I know most people make their yearly resolutions in January; I’m not one of those people. I have found making them for Chinese New Year (which usually falls pretty close to my birthday) is a lot easier for me. To be completely honest, I usually work on my list for several weeks leading up to the beginning of the calendar year, and anything that I can’t make stick for 6 weeks until the lunar new year gets cut. Shrug. That’s just how I roll.
Before I get into my new resolutions, let’s recap my old ones from the Year of the Dragon:
- Implement and stick to a monthly budget - DONE! Last January -Mo and I sat down to make a budget we could both stick to and still keep our own financial goals as well as new ones moving forward as a couple. Over the year we have revisited and tweaked our spreadsheet to account for unexpected changes, but we both have done really well at keeping on top of this project! Yay us!
- Try 40 new recipes - DONE! Wrap up post here.
- Start a book club - DONE! This is, hands down, the best thing I have ever done. Not only for my own selfish literary reasons, but to improve and strengthen old friendships and discover some new ones. Love. For tips on starting your own book club, check this out.
- Read 30 books - DONE! I hit my 30-book goal sometime over the summer and kept on reading. I read 62 books last year, and even wrote mini reviews for each one, by quarter (part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4). I have also listed the books I’ve read since 2007, and their star ranking, here.
- Visit two new countries - FAIL. J-Mo and I had big plans to go on a belated international honeymoon this last fall, but something else came up, something far more important than a week in Paris and a weekend in Iceland. We have not cancelled the trip, just pushed it back to be rescheduled at a later date.
- Visit at least two new states - DONE! J-Mo and I spent some time in North Dakota, a new state for me. We also went on a wonderful weekend getaway to Santa Fe, New Mexico (a new state for us both) and I fell in love with everything about this small, adobe town. Swoon!
- Visit two previously unvisited National Parks - DONE! J-Mo and I have visited Canyonlands National Park (Utah) in the spring and Mesa Verde National Park (Colorado) this last fall.
- Train for and run a 5k - DONE! Dirty Dash, September 2012, Midway, Utah. When I was standing at the 5k finish line I discovered my group was actually running a 10k, which I did not train for at all. But I finished the race–all 10k’s of it–and, after several showers and a lot of scrubbing, got all the mud and dirt out of my skin/nails/ears/hair/[redacted], so I’m counting it!
- Hike Mt. Timpanogos - DONE! J-Mo and I woke up at o-dark-hundred and hiked all 15-point-something miles up and down this 11,749′ mountain, and mostly lived to tell the tale. (Although, it should be noted, the gash I found on my leg when we made it back to the truck has left a very distinct scar. It seems I will carry Timpanogos with me always.)
- Send birthday cards to my siblings, in-laws, and all the nieces and nephews - DONE! I am really proud of myself for this, actually, and I am hoping to continue this one next year. The Google birthday calendar made all the difference, and the 10-day email reminder and 3-day email reminder is the only way I kept up with this!
I hit nine of my ten resolutions! I consider this a huge success!
Ok, so now for my Year of the Snake list. I will probably continue to incorporate a lot of my goals from last year (cooking, budgeting, reading, birthday cards), but as they have become habits instead of goals I don’t want to include them on this list.
1. Complete my own 30×12 challenge: I turn 30 this week and I have decided to take a page out of Gretchen Rubin’s life and come up with 12 areas I’d like to focus on this year. I have selected 12 things I’d like to do for 30 days each. This is not a “Happiness Project” exactly, it’s just some things that I would like to do for myself, and starting on my 30th birthday seems as good a time as any. Some of the goals I feel okay about sharing, one or two I don’t, and that’s okay. I’m hoping to have a monthly wrap-up post for each of the sharable goals to help me stay on track. In a few days I’ll have my post up that details what exactly I’m going to do.
2. Limit book-buying: I have over 1,000 books in my apartment (I know this because I keep a spreadsheet, don’t judge). I have read over half of them, but that still leaves me with 500-ish books to read. I really don’t need to buy more books. For the last year I have, for the most part, limited my book buying to twice a month, on pay-day. However, I had no limit of the NUMBER of books I would buy…and this year that will change. With the exception of the booksale, this year I will only buy 1 book per month, as much as it pains me to type that out, it is probably for the best. (I know this is the part where someone lectures me about the virtues of the public library. I love the library, but I have my OWN library that I need to read, and this year that is what I will do.)
3. Run a half marathon: Five years ago in April I got in a terrible car accident about a week before I was scheduled to run the Salt Lake Half Marathon. I still have issues with my back, neck, ribs, and hips, but I have been cleared by my physical therapist to train for and run a half marathon. I know I will be slow and will probably have multiple walking breaks. I am okay with this. Frankly, I’d rather come in an hour later than have to deal with going the last few miles with a hip or pelvis that has fallen out-of-place, or–even worse–not finishing at all. (Yes, having a hip or pelvis “fall out” is a thing. Yes, it happens to me often. Yes, it hurts like hell.) I am both excited and terrified. A few hours before my accident I ran 12 miles without stopping, which is the farthest I have ever run; this April I will finish the project I started way back in 2008.
4. Visit Monument Valley and Capitol Reef National Parks: These are the last two of Utah’s National Parks that I haven’t visited. It’s time.
5. Visit two new states: I have a few to pick from: Alaska, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Dakota, South Carolina, Wisconsin. I’m hoping that I can visit every US state before I turn 35! For a girl who didn’t really go anywhere until she was 18 and has paid for all of her own travel since then, I think this is quite an accomplishment!
6. Write every day: I have missed writing. Not that I have ever written on this blog every day, but I used to write much more frequently than I do now, and I have missed it. I am going to write something, somewhere every day. That doesn’t mean I will have a daily blog post, because I won’t. But I do have a journal that I will be using, and I hope to write more often here as well. If it’s just a sentence, that’s fine. Although, my one-sentence writing will most likely be kept strictly in my journal; it would have to be very terrible or unspeakably awesome event to only write a one sentence blog post. Also, I do not fall into the Faulkner camp of writing pages-long sentences of drivel.
And there it is! Six resolutions for the Year of the Snake. Wish me luck, and Happy Chinese New Year!
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