Tag Archives: goals

2013 resolutions!!!

heyyyy, friends!

welcome to the final hours of 2012…seize the day!

resolutions: from my unscientific observations, we either embrace them or refuse ‘em. i fall into the love camp. but did you know, i did not make any for 2012?! i think that was because this year’s kikiproject was structured very much like a resolutions list. two years ago, i did make 2011 resolutions which are chronicled here! (haha, i mean the year 2011, obviously, not that i set two thousand and eleven different goals!).

so, even though i firmly stand by the belief that labour day = the most logical choice for *new year’s day,* i’ll be conventional and make new year’s resolutions that will begin tomorrow. here we go…

refrain from cutting my hair. [sorry mom!!!] my last hair cut was…a very long time ago. july 8, 2011, i do believe. i feel like i have a just-past-the-shoulders sticking point, and i want to see if i can break that barrier. plus, i just can’t be bothered with salons.

re-institute outings of the month with mom and dad. this was one of the BEST goals that i set in 2011, and i realized this year that i really missed making a point of seeing mom and dad, separately, once a month. to up the ante this time ’round, dad and will go out for a meal or coffee break once per month at a different location each month AND we have to be able to walk to said location. mom and i will go to some sort of shopping establishment once per month and it has to be a different spot each and every month.

no gum for the entire year. i made it through the ten month gum hiatus, january to november, thanks to this year’s kiki project. if i can do ten months (without great struggle), i can go a year!!!

as a last hurrah, i bought these packs of gum…

all old favourites

all old favourites

…and planned to chew them from december 28th to december 31st just because i felt i should take advantage of the opportunity while i could, and enjoy one last kick at the can. well, guess what, the gum chewing was so non-fun, that i chewed gum friday and saturday december 28th and 29th, forcing myself to keep chewing, then finally threw the remaining sticks in the garbage. (!) that action and my lack of interest in chomp-chomping bodes well for 2013 (non)gum chewing success!

drink diet coke under restricted circumstances. as i enthusiastically documented, the eleven months of being diet coke-free turned out to be a monumental success. honestly, i have been turned off pop since december 9th! the hugest proof: i told mom not to bother getting me any diet root beer for our immediate-family christmas traditional dinner which ALWAYS includes diet root beer!!! zowie!! so: for 2013, i can drink a diet coke IF i am out for a junkfest fast food meal WITH company (as in i can’t be on my own). now: wouldn’t it be funny/great if i some time order a dc and then can’t finish it?!

knitting: i have two main projects on which i am going to focus: 1) i am going to knit sweaters for house of friendship residents and/or out of the cold attendees, and i am going to knit blankets for children for project linus. i bought yarn recently at michaels during a fabulous sale for the first two projects:

this classic wool is warm but not scratchy.

for a men’s sweater: this classic wool is warm but not scratchy.

note to other knitters: sock yarn makes GREAT baby sweaters and blankets!

for a small child’s blanket: sock yarn makes GREAT baby sweaters and blankets!

my theme for the year is going to be variegated yarn -> i will ONLY knit with variegated yarn! i will track on an excel spreadsheet (i love tracking things) how many of each project i can complete. at the end of 2013, i will donate the produced items to the respective organizations.

of course, it would be a travesty to go a whole twelve months without producing anything for my little darlings, so you can be pretty much assured that little e and cutie c will be on the receiving end of *something* at some point during the year!

do one month of all-the-yoga-you-can-yoga-for-$40 at moksha yoga. at some point this year, i will sign up for one month unlimited yoga at moksha. ahhhhh! i would do it immediately, but i have a feeling the studio will be super crowded in january with all of us resolution-makers. hot yoga during the winter does sound great, though!

increase upper body fat (ie arms and shoulders). as a former fitness instructor, i know you cannot spot reduce; therefore i am doubtful that i can spot poof-i-fy my upper story. but i can try??? i am not going for a muscled/chiseled/hard look; i want a softer, roundy shape from my neck to my wrists. more weights and more cheese???…

increase the amount of face-time spent with friends and family. i feel so energized, positive and happy after socials and in-person visiting! i do see a lot of my friends and family; but, bring on more, more, more!!

floss every day: i have sorely fallen off the bandwagon with my flossing. if i state it here, i will remain accountable!

read a lot [i am adding this goal because then i have ten resolutions and ten is a lovely, solid number]. i read sixteen books this year, so my 2013 goal will be to surpass that mark.

et voilà!

happy new year!

