Dreams to Plans

Goals for 2017.

There’s always something inspiring about the first of the month to me…It signifies a brand new opportunity to set goals and crush them.

January was hectic, mostly due to the move, but it was a great one nonetheless, full of reflection and growth, both personal and professional. Now that we’re more settled, my workspace is set up, and head is clear, I’m so ready to get to work. Therefore, I thought it would be a good idea to get all my goals for the next upcoming year down on paper. I don’t know about you, but having these physically visible help me to hold myself accountable 😉 Here we go!

My goals for this year are:


    • Revamp my blog. This is a big one for me! Quite possibly #1 on my list. You all know how much I adore this little blog of mine so naturally, I want it to evolve and grow with me. With that being said, this is my official announcement that I plan on creating a lifestyle section in the near future 🙂 I’ve been a content machine lately, but a lot of my ideas don’t fall under the category of travel. Therefore, in order to keep from limiting myself, I want to expand the scope a bit. Keep an eye out for a lot of fresh posts and changes to the layout/design! YAY!
    • Make money from my hobbies. Last year, I bought an item I’d been wanting for a while; the Cricut die-cutting machine. It has been SO much fun getting to know how to use it better, and although I still have a ton to learn, I’ve become halfway decent at personalizing items such as wine glasses, tumblers, plates, and notebooks. I would love love love to get to a point where I’m able to produce & sell them to others. There are a ton of craft fairs in PHX, so perhaps that’s something I can look into participating in somewhere down the line.
    • Attend one conference. This one will be checked off come May thanks to Tyler, as he got me a ticket to TBEX for Christmas! It’ll be my first travel blogging conference, but not my last, I’m sure. I can hardly wait to network with others in the industry, and explore Hunstville a bit by myself 🙂 Anyone else going?
    • Teach English as a Foreign Language ✔ I can happily say that I can already check this one off my list! Last week, I was hired for a 6-month contract with VIPKID, where I teach one-on-one English lessons to students in Beijing via the computer. I’m super excited to put my TEFL certification to good use, and in such a rewarding way!
    • Develop a deliverable for my blog.  You know – downloadable cheat sheets, guides, how-to freebies, that sort of thing. It’s just a matter of what kind. What would you all like to learn about from me? I’m all ears!
    • Improve my marketing skills. I’m quickly learning that marketing is something that I both enjoy and am good at. It’s what most of my potential virtual assisting clients seek me out for, too. There’s always room for improvement, though, so I’d love to register for a course or two in brand development this year, and up my own marketing efforts as well.


    • Take a trip to Havasupai Falls. Have you ever Googled the place?! Un.Real. I’m going this year if it’s the last thing I do, damn it!
    • Visit 1 new continent this year. I’m trying r e a l l y hard to break away from my extreme Oceania fascination and go somewhere different. Thinking Europe – Flights are SO affordable to London right now on Skyscanner! New Zealand, Fiji, Indonesia… You’ll just have to wait for me a little while longer ;(
    • Become knowledgable about Arizona tourism. This state is so stinkin’ beautiful; we’ve got every type of landscape imaginable (except coastal, of course) and because of that, I really want to become an authority in traveling here. I want to encourage people to come visit and see all that it has to offer. Many of my co-workers and friends weren’t even sure where it was on a map – We really oughta fix that!
    • Plan a trip to the Best Friends Animal Society in Kanab, Utah. Just because I’m a crazy animal lady & this place tugs at my heart big-time. It’s a no-kill animal sanctuary built into the middle of a canyon with 1,600+ homeless animals being loved and cared for. But wait, it gets better – The dog section is “Dogtown”, pigs live in “Piggy Paradise”, and horses reside in “Horse Haven”. I mean REALLY?! What could be cuter? <3 Honestly, I’d love to spend a week or so volunteering at the place, but one thing at a time 🙂
    • See Los Angeles in all its’ glory. I’ve been to San Francisco and San Diego, so it’s only right that I visit LA at some point too! It is road trip distance, so honestly, it would be stupid not to.
    • O Canada…Did you guys know that admission to all of Canada’s national parks this year are free?! GO TAKE ADVANTAGE! I actually found a flight to Calgary last night for only $232 round-trip, which has definitely got me thinking…



