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Rating last year’s home goals: in which I prove that goals do not motivate me.

Well happy new year to ya! I must say: 2014 looks really good on you.

I mostly took a break from doing anything remotely productive since Christmas, and am suddenly looking up to find we’re four days into the new year and I’ve hardly been out of my pajamas. Which of course means this year is shaping up perfectly! (I did start the Whole30, which is kind of like a more restrictive Paleo diet for 30 days, in an effort to kick my sugar cravings and jumpstart some healthy eating again. My expectation is that by February 1, I will be able to leap tall buildings, run marathons and resist cookies… all three of which sound equally daunting.)

It’s New Year’s Resolution season, so I thought we could take a look at last year’s goals and see how we almost definitely rocked them SO HARD. Almost definitely, right?

Except not.

Really, really not.

Check this out. Here were my home goals from 2013:

Goal #1: Finish the laundry room.

Okay, we did do this. But in complete honesty, when I told you that was my goal last January, we’d already done the hardest parts and just needed to do a little sprucing and photographing. I basically put it on my list so I could cross it off.
Laundry room before-and-after: This whole room was DIY-ed top to bottom for only about $150! Come see how!

(Here are the details on that makeover.)

Completely subjective random score: Success. Grade of A. It is finished as planned.

Goal #2: the Guest Room.

My goal here was to punch it up with more accessories, patterns and new bedding. This is how it looked when I made that goal last year:

And this is how it looks right this second:


Soooo. *cough.*

OHHH! But I DID buy one thing for it, that I’m hoping will influence the whole room makeover. So I have successfully THOUGHT about this room.

Completely subjective random score: One overnight guest out of a possible four.

Goal #3: the Master Bedroom

Here were my goals last year:

  • Find new nightstands, lamps, dressers (The lamps and accessories in that photo were stolen from the guest room for this inside exposé of home blogging.)
  • Finally add some art and accessories!
  • Begin to furnish the sitting room area
  • Get a new chandelier

Here is what I have done:

  • Zero things.

In my defense, 2013 was an exceptionally fast year.

Completely subjective random score: Banana. (I like to keep the rating system meaningless when I don’t like how I performed.)

Goal #4: Weston’s Bedroom

Last year, my goals for this tragic little space were:

  • Reconfigure the room so the layout makes more sense for how we use the room.
  • Get the kid a new bed, bedding and window treatments
  • Design a fun play/creative space so he uses it more during the day.

This is what I have done:

And when I say “bed,” I mean, “mattress on the floor.” I still haven’t bought an actual bed, or any bedding beyond sheets. There are some parenting schools of thought that say it’s good for kids to have mattresses directly on the floor. We’re going with that, for now.

Completely subjective random score: 4 great naps out of a possible Q.

General home goal

For the last two years, I’ve had a general goal of this:

Be grateful for my home, for shelter, for comforts. Even if it’s not perfect, even if it’ll never be in a magazine, even if it’s covered in tiny grubby fingerprints. Especially then.

Oh my gosh you guys. I just teared up a little reading this. I didn’t realize that I had said that about the magazines. I wrote that goal last year just about six weeks before Better Homes & Gardens emailed me. (There have been a couple other magazines since.)

I just had no idea what was in store. Sitting here right now in this moment, I am blown away.

Going off-topic for a second, but that’s how last year went for us. God opening doors whose knobs we never even thought to turn… creating space for blessings we hadn’t even considered requesting. (I’ll tell you about one of them in a week or so.) I didn’t even think to ask for some of the amazing things He did for us in 2013, and I can’t stop being thankful for His favor, of which we are supremely undeserving.

* * *

So while the laundry room kicked off our goal-reaching with bang, the rest of the year we seemed to completely disregard our goals and run willy-nilly through the house, working on rooms (like the foyer) which we never even planned to tackle, and ignoring spaces that truly needed help urgently.

Welcome to the way my brain works!

Here’s to a more productive 2014! How’d you fare on your resolutions last year?

Let's connect


  1. Hahah! I LOVE bananas! And my brain works the exact same way because as soon as I jot down a goal I start to work on something else entirely. It’s like a strategy. It must be a strategy.

  2. Are you unaware that you were also in This Old House magazine? That is one of my favorite magazines. (Oct 2013, page 99)

  3. You made me laugh out loud! I don’t make resolutions but I did have plans … Most of them didn’t come to fruition but, hey, they’re good for this year, too. Apparently they have no expiration date. 🙂 Personally, I think you have the best rating system out there!

  4. OK, I really can’t wait a week or two, spill the beans, what blessing??? Are you expecting the patter of small feet again??? Please put us out of our agony (OK, MY agony, I’m annoyingly nosy 🙂 )

    Love the scoring system by the way, and great rating out of a possible Q, that must be the highest ever 🙂

    Happy New Year Kelly, here’s to many more x

  5. Hi Kelly. I have to say I love reading your blog. I truly LOL almost every time I read it. You’re just so funny & real. I like you’re rating system too.

  6. I loved this post!! Your scores cracked me up. I earned several “bananas” last year too for my lack of goal-reaching. I’m swearing up and down I’ll do better this year. Huge huge congrats to you for the magazine features!!