(source)

resolutions: do you love them or leave them? bonus answer – > share a 2013 goal!

new month, new project!

happy friday, friends!

i am totally excited that it is now the month of june (although i did love may, the weather was fantastic, and life was good). i LOVE june! now: does anyone else agree with me that it is just plain WRONG that there is no long weekend this month? why *they* (the gov’t) ever made up a holiday and stuck it in FEBRUARY (hello, family day, i am looking at you) is beyond me. june is the best, and we should have a mchappy friday holiday, i am telling you.

guess what?! i have a new challenge all lined for this month. june’s special project is light years different from may’s great grocery challenge. here it is!…

now, i am the first to admit that photography is not my creative thing. i have told you before that the purpose of taking pictures, for me, is simply to illustrate my blog posts. i am not out to be artsy, symmetrical, or even particularly in focus. i aim and fire and that is what ends up on the blog.

here is what i envision for my take on the 30 day photography challenge: i am going to post a snapshot every day as per the dictated theme-of-the-day. most likely, i will give a brief explanation as to why/how i chose the subject in the photo. since this project means a return to daily blogging, (!!) some days may see only the photo + a sentence or two, and that will be the end of the blog entry. other days, i may chat as usual and just toss the daily photo in as an afterthought an add-on.

i am really jazzed to take on this challenge! (ok, i have to confess that projects and challenges, in general, excite me). the only potential glitch is that my little canon point-‘n’-shoot is on its last legs…it has been acting wonkier and more unpredictably with each passing day over the past couple of months, (like, since spring stitch n kitsch??) and as of tuesday, this week, the view display thingy is watermarked and foggy. my fingers are crossed that we can get through this month before it goes kaput completely (ideally, it will live until christmas when i can put a new model on my xmas list). how ironic it will be if i embark on a photo project…and lose my camera! [yes, i do have my blackberry but i do not how to work that thing the quality is not quite on par with my canon].

without further ado, here is photo #1.

the theme for day one: self-portrait

is this what we call, “portrait of the artist?!”

taking a self-portrait was not too much of a challenge – i mastered became comfortable with my technique during my florida vacation in july 2010 and in aruba in 2011, and still take lots of self-snapshots for the blog.

yesterday, i snapped twelve photos [ok, that is freaky because i swear i did not count as i was snapping away, and i ended up with 12...12 days of kiki project ->get it?!], playing with a variety of lighting conditions and backgrounds. the photo you see, above, is the winner! but, actually, of the twelve, i liked them all!

outtakes [this may be a frequent feature, this month. rejected photos are the most fun!] ->

i do not do serious well…

walking + fish-face making!

:D

would you rather write or take photographs in order to express your creative self? since i have only ever done ONE word-free blog post in 2.5 years, i bet you can guess my answer!

the fun factor

how, exactly, do you quantifiably measure “FUN?”

something that i find to be an absolute hoot may leave you scratching your head in bewilderment. then, you may be laughing uncontrollably on the floor while i will be looking at you like you just landed from another planet. i have no answer to this FUN question – all i know is that i had a lot of FUN in march.

you’ll remember from here that my theme o’ the month was to make march as FUN as possible. how’d that go? well, i’m going to give this goal a rating of A-. here’s the reasoning…

first, off the top of my head, are five occasions that were a lot of FUN:

1. taking off for toronto on a friday aft to spend time with little e and cutie c.

2. massively beating my knitting deadline for the blanket donation to mcc.

you will see the blanket again in MAY when it's auction preview night!

3. seeing “the vowwith nicole and “salmon fishing in the yemenwith andrea. *sigh.* i really love movies.

4. shopping with mom (and dad) at conestoga mall and getting aviator sunglasses!

