2012 goals — because all the cool kids are doing it!

I’ll be honest, I love the start of a new year. New, clean calendar. Coming back to work after a (hopefully restful) break (hopefully) full of awesome new ideas. I also really enjoy the process of coming up with New Year’s Resolutions. I know that it’s corny, but the reboot allows me to look at what I do and don’t like about my life, and make steps to change that.

I make a point of trying changes throughout the year, whenever I find something in my life that I’m not happy with, but the New Year reboot is a particularly good time for me. It allows me to take control of my life after the holidays – a time that I feel like I’m just along for the ride (traveling, staying with family, events at work, etc.). Finally it’s about me, rather than the season. The other thing that I find particularly useful is the large chunk of free time that comes with being in academia. I’m very, very lucky to have the period between Christmas and New Years off automatically without having to use vacation (did I mention how lucky I am?). Consequently, that provides a chunk of time to do something. Sometimes it’s just resting up and recovering. (I know, my job isn’t physically hard, or as emotionally demanding as some, but I still get run down. And hey, I had surgery in December, so that rest was really important.) Sometimes it’s time for a big project like cleaning the condo. (Disclaimer – I did not clean the condo, Jeff did. He did a fantastic job. I lost a few recipes, but OMG it hasn’t been this clean since I moved in. I’m not known for my neatness. *Cue laughter from former roommates*)

Goals for 2012

1) Continue being more mindful about where our food comes from. I joined a CSA in 2010, and continued in 2011. This year we’ll either stick with our CSA from last year (if they do it again) or switch to shopping at the farmer’s market during the summer. We’re working on switching over to locally raised, organic, grassfed meat. We still buy meat at Meijer sometimes, but do our best to find organic/free range options.
2) Be more active. Physically mostly. I was doing pretty well getting back into running…and then I had shin splints. Then I finally got those under control…then I had surgery. (Exercise was not an option while bleeding heavily from the nose.) The goal is 30 minutes 3 days a week, at least to start with. And once the weather gets nicer, going back to long walks. (I love walking around Grand Rapids and East Grand Rapids…but it’s not advisable in the middle of winter.)
3) Read More. I go through waves of reading. Unfortunately, my book buying is constant. 2011 was the year of the cookbook – I read dozens. (Yes. I read cookbooks for fun.) I also got into cozy mysteries. Give me a murder, some romance, and some baked goods (recipes included!) and I will read your book. This year I’d like to read 50 books. It’s not a super ambitious goal, considering some people I know read hundreds, but I’ve struggled with reading ever since college. Something about reading 500 pages a week for a single political science class (while signed up for 3).
4) Craft More. Getting back into knitting. Loving it. My hands are a little messed up (thanks flute playing!), so this one is contingent on being able to keep myself healthy/functional. Sub-goals for this year: mittens for jeff, shawl for wedding, starting a sweater for myself.
5) Get Published. This is way less exciting than it sounds. And the only work-related goal on this list. I have to publish for my job. It’s a tenure thing. (Yes I know I’m lucky to be eligible to tenure.) The problem is, I hate writing. (Something to do with that senior thesis debacle. Sigh. I’m still not over that.) I’m going to push myself to blog more frequently in hopes of showing myself that it isn’t so hard. And training myself to just write instead of obsessing over what to write about.

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