  • Become an AirBnB host. I would absolutely LOVE to setup one of our spare bedrooms as an AirBnB listing. The families that we stayed with in Australia were so kind and helpful, it made me want nothing more than to return the favor!
  • Pay off my Discover credit card. Ah, credit cards…Such a love/hate relationship. I have a handful and honestly have been really on top of keeping balances low, except for my Discover, for whatever reason. One of my major goals is to pay that baby off by the end of the year!
  • Learn how to cook better. *Sigh* I’m not a Suzy Homemaker, I’m just not. I can make your basic recipes well, but I’d really like to venture out & learn more. So far, I’ve made chickpea tacos with roasted veggies and a few different pasta recipes. And last night, I made a chicken sausage, kale, and sweet potato dish that was DE-LISH. So I’m getting there!
  • Read 5 books. Ones for pure enjoyment and not personal development, because I am SO guilty of flocking to those at a bookstore. I recently scored The Secret Life of Bees for something like 50 cents at a Goodwill, so that’s first on my list. I’ve also had my eye on In A Sunburned Country for a while now too. Any other recommendations from my readers?!
  • Finish planning my wedding. Actually, let me rephrase that – START planning my wedding! We were able to tour a gorgeous venue before we moved & it could quite possibly be the one. I have an appointment to get fitted for my dress in March and I do know what kind of color scheme I like. But aside from that, I’ve got nothin’. Wedding planning has been pushed so far down my to-do list lately. I really need to get a move-on with it pretty soon here!
  • Make a habit of hand-writing letters. I love sending and receiving snail mail so much. Anyone with me?! I really want to make it a point to write letters and make little “thinking of you” gifts on my Cricut for friends and family back home. It’s important to let people know that they’re on your mind. We all could use reminders sometimes!

It sounds like a lot. But it’s achievable. Plus, you won’t know what you’re capable of if you never try!

I hope everyone’s year is off to a wonderful, productive, and fulfilling start! What are some of YOUR goals for this new year?

You Might Also Like...


  • Reply
    Marissa Schrenk
    February 2, 2017 at 2:31 am

    Amazing goals!! Air BnB seems like a great way to make a little bit of cash while meeting new folks and introducing them to Arizona! I love that traveling is top priority : ) It’s easy to forget how much I love exploring a new place when I’ve been going with the daily grind trying to pay bills (and credit cards). Dave and I are seeing Norah Jones this March (my late birthday present) in Birmingham, Alabama. Looking forward to exploring the town, enjoying great music, and experiencing civil rights and art mueseums. A tip for wedding planning: a little bit of work every few days goes a long way. It can be too overwhelming to try and get everything done in a short amount of time and you run the risk of making decisions too quick. Make a concise and basic list of what you need. Dress, venue, invites, photographer, etc. And don’t be afraid to ask for help! Dave and I did most of the planning on our own but recruited help in various ways from family and friends. Oh and Pinterest is AMAZING for wedding planning (I’m sure you know) and for me it’s a really fun thing to see the evolution of my wedding board throughout the year of planning : ) It’s such a sweet and unexpected way of remembering the process.Definitely achieve your craft goal! It’s really fun to let yourself dive into a craft and have the ability to sell it. Only piece of advice: it takes time and kind of sucks your creative energy so never feel like you HAVE to do it if you don’t have the energy for it. Crafts can wait lol I am so excited to hear that Europe is on your radar! I’m hoping Dave and I can plan a trip within a couple years!
    So my goals:
    1. Go outside more. It makes me happy. Gardening is the best therapy ever.
    2. Pay off credit cards. Wedding and moving debt should be paid off by August (huge sigh of relief)
    3. Set sights on buying a house!
    4. Use savings from paying a mortgage instead of rent to travel more often. Big cities around the U.S. and Canada are on the list as well as major parks and landmarks that I have not visited yet.
    5. Take more art classes. Took a jewelry class last semester and taking a wheel throwing class this semester and I LOVE it.
    6. Delve into intro classes in various fields. First goal is to take and accounting course to see if it would be a field of interest for me.

    Keep posting! I love reading your blog : ) It helps remind me to stop sweating the small stuff and look at the big picture in life and to keep the dream of traveling a reality!

    • Reply
      February 2, 2017 at 10:54 pm

      Hi! I love that you love reading it! That means the world to me! Norah Jones is gonna be AMAZING – enjoy <3 *Sigh*, I have so much saved to my Wedding Pinterest board that that alone is overwhelming, lol...I miss you very much and hope to see you, Dave, and your parents soon. Keep me updated about the house hunt and classes! I'd love to hear about them! XOXO

  • Reply
    Madison | Grace + Vine Studios
    February 16, 2017 at 3:33 am

    These are fabulous goals for the year! Love all of your blogging goals and personal ones. I would love to some day get a TEFL certificate and teach English somewhere 🙂

    • Reply
      February 16, 2017 at 10:07 pm

      Thanks Madison! You definitely should 🙂 It opens up a world of opportunities!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.