LOVE!!!

5. drinking a free coffee the size of my head at tim hortons.

next: how FUN was the store? mega! three reasons to note:

1. the arrival of new apparel! merchandising spring/summer clothing is even more fun than unpacking the winter gear. this year, the colours for both shoes and tops/bottoms are very bright. the displays positively pop! it’s been fun to gradually switch over from cold weather wear to the summer selections.

2. completing markdown reports – ok, i may be in the minority, here. most of my colleagues intensely dislike the process of going around and pricing stickers onto items that are now on sale. but, i genuinely like this task! (type a, much??). i look at it as a chance to play treasure hunt, and also i like taking the opportunity to organize and straighten while i’m at it (obsessive/compulsive, much??). it’s very satisfying to cross off each selection with a fresh, black sharpie marker (and it’s FUN to use the sticker gun – haha!).

3. social connections: i love my tuesday eve and sunday morning shifts when i see clinic members and run club participants, respectively. over the years, some of these regulars have truly become friends, and it’s so nice to have these weekly opportunities to chat. and convince them to buy things. i really like meeting new customers, too, and finding out what brings them to the store – everyone has a different story. conversing is such an enjoyable element of my job!

blogging was very FUN this month. by switching to posting with no fixed schedule, no expectations, no pressure, i can genuinely say that each and every blog entry was a delight to compose. and that’s the way it should be!

our march weather was certainly FUN! when you can wear shorts, go jacketless, and see flowers blooming practically in front of your eyes, that is a good, good third month of the calendar year.

one last observation – i really had many moments of personal happiness this month. i chalk that up to being mindful of living in the present, and really making an effort to consciously note “hey, i feel really happy right now.” [not being overly-jacked up on s'bux via pacs contributed to a calmer brain, i have to say!].

i could go on and on, but i’ll leave a few highlights to share when i do my 12 days of kiki monthly review on april 9th.

~*~*~*~*~

let’s talk links and linkbacks (that is when you can click on a word in a blog post and it will take you to a link – a previous blog post, a reference on a website, a news story, etc). today is a very linkback-heavy blog post!

do links/linkbacks bug you? some bloggers get all ragey over multiple linkbacks in a blog post. personally, they don’t bother me at all.

do you ever click on the links/linkbacks? on other blogs, i confess that i never click on a linkback. i do like to include them when i write because they help to flesh out that day’s story. the reader has the choice to click or to keep on reading, so i don’t think they’re that big a deal. (for bloggers who make money off page clicks, i do see the business angle behind the linkback practice. more page veiws = more income, for them. that is not my case!).

eleven for ’11: the year in review

HAPPY NEW YEARS DAY!!!

i am kicking off 2012 by completing kiki project #41. yes, the very last new experience of the year. you’ll hear about it on tuesday because i have to tell you about new experience #40 tomorrow! in the meantime…

there’s nothing like goal setting to motivate me. and for 2011, i pulled out all the stops. not only did i challenge myself to enjoy 41 new experiences [the kikiproject's dates are actually january 9th, 2011-january 8th, 2012  but that is close enough to new year's to be included in our discussion], but i also brainstormed eleven goals to complete in 2011. let’s review! [the recap of this year's edition of the  1970kikiproject will be coming to the blog on sunday, january 8th]. and because i ♥ love and adore ♥ using a four star (****) rating system, that’s how we will evaluate the eleven for ’11 resolutions. (for the original eleven for 11 post, published on january 1st, 2011, click here!).

#1: blog every day. rating: ****

this is the goal of which i am second-most proud. i have a blog entry for every single day in 2011. full disclosure and loyal readers will remember that i skipped october 3rd…but then i went back and wrote an entry and dated it october 3rd. can i confess that i am super-proud of moi-même? truthfully, some days i didn’t feel the blogging vibe, some weeks i had to plan very carefully to fit in blogging time…while on other occasions, creative words would rush into my brain and i would jot down phrases literally while standing on the sidewalk so that i could later transcribe them into blog posts. yea, i’m happy.

