Thursday, April 9, 2009

First-Quarter Check-in

At the end of last year I made an extensive list of New Year's resolutions and to-do list. My intention is to check in quarterly (and publicly) to keep myself honest:

-Get finances in order (joint checking act? write budget. deferred comp plan?) Ha. Ha. Ha. We did get our taxes to the accountant earlier this week. Does that count?

-Write will (life insurance? who gets kids????) Can't even think about this one.

-Finish works in progress (8 year old orange scarf; 10 year old rayon skirt--send to sister) Well the scarf and skirt haven't seen the light of day, but I made some major progress on the quilt seen at right on the cover of the latest GEMINI.

-Write daily (Wild Mind; What If?; Writing the Natural Way) I've only done a couple more chapters of Wild Mind than I had done when I wrote this, but with this poetry class I have been writing almost daily.

-Finish/Submit more work Nope. Hasn't happened. But I did make a plan of what I want to write and submit where. I'm good at making plans. Follow through? Not so much.

-Practice Mindfulness I have been choosing one of the "seven pillars of mindfulness" to focus on each month. January was Beginner's Mind, February Non-Judging, March Patience (may need to try that one again!). This month is Non-Striving. Does that mean I should throw this list out the window?

-Go to yoga/pilates classes at lunchtime I went today and Tuesday and one day last week. Overall, I've probably only made an average of two or three classes a month, but I've gotten a co-worker to persuade me to go over with her, so that should help, right?

-Organize house (kids' room--bunk beds, book shelves; basement; arts & crafts) As you know, because I can't stop posting about it, I'm in a crazy organization frenzy. The kids' room is pretty much done (although neither C nor Ikea has furnished the room with bookshelves yet; instead I managed to make do with what we had through some creative rearranging). I did part of the basement in January, but that needs to be done again, along with the rest of it (also I am staging my stuff to get rid of down there, and it's not helping things much). I took care of the arts & crafts stuff. Now I'm getting antsy every time I walk past the book cases in our stairway--can't wait to go through and purge those!

-Do more spontaneous creativity with kids Hmm...I think I've done this a little, but definitely not to the extent I envisioned, and definitely not as spontaneous as I could be (although if I plan on being spontaneous, is that spontaneous???)

-Read Dickens Not yet, although I did watch Oliver Twist and am watching Little Dorrit on Masterpiece. Also I read some Thomas Hardy. I'll get to Dickens, I swear.

-Continue w/ Zine--3 issues Issue 10 done and out the door. Two to go (this year).

-Carve out creative time daily Maybe not daily, but with a little bit of writing, a little bit of craftiness (sorry I refuse to use the word "craft" as a verb), I'm getting it in at least weekly.

-Be patient Not so much. Will work on that when it comes around again in the mindfulness rotation.

-Return to Nature Journal (daily? weekly?) Once. I've made one entry this year. Maybe spring will be more inspiring in this area?

-Finish "Drawing on Right Side of Brain" workbook (started in 2005!) I've done three drawings!

-Practice Gratitude (Xmas Thank-You Notes first) M and I sent out Christmas thank-you notes (actually he did pretty much all the work, but I sat next to him!). Not doing so well with everyday gratitude. How's this: I'm thankful for all you faithful blog readers!

-Volunteer nope.

-Deal with anxiety/stress (yoga? pills? Rescue Remedy?) Whoa-boy. I have (similar to the Mindfulness Rotation) been looking up one stress reduction tip to focus on each week in my Ten Minute Stress Relief book, which has been nice sometimes, but not totally effective. I think the last month I've been as crazy-stressed out as ever (for no good reason). Rescue Remedy helps a little; Bloody Mary's help a litte; yoga helps for a while. Need a better long-term solution (have just realized I need to stop taking other people's stress into my own just have to figure out how). Wonder if setting myself up with this long list of things to change in my life has anything to do with my stress levels?

-Suspend disbelief more often Ha!

-Join YMCA (Xmas gift certificate) We did it and even re-upped when our complimentary three months ran out!

-Learn to shop at thrift stores Hmpfh.

-Swim weekly (need goggle strap--old one melted--and poss new suit?) Yes! Got new goggles (may still need new suit) and have been swimming if not weekly, then almost weekly, which is as good as I can expect.

The final analysis--less than 50% success, but it's only the first quarter! Don't give up on me! I can change! I can change!

Already thinking of a resolution for next year--try to be happy with yourself as you are and stop getting on these kooky self-improvement binges (after you organize your finance, household, get in shape, become a Supermom, and write a bestselling novel).

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