Blogiversary 5: Goal Tending

It’s time for some annual goal declaring (because nothing lights a fire under your keister like a big ol’ public proclamation). Let’s do this thang.

Goal #1: Embrace The Crazy (aka Be Flexible): After five years of blogging and over two years of both of us doing it full time, we’ve learned that no two days are ever the same. But this upcoming year is about to get crazier than anything we’ve ever experienced. Between the release of our book on Nov 6th and a 15 city+ book tour along with some secret side projects that we can’t wait to reveal to you guys (no mom, that’s not a we’re pregnant euphemism) the next 365 days are guaranteed to be like no other. So our goal is just to be flexible and resist the futile attempt to cling to any sense of “normal.” We figure the less we stress about it, the more we’ll be able to enjoy what’s in store for us. And you know we’ll share every last crazy detail as it all goes down. Woot.

Goal #2: Smorgasbord it up. Looking back in our archives – especially as demonstrated in this morning’s post – we realize there used to be more variety in our posts (we blame the change on our Type A personalities, which make us quick to fall into a routine). So somehow we’ve lost that sense of mixing it up and a smidge of the spur of the moment randomness that we had in the beginning of the little ol’ blog of ours. So in addition to our usual routine of projects, giveaways, and reader redesigns, we’re hoping to add more of these ingredients to the proverbial YHL pot:

  • House Crashings
  • Window Shopping
  • Budget Blooms
  • Fast and Free Upgrades
  • Advice-Seeking (from you guys for ourselves or even for other readers)
  • Table Setting
  • Holiday Decorating
  • Mood Boards
  • Using/Tweaking What We Have
  • Round-Ups & Top Ten Lists
  • Road Trips (or other travel-related adventures)
  • Random Off-Topic Chitchat (looking back, these usually end up being some of our favorites)

We feel like this mix will be a truer reflection of our real life (since we’re definitely not doing projects 24/7 around here). Sharing two or three projects a week has always been a pace that works best for us (it’s amazing how much you can accomplish when you look back, as seen in our monthly recaps) and that pace also helps us avoid burn-out and keeps us from busting our budget. So we’re recommitting to bringing back some old stuff, trying new things, and generally smorgasbording it up along with those two to three project-related posts per week – which is definitely what got us here in the first place.

Goal #3: Less Typey-Typey, More Lifey-Lifey: Finding balance and not writing such wordy posts probably go hand in hand, and both have been goals from past years that we haven’t quite mastered. So while we’ll still probably work a few nights and weekends and ramble on from time to time, some of our favorite posts in our archives don’t have 2,000 words, and many other blogs that we love are less long-winded. So this is our commitment to keep working on it. Here’s hoping the third time’s the charm, and that you guys are down with short & sweet along with the long juicy stuff that we serve up on the regular.

Goal #4: More Of You. We’re not fully sure how we plan to do this, but we want more of you guys on our blog. So from crashing more of your houses to getting your take on how you like to live in your home, and just working harder to create a sweet little community over here, we’d love to work you guys in even more. Our casa is su casa. Come on in and get cozy. I might be found inside posing like this, but it’s all good.

So there they are. Four probably-won’t-all-be-accomplished-but-we’ll-try-our-darndest goals for year six of blogging our pants off (figuratively speaking). While we’re on the goal tending topic, we also like to annually revisit the prior year’s goals to see how we did. You can read them a bit more in depth right here, but we thought we’d just summarize the ones from last year to evaluate our progress:

Last Year’s Goal #1: Find Balance: As we mentioned above, we’ve been working on this goal for a few years (we actually mentioned it during this 2011 resolutions post). We said we wanted to avoid the trap of putting all of our time, money, and energy into the house to the point that we have no life, no savings, and Clara doesn’t see the light of day. Since the internet is 24/7, we’re still plugged in on nights, weekends, vacations, and even holidays. So one reason that we started Young House Life was to remind ourselves to take a minute to have fun, be spontaneous, and step. away. from. the. laptop. The verdict: Blerg, still working on it (see Goal #3 of this year), but we’re getting a little better I think. After all, we did take our first ever break from blogging this year.

Goal #2: Not drone on in every post. We noted that this actually might be the key to accomplishing more of the balance that we craved in our first goal, which is why we worked it in again this year. The verdict: Oops, still working on this too.