#2: travel. rating: **

i enjoyed one major trip in 2011 – my vacation in aruba, back in march. and that was it! to stretch the definition of “voyaging,” i drove up to goderich for a day in july, and to really push the limits, we could call aunti wednesdays in toronto “travel days” – but i don’t think so! one more major trip would have been nice, but c’est la vie, and i am just very grateful to have been able to get to aruba this year.

#3: knit a blanket for the mcc relief sale. rating: *

i will not have a blanket ready for may 2012, i am 94% certain. but i do have the kit! (from the september knitter’s fair). i made other knitting projects priorities, and didn’t push to get going on this blanket. however, i do anticipate having it ready to donate for 2013.

#4: build a set of eclectic dishes. rating: **

i don’t have a whole set, per se, but i did add in some pieces:

do any of these look look familiar?!

we’ll call this one a work in progress, and a “to be continued” in 2012!

#5: keep getting up at 5 a.m. rating: ***1/2

yes! i stuck to this wake-up time, naturally. i never use an alarm clock to wake up – not sure if that fact has ever been shared. now, to be fully honest: the last couple of months, my body has been rousing itself closer to 6 a.m. than 5 a.m. and a very few times, my watch has read 6:xx when i actually roll out of bed (due to working more evening shifts this fall, and also the frenetic pace of retail in december wore me out a bit more). however: since my watch shows 5:xx when i am getting up, i am counting this goal a winner.

#6: run a half-marathon in 1:44 or faster. rating: *

haha, i clearly remember typing this goal and knowing at that time that this was a farrrr reach. and that’s ok – we need challenges and big dreams in life. i get one star because at least i ran/run!

#7: keep a gratitude journal. rating: ****

2011 concludes my second year of keeping an excel spreadsheet gratitude journal (i ♥ excel and prefer it to word documents). for every single day, i recorded either a good thing that happened to me, or something i did to help someone else have a nice day. the act of consciously typing out/reflecting on the day keeps me grounded in what matters in life, and keep me positive. and even on the worst days, there is always something – even miniscule – for which to be thankful.

#8: fulfill my coupon of the month gift. rating: ****

yes!!! yippee!! jump for joy!! this idea, without a doubt, without question, bar none, is the project of the year which makes me feel the greatest sense of satisfaction and of which i am most proud. i’m not going to link back to every single post about my meals or coffee breaks with dad, my shopping outings with mom, or my babysitting times for the brother and sil ana, but they happened. of special note: mom and i had eleven different locations where we shopped (march was modified to be a coffee break with dad). i had thought that dad and i could visit eleven different food establishments…but we ended up gravitating to starbucks and i actually like how that routine comfortably evolved. and you know that it goes without saying that my time alone with little e and cutie c swells my heart.

#9: try running in vibrams. rating: 0

haha, i totally and completely forgot about this goal! i walked quite a bit in my two pairs of “finger shoes” over the warmer months, and wore them to the store on occasion, but never ran in them! i need easy access to moab, utah more barefoot-running friendly terrain, that’s the ticket.

#10: reach 1oo friends on facebook. rating: ****

as of the time of publication, i have 124 facebook friends – score! a 25% increase over the goal number? that’s good! i was sorely tempted to just massively send out a bunch of friend requests so that i could hit 141 (41 for my age) by december 31st but didn’t want to appear desperate. i really like how my “collection” of friends encompasses many eras of my life: from grade 7 & 8/high school friends to running friends to family, etc.

#11: cook more: rating: 0

yes, the word “more” is vague, and professional life coaches would circle that word in red and have me quantify what i mean. however, when you start at zero, “more” is clear enough! basically, i cook no more today than i did 365 days ago. and i didn’t have any culinary surges during the intervening months, either. cooking is not my game. in fact, i baked even less as 2011 went on, so maybe i need a negative star rating for this goal!

in summary, here is the biggest a-ha i take from 2011:

if a goal is important enough to me, i will make it happen.

simple as that. overall? i am content with the results from 2011. if every goal had been achieved at a four star (****) level, i’d be over the moon boring, right?!

