Friday, July 24, 2009

New Year's resolutions: a mid-year review

Well, the year is more than halfway over, so I thought I'd better check the status of my resolutions. This is when it is handy to have a blog, otherwise my list would have been long lost in a pile of papers (see item #24 below) and forgotten.

So, here are the things I resolved to do this year, with a status update on each one.

1. Cut back on the lattes (I actually have cut back, although probably only about 25 percent.)
2. Drink more green tea (My cabinets are filled with the green tea of my good intentions.)
3. Put the kids in daycare one morning a week (It hasn't necessarily been that structured, but I have actually been pretty consistent about taking that time to write.)
4. Take a martial arts class (Okay, this one should probably be on my list of "to do before I die" rather than a new year's resolution.)
5. Walk the dogs (Right, whatever. I've lived here for a year and when my neighbor came over the other day she was surprised to see that we had dogs.)
6. Start a new website (And I was going to do this with what free time exactly?)
7. Add book and product reviews to this blog (I have actually started doing more reviews.)
8. Start composting (This has been on my "to-do" list since 1998.)
9. Plant a vegetable garden (I cannot even keep hearty wildflowers or grass alive.)
10. Compile some of my writing into a book (That is sort of in process. It is just a VERY long process.)
11. Begin writing a novel (If by "begin" I meant "write a line that I might someday include in a novel," then yes, I have begun.)
12. End my relationship with diapers (Do Pull-Ups count?)
13. Quit making separate meals for picky family members (I only do this on days that end with "-day.")
14. Take a yoga class (But if I actually go to a class then I will have to stop talking about how I'd like to try yoga. I LOVE talking about how I'd like to try yoga.)
15. Put out the hummingbird feeder (I did put it out, the only problem is after the hummingbird eats all the nectar you have to refill it...)
16. Go to bed early (I do this at least once a month.)
17. Exercise every day (If by "exercise" I meant "walk up and down the stairs, chase a kid who needs a new Pull-Up and pick up dirty clothes from the floor," then yes, I exercise every day.
18. Learn a second language (My son taught me how to say "red" in seven different languages. I already forgot most of them.)
19. Keep the house clean (If by "clean" I meant, "the authorities have not threatened to condemn our house," then yes, I have been keeping the house clean.)
20. Do a better job keeping up with friends (Now this is my kind of resolution. Vague and impossible to measure. I'm just going to say "yes.")
21. Post inspirational quotes around my house (I haven't actually done this, but several times I have been reading something and thought to myself, "I totally should write that down and put it up somewhere in the house. It would completely transform my life!" I am so sure I will remember and come back and find the passage. So far this has not happened.)
22. Always remember to bring my reusable bags to the grocery store ("Always" is always a poor choice of words for a resolution.)
23. Push back my cuticles (I actually did do this, once or twice. I think you are supposed to do it more often than that.)
24. File papers once a week (If by "file papers" I actually meant, "shuffle through a stack of papers to find the bill that is past due, then later come back and straighten the pile, and perhaps move it to a new location," then yes, I file papers about once a week.)
25. Put all the bills on autopay (I actually did do this, then some schmo stole my identity and I had to get a new credit card and put all the bills on autopay AGAIN. Then my credit card company got bought out by another company and I got a new number and had to put all the bills on autopay YET AGAIN. So much for simplifying my life.)
26. Establish more of a routine (Another delightfully vague resolution.)
27. Quit using the word "actually" so much (hmmm...)
28. Improve my knowledge of history and geography (Well, I'm sure I've learned something new in the past six months.)
29. Keep up on current events (I do this, but it only makes me agitated.)
30. Print off more pictures (More than none? That should be easy.
31. Send photos of the kids to the grandparents via email (I just sent a photo of a dead lizard to my in-laws. That should count for something.)
32. Check email less often (But I have see what they said about the lizard!)
33. Join my kids in play more often (This one and #19 are sort of mutually exclusive. I'm trying to prioritize the playing with the kids part since it's more of a limited time offer.)
34. Get to know my neighbors (Whenever I talk to any of my neighbors I discover that this is on all of our "to-do" lists. Progress is being made slowly but surely.)
35. Go on weekly dates with my husband (We may not go out every week, but, all the dates I've been on have been with my husband.)
36. Start riding my bike again (Oh, pitiful bike with your two flat tires and your rusty gears...someday we'll hit the trails once again. Sigh.)
37. Start playing my guitar again (Oh, dusty guitar with your out-of-tune day we'll make beautiful music together once again. Sigh.)
38. Clean out the refrigerator (Hey, I DID this one! Twice! And, then it got dirty again.)

Wow, that was really long. But you might recall that the reason I made such a long list in the first place is so that it is actually impossible to keep all my resolutions. (Last year, I only made two, and when I couldn't even manage to keep two lousy resolutions I felt like a big loser.) But, after reviewing the list, I'm surprised to find that I am doing so well. Sure, so far I haven't managed to master a second language or write a novel, but don't count me out. I've still got five months left.


lucythevaliant said...

That is amazing! Maybe the key is to making a TON of resolutions, so you at least accomplish some of them. Good thinking!

Meaghan said...

Well geez, Ruth. What have you been doing with your time?

Cristina said...

Ruth, nice long resolution list. Lovely. And it shows how much you've accomplished, and it makes me feel about those items still on the back burned. Nice job! You can finish some more up before January. ;) My resolution to go to Australia again!!