Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A year in the life
For us Westerners who follow the Gregorian calendar, these are the final days of 2010. As such, our human need for closure leads to endless lists: celebrity deaths, top ten tech fads, top movies, worst gaffes, etc., etc. A year in review is supposed to somehow make sense of the preceding days, or not.

I’ve been working so hard to learn not to dwell on the past, where I’ve been mired emotionally for so many years, that even reviewing 2010 is a shift. That’s good I suppose, shows I’m making progress, but I still can’t resist at least a little year-end summary.
- We bought our first (and last?) house – yikes!
- I finished my master’s degree and for the first time in five years did not start classes in the fall. That was disorienting in itself and may prove to be a poor decision when the student loan payments hit next month.
- Geo built a geodesic cold frame greenhouse in the backyard and is immersed in plans for a new woodshop. At work he’s moved into management, something he never anticipated or sought, so 2011 will be interesting in many respects.
- Our daughter took up pottery, spindle weaving, rapier fighting and a new beau, not necessarily in that order. Her association with the Society for Creative Anachronism is expanding her world.
- Our son has taken the bold step and become the first family member in three generations to move out of state (except for my dad, and military service doesn’t count, because Ohio is always home). He’s in Chicago with his landscape-architecture-grad-student girlfriend waiting for admittance to law school in the fall, working for a bank and loving the big city.

And that’s enough looking back; looking forward is more productive, even though I need to keep reminding myself to live in the moment so I don’t miss out on life (perpetual goal number one). Since I can’t expect to meet a goal if I don’t know what it is, I have to have some idea what I want to accomplish in 2011.


- eat better
- meditate daily
- walk outside daily, weather permitting, or on the treadmill for 15 minutes
- read at least one book per week
- find a new, local community service outlet so I can give back


- weekly blogs on something more than life inside these four walls, although I love the life and the walls, that may attract more than six followers
- find an agent who believes my writing is worth marketing to take on novel #2
- rewrite and edit novel #1, which served as my thesis and is waiting to be polished for publication
- finish novel #3
- continue writing and submitting short pieces on a regular basis (not very specific, I know, but it’s all flexible)
- find that elusive non-fiction topic that will lead to a viable book proposal


- all those new homeowner things we’ve never experienced before – seal the deck, repair the driveway, replace the screens on the porch, clean out the pond, paint the entryway wall
- regular ‘us’ time when we turn off technology and just be together, talking, walking, biking
- maintain and improve connections with those who are important to us, no matter the physical distance
- open our home to friends and neighbors at least once a month for a meal and conversation

Is any of that worth blogging about? Probably not in the grand scheme of things. I’ve always wanted this to be more than a journal; I have a real hang-up on the whole concept of journaling since I stopped writing a daily diary when I was maybe fourteen.

So my resolution is that this will be the last lame blog post I will make. In 2011, I will find a compelling, recurring theme that stretches my writing brain and also communicates something meaningful to those readers who click in.

Suggestions? What makes you return to a blog regularly? What can I offer you?

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