Wednesday, January 1, 2014

The End of More; the Beginning of Study

The word for 2014 is study.

Last year, my Word of the Year was More.

  • More miles
  • More family time
  • More charitable donations

I am happy that, for the most, I did more.  I ran more miles in 2013 (558.91) than 2012 (427.7).  I put a lot of emphasis on spending family time together, making sure that some fun activities like the Polar Express involved all three of us, even if that took a little more effort/planning to make sure Husband wasn't working or traveling for work.  I don't feel like we made a huge impact on the charities I had planned to focus, but with apps like Charity Miles and some other donations that came up mid-year, I feel like I have made a more positive impact on the world than in past years.

As I turn the calendar to 2014, I am also turning a page in my own life.  This semester, I am officially a Northern Arizona University Lumberjack, working towards my masters in English.

I have hemmed and hawed over my masters for far too long; Husband graduated in 2007, and since then, it's been "my turn" to go back.  Some days I would think that I needed to get my masters in Something Practical (read: not English).  Some days I would think that I needed to study What I Love (read: English).  Finally, the days when I thought the latter far outweighed the former, and the decision was made.  I'll be taking all my classes online, which does restrict my class options a little, but I will be able to take some electives within the education college, which will in turn help me add some practicality to my new degree, which I should earn in December 2015.

As such, while I will continue to run more miles, spend as much time with my husband and daughter as possible, and give back when and where I can, my main focus for 2014 is on myself and my books.  Hopefully the work-life-school balance will be manageable in the first half of the year; I'm counting on HRH's entrance into kindergarten next fall to allow me a greater ability to focus on work during the work day so my school hours can be more tightly focused as well.

I've always loved learning, and I was a good "traditional" student (I still take notes when I'm reading books for fun), but after not having been in a class since 2002, I'm also a little nervous.  I'm not new to online learning (after all, I teach online now), but it will be a new perspective being a student.  That being said, I'm excited at this new chapter in my life, and I can't wait to see what doors it may open to me!

What is your word/motto for 2014?


  1. wonderful! I love English, too. And English literature. What a great way to start the year! I wouldn't be so nervous...cuz you'll be studying what you love! I wish you much success, good health and happiness in the coming year. And my word for 2014....simplify. Happy New Year!

    1. Thank you, Anne! I am really excited, and I loved my undergraduate degrees (one of them is English), so I'm certain I'll love this, too, once I really get into the thick of it. This semester I actually am taking two education classes, so I'm not as excited as perhaps I would be if they were English courses.
      I love your word for 2014. At some point that needs to be mine as well. :)

  2. I would have to go with focus. I feel like I was so split last year that I did lots, but not very well. I need to refocus.

    1. Great word, great plan! It's easy to think loftily at the beginning of the year and spread oneself thin (looking straight in the mirror as I type that). Good luck!

  3. You deserve to focus on and learn what you love. You'll do great!