Alright, yesterday’s pity party is done. It’s a new year, new start, new mood.
Here’s the thing – I can’t force 2012 to be less stressful. There will still be plenty of chaos in my world – I do have three kids, after all, one of whom has higher-maintenance needs that aren’t going anywhere. But I’m remembering the chapter in Nurtureshock about sibling relationships. The idea was that the amount of arguing and conflict between siblings wasn’t the determining factor in how close they reported their relationship to be. Some brothers and sisters fought a lot, some fought a little. But the ones who reported the closest relationships were the ones who had the most positive interactions and memories together. The good balanced, or even outweighed, the bad.
So that’s what I want for this year. I want to make it a point to create a lot of good – good experiences, good memories, good events, good progress – so that the good can outshine any bad. To that end, I’m starting a list of goals for this year. It’s a mixed bag, they aren’t all shiny, pretty, fun goals. But they are concrete and specific, which means I am more likely to actually accomplish them. They give me a structure of things to work towards, and I always work better with structure.
- run a 5K in 35 minutes or less - I’m currently nursing a hip/muscle injury, but really do want to stick with running. If nothing else, it lends itself to such clearly-defined goals. I’m not sure I’m ready to tackle longer distances, so for now, I’d like to get a bit faster.
- beat my time in the Feaster Five – I really enjoyed running this race on Thanksgiving morning, and would love to do it again. Faster this time.
- finish a 10K – Adding another mile to my longest-ever.
- lose (at least) 35 pounds – Oh, come on. It wouldn’t be New Year’s without a weight-related goal, right? But there it is, I want to be down at least 35 pounds, and I’d like to do it by July. Why July? That’s when my stepsister is getting married. I’m a first-time bridesmaid, and most of the rest of ‘em are a size 0, maybe a size 2 post-kids. And there will be pictures. In case I needed extra motivation, there it is.
- de-clutter at least one day a week – It’s an ongoing battle over here, always so much clutter. I need to attack it one bit at a time. Especially if, as we are strongly considering, we plan on moving in the next six months or so. Half of this crap really doesn’t need to be packed up and moved to another house.
- find a house we love, not just like – I think we’re settled on the town, so now we need to find The House. It doesn’t need to exactly be the house of my dreams, since I rather doubt we could afford such a house here in Massachusetts. But I want it to be a house that we really, truly love. I don’t want to settle for something “good enough.” I want to love it.
- decorate our new house with thought and purpose – That’s something I’ve never quite done in our current house. Next time around, I want to go room-by-room and, again, make it a space we really love.
- complete project 365 – I’ve wanted to do a one-a-day photo project in the past, but either I get too daunted, or don’t remember until a week into the year, or whatever. No excuses, it starts today. At least one picture per day, all year (366 days, technically). I’m not committing to blogging those pictures in any particular way, other than probably uploading them to Flickr, but I want to do it. Phone camera or DSLR, doesn’t matter.
- find a synagogue – It’s time to find a community we like and really bring the kids into it. After all, Hebrew School starts in the fall…
- take a family summer vacation – Just a vacation. Not visiting parents. Not in Chicago or Florida. Just us, just for fun. Maybe we get together with some other friends, maybe we don’t. But a VACATION, not a family visit.
- get away by myself – Restorative. Necessary.
- get away with M – Restorative. Necessary.
- get a babysitter – I need someone I can leave Ellie with from time to time, so that I can run errands or go work out by myself. Not to mention the occasional evening out with my husband. There’s a chance my in-laws will be moving closer, which would fit the bill, but in the meantime I need to find someone I can pay, and who can actually take care of feeding Ellie and not freak out.
- get a financial planner – This one is boring, but way over-due. M and I do fine with our finances – save for our mortgage, we have no debt, and for that I am grateful. But I know that we need to be a lot more proactive about saving and investing and allocating in a responsible and productive way, so that’s high on the list.
- get a therapist – For me. I’ve thought about it several times this year, and am so daunted by the idea of adding any more appointments to my day. But I think I could really use it. In part, I’d like to work through some of the stress that is lingering over Ellie’s rough beginning and ongoing needs. But one of the big things I’d like to address is my relationship with food (see: Fitness Goal #3). It’s messed up in all kinds of interesting ways, so I’d like to try to work at it from another angle than simply “dieting.”
- get a piano and start the kids on piano lessons, if they’re willing – I want my kids to have at least a basic knowledge of music. I had a conversation with S of Lit and Laundry after her post on finding an “I HATE PIANO” note in some old sheet music, and I totally agree with her that music is a part of basic literacy in my mind. I don’t want to be a crazy Stage Mom, I’m not trying to re-live my own childhood and adolescent love of music through my kids. But I at least want them to have some exposure, in case they find they have a gift for it, or at least a love of it as much as I did. I’m not going to force it on them, kicking and screaming. I’m not going to make them take lessons until they graduate from high school if they don’t want to. But I’d like to start and see where it goes.
Alright, that’s my list. I’m sure there will be other things I want to (and, hopefully, do) accomplish this year, but these are the ones I’ve got for today.
What about you? Do you share any of the same goals? Have some big ones for yourself?