Wow, 2013 has brought about a lot of changes..from a big move to the Old Irving Park neighborhood of Chicago, to Darren starting his second (and even harder it seems) year in law school, to my first full time year with Design Big Dreams, to our newest “DBD member”, Gracey Price, this year has brought challenges and unbelievable joy! I am not sure how to top it, but it is already looking promising! If you know me, you may know I LOVE lists…especially, Top 10 lists!

Instead of “Resolutions” or “Goals”, I like Top 10 lists! Here is my Top 10 for 2014- the places I will go, the people to meet, the work to do, and experiences to enjoy:

10. Inspired by my colleague and new born baby- I am looking forward to getting back into a more active way of life. I can’t wait till the Spring/Summer in Chicago and the DBD tennis matches that will ensue! In the meantime, it’s time to build the elliptical at our house! When my dad had passed away we were given this amazing piece of equipment and since we moved into the new place, we haven’t taken the time to put it back together yet. Now is the time!

9. Write more. I have been challenged with time and energy to write, but I do love writing. I love storytelling. And, we all know I love talking, so there must be something to say. I am challenging myself to write down all those instances that something wise comes to mind. Also, it’s time I get working on my books. There are not many resources on Catholic fundraising and technology out there, so it’s time DBD got on it!

8. Learn Spanish (re-learn Spanish, really) I can’t ignore that I live and work in a multi-lingual field. It is important to communicate with all clients, and I think it would also engage me in conversations with people I otherwise might not have been able to before. It’s time to re-learn a language and time to be a part of the conversation!

7. Take a walk- I draw the most inspiration and ideas from a good walk. Yes, I may have to carry around a notebook to jot-down those ideas, but I think it would be beneficial to put this into my regular routine. Plus, I have great walking buddies- Gracey and my dog Mya! Mya is always up for a good walk!

6. DBD is hosting a webinar for the National Catholic Development Conference in August, but before then, I am hoping to figure out a way to create other online class experiences, either through a webinar type of setting or even just posting video series on this blog and distributing them. I’ve got a lot to say about my field, but more importantly, i think real learning takes place in conversation, so this would enable those conversations to start and grow. (Of course, stay tuned to learn more)

5. CFRE time…about time. I have my Master’s in Public Service Management from DePaul University’s School of Public Service, but another stepping stone in my career is getting what is called the Certified Fundraising Executive certificate. It requires time, testing, and experience, but I have all that it takes- just need to complete it! It will also require me to continue taking classes throughout my career to stay current in my field, which is a plus!

4. I am blessed to live in such a beautiful city- Chicago! It also is home to some magnificent churches, so it is time to explore them. I have been in the city for more than 10 years now, and I can say I have only been to a handful of them. During the church exploring, I am hoping to find some unexpected experiences and people!

3. Go on a spiritual retreat. I am not sure where, or when, but it is time to take a spiritual retreat to rejuvenate, inspire, and energize my faith life! Maybe silent, maybe not- either way, I want to get away by myself and just be in prayer. Taking suggestions…

2. Cook more- take a class with the hubby! Darren is an amazing chef, but I used to be too! We intend to spend some quality time together through some cooking classes around Chicago and hope to bring that home. Cooking is so therapeutic for both of us, we really enjoy the time in the kitchen together, so this one should be fun and easy!

1. Play more- with Gracey. Roll around on the ground, play in the dirt, get messy with food, and all around good fun, I hope/think all these are in my future. I can’t wait to see the playtime I will have with Gracey, as she continues to learn and grow every day!

 

What a year 2014 will bring! I hope to accomplish all these and more and hope we can connect with you along the way!