:)

your turn! what was a 2011 goal that you achieved and one that fell by the wayside? many bloggers have already posted their “2011: the year in review” entries – i love reading these reports!

the biggest lesson learned in october

hey friends! happy day-before-trick or treat-day!

i know it’s not the last day of the month – but i want to do a halloween-themed blog post tomorrow, so we’re going to do a recap of october today.

we’ll talk about the easy stuff first.

books: i gave up on the girl with the dragon tattoo [and am very glad i did, after y'all told me the rest of the story. eesh. not my cup of tea], and am now into the time traveler’s wife. it’s quite enjoyable, and i plan to stick with it [so far]. i was a bit confused about the time travel thing for the first few chapters, but it’s coming together in my brain the further i read.

outings of the month: checkmark (the brother and sil ana), checkmark (mom)….and hopefully checkmark DAD today!! true to form, we’ve left our father-daughter plans to the almost-last minute! one of two options should come together this aft or this eve, and i will report back on tuesday!

ok, let’s get to the meat of this blog post:

this month i learned that i do not enjoy making proclamations.

remember back here, early in the month, when i said i wasn’t going to blog daily any more. you were all very supportive and kind with your comments…so i skipped monday, october the 3rd…then proceeded to blog every day after that. well, do i ever feel foolish.

(source)

so i hearby PROCLAIM (uh oh!) to avoid making bold statements or promises on this dear blog o’mine. it’s different to set monthly goals or pursue my 41 new experiences for this year – at least in my own head i see the difference. i think it’s the potential for drama that rubs me the wrong way. for example: i always share new experiences AFTER i complete them. i don’t go about saying, “i’m going to meet canada’s best marathoner tomorrow!!” or “i’m going to puzzle ’til i go bonkers” -> sharing when it’s mission accomplished is way more my style.

ok, so here’s the funny part to this story: since i only missed that one day – october 3rd – i completed a backdated blog entry for that day last weekend. the only person, to my knowledge, who saw it was lisa – she was the only one who left a comment, at least. the blog entry is here: DATE squares.

do you get it?? i wanted to do a play on words with DATE. because it really is the date of october 3rd that matters – not that the squares are not fantastically tasty, mind you.

that means that every day in 2011 now has a blog entry. you can decide whether backdating one post is cheating or not. i say no because i pre-blog, so really what’s the difference between pre- or post- dating??

anyway – october flew by. november has got to be one of my two LEAST favourite months (the other is march) but i’m sure good times will abound, nonetheless! my focus is going to be on christmas shopping! and finding new experiences – planned or spur-of-the-moment.

what’s one lesson, big or small, that you discovered in october? OF COURSE you know i’m going to mention that it was confirmed to me that future shop SUCKS (i have too many blog posts on the subject to link back to just one).

least favourite month of the twelve options available to you? november -> at least with march, we anticipate spring. november -> winter’s gloom looms.

~*~*~*~*~

COUNTDOWN TO HALLOWEEN:

parting is such sweet sorrow, september

ah yes, the last day of the month. so you know what that means – time to review the goals that were set wayyy back 30 days ago (actually, it feels like about three days ago – september flew by!)

at the end of august, i wasn’t feeling all that inspired for the coming month.

let’s start with the goal that never got off the ground: readingthe girl with the dragon tattoo.” i got sidetracked by snooki! i’ve got less than fifty pages to go of “a shore thing“…and i’ll be sad when i finish (shh, don’t spread that around). the book is just like a written version of a jersey shore episode – in other words, complete fluff and sexcapades and outrageousness. however, there are a couple of actual plotlines, and they are more involved than i would have predicted. i’ve read far worse novels, for sure. “a shore thing” would be a perfect beach read. i would heartily – although not quite enthusiastically – endorse it for your next vacation. and i vow to you that i will begin dragon tattoo girl as soon as i take snooki back to the library.

yoga: i finished up my groupon at fearless heart, sob, sob. now i am taking a serious look at the local bikram schedule – i can take two weeks of unlimited sessions for $30. if i go ahead with the 14-day pass, i want to make sure i can get there frequently. so, i’ll examine my october agenda pages and see if bikram yoga is meant to happen in the month ahead.