  7. Lol — I’m afraid to look at my list from last year (seriously — i’ve put it off for 4 days now!). Guessing it’s less than half finished but so it goes. 🙂 Happy New Year, Kelly and many blessings for you and yours. 🙂
    xo Heidi

  8. I actually laughed out loud when I read this post. Normally the most I can muster is a sly smirk.

  9. And THAT is why I love your blog more than any other out there!!! You Ms. Kelly, make the rest of us feel good!! You make me laugh every single time, and if you never completed another project and just wrote your blog the way you have been, I’d follow you until the end of my days. (i’m much older than you so that’s why it’s my end and not yours!) I never make resolutions … well almost never, this year I pledged to try and remember to write 2014 on all my papers instead of 2013 and then trying to fix them! HAHA!! Do you think you can just blog a little more often now that the Holidays are over, cause I’m like a little kid on Christmas morning, running to my inbox to see if I got the email from you that I’ve been waiting for! You are one of my blessings, and I thank you!! ~ have to go read this again and laugh some more!

    p.s. The things you do complete are always beautiful, and I like that there’s “no pressure” to be perfect!

  10. Hi Kelly! First of all, thank you for making me laugh OUT LOUD several times. That is why you are hands-down one of my favorite bloggers. Even though you may not have checked off everything on your list last year you accomplished SO much with your blog. It’s so cheesy to say, but you are a huge inspiration to me, so thanks! Happy new year!

  11. PS- I have also started the Whole30. It was going really well and I found it fairly painless…until I started PMSing. Then I started wanting chocolate {totally stereotypical, I know}. But I am holding STRONG {so far}!

  12. This is probably, most definitely, my favorite resolutions post ever. 10 grilled cheese sandwhiches out of 10!

  13. I had to carry over my resolution from 2012 because it was not complete, which was use up my stock pile of shampoos. I can safely make a new one for 2014, but what will it be?

  14. I love this, our brains are similar in the whole “goals are great!…Ooh, look there’s something shiny over there! Ooh, let’s do something I never thought needed to be done but now MUST be done now!” I’ve had the same project on my new year’s goal list for 3 years running…and I still didn’t do it! I’m a little afraid to look at the other goals I set. May 2014 be the year they get done! You had an awesome 2013 and the magazine comment got me a little choked up for you too, that was an awesome dream come true and it couldn’t have happened to a more deserving person.

  15. This is hilarious as always, and makes me feel infinitely better about not reaching all of my home goals this year (even if I was making them up as I went along). Congrats on all your blessings in 2013, and here’s to new blessings in 2014!

  16. Well…I fared exactly like you. If i set a goal to finish a room I automatically ignore it and start a completely different project. It’s a sickness but I am glad I am not alone!

  17. I had a goals post for 2013…and the only goal I accomplished was graduating nursing school, which I knew I had to do or never become a nurse…there’s a definite motivation there.

    Everything else? It’s right back on the list for 2014! Holla! lol.

  18. goals are just guidelines and we have to allow ourselves to be flexible, which is what you did! 🙂 and look at that laundry room. bam.

  19. Love you rating system. I need that for my whole, random life! Since my hubby and I DIY together I wait for him to randomly (there’s that random word again) decide he wants to paint/remodel/build/drive me crazy that very second and off we go! I better be ready to make a decision and jump in or the spirit that moved him moves right on by. We are tackling my craft room as I write this, since I’ve been thinking about it and he jumped on in there today. We remodeled our small bathroom last year which was the best/hardest/scariest project ever for these two untrained DIYers but I love it!

    Life is way more important than a checklist, although my A personality likes it a bunch. Great post!

  20. Best new years resolution post ever! I don’t even make lists, since I fear failure (and I’m lazy!)

    Can’t wait to see what you have for us in 2014!

  21. Ha ha ha… Have I told you lately that I love your writing!! LOL… Can’t wait for all your non goal-y items in the year to come. I love surprises 🙂

  22. Hi, Kelly! I’ve never commented before, but really like your blog – your delightful humor, your doable projects, and the Christian aspect I find here. On that regard, I wondered if you knew there is an offensive ad on your blog….the League of Angels. I’m not criticizing, I just wanted to let you know, in case you hadn’t seen it. Thanks alot for your great blog! It’s definitely one of my faves! 🙂

    • That ad started popping up yesterday and I think we have blocked it now so it shouldn’t be back again. Gross! Thank you SO much for letting me know, and thanks for the sweet words! 🙂

      • The League of Angels ad was there for me today. If it makes you feel any better, it has been popping up all over the place — not just on your blog. I just scroll down quickly and hope my little boys are looking over my shoulder!

  23. Can I borrow your rating system for my own house goals? I think it’s perfect.

    No really, I needed the post so badly yesterday when I spent hours (HOURS) ugly crying over the state of our home projects. And I meant to comment then to say so, but my hands were full of soggy tissues and I couldn’t type. >.> Thank you!

  24. 2013 was a year of fabulous projects and fun over here Kelly and I loved following along! Can’t wait to see what 2014 has in store for you!

