Chapter XVII

because you never know someone from the very beginning


January 2013

This Post Deserves A Title

It’s been a month – time for a check in on those pesky resolutions. Overall I am totally failing.  This is a good thing.  I always like having something to look forward to and really it’s all upside from here.

I am reading but not more than before.  We have had more dinners with friends, check one.  I’ve called more friends rather than waiting for their Facebook updates, so now the phone tag begins.  I still buy coffee and am having trouble living in a state of disaster which all the parenting blogs say is good for my childrens’ creativity.  I’ve been pretty kind though I cut off an old lady at the subway the other day.  My frugal fashion strategy of closet shopping has been foiled by my mid-section which demands ambiguous waistlines.  That 15K is still out there in April. I need to get started on training for that. The other night I was having an unhealthy day (ramen, swiss cake rolls, brad pitt) so I did what any rational person would do – I downloaded a couple of fitness apps, told myself how great it will be to start on that workout plan tomorrow, finished my beer and went to bed.

In other news I almost walked outside last night in just a shirt and pantyhose (Black opaque. Don’t think I’ve gone all crazy wearing nude hose. Self-respect.). This is what happens after five years of sleep deprivation so really SLEEP needs to be added to the list of personal initiatives.

I’ve found that in these cold winter days when the kids are asleep I am tormented by thoughts of perfect steamed pork buns, how many years we will need to live off of retirement funds and what a friend’s dedication to flossing tells you about their personality (turns out a lot, btw).

Since February is the only month of the calendar that once every six years and twice every 11 years has only four full 7-day weeks, I figure it’s a great time to start again, and I am not going to let the fact that February is also Canned Food Month stop me.

On that note, tomorrow I will run in the morning, I will iron that shirt that hasn’t been worn in more than a year and give it some love, I will call a friend back (she will be IT if I don’t get her), and I won’t cut off any old ladies.  Wish me luck.

I Like Resolutions

Resolutions. Some people hate them. I like them. I like thinking about goals and personal initiatives. I like tracking things.

I almost didn’t make resolutions this year because I don’t have a lot of time to think about them. But never let the perfect be the enemy of the good. At the end of 2013, I think I will be pleased if the year has included the following:

  • More Reading. So cliché. So useful. Often at night after work/kids/baths/lunch-making I find myself sitting down finally at 9:30 and staring at a wall. I could lie and say I am meditating but truth be told I am just zoned out. Time to get out of the haze. Reading is just as relaxing as staring at a wall and far more rewarding.
  • More families over for early dinners on the weekends. We have done this a bit in the past month or so and it’s really enjoyable. The kids run around and make a mess and have fun. Nobody cares. Adults get to cook a little and talk. Everyone goes home by 8PM to get kids to bed. We are cleaned up and done by 8:30 / 9PM.
  • Consistent Running. I did an ok job with exercise in 2012. Sporadic but when I got into it, I was fairly consistent. But I am much better with a goal. So I signed up for a 15K in April.
  • Call a friend a week. This should seem like DUH but when I really think about it, I don’t actually speak to many friends that often. The occasional text or email maybe. Or even worse, seeing what they’ve posted on Facebook. Connections make me happy. Reach out and call someone.
  • Buy less coffee on the way to work. There is simply no reason to spend $3.00 on coffee a day when I can brew it at the office.
  • Clean up the mess only once a day. I pick up and clean all day at home. Just let it go. What does it matter. Take a deep breath.
  • Random Acts of Kindness regularly. I don’t really know what this means – daily, weekly? But have you ever done something like bought the person behind you coffee or lunch? Amazingly rewarding.
  • Put the phone down between 6PM and 8:30PM. That is kid time. Focus woman.
  • Go closet shopping. I am sure I have things I don’t wear and yet I feel like my closet is empty. Get in there, try things on, iron the shirts, and mix it up. Be happy with what I have.
  • I resolve to use more puff pastry. I just love puff pastry.
  • I am going to stop worrying about not knowing how to speak French or play chess. How about just enjoy a game of backgammon or Scrabble. (i.e. let’s shelve the idea of being the Uber Person for a bit)
  • I would also like to take a moonlit walk on a beach with my husband.
  • Be less reactive. Someone recently described me as calm. “Ha!” I scoffed upon hearing this. But the comment was made in a work setting – I took pride in it. If that is true at work, the lack of calm at home may be paying the price. Let’s try calm and laughter.

None of this is high-minded. But to me the themes are clear. Be more present, less wasteful, more calm and good to myself. Happy 2013.

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