11 in 2011: Recap

Back in January, I made a list of 11 resolutions and goals I wanted to accomplish in 2011. The plan was to update my progress on the 11th of each month. 11 in ’11 on the 11th. I think I stopped documenting mid-March, although I did still work on my resolutions outside of blog-world.
2011 is coming to a close and I’m already planning my goals for 2012. Even though I did not complete all of my goals for 2011, but I made lots of improvements and put a good deal of effort into every resolution. For that, I think making a list is totally worth it. Some people are “anti-resolutions” because they say they never follow through with what they wanted to do, but I tend to believe that every little bit helps.
For 2012, you can betchya I’ll be doing 12 in ’12 on the 12th! I’ll make a little button/graphic for anyone else that wants to join in on my mission to better yourself and your surroundings.
It helped me to categorize them by the words in bold so that I didn’t have 5 exercise goals or 2 scrapbook goals or whatever. This way, it’s one main goal for several different areas of my life. Here is the final recap on my goals & the outcomes for 2011.

1. FASHION | Fine my personal style and be more fashionable.

  • Thanks to Pinterest, I did well with this one! I started off a little rocky, but by now I have a better idea of my style and what looks I like. I have a neatly organized closet (I’ll be sharing photos soon), and I updated my wardrobe with some key pieces that work well for work, play, and staying in. I have learned that I am a lover of ballet flats (black knotted, camouflage, & red jeweled being 3 of my favorite pairs); aviator sunglasses; leggings paired with oversized shirts; cat-eyes via liquid eyeliner; wide belts; decorative headbands; anything with an artsy flair; and platinum hair. I like where this is going & look forward to getting more creative in 2012.

2. DIET | Reach my goal weight.

  • Goal weight did not happen. I was quite the yo-yo this year. But stay tuned… I’m always working on it. 

3. LOVE | Plan for & have the perfect wedding.

  • Success! Our June wedding was beautiful & everything I had hoped for. I have a bunch of “Wedding Wednesday” posts planned with all of the wonderful details. Better late than never, yeah?

4. BUSINESS | Launch my design business.

  • Success! I launched Graphic Grace Design on January 1st, 2011 (website needs an update, for sure). I had a fun variety of clients throughout the year, from close friends to small businesses. Unfortunately… the economy was not great for a design business, and I had to put GraphicGrace on hold for a bit around October. I’m now employed full-time by an awesome company that works for the DoD and military Quality of Life programs for service members and their families. I love it! I’m not giving up on GraphicGrace, I’m just trying to find a balance between my new job & my home life so I can add in freelance work on nights & weekends. Can’t give up on my dream.

5. BLOG | Redesign & upkeep my blog.

  • Redesign: success! Upkeep? Not so much. I went in spurts, updating a few weeks at a time & lagging a few weeks at a time. I’m hoping to get a schedule going for 2012 so I schedule my posts ahead of time so I don’t run out of time during the work week, when life always takes over. Blogging has been an awesome creative outlet for me and I’ve made many new friends through it this year!

6. EXERCISE | Work out 3x a week, minimum.

  • Another activity I went in spurts with. I did P90X a bit, C25K a bit, and the elliptical a whole lot. I’m happy to say that after a few months of slacking, I’m ending the year on a high note… Joshua & I have been running together 3 times a week, at night around the neighborhood. We wear glow belts (base regulations) and check out all the Christmas lights. Great motivation!

7. MONEY | Spend less, save more.

  • Well… we did spend less. Only because we had less. And had no choice. It was a rough year for us financially, what with wedding expenses, moving twice, and several months of only being on a military income. Not the highlight of the year, for sure. This goal will surely be extended into 2012. And probably the rest of our lives. Just sayin.’

8. TIME MANAGEMENT | Be 5 minutes early. Everywhere.

  • Ha. This one was a bit of a joke. I guess it was hit or miss. I averaged between being 5 minutes early, or 5 minutes late. I was usually no later than that, although I can’t say it didn’t happen from time to time. Overall… I still need improvement in this department.

9. SCRAPBOOK | Get up to date with j&d scrapbooks.

  • Okay. Although I am not “up to date” on my j&d scrapbooks (joshua & danielle), I did make progress. I started a new album I’m calling “Our Love Story,” and a good portion of 2011 is documented in Project Life. So like I said, progress but not completion. To be continued in 2012!

