HELLO MY FRIENDS! HAPPY 2011!
I was all excited about posting from RI, but when I was actually there, sitting on the couch in my parents’ living room and enjoying the Christmas ambiance, I realized that I had much, much better things to do – things like catching up with friends over tea or brunch, and spoiling my doggies with love, and visiting my sweet grandmother in her nursing home, and playing really cheesy LAN games with my family, and being generally inane and ridiculous with my sister. So I’m not sorry for not posting – I see my RI family and friends so rarely that I wasn’t about to squander my time with them by putzing around on the internet and reading blogs when I could be enjoying their company – no offense.
And when I finally got back to Madison, a day and a half later than expected thanks to some major travel!fails*, I was tired and stressed, and blogging was sort of beyond my comprehension. Then I had a quick two days of work before taking off for a New Year’s Eve celebration with some of my best friends from college. I did bake cookies for our celebration:
Oh, they look a little flat, you say? Oddly thin and grotesquely large, you think? Well… yeah. I won’t argue with you. I had a little baking!fail with these Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies from 500 Vegan Recipes – had to keep the travel!fail company, y’know? I suspect I must’ve added a bit too much EB – I was a little sloppy while measuring. But they still tasted rich and delicious despite their dubious appearance.
And, while making them, I got to use the brand new sifter and cooling rack my wonderful parents gave me for Christmas, which was very exciting for me!
I think cooking or foodie-related gifts made up half of my Christmas haul this year – my family knows me so well. As for me, I felt all filled with Christmas cheer when I watched my family open the plethora of handknitted gifts I spent months creating – look out for them in an upcoming post.
Now, though, I’m thinking ahead to 2011. I never made an official resolution until two years ago, when I made a very deliberate decision to improve my outlook on life and to replace my characteristic pessimism and negativity with optimism and positivity. Despite my skepticism, I succeeded, and last year I extended that resolution with what I called my “Positivity Plus!” goal, which was essentially just keeping up a [mostly] positive attitude.
This year, though, I’m focusing on a few other things. I definitely will maintain my newfound optimism, difficult though it can be at times, but I also want to extend it to my shyness and social anxiety – half the reason I get nervous about various situations is because I always think about them in negative terms; I’m convinced that they’ll be terrible and awkward, and I set myself up for failure. No more! I will consciously try to not do that anymore.
At my NYE gathering, my friends all issued 2011 challenges for one another. For example, my physics major friend is tasked with reading 4 books this year. What a terrible challenge, right?! Oy. Anyway, my challenge is to try one new fitness DVD/YouTube video a month and to write a review of it for my friends. So – anybody have a suggestion for that? It can be serious or otherwise!
Those are my two serious goals for 2011, but I also have some general thoughts about other things I hope to achieve. For example:
* Continuing to buy mostly used/upcycled/thrifted clothes and other household items
* Trying out new crafts, like crocheting and embroidering
* Making time to volunteer with the Humane Society
* Taking risks!
* Being more active in general
* Focusing more on really learning Italian and ASL (instead of dabbling in multiple languages)
* …a few other personal things
Whew! Those are my thoughts for 2011… what are yours? Do you make resolutions? Set goals? Issue challenges? I’m so excited for this year! Are you?
* Things that are good about travel!fails: Extra time with your family, the possibility of compensation by the airline for their screw-ups, an extra day of vacation
Things that are bad about travel!fails: Being too tired to enjoy extra family time because you had to wake at 4:30 to catch the flight that failed you, needing to take 1.5 more days out of work than anticipated, not getting compensated because everybody’s blaming everybody else for the fail
…overall, though, I didn’t mind the extra time with la famiglia.