Hopefully by now everyone has had a chance to recover from any exuberant New Year’s Eve celebrations as well as the inevitable Christmas over-indulgence and is starting to think about the year ahead. I know I am. I love beginnings of any kind and the start of a new year always fills me with a level of enthusiasm which may have started to wane at the end of the previous one. It’s not just new years that I like, it’s all kinds of beginnings. Starting a new project, cracking open the cover of a new book or the start of a journey all inspire a heightened sense of anticipation and excitement for me.
I do however have a fairly major problem of biting off more than I can chew, over extending myself, or having my thumbs in too many pies (is that how the saying goes?). Couple that with have very little time to myself and a touch of sleep deprivation and it is highly likely that I won’t be able to get through all my goals for 2012. Nevertheless I intend to make public (well, here on my blog) some of what I’d like to achieve in the next 12 months. I will have to return to work three days a week from half way through the year, so it will be very interesting to see if I can maintain the other parts of my life that I have come to love so much once I am even more short on time.
To my goals:
Reading – something that has fallen a little by the wayside since child number 2 came along. My goal is 15 books – all currently sitting, unread on my bookshelf and some of which I have had on loan from various people for quite a while. First cab off the rank is The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery. There is also the very daunting A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth at nearly 1400 pages, sitting comfortably at the bottom of the pile.
Cooking – obviously I will continue along the retro cooking path, hopefully fitting in a few more from my must try list. Also cooking with the harvest is something that I have to think about more now that I am growing a lot more food. However, my main goal for 2012 is to find dishes that Miss Two will eat and that are still tasty for Mr Good and I. Miss Two is not a particularly fussy eater in terms of what she will try, but convincing her to sit a eat an actual meal, especially if there are vegetables involved, rather than just snacking on dried fruit and cheese periodically is a problem. So I’m looking for inspiration, what are your fail safe family meals? I also own a lot of cooking books, many of which I haven’t explored nearly as much as I would have liked. I read somewhere that most of us cook on average three recipes out of each cook book and I would have to say that is probably about right for me. I have some that I have used to death and few I actually haven’t cooked anything from and the rest probably fit above profile. So in 2012 my goal is to pick a couple of different style cook books and reach beyond the standard three recipes.
Gardening – There a quite a few vegetables I want to try growing for the first time (leeks, onions, celery to name a few), some that I have never had much success with (cauliflower) and others that I’d like to try some different varieties (tomatoes, beans and potatoes at least). I also have a few new vegetable gardening books which have given me some guides to things I should be doing month by month which I thought I would try to follow. I would also like to have a go at a couple of the vegetable plot suggestions from the One Magic Square book. Finally, I have started introducing some nice flowering plants which I would like to expand on. So far these have been either from seed or cuttings and my success rate at growing from cuttings is not great – I will try to improve this also over the next year.
Decluttering – with a small house and a growing family, this is a never ending issue. My goal is to go through the piles of magazines I have collected (mostly cooking ones) get what I want out of them and then get rid of them. I also need to reclaim my laundry so it’s actually a usable space and sort out the cupboards in general. Sadly I feel like I just did all this, but it gets out of hand so quickly with limited storage space.
Craftiness – something I usually enjoy even if I lack talent. I’ve done almost no projects over the last few years and would like to accomplish something this year. I have actually started one, which I hoped to have finished by now but it shouldn’t take me too much long I don’t think. This year I would like to try my hand at knitting something a little more challenging, teach myself to crochet (with the help of YouTude I hope) and maybe even attempt a little sewing (if I can get my hands on a sewing machine at some point). Having said I love starting a project, I should also add I’m not so good at finishing them, this I will need to change.
Other – there are a few miscellaneous goals I have too. Firstly, getting Baby Good sleeping through at least some times. And if that goes really well, then I will try putting the girls in the same room, so we can reinstate Mr Good’s computer room/spare room. And for me I want to run 5ks and enter some kind of fun run. I’ve been training with my sister and my dog (the dog doesn’t know what’s hit her). We have quite a way to go but we’re making progress and this feels great. It’s been a long time since I did any sort of consistent exercise and I must say I enjoy the time away from the house, kids, life. I get a weekly catch up with my Sis as well as some much needed solitude when I go on my own during the week.
I think that will just about fill up my year and if I can keep at least some of it up once I get back into the throes of teaching it will be even better. And now it’s your turn, what have you got on your list for 2012?