Sunday, January 04, 2009

A New Resolve

So you know I make random goals for myself all the time so I don't always make specific New Years resolutions, but I've been thinking about them a lot this year.  Now that we're sort of settled in our new nest, it seems like the next step to focus on how I can improve things.

Buy Less - To start this off, Larry and I have set a goal for January to be a month of no spending.  Of course we will still have to buy food and pay bills, but we will not be spending money on any extras this month.  No clothes, no movies, no trips to wander Target, Etc.  I read about someone who did this for several months and said it changed her habits and her way of thinking about things as she's shopping.  I don't think I spend too much, but I do drag Creed around to explore new shops with me, and he doesn't usually enjoy it so I'm hoping this month I can focus on finding some fun new things to do with him instead.  Any suggestions?

Finish - My mom says that she's going to call this A Year of Finishing and she will be pulling out and using up all those supplies for projects she never finished or never even started.  She started this Christmas with a quilt for each of the girls in my family (I still need to photograph mine so you can see how pretty it is).  If you know me, you know I take after my mom and have loads of supplies for projects I've been wanting to get to.  Now before I can start anything new, I need to finish the projects that I already have supplies for (Creed's quilt, some new curtains, a couple of baby quilts, some more fairy doors, some new quiet book pages, some t-shirts for Creed . . .)  I should be busy and I'm looking forward to clearing out some of my stash.

Say Thanks - I love getting real mail and I am always buying stationary, especially thank you notes, but I'm very bad about sending them out.  I need to start off with my Christmas thank you notes, and then my goal is to send one thank you note a week.  52 thank you notes sounds like a lot, but one a week is doable, right?  I think it will help me be more grateful for the people that I have in my life.  And lately I've been thinking about people that deserve to know how much they are appreciated, like my favorite elementary school librarian who is probably a large part of the reason I have a MA in children's literature, and Creed's nursery teachers who have made it so easy to transition him into nursery, and the staff in Larry's department who are arguing that the infectious disease fellows should be able to moonlight since they are the only fellows in the whole internal medicine department who are not allowed to moonlight.  The list could be never ending!

And of course there are several other goals maybe too small to be considered New Years resolutions, but important to me none the less: 
  1. Hang some artwork on the walls.  After getting our house ready to sell and loving how it looked we promised we would not postpone getting our house together next time because it was so nice once it was done.  Here we are, six months later and it looks like we just moved in.
  2. Feed Creed healthier food.  Seriously, the kid will not touch a vegetable.  There must be something that we could do that I'm not thinking of.
  3. Cut back Creed's TV time.  I didn't think he watched a lot, but they way he can name like every character on TV is eerie.  He doesn't need to watch any TV as far as I'm concerned so we better come up with some fun things to do while we're cooped up inside, and fast!
  4. Clean my room regularly.  Our bedroom is so small that we can barely walk around two sides of the bed so just a couple of things left out make it look like a disaster.  I need to be neater (that one probably has my little sister rolling because we shared a room for years and my messy ways drove her crazy until moved all her stuff down into the unfinished basement and camped out there in protest that she should have her own room, which actually worked after a few weeks)
  5. Continue to explore the city.  It's been six months and I regrettable do not have any favorite haunts around town.  No food I would die without (besides Cafe Rio, but that's not a new discovery).  No shop that I have to take every visitor to see.  There must be lots of things that I'm missing out on.  I'm looking forward to Larry's second year of fellowship full of months of research that should allow him to have some weekends, yes two whole days off in a row so we can explore the rest of Utah a little bit too.
  6. Make some new friends.  When I want to see a chick-flick, I have no one in town to call (I tried to make my cousin Whitney see The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 at the dollar theater with me, which I probably shouldn't admit, but everyone needs to see a stupid movie once in a while, and she said, "No way!").  When Larry's parents changed their plans on New Years Eve and we were left without visitors, we had no one to invite over to party.  It made Larry and I decide that we need to start inviting people over once in a while and maybe next year we will even find ourselves back to throwing Halloween parties and Valentine Exchanges.
So any advice on any of these items or any resolutions that you would like to share?


Greta said...

I always LOVED when my brothers and I would build elaborate tents out of blankets. We would play in there all day! I have enjoyed doing that with my kids, too. My resolve is to actually play with them instead of get them started on something then split to get some work done around the house. I applaud your goals for the year!

lisa (lost pezhead) said...

my friend just wrote a little about feeding babies and an older post, they might give you some ideas.

Nikki said...

I too appauld your goals and I'm going to join you and Larry and not buy any extras this month - great idea! I'm often amazed at how much unnecessary stuff we consume.

As for fun things to do with Creed and getting him to eat healthier, perhaps you could do some cooking together. And, see if your library has "First Meals" by Annabel Karmel. I have a copy on loan from a friend and I noticed that the recipes for Audrey and Creed's age range focus a lot on making the food look fun.

And this may seem obvious, but we recently decided that we have to have at least one vegetable (that is not potatoes) for lunch and dinner. Audrey still doesn't eat it every time, but she is eating them more often than a month ago.

Okay - last one and this goes in the "making it fun" category. We tried to give her edamame and she was NOT interested at all. Then on New Year's Eve we had shelled edamame. Well, popping edamame out of shells and then eating them is a lot more fun. Who knew?!

Good Luck!

wandering nana said...

I like your list. I especially liked the finding new places where you live. We lived in Utah our whole life until 2 years ago. We moved to Seattle... left family and friends. I still am finding my way around here and still haven't found a Taipan imports or anything like it. We were by ourselves for Christmas and New Years. We have made friends but most are our children's ages (church friends) and most are from here so they have family. I actually had a Christmas Brunch last year and we did a Halloween party this year. It is a great way to get to know people. Good luck.

Christopher & Rebekah said...

You'll love your month of not buying stuff and you'll love when it's over, too. I miss you.

Cassie L. said...

I feel obligated to write because my girls are great eaters. I truly don't know what we did to get this way, but here are something things that seemed to work consistantly.

1. someone alredy said make it available each meal. i totally agree - it is hard because you feel like you waste food sometimes - but eventually they try it

2. edamame -my kids would choose that over chips

3. frozen peas - sounds stupid -but my kids still ask for them. an easy snack too if you are going somewhere because they stay frozen for a little while and aren't messy. and they're cheap!

malia said...

i'll be your friend! call me! i've been here for how long and still feel embarassed that i don't know my way around slc very well. seriously. let's get together sometime.

Brooke said...

I'm always up for a girly movie :) Call me anytime.

And if you discover any secrets on how to get kids to eat veggies, let me know. My kids are SO PICKY when it comes to food!

(Oh, and I absolutely adore the picture you made for Candice for Christmas. How come you got all of the creative genes in the family and I am lucky if I can sew a button on!?!? :) ).