remember i wanted to spend time on my yoga mat(s) at home? well, that happened twice. the second time, i practised for about 45 minutes – major accomplishment! i think the key for me is to not force at home yoga – wait ’til the time feels right, then pounce into downward dog!

coffee: i questioned whether i’d return to gleeful anticipation of drinking coffee. short answer: nope! however, i have had a few mugs. i keep a jar of mud flakes instant at the store, and i’ve brewed micro’d a cup here and there on a few shifts. that’s more because i want to drink something other than water, and i’m low on tasks to do and customers to assist. i’ve got a niggling feeling that the coffee luv may be lost!

one of my favourite days in september was my outing of the month with mom when we went to the knitter’s fair. dad and i (and special guest, mom!) squeezed in an afternoon break. and babysitting little e and cutie c never made it on to the blog, but on at least two occasions, the brother and sil ana were able to slip out for a wednesday early-eve “date,” and it was aunti in charge for a couple hours. i so adore that precious time with my girls!

the zen goal: the mindful intention was to live like yogis who strive to leave a place or a person better than when they found them. this resolution was a success, i would say. of course, it’s harder to measure a goal like this – there’s nothing quantifiable like there is with attending yoga x times or reading y book. but, whether it was cleaning up at the store, meeting up with a friend, or being a gracious human being, i’d say this attitude was in my mind quite often.

now: i just took a peak at my new experiences page and i have completed 28 new experiences. that means thirteen new experiences are waiting to be experienced! searching out new experiences is going to be my focus for the next bit! fun times ahead!

what was one memorable september day for you? for me, the panel discussion on “the future of science” was a neat evening out!

2011 goals

i often link back to the blog post i wrote on january 1st, eleven for ‘2011, where i listed my goals for this year. however, i never actually re-read the post when i do the link-back!

on the weekend, i just happened to take a glance-thru, and thought i’d see what i actually wrote down how things are progressing.

(source)

very interesting!

just to be a tease, instead of reviewing each one and evaluating the progress [or lack thereof] let’s summarize thusly:

eight of the eleven goals have either been completed or are on track.

three of the eleven goals…would receive a failing grade if the end of the world the end of the year was tomorrow. however. the good news is that at this time, there is no reason why each and every one of the eleven items on the 2011 wish list could not be accomplished by december 31st. [slight modifications may be necessary and would be allowable].

i’m glad i reviewed this blog post! we have nearly 3.5 months remaining in 2011 ie. over 1/4 of the year. that’s lots o’ time!

my vigour is renewed – it’d be wonderbar to put check marks…

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…next to each and every goal!

how ya’ doin’ with your own 2011 goals? do you even remember them?! i am most happy with the coupon of the month goal. it is on target for 100% completion! sample, sample, and sample!

bloggers: do you go back and read previous blog posts? me -> never! i don’t re-read my personal journal, either!

september: just go with the flow

you know what’s strange? my mind is completely blank every day about possible september goals.

for all of august days, i’ve been brainstorming ideas. see, i really want to have credible september goals because this month is more of a new year, a time of fresh starts, than january 1st will ever be. (i won’t repeat what i wrote last year, welcome to the REAL new year that you can read right there, if you want to see the argument for why labour day makes a better new year’s).

so, for september, i’ve decided to keep things pretty basic, yet go a little deeper, too (strike a side angle pose, everyone!).

(source)

i intend to make the most of my yoga groupon and get to fearless heart on as many days as time permits. i’ve mentioned that i have this blockage about doing yoga at home on my own, but for september, i am going to spend time on the mat at home on days i cannot get to the yoga studio. even five minutes of legs up the wall will count!