10. KINDNESS | “Practice random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty.”

  • This one was hard to judge, but I’d call it a success! Any time I had the opportunity to give to a charity or donate a few dollars to people going door-to-door or requests at cash registers, I did. When my friends had fundraisers, I donated… even if it was just a small amount. The couple times we were able to help out friends or people in need, we did. We also made donations to Wounded Warriors, American Cancer Society, and Adopt-A-Family. So if any of that counts? I’d say… yeah… this was more of a success.

11. KEEP IN TOUCH | Regularly update email, photos, Facebook, & website.

  • I need to get better at responding to email in a timely manner, I need to stay on top of my websites to keep them up-to-date, but I was better at updating my photos & Facebook life! I love Facebook because it’s the quickest, most effective way for me to keep in touch with our long-distance family & friends. I did go on a big deleting spree and “unfriended” those I did not keep in contact with regularly. It was part of organizing my online life and streamlining what information is shared with who. That made it easier to update things and stay on top of it all. I will definitely be doing it again from time to time. I recommend it!

So there you have it. I’m excited to start it all again in 2012… with 12 new (or updated) goals & resolutions! Anyone want to join me?

11 in ’11 | March Update (Part 2)

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You guys, I cannot believe we’re already 3 months into 2011. It’s ridiculous! Does this really mean my wedding is only 3 months away? Ohhh myyy goshhh. 

Since I have a few new followers, I’ll fill ya in on what I do on the 11th of each month here at Hard Corps Love (ha). I have a list of 11 goals and resolutions I made for 2011, and I keep track of them on the 11th day of the month. It’s kind of a motivational/progressive/accountability thing for me.

With that said, I did great for January 11th (barely 2 weeks into the new year, go figure!), but then on February 11th I totally sucked and only posted half of my updates. Since not much has changed with that half of my goals from last month to this month, I’m just going to post the second half of my goals today.

It’s never too late to set goals or resolutions for yourself! Feel free to take the image above if at any point, you’d like to join in. I could use some company, really. ;-)

So here is an update on the second half of my 11 in ’11 progress.

    6. EXERCISE | Work out 3x a week, minimum.

    • Um, yeah. About that. I really hate to start off my progress on a bad note, but seriously? I haven’t been making time to work out. I can blame it on the weather, blame it on my schedule, blame it on whatever, but the truth is I just haven’t been prioritizing. And with my wedding right around the corner… yeah. I need to put this first.
    • My plan? I’d like to start P90X again on the 18th. It’s a 3-month program and the 18th is the 3-month mark to my wedding day. Cutting it close, yes, but also a really good reason to stay on track!
    • I started to C25K (Couch to 5K) program in December, and even though I’ve taken a few breaks along the way, I’m going to pick back up with Week 4. I will run a 5K this year!

    7. MONEY | Spend less, save more.

    • Okay. So aside from the massive shopping spree at DSW that Joshua & I indulged ourselves in last month, and aside from the dresses I purchased at Macys for my bridal shower, bachelorette party, & rehearsal dinner… and aside from the office furniture we bought to furnish the home office (tax write-off!), we’re doing pretty well. Ha.
    • I’m taking a once-a-week coupon class on base and learning so much about coupons and budgeting. I saved $13 on my last trip grocery shopping, and I have a feeling I can save a lot more if I put more time into it! The world of couponing can be quite ridiculous, I’ve definitely learned.
    • I’m making it a goal to read this book, SHOO, Jimmy Choo!, by the 11th of next month. This girl (yours truly) could use some help.
    [SIDE NOTE: One of my BFF’s and maid-of-honor, Sue… just got a job at Jimmy Choo in Boston! So proud of her. Go Sue!]

    8. TIME MANAGEMENT | Be 5 minutes early. Everywhere.

    • Sometimes, yes. Most of the time? Getting there. But at least now, I’m not as late as I used to be. This resolution is continually getting better.
    • And this may sound weird, but now that my hair is longer, I have the option to get ready quicker and therefore, leave the house earlier. When I had my shorter cut, I had no choice but to blowdry, flat iron, and style everyday. Now that it’s getting longer, I can twist it up into a bun, pull it back into a braid, tie it loosely into a side ponytail, or doing something else with it that doesn’t require an hour of blowdrying the massive thickness that is my hair.

    9. SCRAPBOOK | Get up to date with j&d scrapbooks.

    • We haven’t been as good at taking a photo everyday as we did in January for Project Life, but we are still taking the photos and have all of February to catch up on as far as documenting them. I have a million prints to order before we can do this!
    • Let’s just say I’m really glad there are still 9 months left in the year for me to catch up on this one!

