101 in 1001- Update!

Last year I sat down and wrote out a list of 101 goals to accomplish in 1001 days and even though I haven’t said anything really about that list since then I have been working on those goals.  So I’m going to start sharing my progress and what I’ve completed!  For this post I’ll update you on the goals that don’t have photos to go with them.  So here is my original list from last January, you can read the blog post about it here.

1. Blog once a day for a month- I’ve attempted this one but haven’t accomplished it.  My current plan is to do this in February, it’s a short month so I’m cheating a bit!
2. Delete old RAW photos from laptop and organize all photos into better filing systemDone!  I deleted tons of old files that sucked and started getting better about forcing myself to delete any bad photos as I edit instead of ignoring them and running out of hard drive space.  I just commandeered my husbands desktop computer the other week so everything is much more speedy and I was forced to organize all my stuff on an external hard drive that is backed up to another external drive just in case.  Add to that my DVD backups of each session and you can trust that I make sure never to be victim to computer failures!
3. Put together a Thank You gift for clients
4. Lose 20lbs and keep it off- Still working on this goal, I am down about 5-10 lbs from this time last year but now I want to lose 10 more lbs which would make this original goal 30lbs.  I’ve been working out with a personal trainer doing bootcamps a couple times a week and started the Wii Active 30 day challenge for this month since it is notoriously bitterly cold in January here in Virginia.  Also I’m back on Weight Watchers which I highly recommend to anyone trying to lose weight.  It is easy to stray off any diet and exercise plan but when I have followed the weight watchers plan I really felt like I was in control of my diet.  Also I have a new rule that I’m not allowed to buy beer or soda at the grocery store, I can have it if I’m out to dinner or something but no more easy access in the fridge.  I’ve been awful about drinking water so I’m working on that again too.  My husband comes home in 2 months and I want to be down at least 10lbs by that time!!!
5. Have professional portraits taken of me for blog and marketingdone and I will do a separate post with those images!!
6. Take photos of both sets of my grandparentsdone and I will do a separate post about that!!
7. Create client packets for weddingsdone and I will do a separate post with those images!!
8. Update sample albumsdone and I will do a separate post with those images!!
9. Update wedding contractdone!!
10. Pay off debt
11. Book 20 weddings per season
12. Blog about the cool new products out there to display photographs
13. Paint spare bedroom henceforth known as home gym/overflow roomdone and I will do a separate post with those images!!
14. Paint master bedroom walls and furniture- halfway done, I painted the room but still deciding on what to do with the furniture.
15. Finish kitchen cabinet wine cubbies and trim- almost done, I need to get my Dad over here to help me with the last section.
16. Clean out studio of un-used equipment and stuff (Currently selling my 85 1.8 and my 100mm macro 2.8 Canon lenses.  Email me if you are intrested!)- Still working on this, ironically I decided to keep both those lenses but I have a couple other things I need to sell.
17. Test out slideshow software and audio fusion idea- halfway done, I have incorporated slideshows into my blog so I’ll do another post about this and what software I use and why. I have not played around with fusion yet though.
18. Set workout schedule and stick to it- still working on this one, I am doing regular bootcamps 3x a week and I’m trying out the Wii 30 day challenge so maybe if I can keep that up for a couple months I’ll mark this as complete.
19. Improve product packagingdone and I will do a separate post with those images!!
20. Enter my photographs in competitions
21. Shoot with film again- well I have been shooting with film more but right now I have a bag of 20 or so rolls that need to be developed so this goal is partially done.
22. Write business procedures and policies into a handbook for future employee reference
23. Hang my fine art landscapes in a coffee shop or downtown store
24. Take more trips with my husband and my dogs
25. Reward myself once I accomplish 10 and 11 with the Canon 50 1.2L
26. Hang out with my brother and sister more
27. Actually attend meetups for some of the different groups I belong todone and I will do a separate post with those images!!
28. Knock out 5 more classes towards my Fine Arts Degree
29. Attend WPPI in Vegas
30. Have a photo safari with old photography classmates Roni and Ashley
31. Start doing projection sales
32. Print Inspire Guide as book
33. Connect and network with local wedding vendorsdone and I will do a separate post with those images!!
34. Create dream shoot with local wedding vendors that I can photograph- working on right now and cannot wait to share the final outcome!!!
35. Work on Facebook pages and learn how to integrate my blog and website with FB
36. 2nd shoot a wedding with Jessica Claire or Melissa Jill
37. Attend a workshop by Jessica Claire, Jose Villa, Melissa Jill or Chenin Boutwelldone and I blogged about it here and here! Although I’d still love to attend workshops for the other too!
38. Improve my cooking so my husband doesn’t worry that he might die when I cook- working on this but thanks to The Pioneer Woman and her awesome cookbook and website my husband actually started looking forward to me cooking dinner before he deployed.  I’ll have to make one of her dishes and blog about it to mark this goal as complete.
39. Send out anniversary cards to past clients
40. Get my work published in a bridal magazine or an online blog such as Style Me Pretty
41. Improve post wedding workflow to get 25 previews up in 1 week