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yoga instructor lindsay shared a quote with us the other day from david swenson [guru in the ashtanga yoga world] about what makes a yogi (someone who practises yoga). to paraphrase, in david’s opinion a yogi is someone who leaves a place or a person better than when they found them. that is awesome. add that philosophy to how we’ll approach september.

in addition, my strategy is to take each day as it comes – hence, the go with the flow in today’s title. that kinda terrifies excites me!

otherwise, i am also happy about beginning my schedule of full time hours at the storeS !!

for the outings of the month, mom and i are all set as we will have our annual day at the knitter’s fair [local knitters: you must go if you have never been! click here for info or ask me!] in less than two weeks! dad and i have about 41 eatery options we could pursue, and i’ve got play dates already lined up with adorable e and cutie c in toronto. fun stuff!

and…i will see if i can find my misplaced coffee-loving taste buds!! they must be out there somewhere!!

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when is the better new year’s: january first or labour day in september? state your case!

one september goal?? i am just beginning the novel the girl with the dragon tattoo so that will be my read-of-the-month. watch out: it could inspire me to acquire tattoo #3!!

one august goal was GOLDEN!

welcome to the last day of august! everyone says this, so i’ll say it, too: where did the summer go. i am throwing my arms up in the air in dismay because you know as well as i do that in the blink of an eye, we’ll be walking around in conditions like this:

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so enjoy the sun and warmth while we have it!

at the end of july, i shared with you three goals that i concocted for this month of august. let’s review:

goal #1: be a girly-girl

success rate: B

this goal was more of a success than a failure. i’m esp happy because i kept on trying right to the end of the month. here are a few ways in which i showed my girly-girl colours:

  • i watched an episode each of bethenny getting married and the hills. with regular viewing, i could pick up some very useful grooming and fashion tips. [i am also up-to-date on jersey shore. whether that show assists with self-improvement goals is debatable and up to you!]. watching these fluffy shows brought out my inner air-head, i did notice.
  • i switched up my earrings and hair barrettes/hairbands every day, and used hairspray once or twice (had to buy the hairspray!)

$5 flower-power earrings that i found when i was out with sarah - i went back for them!

  • i party-prepped extensively for angela’s birthday party!
  • mom and i enjoyed a bonus shopping outing one aft over at the mall. at the embellished room, i picked up two floral pieces:

a mini - dress (treat from mom!)

this top, i adore. the vibe is such that i am calling it "my grandma i. 1970's florida top" - > the floral pattern is just of that vintage!

  • i wore nail polish more days than not, and make up every time i left the house

there is still room for improvement! i fell a little short on:

  • actually wearing skirts – shorts are still just soooo comfortable
  • lotioning up during the day [in my defense, i do not enjoy putting on lotion before a yoga class as it makes me too slippery]; i did cream up my face nightly

take away lesson: i’m certainly not on the path to becoming a diva any time soon, but it is fun to do a little something to spice up your appearance, even if you are the only one who knows it.

goal #2 blog in lower case letters

success rate: a+

ladies and gentlemen, we have a winner!

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i hearby declare that this writing style is the new normal for the blog. i ♥ love ♥ blogging entirely in lower case! hopefully, you don’t miss the capital letters because i’m going to stick with no capital letters until further notice.

goal #3: enjoy a different sweet treat every single day

success rate: barely a pass (d+? c-?)

i was doing really well with this goal until i got the flu in the middle of august. that 24 hours of *upheaval* completely messed with my taste buds and appetite. i abandoned this goal because the whole quirky point of it was to riff off baskin robbins and their 31 flavours, and present my own 31 flavours. oh well. i still enjoyed fun treats this month – hotdog, anyone?!

i had no specific reading, knitting or grocery goals for august, but let’s recap anyway.

groceries: cheapest month so far since i started tracking in may. chalk that up to the flu: saltines and frozen pepperoni pizza are cheaper than fresh veggies – did you know?!

knitting: i’ll talk separately about the silky baby blanket when it’s done – almost there!

reading: i finished american wife on sunday august 28th

just in time for it's due date at the library on monday august 29th!

this novel’s structure is unique in that it is divided into four parts, one for each of the places alice lives over the course of her life. while the book is absolutely wonderful, and i highly, mightily recommend it,  the weakest chapter is the final section, “1600 pennsylvania avenue” when charlie and alice are in the white house. i just found the tone and pace to be somewhat different in this last part.

here’s one quote from alice, from near the end of the book, that struck me: “oh, the past, the past – how the memories of the people i loved sear me.” p 546

this novel gets a resounding **** four star rating. i will miss alice! i am totally inspired, now, to read a biography on laura bush. there are a few suggestions in the back of american wife, so hopefully i can find one at the library. for now, i am doing a brain vinyasa and spending time with…

counts towards the girly-girl goal, no?!

and next up is september – the TRUE new year begins on labour day, totally, don’t you agree?

how was your august? any highlights to share? i’m happy with all the outdoor time i enjoyed. i did make the most of the hot and sunny days!