    10. KINDNESS | “Practice random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty.”

    • This goal is seriously the hardest goal of them all. I want to do more, give back more to my community, be a better person, inspire people. I just don’t even know where to begin. Joshua began volunteering for the Marine Corps, but I just don’t know what to do?
    • I’ve donated to 3 charities so far this year though, all in the past month. When I can and I have the money, I do try to help out as much as possible. 

    11. KEEP IN TOUCH | Regularly update email, photos, Facebook, & website.

    • Definitely keeping up with this one. I uploaded a bunch of pictures of Gypsy Rose to our Facebook album, “All About Gypsy” last week, and I finally shared our engagement photos both here and on Facebook. 
    • Both of my websites could use some sprucing up though, so that’s next on the list.
    • I’d also like to return emails a bit quicker. If I don’t respond right away, sometimes I forget until the next day or week, and that’s just bad manners!

    So I’m making some progress, but I still have a lot to accomplish. I’ll say it again… thank goodness there are still 9 months left this year!

    11 in ’11 | February Update (Part 1)

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    Hello, February! I seriously don’t feel that I did a whole lot toward my resolutions this past month, so I’m looking forward to breaking it down right now and getting pumped for March’s edition!

    1. FASHION | Find my personal style and be more fashionable.

    • Okay, so… I’ve been making modest attempts this past month. When I leave the house, that is. When I’m home, I’m in yoga pants and sweatshirts all day. Ha. I guess that’s the beauty of having a “home office,” eh? But seriously, I do take my time to assemble my outfits when I’m going out, and I even count the gym as “going out” (it’s amazing the things that become outings when you do stay at home all day) and I wear my cute little workout outfits and feel good about that.
    • I haven’t picked up Lauren Conrad’s Style book since I last posted, though I did read through all of it except the makeup section. I have a few new style books on my list I’ll be reading next. In the meantime, do you like fashion blogs? I do. These are my fave:
    • The Daybook
    • Selective Potential
    • What I Wore
    • Blonde Bedhead
    • Sterling Style
    • Seriously, check these ladies out… they’re awesome and inspiring! Do you have any recommendations for fashion/style blogs or books?

    2. DIET | Reach my goal weight.

    • As a matter of fact, I rejoined Weight Watchers, my fave program, just last week… and I already lost 3.8 pounds this week! Whoo hoo. I had joined before Christmas but slacked off with the move, and it feels great to be back on track. I love their cookbooks! And I’m obsessed with the new PointsPlus program. It’s awesome. I can eat all the fruit I want… and I do!

    3. LOVE | Plan for & have the perfect wedding.

    • In progress! I’ve booked our hotel for our wedding night, ordered my garter, ordered the bridesmaids gifts, ordered my jewelry… I’m making some headway! Now, if only I could sort out this guest accommodations situation. More on this in a future post.

    4. BUSINESS | Launch my design business.

    • Graphic Grace Design launched January 1st, and I’ve since added two pages… please follow me! 
    • GGD on Facebook
    • GGD on Twitter
    • I’ve registered my business in the state of Virginia, and filed for an EIN with the IRS. We’re legit, baby!
    • I have 3 new clients this month alone… all brides to be, with wedding stationery projects. My favorite.

    5. BLOG | Redesign & upkeep my blog.

    • Blog design: complete. I went with a “tattoo” theme, kind of emphasizing the “hard core” part of “Hard Corps Love.” I myself don’t have any tattoos… yet. I’m too indecisive. But I love swallow tattoos and so of course I incorporated both those and hearts! I like the look for now… hopefully it lasts awhile.
    • Blog upkeep: getting better. I am getting better, aren’t I?
    Unfortunately, lover boy and I have dinner plans tonight, so I’ll have to finish up these updates in a bit. For now, I’m off for some Mexican with a very hot date! Happy Friday, everyone. :-)

    11 in 2011 | January Update

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    Hello friends! Can you believe it’s already the 11th of January? I can’t! That means it’s time to update my progress on my 11 goals for 2011 already. Wow! But first things first…

    Sorry I’ve been MIA all month. But right now, Joshua and I are in the midst of packing and moving our lives to Virginia. So everything has been all over the place as we go from North Carolina to Virginia and New York to Virginia gathering all of our furniture and possessions and putting them all in one place!

    Also, please excuse the appearance of my blog. I realize it’s still a mess of Christmas trees and sparkle, but until I can take a few minutes to redesign everything, you still get to experience all the holiday joy it brings to your screen… haha.

    Alright, now! Onto my first 11 in 2011 update!

    1. FASHION | Find my personal style and be more fashionable.

    • I’ve definitely been making so much more of an effort to be fashionable this month! Aside from the days we’ve been packing and moving, I’ve been setting aside the extra time each day to really plan out my outfit and find my own style! I started out by ringing in the new year in a cute new skirt and top from the Gap, black tights, brown ankle boots, and a colorful bracelet that felt a lot like “me.” I’m also 3/4 of the way done with Lauren Conrad’s Style book and picking up lots of tips from it!

    2. DIET | Reach my goal weight.

    • Slacking. We’ve been on the road so much that I’ve been eating crappy and consequently feeling crappy. This one is so hard for me. I love the Weight Watchers program, but I need to find a new meeting center in Virginia and get back on track.

    3. LOVE | Plan for & have the perfect wedding.

    • In progress! While Joshua and I are here in New York to pack up our furniture and the rest of my things, we’ve made three appointments for wedding planning… a company to rent chair covers, napkins, table cloths, and table runners from; a florist; and the venue planner to discuss our menu and other wedding details.

    4. BUSINESS | Launch my design business.

    5. BLOG | Redesign & upkeep my blog.

    • Slacking. I had a whole new, pretty design planned out and ready to upload, but it was all tailored toward my design website and since I decided to keep the two separate (thank you so much for your opinions on this, by the way), I now have to redo it all and figure out how I want to decorate around here!

    6. EXERCISE | Work out 3x a week, minimum.

    • Week 1, check! On Monday, Joshua and I went for a run. On Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, I ran up and down a billion flights of stairs carrying heavy heavy boxes while we moved our things from one state to another! That so counts as workouts.
    • Week 2, in progress. We’ll be moving all of our furniture from state to state this Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, so we’ll we how that goes and if I can squeeze in any additional workouts!

    7. MONEY | Spend less, save more.

    • So hard to do while moving. Honestly, we have not been doing a good job at this as a couple. So yeah… slacking. Needs improvement!

    8. TIME MANAGEMENT | Be 5 minutes early. Everywhere.

    • I’ve actually been doing this! Okay, so I haven’t been a full 5 minutes early, but I’ve definitely been early and not late anymore! I was 4 minutes early to a photo shoot last week, 3 minutes early to meet friends for lunch, and 2 minutes early to my hair appointment today. Seriously people, this is me doing well.

    9. SCRAPBOOK | Get up to date with j&d scrapbooks.

    • Our lives in 2011 are up-to-date thanks to Project Life! Whoo hoo! It’s my favorite thing ever!

    10. KINDNESS | “Practice random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty.”

    • I can’t pinpoint anything I’ve done worthy of this resolution in the past 11 days, other then donating some clothes and shoes to Salvation Army. That isn’t really what I had in mind when I made this goal though, so I’ll work on improving it.

    11. KEEP IN TOUCH | Regularly update email, photos, Facebook, & website.

    • It’s been tough the last week or so with the move, but I’ve been taking photos daily for Project Life and updated Facebook with New Years pics already. Working on it!

    I’m updating this from my mom’s laptop and in the midst of boxes, papers, and lots of distractions, but next time when I’m home and updating my 11 in 2011 from my own computer, I’ll include photos!

    11 in ’11 | The Plan

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    This year, I’ve decided to make a list of 11 resolutions and goals I want to accomplish in 2011. I plan to update on my progress on the 11th of each month. If you’d like to join me, grab the icon I made!

    These are my goals for the new year. More details to come.

    1. FASHION | Fine my personal style and be more fashionable.
    2. DIET | Reach my goal weight.
    3. LOVE | Plan for & have the perfect wedding.
    4. BUSINESS | Launch my design business.
    5. BLOG | Redesign & upkeep my blog.
    6. EXERCISE | Work out 3x a week, minimum.
    7. MONEY | Spend less, save more.
    8. TIME MANAGEMENT | Be 5 minutes early. Everywhere.
    9. SCRAPBOOK | Get up to date with j&d scrapbooks.
    10. KINDNESS | “Practice random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty.”
    11. KEEP IN TOUCH | Regularly update email, photos, Facebook, & website.
    It helped me to categorize them by the words in bold so that I didn’t have 5 exercise goals or 2 scrapbook goals or whatever. This way, it’s one main goal for several different areas of my life.
    What are your goals for 2011?