End of Year Review.

Let’s see how this went, shall we?  All old text in italics.

Resolutions for 2010, by Sarah Lena

1. Eat Less, Move More. Bryan and I did this in 2009, and saw HUGE impacts from it.  This year, we will eat meals on salad plates instead of dinner plates to keep portions under control; we will walk the dog at LEAST once a day; and we will make smarter choices when it comes to food that we bring into the house.  Well.  So.. we did good about the eating less part.  We really did.  The move more part.. well, I hate to be this way, but I did really well at it.  I did Huntsville Bootcamp for Women a few times, I started running again, I joined a CrossFit box.  I didn’t come out of 2010 a size 4 or anything, but I did more than just sit on my ass eating bonbons.

2. Stop Feeding the Diet Machine. In my house, we often dissuade guilt by buying “Low Fat”, “Reduced Sugar”, or “Natural” food products.  Truth is, it doesn’t make a difference.  I read an article where a dietitian recommended eating full fat.  Whole milk, full-fat cheese, nothing called “diet”.  Because?  You’ll feel full faster, and you’ll enjoy food more.  I think we’re going to try that for a year.  This, I’m happy to report, we did AMAZINGLY well on.  Because it was the best change our family  has ever made.  We started by cutting out “diet” and “lite” and “reduced”, and it naturally led to “organic” and “free-range” and “grass-fed”.  We ate whole-fat everything, and I’m happy to report that no one in the house gained ANY weight.  Seriously.  Real sugar – if any sugar – and real fat and .. REAL FOOD.  Also, it should be noted that NO ONE got sick in my house this year.  No flu, no pneumonia, just an errant ear infection here and there.

3. Money.  MONEY. Bryan and I are doing SO MUCH BETTER about money, but 2009 was INCREDIBLY hard.  The economy was in the toilet, and when one income depends solely on commissions from sales?  Well, the whole house feels that pinch.  My goal is to live frugally enough to pay off ALL of our debt (excluding our house) by the end of 2010.  In fact, I’m going to do whatever necessary to have all credit cards paid and closed, the car loan paid off, and anything else taken care of.  I refuse to be a slave to money any longer.   We are so much better than we were last year.  I was just pontificating on how lovely it is to be able to get gas or buy bread without writing the hot check or worrying about if the paycheck will come in before the charge hits the bank.  You know what helped?  Unemployment.  By figuring out what we HAD to have, it gets a lot easier to weed out the WANTS.  Also: I don’t recommend this method of budget revelation.

4. Be a better pet ownerWe have a fabulous new puppy who needs to training and discipline.  We fell short with Charlie (God rest his soul) and I refuse to let that happen again.  We will be working on socialization and training this year with Beau so that he can enjoy being a dog and we can enjoy owning him.   We kind of sucked at this one.  Beau took puppy classes for half of the scheduled session, and then I don’t remember what happened.  We had both Lola and Beau fixed this year, so I guess we get some points for that.  I think our pets have rather fortunate, cushy lives, but I still know that Beau in particular could benefit from some activity.

5. Make any endeavor worth doingI haven’t really talked about it on here because I wasn’t sure of a timeline, but Ronda and I are starting an online venture called Southern Fried Snark.  We are SO psyched about it and we hope it becomes a regular thing because, dude, WE GET A FORUM TO SNARK!, and I’m really wanting it to be something REAL.  It’s a love of labor right now, but I just want to pour myself into it to make it successful, whatever success might be.   Man, that was good times.  And I stayed true to the original resolution.  Points for me.

6. Go back to schoolI’ve been talking about doing this for years, but now?  Now I need to.  I’ve reached a place where I can’t move forward any more until I’ve got some schooling under my belt.  I haven’t figured out when or what school, but it’s gotta start this year.  Yeah, sucked at this because of the whole unemployment thing, BUT!  There are enrollment sessions on the horizon!  It will be fine!  In a year, I’ll have all my tuition and expenses paid for by my employer.  So I guess until then, I should just live it up like a high school senior, right?

7. Give $25 a month to a charity organizationBryan surprised me with my FAVORITE Christmas present: a donation to Operation Smile, which is a charity that I feel VERY strongly about.  I was surprised at the feelings that it brought out in me, and I think it made Bryan realize how important giving is to me.  We’re going to find $25 a month to give to various charities, and I also plan to have the boys make some blankets for Project LinusWe didn’t make the blankets, but we totally did the donation portion through June of this year.  We gave to varied local charities, and I currently have my paycheck set-up to make a twice-monthly donation to our local Arts Council, so that we can continue giving.

8. Cut myself some slackIf I want two cookies?  I’m gonna eat ‘em.  If I’m too tired to clean after work, dinner, and putting the kids down?  I’m gonna watch tv.  If I want to sleep in instead of doing a long run on a Saturday morning?  I’m going to sleep in.  I owe no one any answers, and I owe myself a LOT more slack.  I juggle a helluva lot, and I need to remember that I’m only human.  Man, what an emotional rollercoaster of a year.  I think that I did okay at this one. (Which, in retrospect, I probably need to CUT MYSELF SOME SLACK about.) It was a crazy year, full of ups and downs and good times and bad and all that good stuff.  But we all came out okay.  Stronger, actually.  We’ve got a good idea of where our core is and how we protect it.  And nourish it.  And heal it.  And I think that’s worth a couple pat on the backs.

Still working on next year’s plan forward: what are your resolutions for 2011?

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3 Responses to End of Year Review.

  1. AndreAnna December 28, 2010 at 12:49 pm #

    I resolve to find an online course and finally get my ass in gear and become a certified holistic nutrition counselor instead of just talking about it.

  2. Lisa December 28, 2010 at 12:59 pm #

    Aw, Project Linus! Olivia has a blanket from Project Linus that she got in the NICU. When she moved to her open crib, she was still a tiny little thing and couldn’t really keep her body temp up without a LOT of help. We had her dressed in multiple layers, 2 hats, swaddled, and they gave her a fleece Project Linus blanket to go on top. As a NICU parent, I can say that the kindness of others really means a lot.

    I haven’t thought of my 2011 goals yet, but I guess I need to get on that, don’t I? 2011 is almost here…

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