31 Flavours of August

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Tomorrow is the first of August! You know what that means…it’s time to discuss the plans for the month. Ah, it feels good to have some concrete goals, again!

I have three top-notch, fun and unique ideas to share with you.

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Goal #1: Be a girly-girl. I do love nail polish, and I wear make-up daily. But I’m no chic diva. Casual? Sporty? Très relaxed? Those adjectives are most appropriate to describe my personal style. I want to devote more time to self-care. By that, I mean giving more than a couple of slapdash moments to skincare, hairstyling, and clothing and accessorizing myself – a little pampering. Here’s how I plan to set myself up for success:

  • give myself extra time to get ready for the day/to go out. I think I could make efficient use of even 10 more minutes, at a time!
  • place lotion bottles strategically around the Condo Casa as visual reminders to moisturize several times, daily.

i bought hairspray! and there are some of my lotion options

  • [The problem is that I really dislike when hand and body lotions make me feel sticky and greasy. But I want softer skin. It's only for a month - I'll grin and bear the slimyness shininess!].
  • go back to quality facial cream. I’m giving a brand that’s an oldie-but-reputedly-goodie a shot:
  • i've never used olay! might as well try the cleanser, too....

  • make Mom and/or girlfriends go shopping with me for cheap yet pretty wardrobe pieces. I have hair accessories, earrings, bracelets, rings – I just need to wear them!

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Goal #2: Blog entirely in lower case letters. now, janetha practically has the copyright on this writing style. but, if you’ve ever corresponded with me via email, blog commenting, twitter or facebook, you know that for casual communication, i never use capitals. i’ve written like this for ages and ages – it’s fast and i think it looks hip. bien sûr, if i’m writing professional or formal correspondence, i’ll follow standard grammar and punctuation rules, but i really like the look and feel of all lower-case lettering. so, this month, blog posts will look…like this! eesh, i hope i don’t forget!

at the end of the month, i’ll decide which way we’re going to swing: will we go back to the conventional, or stick with the janetha?…

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Goal #3: Enjoy a different sweet treat every single day. Cuz it’s summer, and why the heck not.

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I actually did a project of this nature about two years ago, before I had the blog. At that time, my goal was to go 100 days with a treat-of-the-day taking place each and every day. If memory serves, I made it to about Day #67 before my sweet tooth conked out. So, 31 days should be no problem-o.

Here are some more details for this round of 31 Flavours!…

  • 31 days, 31 different treats, no repeats [I can tell you straight off what a few treats will be, for sure: a Starbucks pumpkin scone, a piece of coffee cake from Coffee Culture, a Tango Palace apple square and a DQ something. Tangent: I could never do 31 flavours of ice cream because I really only like chocolate chip or heavenly hash - can you believe chocolate ice cream is really not a favourite?!].
  • because I adore using the four-star rating system, each treat will get a ranking. I’ll show you the previous day’s choice and how it fared, every day, beginning on August 2nd.
  • yes, gluten-containing products will be consumed (see above). Due to the fact that farty-bum-bums will therefore spontaneously erupt naturally occur, I’ll make sure to consume these delicacies on days when I am not venturing out into public shortly thereafter.
  • I don’t plan on baking anything myself because baking’s not my scene I want to avoid multiple servings of the same product. Thirty-one choices, remember!

So, there you have it! No reading, knitting or grocery goals for August – been there, done that. It’s time to branch out. Stay tuned!

Sweet or salty – what do you prefer? I rarely feel the urge to munch on chips, pretzels or salted nuts…I inherited the family sweet tooth but good!

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