off the phone, tablet and computer and into picture frames, calendars, photo albums or a home movie slideshow. Thank goodness iPhoto organizes pictures for me by month and date. Yes I am a Mac lover. I would be in big trouble otherwise.

9. Exercise consistently( 3-5 times) a week. Chalene Johnson is my new best friend.

10. Home Improvement : Finish our Master Bathroom! ( Considering that this was supposed to be finished before Dominic was born, and he is almost 19 months old we will see how this goes.)

And there you have it! It doesn’t look all that fancy, and there is so much more I want to add here but I do not want to set myself up for failure again. I don’t want to  look back a year from now and realize that I once again accomplished less than half of my goals. I want to have realistic accountability for myself. The power of focus is unmistakable.

I realize that some of these goals are broad and not too specific. That’s ok because this is just a starting point for me. I plan on taking it a step further and coming up with some action steps  for each individual goal ( sorry type A personality taking over a little here), which I’ll be sharing on the blog throughout the year.

To give you an example:

Goal: Save towards buying a newer car

Action Steps:

  • Figure out what kind of car we should get for our growing family ( brand, type, certified used, private sale etc.) – any suggestions are welcome!
  • Do some research online to find out prices ( craigslist, auto trader, etc.)
  • Create a separate savings account and start to set monthly savings towards purchase
  • Show up to dealership 6PM New Years eve and proceed to torture car salesman with ninja negotiation skills

You get the general idea :).

Hey thanks for reading!What are some of your goals for 2014 ?