Goal #3: Bring back before & after inspiration. Back in 2010, we phased out our Reader Redesigns and invited folks to share their makeovers on our Facebook page instead. But after a year of missing them dearly, we decided to bring them back. There’s just too much amazing stuff that can leave us all inspired/encouraged and you know we love to share the love. The verdict: Wahoo, mission accomplished! So glad they’re back.

Goal #4: Be Secure In Our Own Bloghood. This was about how we’d love for every single person to love every single post, but we’d also love a goose chihuahua that lays golden eggs. The truth is we just have to be ok with not everyone loving everything, or even anything. And in turn everyone reading will hopefully understand that projects, decor choices, and post-writing is as subjective as favorite foods and hairstyles. We vowed to remember that and blog more fearlessly and confidently. The verdict: We’re finally in a just-doing-our-thang groove these days (it only took five years, haha). And there’s a little more on this topic in this post and this post if you’re a fellow blogger who is struggling with it.

Goal #5: Be Grateful. This goal was about how sometimes the stress of a project or a long blog to-do list can make us momentarily forget that this is a dream job. So this goal was more of a mental shift than anything else. In those oh-crap-we’re-stressing moments we just wanted to stop, breathe, and remember how geeky giddy we are over this amazing opportunity. The verdict: We definitely took this to heart, and whenever we felt crazy-overwhelmed by book stuff, life stuff, and all of that project/blog stuff, we tried to take a breath and smile. Life is good, even when it’s full of chaos.

Goal #6: Try New Things. We wanted to have an open mind about some weird half-baked decorating idea that might pop into our heads or some other new adventure, like what writing a book might have in store for us. So we just wanted to be open to those new things – and try not to dread them or turn into a big ol’ ball of stress. The verdict: We wrote a few awesomely random and spontaneous posts, we shot book photography for three solid weeks in our house without killing each other, and we have just generally tried to be more open when it comes to spontaneous post/life/project ideas. Hopefully there’s even more of that to come this year!

Now it’s time for us to change out of our hockey uniforms and slip on some grass skirts to do a little love hula for you. Oh yeah, these swaying hips mean that we love you more than words can say. Without you guys our goal would be: get back into advertising because we’d be out of a job. Haha. So just know how much we appreciate you. Not in that “thanks for holding the door for me” way that you toss out five times a day to strangers. More in that genuine “thanks for making our life possible” way. And speaking of meeting you guys, we just heard that next week we’ll have all of our book tour dates nailed down, so we can finally announce them! Here’s hoping we can meet some of you and sincerely thank you for dropping in on our life. You guys are not only the reason we can do this for a living, but you’re also the reason that we love doing this (you encourage us and make us laugh in ways you’ll never know). In short: you guys make our day every day. How’s that for a lovefest?

Psst- First image found here and last image found here (without our heads on them of course, we added those).

Psst – We announced this week’s big giveaway winner. Click here to see if it’s you.


  1. says

    LMBO!!! I love the photoshopped heads…almost got me to spray my water all over my monitor. I think you guys are so humble and grateful – you can tell you don’t take anything for granted. That is what makes you so endearing and why we all follow you daily (and some of us more than once a day….okay so I have your blog up multiple times a day, so sue me. ;-) )

  2. Amanda C says

    Two things…

    Oh My Gosh, I LOVE the foosball photo of the four of you!!! Awesomely hilarious and so cool I might actually put it in a tiny frame somewhere so I could get a little laugh out of it every time I saw it! :D I also adore the pic of Clara!! And of Burger!

    On that note: Someone mentioned there were too many pictures in each post and I’d like to strongly disagree. I love the pictures in your posts!

    And for the second thing: Hmmm… I’ve never once thought your posts were too wordy, or longer than they needed to be. In fact, more often than not, I’m surprised they’re over when I get to the end. So I think that means they’re probably about the right length for the topic you’re posting about. Now if the topic didn’t deem an in depth post and you went on and on that would be another thing!

    Having said that, I’m all for you guys having balance in your life, so do what you gotta do.

    How’s that for a wordy comment? Hah! =D

  3. Alan says

    You guys are great! Have you ever seen the show on the DIY Network called “Blog-Cabin?” I think it would be fun for you guys to do something like that on your blog- basically you let your readers vote on things for your home updates (like what color curtains you guys will hang in the office, or what color you will paint one of your ceramic animal…things like that).-AG

  4. jillian says

    I absolutely love your foosball (never had to spell that word before) photo! You guys are such an inspiration to me! Keep up the amazing work and hope to see you in ATLANTA!!!!!

