New year, new leaf! Right?
I always make resolutions, and I never keep them. Lump me in with the 99.99% of the rest of the world who does the same. This year, though, I was inspired by a few discussions with my friend Hannah, and some serious navel-gazing on my own, to think about writing some down and hopefully really going after them with some serious stick-to-itiveness.
So, here goes nothing?
2014 New Years Resolutions
1. Cook at least one new recipe a week.
My Pinterest has an insane number of recipes on it. Very few of which I've attempted. I've never been much of a cook, largely due to having grown up with two parents who are phenoms in the kitchen (and therefore, with little impetus to learn to cook for myself). Throw in 4 years of college with a meal plan, and now a two-year relationship with a guy who's a pretty damn good cook himself, and I've just never gotten around to it. This year I'd love to change that. One new recipe a week would put me at around 50 (give or take) new efforts…there's got to be some wins hidden in there somewhere.
2. Manage my closet/shopping habits in conjunction with each other more effectively.
"Shopaholic" might as well be my middle name. I have a serious affinity for J.Crew, Anthropologie, Kate Spade, etc…and a serious wardrobe to match said affinity. This resolution is going to be two-fold: first, I am going to try to refrain from shopping as much as possible--unless it's urgently needed, I just plain won't buy. Second, for every article of clothing I bring in, I'm going to get rid of one article of that clothing. I.E. every time I decide I just neeeeeed another adorable J.Crew top…one of my current tops must go. Seems fair…we'll see how this goes!
3. Have at least one "event date" a month with Jon.
This is my shamelessly cheesy "I love my boyfriend a lot" resolution. We'll have been together for two years this month, and accordingly, have gotten into a really comfortable rhythm relationship-wise. We have our favorite restaurants, our dates we like to have, heck, even our established preferred bedtimes (we're not night owls). While that is so great for my general happiness, I'd love to get us off the baseline every so often. Planning monthly "big nights out" will do that--whether it's a concert, play, sporting event, or totally new experience, it's important for me to remember to prioritize my relationship--including keeping it fresh.
4. Focus on continuing friendships.
I'm lazy about friends. It's not something I'm proud of--but like I said above, I get comfortable in a routine and it's really easy for me to use that to justify not being as social or giving of my time as I'd like to be. And I'm lucky enough to have some really great friends in the Twin Cities area! To promote those friendships for 2014, I'm going to try something a little different--I'm going to make sure I plan to see my friends early in the year, and every time I see a group of friends, I'm going to make sure I get another outing planned (as in, scheduled and in the books) before we're done. It'll force me to overcome some of the friendship inertia I've let myself develop, and friends always make me happier!
5. Call my grandma regularly.
She's newly widowed, 90, and sweet and sad and alone. And she loooves her family. My grandpa passed away on Thanksgiving this year after a nearly-decade-long decline, and watching my sweet grandma Lo try to pick herself up and deal with everything is really humbling. I live half an hour from her, but even easier is picking up the phone--just to say hi, for five minutes. It's such a small thing, that could make such a good difference.
6. Grow some succulents.
I have no green thumb, but I love flowers and plants. Once it warms up, I fully intend to have potted flowers on our patio, but in the meantime, rather than spending major moolah on fresh flowers once a week, I'm going to get a couple succulents. Apparently they're totally foolproof…so it might be a nice way for me to get something in our apartment (other than the two of us) that's living!
7. Write more!
I've loved having this little blog so very much for the past couple months. It's a great outlet, it's a lasting record of what I'm thinking/feeling/caring about at this weird junction of my life, and best of all, it's 100% for me. I used to be such a great writer, and I used to write a lot. For this year, my goal is to write something every day. Whether it's an email to my sister, a summary of my day in my Jane-A-Day 365 Journal (so cute, more on that another time), or a little something here, I'm going to really focus on writing more. And notes!! Writing handwritten notes to people is a resolution I genuinely care about. Let's go with three notes a month, to somebody (anybody, really).
8. Stop leaving my clothes in a pile on the floor.
I am a notorious slob, and thanks to years of effort on the part of my mother and boyfriend, I'm starting to (try to) reform my bad habits. One of my worst is the tendency to leave my aforementioned extensive, expensive wardrobe piled on the floor. It drives Jon crazy, and it's even starting to bug me. Such a simple little thing--but all clothes will either go back on the hanger or into the laundry basket as soon as I'm done.
9. Make smart, healthy choices.
This one is SO simple: do something active for at least 30 minutes a day. Drink two glasses of green tea and 6-8 glasses of water a day. Wash my face every night before bed. Daily Listerine. Daily lotion. Basic. Shouldn't be that hard. Fingers crossed this is the year it stops seeming hard and becomes second nature!
10. Focus on maintaining a positive outlook.
One of the saddest things to me in our culture is how easy it is to be so negative, when we have so much and our lives are, by and large, SO good. I've fallen into the trap of thinking really negatively about a lot of things! I'm going to focus on finding the bright spots and positives in my life every day, whether it's a really good commute, an achievement at work, cute kids/animals, something on the Internet that makes me smile…who knows? At any rate…this isn't quantifiable or really even something I can check off a list. Just a good thing to keep in mind, going forward.
Here's to 2013--it was great. Here's to 2014--it's going to be even better.