Setting Goals for Simple Living in October

As summer turns to fall, I’m working to simplify life as much as possible to make the most of my favorite time of year. Here’s how I’m setting goals for simple living in October.

Setting Goals for Simple Living in October 2016

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September was a busy month. The kids and I leave tomorrow for a ten-day visit to see my sister and parents in Tallahassee. We haven’t visited them since Anna was a baby. My parents have moved cities, and my sister is now a college student. We are all looking forward to getting a glimpse into my sister’s college life, and catching up with my parents in their own home. The trip wasn’t planned until recently. I found a good deal on tickets, and those don’t come up that often, so we decided to grab the opportunity.

Between the new trip, a broken washing machine (we’ll get a new one today!), school, and working out housing for next fall (we’re moving out of our condo and into a house in less than a year!!!),  a lot of my September goals didn’t quite happen. Anna did enjoy a fun birthday party. I got part of Lily’s quilt top done, but it isn’t even halfway finished yet! I have at least made progress since the photo above was taken. We did spend a fair bit of time outside, until a big heat wave drove us indoors with the shades down (we don’t have AC). I did a tiny bit of decluttering. Johnny (8 years old) saved me by organizing the downstairs shelves for me!

Setting goals for simple living in October. The holiday season doesn't have to be stressful!

Setting Goals for Simple Living in October

Simplify is a big theme for me in October! The kids made a great start to this by deciding that they want to wear costumes from previous years for Halloween. Johnny and Emma are re-wearing their fox and owl costumes from last year. Lily and Anna decided to wear the butterfly costumes Emma and Lily wore in 2013 and 2014. Re-wearing costumes is something of a trend in our home – and I’m happy to keep that trend! My goal focus areas in italics, as always.

Costume-making is usually the biggest time consumer in October. This means I should be able to stick with very reasonable goals:

  • Enjoy visiting family. Focus on mindful living and gratitude.
  • Finish Lily’s quilt top. Focus on learning.
  • Make an advent calendar out of a sewing panel I bought last year. Focus on learning. 
  • Spend time outside. Focus on mindful living and gratitude.
  • Finish reading Between the World and Me. My college-student sister is reading this for school. Several of my siblings and I decided to turn her school assignment into a family book club. Big families are awesome that way. I have to finish by October 15th, which should be fine since I’m about two thirds of the way through. So far it is well worth reading. Focus on learning.
  • Read Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry
    . My ten-year-old is reading this for school, and wanted to talk to me about it. I read it when I was in sixth grade, but it has been so long that I don’t remember it very well. I do remember that it gave me a lot to think about. So this will be our mother-daughter book club. Both of these books focus on race relations in the United States – very relevant to current events. Focus on learning.

I’m going to stop there – in the name setting goals for simple living in October.

What are you hoping to accomplish this October?

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MaryAnne lives in Silicon Valley with her Stanford professor husband Mike and their four children. She writes about parenting through education, creativity, and play. Mama Smiles - Joyful Parenting is a space to share crafts, hands on learning activities, and family outings that enrich lives and bring families together.

8 thoughts on “Setting Goals for Simple Living in October”

  1. Elisa | blissful E

    Oh I love your book goals! Great idea! And how exciting to visit your parents and sister. Yay! And double-yay about your upcoming move to a house with a yard!! :) So happy for you guys!!! :)

  2. I want to see pictures of the Advent Calendar!

    I told my kids before I made their outfits for Williamsburg, these are your Halloween costumes, I am NOT making anything else.

  3. I want to see the Calendar when it is done. I love the quilt top. I’m doing TONS of decluttering. We have a goal of clearing out one room in the house as fast as we can to change things around.

  4. Have fun with family!! Florida is a long flight (we did it earlier in the year). We’re going to visit family in Vegas for a new niece’s Christening (8 hrs in the car with a newly potty trained Miss J). My whole family will be there. We just finished the Wizard of Oz book, and the kiddos saw the movie for the first time. They loved both! October, we’re going to read and then watch Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (J’s school has pj/movie party with Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory at the end of the month).

  5. Love the look of that quilt! I bought a new sewing machine recently and one of my plans is to learn to quilt.
    I love your reading goals too. What a fantastic way to connect with family. <3

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