It’s a Monday and in a normal week I’d be settled in at my desk by now, working on payroll, grant reports, or calling for a quote to fix whatever problem has cropped up with our office building that week.
Instead, I just hopped out of a shower with endless hot water and no interruptions from my toddler wanting to practice his “aim” in the newly discovered potty, all so he can get the promised one M&M for his efforts.
I’m all stretched out, my 33 week pregnant belly protruding as a reminder of what the coming year will bring.
It’s glorious, this lounging on a hotel bed with clean sheets in the quiet while watching my husband pack up our things as we head to our next destination, The Billy Graham Training Center at The Cove for the Christian Blogger Retreat.
At dinner last night at a local dive we visited 11 years ago during our first end-of-the-year retreat as a married couple, we sat together and began the process of reviewing our year.
This reviewing and reflecting together, it’s something we intentionally take time for every year.
We first share the highlights of the past year together, remembering exciting events like my daughter’s first day of kindergarten, finding out we were pregnant with baby #3, the growth of my husband’s business, being brave and stepping into this unique ministry of blogging, and my husband writing and launching his first book.
Then we move on to talking through the coming year. We talk about the things we’re looking forward to, the challenges that lie ahead, and the opportunities for growth we’d like to capitalize on. We talk about what we personally want to focus on and identify a focus for our family as a whole. We talk about relationships we’d like to foster and experiences we’d like to have.
It’s my favorite time of the year.
In the midst of the mundane tasks of the day-to-day, we often lose our spark. We forget the why in what we’re doing. And we’ve learned over the years that a re-set is important.
This time to reflect and renew our commitment to one another, to our family, to our pursuit of God, and to our own growth as individuals is not optional, it’s necessary.
Over the years we’ve had many married friends ask us how we’re able to get away and take this intentional time together. Honestly, we’re blessed with fabulous parents who love our kids and understand the importance of investing in your marriage. But even if we didn’t have such great family support, we’d figure out a way to make this time at the end of the year a priority. It’s that important.
What about you?
Do you and your husband take time away to reflect on the year almost completed and to plan and dream about the year ahead?
I’d love to hear about some of your experiences – what you’ve tried that works and what doesn’t. Do you use any particular resources to assist you in your reflections? If not, what would be helpful to you?
My husband and I are passionate about our end of the year reflection time and would love to serve you in the future with resources for doing just this thing. How can we help you? I can’t wait to hear!