I am a big proponent of yearly “to do” lists. In fact, I prefer making yearly “to do” lists to resolutions, because “to do” lists are actionable and they aren’t dependent on other people’s actions (i.e., things like “win a fellowship”).
Resolutions are, in the end, comprised of many “to do” items, anyway–so why not break them down into more reachable increments? A resolution to run a marathon involves training milestones and “to-do’s” just like a resolution to “relax more,” involves defining what it is that helps you relax, and then doing those very relaxing things.
Here’s my 2012 To Do List (and may this list lead to more amazing things).
Send at least two friends baked goods whether by postal mail or in person. Thanks to my sudden “nesting” and manic baking, yes.
- Cook a hot meal for at least one friend. I don’t remember if I did this! :/
Read a novel a month. Well, this ain’t going to happen (my brain went on vacation all first and second trimesters). but that’s ok. Lose the baggy clothing and begin dressing in a way that does not scream that I am ashamed of my body. Because for the first time in my life, I am really starting to be proud of my body. Update: need to make this more concrete. So…buy at least one dress that hugs my torso & buy 4 body skimming tops.I did this. and then I got pregnant. and now I’m wearing body hugging pregnancy clothes. that counts, right? Clean out my closet of clothing that no longer fits me. For real.As of March 2012: Done! A few of my friends are now recipients of some of my favorite designer clothing items that I can no longer wear. (Update October 2012: Now I kinda miss them, because I could use a few in the latter half of my pregnancy). Learn to make perfect pie crust.happy dance of joy here. Make a fantastic apple tarte tatin. Done. It was fabulous, and oh so pretty.
- Make tamales. So did not do this.
Eat at Amada in Philadelphia.Thank you, Laurel! It was delicious. Eat at Alinea in Chicago. Happily eaten. Eat a Japadog. Mission accomplished.
- Say yes to at least 5 things to which I would usually say “no.” Update: I need to keep track of this. I have no idea if I’ve done any yet!
Send out more snail mail. Like 30 pieces this year.Done.
- Can’t believe I didn’t do this in 2011, so I’m carrying this over: take a ferry around the San Francisco Bay. OMG, 2nd year running I haven’t done this!
Take “tilt” photographs on San Francisco hills. Want to do more of these, but yes!
- In Berkeley, ride bike at least once a week for errands/exercise.
Kayak Lake Tahoe.So fun.
- Hike past Grass Lake to Susie Lake in the Sierras.
Listen to Pacific Tree Frogs in Berkeley.It’s tree frog ribbiting season now. ;) Go to the Jersey Shore.Done. With C. Went on one of the hottest days of summer, and it was awesome. Don’t you wish you were there? Go to Disneyworld.Did this. Didn’t realize that at the time I was about a week or two pregnant! Visit friends in Boston.Did this, too! Got to visit and see Andrew and Matt.
- Visit Korea. Check out Cheonggyecheon and NamDaeMun market. Pregnancy threw a wrench in these plans! I had dates lined up and everything.
Writing & Fitness
- Revise/Rewrite novel until I am proud of at least 100 pages. (optimally: revise/rewrite until I’m finished!).
- If I find myself in a writing slump, “allow myself to write badly.”
- Find a good writing cafe in Berkeley where I can write. Found a cafe, then got pregnant needed to pee all the time–but then found a good library.
Write one short story (I haven’t allowed myself a short story in years bc of all my novel-writing).I’m going to make an adapted excerpt of my novel count for this. Apply to at least three writing residencies. Keep your fingers crossed for me. Go to AWP in Chicago. Done. While at AWP: try not to hide in hotel room the entire time. I am proud to say I only went up to my hotel room to sleep or for my 2 hour “introvert breaks” each afternoon. Meet up with at least two virtual friends IRL at AWP. Matt, Roxane, Jimin, Yuliana, Roohi…so many wonderful people!
- Find a writing partner for this revision of my novel.
I know this is one of those “everyday” items that are hard to achieve, but this one’s important: wear my fitbit everyday and move my body at least 5 miles a day (or a weekly average of 5+ miles/day).I did do this! And I walked 5 miles a day everyday until the 32nd week of my pregnancy.
- Save knees, run less, but run 4 miles in a run. No running anymore.
Hold the “crow” pose in yoga–for more than 1.5 seconds. Ideal: 5 seconds.As of March 17: I can hold the crow pose for almost 7 seconds! And in fact, I could do crow until 20th week of my pregnancy. Try a non-Tara class at my yoga studio.Every instructor offers new perspective. This did not work out as well as I’d hoped, because I totally didn’t like this new impromtu instructor’s teaching style. But will try others, and keep my mind open. (Update October 2012: Yes! I found great instructors in H and M). Do/Try a juice cleanse at least once. I did another juice cleanse, and I loved it. I even got a juicer. Decrease from 6 packets of sugar in my decaf latte to 2 (or fewer) packets.Oh totes did this thanks to the Blue Print juice cleanse. And it was pretty amazing.