Sunday, January 3, 2010

New Year, new me... Time to "Do"

I've never been one for New Year's Resolutions. I tend to get motivated to make one, then the idea fizzles within a few weeks. But somehow, this year, I know I need something.

I've been a fan of Ali Edwards for quite a while, and every year, instead of resolution, she chooses a word to live by. Something that helps her focus on what she wants to achieve in the coming year.

I've never been very dedicated to much of anything (except my husband!). I tend to start lots of projects and never finish. Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of things I have accomplished that I am very proud of, like completing my AA degree in two and a half years while working full-time! But then I stopped, as is the case in most of my life.

So this year, it's a new year, a new decade, a new chance. I've been at a point over the last few months where I am ready for a change. The other day, I was thinking about all this and weighing whether I should have a word or not, when it suddenly dawned on me what an appropriate word for me would be... and that is "Do." There's so much I want to learn, want to experience, want to complete, but that want has never formed into anything because I never take initiative to just "do" them.

So here are my things to "DO" this year:

* Learn something new - I have always wanted to learn sign language, how to use my sewing machine, how to quilt, how to use my camera. I challenge myself to "do" just that by learning something new at least once a week. That's a huge challenge to undertake, but hey, even if it's one sign, one stitch, or one page of my camera manual, that's one more piece of knowledge then I had the previous week.

* Try new recipes - Jonathan is particularly excited about this one. I love to cook, but rarely try anything new. I recently made these Monkey Muffins from a Pioneer Woman recipe, and they were YUMMY! I loved the outcome and how good it felt to try something new (and it helped that it was successful!) It reminded me of a time about nine years ago when I was working from home and watching cooking shows all day. There was a gourmet breakfast recipe that I decided to try and it turned out awesome. The presentation was exquisite, the food was delicious, and the feeling I got of being proud about what I had created was priceless. There's lots of foods I have never branched out and learned how to cook. Now I will "do" just that. I think I will make this one a bit more manageable and make at least one new recipe a month. Then if I make more, I can exceed!

* Read more - I go through phases of this. I tend to read a LOT for a while, then can go for months without reading anything. I have wanted to read the Top 100 Classic Books. There's a lot of different lists out there, but most of them are fairly close to each other. I am about half way through, which is definitely a huge accomplishment, but again, haven't finished (or even been working on it for a while). So I will "do" more reading and dedicate myself to at least one new classic novel a month, even if I have to juggle it with some of the more recent stuff I have been reading lately.

* Take more pictures
- Part of learning about my camera, is also to use it. I will "do" that this year, even if it is just an every day photo of something boring around the house, or something boring about me. I will take at least one new photo a week.

* Move more - I know, I know, this is the one that we all say we are going to do at the beginning of the year and don't stick to it. This year, I am trying a different approach. I am not saying I need to lose weight (even though I do!), or I am going to start going to the gym every day (don't get crazy), I am just saying what I think I will "do". And that is to move more. Whether it's on the treadmill, taking the dog for a walk, actually taking a break at work and using it to walk around a bit, or maybe just doing some Wii Fit fun stuff. I think I can "do" that at least three times a week.

It seems pretty real to be putting this all on my blog. Now I know I have to dedicate myself to it. I remember when I was 19, my friends and I decided to do a life book collage. One of my friends knew that putting your dreams or hopes or wants into words or pictures, made them more tangible. So we sat around one night and cut up magazine and made our book of dreams. It seemed so far away and unrealisitic at 19.

Now, I think back to that book, though I haven't look at it in over ten year, and I can remember what I put in it... a car (I didn't have one at the time, so this was a BIG deal! Check), my AA degree (check), love (check), marry an awesome man (check), vacation in Hawaii (check check!), a house (check), a job I enjoy (check), kids (well, that's still a work in progress, but we'll get there eventually)... I have achieved most of those things. And those that I haven't, are still in progress and I am still working on them. Maybe putting all these things I plan to, strike that, thing I am GOING to "do", will make them more tangible too.

So how about you? Any resolutions or word to live by in 2010?

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