  5. Katie says

    Really looking forward to more of these topics:
    •House Crashings
    •Window Shopping
    •Holiday Decorating
    •Using/Tweaking What We Have
    •Road Trips (or other travel-related adventures)
    •Random Off-Topic Chitchat (looking back, these usually end up being some of our favorites)

    Any idea what time of year you will be traveling? After the new year? I ask because I am due in December and knowing my luck you would be in St. Louis (YAY!) when I am in the hospital (Boo!).

  6. Fi says

    I just love you guys. And this blog gives me such inspiration. If only you lived next door so we could be friends and I could Clara/Burger sit in exchange for design help… that would be awesome!! lol Congratulations on five years and I can’t WAIT for your book to be out! Come to Houston and I can take you to get some great Mexican food. :)

  7. tamara says

    Super excited for book tour reveal! Yeeaaaa! And best of luck on meeting your goals. i TOTALLY vote for more work-life balance for you two. i read your blog every day & totally lurve it with cherries on top, but the reality is, I will STILL love it (a lot) even if you only post once a day, or even just 4 times a week. And i think EVERYONE in the YHL community probably feels this way. i’d rather have a little less YHL and *know* you guys are going out on more dates, traveling more (just the two of you! plus other adventures with C!), or just freaking sitting on the deck drinking a bottle of wine. Shoo. I feel like at the end of my life I am going to savor the romantic trips I took with my husband, the days I spent running in the woods with my kid, etc., waaaaay more than I will even my most proud and noteable career accomplishments (and i too have a pretty amazing job . . . environmental prosecutor saving the planet, holla!). You know what I mean? Your joy in YHL is apparent, but I dunno – life is short! Even your groovy job is still a “job.” Work less, Team P. PLAY MORE! We happy readers aren’t going anywhere. :)

  8. says

    The Calgary Flames hockey jerseys! haha That team is pretty far away from you guys!
    It’s been really interesting reading your Blogivesary posts. I remember reading them last year too, wow.
    Congratulations on 5 years!

  9. says

    Great goals! I think many people can probably relate to the be flexible and find better life-work balance ones. I know I can! Honestly, sometimes I get overwhelmed for you. You guys just seem to pack so much in. I think to myself “they could totally just do one post a day and give themselves a little break!” :).

    Looking forward to the new/recycled post topics, especially the advice one. I feel like there is so much to learn from you guys and this community–that one type of post could go a far way in accomplishing goal #4.

  10. Jenn says

    I love your blog. I was a little confused by the Calgary Flames jerseys because I thought you would pick a team closer to your city. Anyway, what I wanted to say was this:

    My mom refinished her kitchen cabinets this summer. She bought a new fridge which was bigger than her old fridge and so she had to cut the doors above the fridge down to make it fit right. I emailed her the link of when John cut the door in half and then glued it back together. Worked perfectly!!

    Looking forward to the book!

    • says

      Love that! So smart! As for the hockey pic, you’d be amazed how hard it is to find two people with their faces showing in a pic with a goal. Seriously, you take whetever you can get!


  11. Amanda says

    Oh my gosh, in the measly little one year that I’ve been a follower of your blog, the book tour announcement has got to be THE MOST ANTICIPATED POST for me EVER! Can’t wait. Oh my gosh, I Can…not…wait! lol

  12. Jenny says

    Hi guys, I’m waiting for my dad to get out of surgery and just opened my daily dose of young house love. Your awesome foosball players – gave me a much needed chuckle..Burger…what a hoot! love your blog…hope to see you on your tour!

  13. says

    For goal #4 you could do something clever like “Bloggers DIY better” – some sort of challenge to paint a room, build a new piece of furniture, or re-do granny’s bathroom in a weekend. Other bloggers could link to your website and then we could all see what other bloggers are doing. That way you don’t have to deal with a million submissions, rather bloggers who complete the challenge can put their link on your post that day and we can all virtually see what other people did for their challenge. (Ali Edwards is doing a link post like this today but her site crashes my computer. So you can access it from my blog or google her. Ali’s post isn’t about DIY, rather it’s about what is happening currently in bloggers lives but it would give you the idea.)

  14. Chaney says

    I know this has already been said many times, but I nearly (nearly only because I’m at work) busted out laughing at the first foosball photoshopped photo! Y’all are great – I have LOVED all the posts you’ve done this week! Keep up the good work.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *