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Goal Action Ideas for Parenting Goals

We're back today with the next edition of our Goal Guide series! Many of us are striving toward the same things: deeper relationships, a growing faith, and a healthy lifestyle, to name a few. We created this series to spotlight one of those topics at a time and create a bank of ideas for your Tending List! Now, when you want to make progress on your fitness, faith, or nutrition goals, for instance, you can use these posts for inspiration!

This week's topic is parenting! I'm very new to this (10 weeks to be exact), but being the best mama I can be shot right to the top of my PowerSheets priorities the moment I found out I was expecting. As moms, we want to be more present, patient, and nurturing with our children. One thing that helps me make imperfect progress? Coming up with meaningful and practical ways I can love on my baby well. Thankfully I got some help from the Moms Cultivating What Matters with PowerSheets Facebook group. Veteran mamas, please share your ideas in the comments below as well!

Monthly Goals 

  • Read one new-to-you parenting book (We love the idea of inviting your husband to join you for this goal!)
  • Tackle an age-appropriate milestone goal such as sleep training, solid foods, weaning, or potty training
  • Do a seasonal craft, outing, or activity
  • Create a family mission statement
  • Get up-to-date in each child's baby book or scrapbook
  • Plan a family trip
  • Get involved in children's school activities
  • Join a moms' group or play group
  • Learn 2-3 new age-appropriate games
  • Create a chore chart or family values chart to track progress
  • Work through the Parents Goal Companion Guide
  • Pick a topic to learn about and check out several books on that topic from the library
  • Take an infant or child CPR class
  • Frame and hang photos of and artwork by your children

Weekly Goals

  • Have 3-5 sit-down family dinners together
  • Attend church and discuss what you learned
  • Write a letter, email, or diary entry to children to read when they're older
  • Take child to 1-2 activities such as play group, story time, or music class
  • Plan a special one-on-one date for each child
  • Call a mom friend to seek advice
  • Host a play date for each of your children to invite friends over
  • Memorize a weekly Bible verse together
  • Teach your child to cook a new dish with you
  • FaceTime a faraway family member
  • Make artwork together (Don't stress about making a mess!)

Daily Goals

  • Spend an hour of uninterrupted technology-free time with each child
  • Pray for and with each child
  • Read 2-3 books before bedtime
  • Keep your phone in another room during play time or conversations
  • Pack homemade lunch for each child (Adding an encouraging note while you're at it!)
  • Laugh together!
  • Talk about ways your children modeled your family values
  • Show gratitude for good behavior
  • Ask each child to list five things they are grateful for from the day
  • Get outside and active together: ride bikes or take an afternoon walk and talk about what you see
  • Practice patience: respond with grace and say yes whenever possible
  • Tell your children how much you love them!

These are just a few suggestions for items to add to your Tending List each month to make progress on your parenting goals for the year!

We'd love to hear from you: what else would you add to this list?

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Writing the Word with Kids

Since releasing our Write the Word journals, we've had numerous questions about how to Write the Word with children, and today's post has been in the works for a long time! We hope it's encouraging to all you mommas out there hoping to cultivate faith in the hearts of your children!

Let them see you in the Word. Prior to my current role on the Cultivate team, I was a Kid's Director for my church, and one of the things we often said to parents was this: Whether we like it or not, children pay more attention to what you do than what you say. Let your actions speak louder than your words. Whether you are using our Write the Word journals or not, make sure your children see you spending time in the Word and making it a priority in your life.

Provide shorter pieces of Scripture. We intentionally chose longer passages for our Write the Word journals because we believe that it's important to see the verses in context, but smaller pieces of Scripture are a great place to start. Here's an article with some great verses for children! You can also pull out key phrases from passages that you are studying.

Let them choose a special notebook. Turn an errand into an adventure, and let your child choose which notebook they will use to Write the Word. Having a sense of ownership will help them get excited about the process. Now's the best time to go shopping, because back-to-school is in full swing. There's bound to be good deals and a big selection to choose from!

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Photo by Val Woerner

Provide coloring pages. Is your child too young to write? That's okay! Incorporate coloring pages into your time together. A quick Google search of "Bible coloring pages for kids" will bring up a plethora of results, and allow your child to start familiarizing themselves with Scripture at a young age. And for when momma needs a writing break, check out our friend Lindsay Letters' Sweeter Than Honey Coloring Book.

Keep Scripture in front of them. Whether it's on your walls in your home or in your prayers, make talking about Scripture a priority in your home. One of my favorite and creative ways to do this for children is with temporary tattoos. Our friends at Armed with Truth created packs of temporary tattoos with verses, and my favorite is their set just for children.

