Family Goals for 2013

If you are like most Americans, you have goals / resolutions / objectives for 2013, whether individually or for your family. I have one major goal for my family.

We will stop using pennies as currency. 

Why? As this video from CGPGrey explains, the penny is economically inefficient.

Earth-shattering goal, isn't it? Well, maybe not to you. But for a guy who once argued with the phone company for 45 minutes over a 13-cent charge, and for a guy who once couldn't rest unless my checkbook was balanced to the exact penny, it's a big deal.

It's not that we're going to throw away these coins or ignore them. We just won't use them in transactions. We will collect them in a jar, and then roll them up. After all, my kids have never rolled coins before, and everyone should get to experience the thrill of stacking coins. When the jar is full, we'll do something with that money.

I hope our family's boycott of pennies won't push our country over the fiscal cliff.

Our Other Family Goals 

"The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps."  Proverbs 16:9

Perhaps these other goals will be more significant and meaningful:
  1. Grow in knowledge of God's word. This goal breaks down into several parts:
    1. In addition to other Bible reading, our kids will finish their inductive Bible study of James
    2. Along with this, we are all (minus our 6 year old) memorizing the book of James (I use Memverse to help me). 
    3. A few times in the past, I have read through the Bible in a year, but I find that I don't get much out of it. More recently, I've been reading through the Bible in 3 years (I did this for 2 cycles). But for 2013-14, I will be following a plan to read the Bible chronologically; the setup is for 1 year, but I will stretch it to two. Joanna is in the middle of reading through the Bible over two years.
    4. We will make it a point to share with each other (at breakfast?) what we read that morning. I think this mutual sharing can be an encouragement for each of us.
    5. See the "Related Links" section below for some ideas on how you can read the Bible this year.
  2. Give our kids more responsibilities. They groaned at the mention of this idea. But we know that as they want more freedoms, they also need more responsibility. We call them "responsibilities" instead of "chores," but that's our preference. Need some ideas? Here's a great article from The Art of Manliness, How to Get Your Kids to Do Their Chores (And Why It's So Important They Do Them).
  3. Have at least two 4-or 5-day vacations. We need time together to get away. Possible ideas: beach, DC, and Florida.
  4. Hike in the mountains. We missed this the past two years, and want to get back.
  5. A get-away for just Joanna and I. What has become a staple for our marriage, such as last year's trip towards the end of a busy summer.
  6. An activity for each of our children. We've never had our kids involved in many extracurricular activities, but we'd love to see what opportunities are available around Allendale. Hannah mentioned gymnastics, Elijah chess (like father . . .), and Sender karate. We'll see.
  7. Determine our family's ministry involvement. We did camps last year, and plan to again. But does God have something more for us in 2013? We love the opportunity to do things together.

How Did We Do in 2012?

Let's see how we fared last year, from our Family Goals in 2012:
  1. Give the kids an allowance. Check. This has been great. The kids love having their own money. Please don't tell them that they get waaaaaayyyyy less than average.
  2. Bible memory. We began this in the fall, with the book of James.
  3. Get-away with Jo. Done, as I mentioned above.
  4. Have a 9-day vacation. Due to my schedule (between teaching in the spring, camps in the summer, and coaching in the fall) this was not possible.
  5. Visiting family. Joanna and the kids did more of this than I did -- again, mostly because of my schedule.
  6. Our family's ministry. Our spring break and summer camps in Allendale were the key things we did together. And we loved it all!
  7. Go somewhere.  This was a nebulous goal. I think the closest we came to meeting it was our Secret Vacation.
"Many plans are in a man's heart, But the counsel of the LORD will stand."  Proverbs 19:21

Another Personal Goal for Me . . .

I came across a video that inspired me to do something new for 30 days. I'll write more about this idea later in the month. But just to let you know, my goal in January was to give up any food with added sugar. Sigh . . . .  I hope you'll consider joining me in this project (with your own objectives, not mine), starting next month.

Edit: Here's a list of my "1 Small Things" for each month:

Edit:  You can read about all the Small Things in 2013.


. . . And Yours?

How about you? Do you or your family have any goals for 2013? Please share in the comments; I'll give you a penny nickel for your thoughts.

Related Links:

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