42. Improve album design and turnaround to complete within 1 month of wedding
43. Start pre-designing albums
44. Write down all the ideas running around my head for my business and put together plan to implement them
45. Finish my business plan
46. Create marketing plan and schedule to implement it
47. Take family portrait for my mother of the family
48. Take family portrait for my mother in law of the family
49. Print an album of my wedding for my mother and mother in law
50. Stop being such a baby about turning 30 this yeardone I turned 30 and I didn’t die, in fact I’m happy to be 30 now!
51. Grow grass in our front yard- yeah we are gonna give this one another try this year, one thing we did though was have our trees trimmed up this past fall so now our front yard gets so much more light!!!  I think that will make a huge difference this year.
52. Put a new deck and front portch on our house
53. Make weddings and portrait sites more cohesive with each otherdone!!!  So instead of making them more cohesive I just combined them with the blog and I’m loving it so far!!!  I blogged about it here.
54. Hire associate photographer to shoot more weddings
55. Lay hardwood floors in the bedroom
56. Take photos of my parents
57. Take photos of my sister and brother
58. Have my own Rock the Dress session
59. Have new photos taken of my husband and I
60. Cap my portrait bookings to 5 a week
61. Setup office schedule for shooting days vs office days
62. Find office space to share with another vendor for client meetings
63. Volunteer at church
64. Take a class with my husband in something fun
65. Visit Italy
66. Go snowtubing
67. Focus more on each thing on my do list and stop getting distracted halfway through
68. Speed up my editing time or look into outsourcing basic edits
69. Shoot a destination wedding or at least a wedding in another state!
70. Set aside time for personal Fine Art projects, set theme and deadlines to accomplish each project
71. Refresh website pictures every quarter with new stuff
72. Work on racing project for my husband’s crew
73. Participate in Project 52
74. Befriend local photographers and meetup to talk photography stuff and take photos walks done and I’ll post more about that later!
75. Spend more time playing with my girls and get back to our daily walk schedule
76. Attend church regularly- no excuses
77. Clean out closet of items that don’t fit or that I don’t wear, purge at least 25%
78. Finish the stained glass frame for my wedding invitation
79. Purge office of junk and make better use of space
80. Print out personal photos and use the scrapbooking supplies I’ve been given
81. Become more involved in local charity organizations
82. Burn dvd of all the photos I’ve taken over the years of my husbands family and give to my mother in law
83. Learn more about using my flash off camera, check out One Light DVD
84. Keep more fresh flowers around the house, they make me smile!
85. Add more canvas gallery wraps to my living room
86. Work on holiday card designs early, tie in with marketing plan
87. Second shoot with more local photographers to build up local network
88. Create a system for keywording photos when importing to lightroom to make things easier to find later
89. Teach a local Mom’s group how to take better photos of their kids
90. Incorporate film images with wedding coverage
91. Take a cruise
92. Start getting a massage the day after shooting a wedding
93. Improve my blog and website content for portraits and weddings
94. Clean out my email inbox and setup rules for incoming mail to separate ads from actual clients
95. Photograph a wedding in Charleston, SC
96. Photograph more seniors and possibly start senior rep program
97. Add 5d Mark II to my gear and try out video for simple fusion ideas
98. Do a Boudoir shoot with a client
100. 2 years from now update my website and blog to a single custom site
101. Start a Friday Favorites blog post done but altered.  Instead of a Friday Favorites I’ve started a Love It!  Hate It! post and I’ve been pretty good about being regular with that one.  It is posted every other Wednesday and gives you a glimpse into my personality and my life 🙂  Check out some past posting here.
So in a year I’ve accomplished 15 of my goals with 11 more in active progress and at least another 5-10 in the planning stages.  Now I have a bunch of blog posts to write to show you how I’ve accomplished my goals, that might tie in with my 30 day goal in February!  I’ll leave you with a photo of me from accomplishing goal number 5 thanks to the uber talented Korie Lynn!!
Melissa Arlena laughing in front of green fence with ivy.
Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

    Miami newborn photographer

    Hello & Welcome

    I'm Melissa! Luxury maternity and lifestyle newborn photographer in Charlottesville, sail boater, lover of Lilly Pulitzer, and obsessed with true crime and interior design. I'm so glad you found me!


    more about me


    Favorite Blog Posts

    free download


    Disclosure Statement is a participant of Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a commission from qualifying purchases. participates in other affiliate programs, and receives commissions when purchases are made through the links. This is at no extra cost to you.

    Melissa Arlena is an award winning Richmond and Charlottesville photographer. She recently earned her Master Photographer Certification in the Maternity, Newborn & Family categories from the National Association of Professional Child Photographers. Melissa offers maternity, lifestyle newborn, and family photography in her relaxed, natural, and joyful style.


    Melissa serves Charlottesville, Richmond, Staunton, Fredericksburg, Harrisonburg, Waynesboro, Culpeper, Gordonsville and beyond.



    Melissa Arlena Photography captures newborns, maternity, and families.

    Charlottesville and richmond, va

    Like what you see?