So, it’s a new year. I’m in the throes of a planning session. And, as usual during my planning sessions, I’m making some changes.

Why do I use the word “throes” when talking about planning?

As I looked at some of my older articles, I noticed a bit of a thoughtless attitude regarding planning. How I might have insinuated that planning should be easy.

On the contrary, planning is not “easy”. If it were, everyone would have a plan. Planning takes effort. It takes some thoughtfulness and analysis. Planning takes time.

Plans need to be reviewed. And sometimes revised. What worked last year may not be where you are this year.

After all, “Ceaseless change is the only constant thing in Nature” – origin unknown

(I think that’s why I like the song “Everything Must Change” by Benard Ighner and Quincy Jones.)

That’s where I am right now. Reviewing the changes that have occurred in the past year. And revising the plans that were laid out for last year’s circumstances so they work smoothly with this year’s circumstances.

Or, at least, “As Smoothly As Possible”

To give you an idea of what I mean:

Last year…

…because I needed to adjust to a new position and schedule, I moved from homeschool/co-op to entirely homeschool.

This year…

…as I begin to manage the workload better, the plan is to do the reverse.

Last year (despite knowing and saying otherwise)…

…I plowed through most days attempting to do many things without help. All on my own. All by myself.

This year…

…I’ve made it a point to talk with the members of our blended family. I want to make my needs and limitations known. It is refreshing to see how helpful we have become to one another. This helps us all be more productive.

Last year…

…because I felt weighed down by so many material things, and because the house was falling apart, I left it all in a bodega and moved for the second time.

This year…

…now that I understand how to KISS (Keep It Simple and Significant), and after several conversations with my youngest daughter’s father, I’m prepared to re-enter that bodega. If I get anything, I will only be retrieving items that make life simpler for us and that bring beauty into our lives. That will take planning because I really have no clue as to what is in there.

Last year…

…I had a word for the year: Freedom.

This year…

…I’m expanding. I have a word and a phrase.

The phrase for this year is a play on a familiar acronym: KISS. For me, it means Keep It Simple and Significant. If what is going on complicates life and makes it stressful, I am going to reevaluate why I’m doing it.

If I discover that the reason I’m doing it holds major significance for me (and my family), then I will figure a way to make it work within our plans. However, if after reevaluation, I discover it holds no major significance for us, it will be tossed.

The word for this year is accountability. As much as I like this word, I know I personally tend to shy away from it. I gravitate towards doing things on my own. In the beginning, it seems like it’s the simpler choice.

Not always!

Usually, I find it is easier (once I let go of my pride) to ask for help. It was easier to let dad take the kids to jiu jitsu while I prepared supper. It was easier to let madrastra organize all the birthdays last year – including mine – so I could work. I didn’t have to make it happen alone.

I like the quote from Brian Tracy: “If it’s lonely at the top, you did it wrong.”

Yes, I want success as a homeschooler and businesswoman. I also want to enjoy that success with the people that are an important part of my life.

For this reason, I’m making some slight changes to the format of the blog and the articles I choose to post.

I want to be accountable to those who read the articles, those who subscribe to the monthly, weekly and daily emails, and to the children in my family. I’m also working to give you articles that are full of information and still simple to digest.

So, I will start with our educational plans, housekeeping goals and tentative menus. I’m hoping to also be able to tell you what is happening with my career/work within the sustainable community.

As we review a product, I will make sure (I hope) to let you know if it will be a new addition to our plans and how it can/will be integrated.

It is my hope that planning to do this will keep me accountable. And that it will help me to KISS. Because I know it won’t be easy. But it will definitely be worth it.

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