I know that I am a couple of days late for actually ringing in 2019, but I have a good excuse. Really I do. I ushered out 2018 with the respiratory crap that was going around and welcomed 2019 with the same respiratory crud. Not a fun way to start a new year, now is it?
I welcomed 2019 – sleeping
The truth be told…I actually was in bed by 8:00PM on December 31, 2018. I slept right through all the fireworks and everything else. I felt like crap and I was not putting up with anyone or anything. Thus, I slept.
Sleep is good. I do not get nearly enough of it.
I am not saying that I am suddenly going to start going to bed at what the average person considers a “reasonable” hour, however, I have to confess that at the time I really needed and wanted the sleep. My body was worn out and exhausted after all the holiday festivities the 6 weeks prior.
Now facing my 4th sinus infection in about 2 months, I really needed to let my body’s natural healing super powers take over. I will confess, my body just isn’t very good at that kind of thing most of the time. A little bit of a cold and I have a full blown infection within 7-10 days. It really is not fair at all. The fall of 2018 seemed to be the fall of all respiratory bugs. I heard more of their prominence than I did about the flu itself.
So I slept.
No resolutions here!
I will not make this a post about resolutions. I know that this is what just about every single person on the planet does, however, I know that this is not a thing that I need to do. I mean, they are resolutions that we plan to keep all throughout the year. I mean, we intend to keep them and most of the time we get off to a great start. Then we just fall off the crazy cart and give up.
I gave up on new year’s resolutions a very long time ago. I am not going to keep them anyway, so why waste my time on something that just isn’t going to happen?
Instead, I like to spend a little bit of time reflecting on the previous year and decide on 2-3 areas that I really want to focus on and improve. These usually come as some sort of goal. I have a higher likelihood that I will actually accomplish a goal as opposed to saying that I will make some huge change that I am not prepared to really make.
Accomplishments from 2018
I can say that I did actually accomplish at least 1 thing that I set out to do in 2018. I know it is probably a surprise, but alas, I managed to accomplish the “goals” that I set out to do in at least 2 areas of my life – spiritual growth and business growth.
In mid-December 2017, I decided that I want to really focus on my spiritual growth in 2018. That was not going to be an easy task, perhaps, for an individual that is a very active church goer. However, I knew that I had lots of room for improvement in so many ways. I wanted to focus on just a couple of things.
I set the goal to read the Book of Mormon from cover to cover at least 6 times before Andrew, my oldest son, returned home from his mission. At the time, we did not know with certainty that he would return in December 2018 or if he would return in January 2019. Due to the way that transfers lined up, we welcomed him home a week before Christmas on our 20th wedding anniversary.
I was already on my 3rd time through the Book of Mormon (in Mosiah 23) in October 2018 when President Russell M. Nelson challenged the women of the church to read the Book of Mormon in its entirety before the end of December 2018. I kept going! I was not starting over. Besides, if I accomplished my own personal goal on top of his challenge, I would finish from front cover to back cover before the end of the year anyway. So I just kept plowing through.
I am pleased to announce that I read the Book of Mormon from cover to cover 6.5 times by December 19, 2018.
I am well on my way to reading it through to the end again. I slowed down for the holidays. I plan on picking the pace back up again next week.
Not only did I meet President Nelson’s challenge, I surpassed it! I read it 3.5 times between October and December. It just goes to show you that if you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything.
I have set the same goal for several years in relation to my business – double my revenue. I have to say that this year, I didn’t just double it, I nearly tripled it. In early December, I was reporting in at a 75% revenue increase with a 41% customer increase from the previous year. That is astounding!
I just sat down and calculated everything out so that I could file and pay my Texas State Sales Tax for 2018 Quarter 4. I did most of my increase in quarter 4. Wow! Like not just a little bit. In Quarter 2 last year, I was still truly struggling to keep Stacey Sansom Designs afloat. However, by the end of Quarter 3, things were looking up though not great.
I am truly grateful for inspired programs. I am truly blessed by these in so many ways. I learned so much going through the Self Reliance initiative sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Ben and I took the Personal Finance class earlier in the year. It did not solve every financial woe in the world for us, however, it did get us to a point we were able to pay of a fair amount of debt.
This past September, I started the Starting and Growing My Business class in the initiative. It was a bit frustrating, but I continued to push through. The more I put into the class and working the steps laid out in the program, the more I got back out of it. The more my business grew.
I am not going to say that I could support myself tomorrow off of this business. It has a very long way to go. Ben can’t even quit his job, however, I have found that I CAN grow a business that nearly fell through the black hole created by our move to the Dallas area in June 2016. It took a lot of focus and determination, but it is viable and growing again. It took a lot of soul searching and contemplation.
I can assure you, sometimes we end up treading down paths that we never thought we would walk. If we truly listen to spiritual guidance, we can truly be rewarded both spiritually and temporally. Heavenly Father has truly done this for me, blessing my efforts.
Looking into to 2019
I have not decided 100% what I want to accomplish and focus on this year. I do know that by design, I will accomplish a few things – they will just happen naturally. However, I do not know what I want to spend the year focusing on from a more personal standpoint.
I have registered for another semester in PathwayConnect (BYU-I Pathway Worldwide). I had a great Fall 2018 semester. I received an A in each of my 2 classes taken. One of those scores was a perfect score. I am excited about continuing the journey this semester. It is actually hard to believe that by the end of 2019, I will actually complete my first semester at BYU-Idaho. I will be on course to actually completing a Bachelor’s Degree. Classes for this semester start up on Monday with our first official semester Thursday Gathering being on January 10th. I actually apply for BYU-I sometime later this spring. I am super excited about this.
Next week, I will send my oldest son, Andrew, back to school. It has been a treat to have him home since December 19th. Alas, UNT starts up the middle of January and it is time for him to return and embark on the rest of his Bachelor’s Degree journey. Fortunately, he will be close enough that I can see him from time to time. College students do like to be fed a good home-cooked meal once in a while.
Then shortly after that, our middle son, Kyle, will return back for his second semester at Collin College. He’s already started to plan out his working and school schedule. I am proud of the growth that I have personally seen him experience the past 6 months, especially the past 3 months.
As a mom, many times our accomplishments are seeing and experiencing the things that our children participate in and accomplish. Our youngest son, Lance, is preparing to take another Black Belt test. When we moved to Little Elm, I was unable to find the boys another Japanese style karate that was close or convenient to attend. As a result, Lance and Kyle, started learning tae-kwon-do from a place not too far up the street from us here. They hated it at first, but have learned to enjoy it. Lance will be taking his black belt early this year and receive his Korean style Black Belt. Kyle should test soon as well, but I have not heard about his estimated testing date yet.
A lot of things going on this year for Lance. He will finish junior high school and move onto high school. He will start early morning seminary.
As for me, I am not sure where I want to focus my energy. I am still trying to decide. That will be saved for another post in the next few days to weeks so stay tuned.