  25. I love that you are so honest about your goals. And even though you didn’t accomplish everything, you were about 184 percent more productive than 89 percent of the US population.

    Do the math. You rock.

  26. I love this line… “Completely subjective random score: 4 great naps out of a possible Q.”

  27. Ummm, I LOVED this post!!! So funny. I love that God knows what He’s doing….and that He gave you a humble heart and then surprised your socks off with the magazine thing!!!

  28. What a great year! Plus Andy works at home with you! A beautiful year that will only be topped by what you’ll do in 2014!

  29. Best rating system ever!! And heres my take on resolutions: I dont make them that way i dont feel like crap about the fact that i didnt accomplish it, which is totally most likely to happen! 🙂 Heres to a productive 2014!

  30. Well, I don’t like making goals at all 😉 Too much pressure!
    The laundry room is the bomb so no need to finish anything else, right? Ha!

  31. I think you may have left off the goal to conquer the world? Oh, and meet Oprah.

  32. I give you a lollipop casserole rating for 2013. Good work!

    It’s crazy how fast a year goes, isn’t it?

  33. Ha, I love the rating system. I can’t wait to see what y’all have planned (or not planned!) for this year.

    I think the only resolution I had last year was to plan our wedding without going crazy. As I think I am no more crazy than usual and am married, I deem that one a success. This year, we’re going to try to have friends over to dinner at least once a month and not care if our place is perfect. I love having people in our home and need to get over the idea that they expect perfection.

  34. I love your attitude about your 2013 goals. Clearly, I could learn a thing or two from you on rolling with the punches. 🙂 Can’t wait to hear your news!

  35. That laundry room is what led me to you, and I’m sure that room brought you a lot of new followers — it was amazing! I love your rating system — I may need to adopt that. 🙂 My whole upstairs is the 2014 goal. Sounds lofty I know, but when you’re starting from scratch, it’s easy to accomplish something.

  36. LOL girl, you are hilarious. well, obviously you left some of the goals for 2014…because what the heck else would you do this year? sit on your bum?

  37. You are hilarious!!! I give this post 4 sweet potatoes.

  38. I think your goals for 2014 should be to write amazingly funny and heartfelt blog posts. With this post alone you’d reach your goal! Keep being real and enjoying life 🙂 I am uplifted everytime I read your blog

  39. I feel like I could have written this post Kelly- well except for the amazing humour and that bit about the magazine. But I had so many goals of room revamps for last year and we only managed to do the laundry room too. Maybe because it is the small space it seems so much less overwhelming and it doesn’t snowball into other rooms the same way that bigger spaces can… I don’t know. But I need to seriously FOCUS (that is my word for the year) and try tackling one space at a time instead of having 87 room revamps going on at the same time. And then leaving those 87 room revamps about 15% done to start on something new that really didn’t need it. I hear ya!

  40. This is probably the most inspiring yearly project round up I’ve ever read 🙂 I’ve been sweating bullets about how imperfect my home still is, how many projects I haven’t gotten around to, how unlikely – with baby on the way – it’ll be to do much next year, etc. This made me stop and appreciate what we have been able to do – out of necessity, prioritizing, budget managing, and straight-up sanity maintenance. Thanks for being awesome!

  41. I am sitting here cracking up at your commentary and ratings. You are the best. Love it all. I still say you did some absolutely incredible things even if some of the goals went untouched! Hope you’re having an amazing week, Miss Kelly!

    ~Abby =)

  42. Hi Kelly! I know you commented or email me or something about how the Whole30 is going, but I can’t figure out where/when {sorry!}. Anyway, I totally broke down and ate some left over Halloween candy one night, but otherwise have been doing well. Stupid PMSing. At least, that is what I am blaming it on. To blame it on my own lack of willpower is just to devastating. Hope it is going well for you!

  43. Hilarious! Having a baby who apparently came at some sort of deadline forced us to score slightly higher than banana on our home goals for the year. Usually our lists are over-ambitious and ridiculous. 😛

  44. At least you pretend to make goals…

    My goal making is like trying to swim up Mt. Everest with a soup spoon.

    But I truly believe, when our hearts and minds are open, whole and ready, the blessings will flow forth in a tumult so that we could never have prepared for the overwhelming nature that is God.

    May 2014 bring a better score than banana. Perhaps, it will bring an entire fruit basket.

    And a box of chocolates.

  45. LOVING this post and your honesty! I think everyone feels that 2013 flew right on by! Obviously we all had items we didn’t get to cross off of our list last year, but in the end, isn’t it best to have a large list of goals!? And of course, those “almost done” projects we can immediately cross off?! Glad to know I’m not the only one! 😉

    P.S. Laughing out loud on the “Banana” score!

  46. Gosh I love your blog 🙂

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  48. Nancy Collins says:

    I also just HATE goals-setting, but suddenly, with no warning, I turned 60 and I’ve decided that I must absolutely start setting some and living up to them: Learn to knit, lose 30 pounds, read the Nobel prize winners and Booker short list, little stuff like that…

    I’ve gone to the gym several days in a row, so maybe that’s a good sign…

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