Make it an activity together. We've all seen those Instagram posts about someone's quiet time-fluffly blankets, warm coffee in cute Anthropologie mugs, a lit candle. But we know what you mommas are thinking. That's just not practical for this season of life, and that's okay! Invite your children to participate in writing the Word with you might make your quiet time a little less quiet, but nowhere in Scripture does it actually say it has to be quiet :)

We're thrilled to be restocking all five editions of our Write the Word journals in our shop on Wednesday, August 23rd. In the meantime, download our free Cultivating Faith guide and start writing the Word today! We've included a selection of 10 passages for you to practice writing the Word right where you are!

Your turn: How do you cultivate faith of the little ones in your home? Teaching your children to engage with the Bible is just one (of many) ways. We'd love to hear from you in the comments!

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How To Set Good Goals for 2017

We don’t do traditional pressure-filled, do-it-all goal setting around here. We uncover intentional, less-is-more goals. This is grace-filled goal setting. We set “good goals.”

Good goals are about stewarding what you’ve been given well: your relationships, your money, your possessions, your work, your children, your home, your health, and your time. A little intentional forethought goes a long way!

We are humbled to say we are sold out of both our One-Year and Six-Month PowerSheets, but that doesn't mean you can't set intentional goals for the year! Lara Casey shared her Sixth Annual Goal-Setting Series on her blog last week, and it's the perfect place to get started on cultivating your most intentional year yet! Grab a journal (we recommend the Make It Happen Journal from the shop!), and join Lara as she walks you through her Personal PowerSheets Prep Work for 2017!

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We are completely sold out of our 2017 PowerSheets, and we are looking into getting a small batch of Six-Month #PowerSheets for the second half of the year, but that doesn't mean you have to wait! Use Lara's Goal-Setting Series to dig in right now. There is nothing magical about January 1st (or June 1st for that matter!)

Do you need the PowerSheets and Make It Happen book to have an intentional year? No. You don’t need any thing to live this life well. They are great tools if you choose to use them, but if you only do this blog series, and use scrap paper to write your answers, that’s great too. Use what you have! If you are someone who has been stuck in indecision lately, or feeling fear about diving into new things, join us in making a mess and dig in!

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Part One: Let's Get Started!

Part Two: Cultivate What Matters

Part Three: Say Yes, Say No, Choose a Word

Part Four: Uncover Intentional Goals

Part Five: Make It Happen!

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Have you set your goals for the year? If so, leave them as a comment so we can cheer you on!

Still need more direction after Lara's Goal-Setting Series?

1. Grab a copy of Lara's book, Make it Happen.

2. Explore the rest of the Cultivate What Matters community site for resources and encouragement!

3. Join Lara and the rest of the Cultivate team in person for the Making Things Happen Conference in March.

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Tips for Tending

Our Tending List was designed to help you simplify your life and break down big goals into actionable items! We've compiled our best tips for tending below, after years of working with the Tending List. We hope they're helpful for you!

  1. Use this Tending List to fit your life. It works for business, personal, or a mix of goals!
  2. Flip through your yearly goals before filling out your Tending List each month. Chip away at a few of them by adding some of your Action Plan ideas to your Tending List each month.
  3. Add items from your calendar and important to-dos to your Tending List. Examples: Host a neighborhood dinner party or finish a project well.
  4. Tending is about progress, not perfection. New this year is a progress bar for monthly goals! Fill in the progress bar little by little. Imperfect progress adds up!
  5. You don't need to fill in every line. Some months, I only have two daily goals, and some months, I fill in every slot!
  6. Daily goals should be simple habits you want to cultivate during the month. Examples: encourage someone, stretch before bed, pray.
  7. Make your Tending List items specific and connected to what matters. Example: Instead of “work out,” try “get outside and get moving three times per week for thirty minutes because it will help give me more energy!”
  8. I rarely finish a month with all the boxes checked off—sometimes, goals change or things don’t get done. The goal isn’t a perfectly checked-off list; the goal is meaningful, little by little progress. The little by little adds up.
  9. Put your Tending List somewhere you will see it all day. Either keep this page open on your desk or take your Tending List out and tape it somewhere. When I get distracted or feel idle, I look at my Tending List, and am reminded where to put my focus.

Want more tips for PowerSheets? Watch our PowerSheets Prep Webinar here!

Buy the PowerSheets at Shop.CultivateWhatMatters.Com

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Lara’s Action Plan Worksheets

Ready for more examples of action plan worksheets? Whether you're filling out your PowerSheets for business goals, personal goals, or a mix of both, we hope these examples help guide you in the process.

A Business Goal:

BusinessGoal1

BusinessGoal2

A Personal Goal:

PersonalGoal1

PersonalGoal2

Buy the PowerSheets at Shop.CultivateWhatMatters.Com

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