Hope is the thing with feathers…


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Welcome 2014

I feel like I’ve been stuck in a never-ending circle the last few years.  This was a rut that was, mostly, of my own making.  I have been thinking the past few weeks/months about what I wanted to change, how I wanted to get out of that rut.  Because I’m the only one who can do that.  I don’t have “resolutions”, but I do have goals for this year.

  • Do the 52 Week Challenge.  I feel like this is something I can absolutely do, and have already gotten myself set up to begin.  I will not put the money away weekly, but will instead add up the total for the month and it will be put aside the first Friday of every month.
  • On top of the challenge, I want to really focus on getting my savings account back to a reasonable place.  The past four years have been incredibly challenging on many levels, but finances have been… devastating.  However, I payed off my car last month (oh happy day) and I believe that I am on a much better track as far as finances go.  I need to begin building up a savings so I can handle emergencies when they arise.
  • Personal health.  I’ve kind of been only half dedicated to my health over the last few years, using stress as an excuse for why I “couldn’t” do better.  That’s ridiculous, because having an unhealthy body does not help my ability to deal with stress.  I am not putting rules in place like “I have to work out three days a week”.  But I am committing to going to the gym and being active, but more importantly to changing my eating patterns.  I have rejoined WW on line, and will be focusing on making good decisions with food.
  • Relationships…. I have done a lot of personal reflection lately and realized just how fearful I am of putting myself out there again.  It’s difficult, because I want a relationship but I’m scared to try to put myself in a place to have one because I don’t want to be hurt again.  However, I have met a very very nice man and we’ve been spending time together since November.  I’m not sure if we’ll be “in a relationship”… it’s not something we’ve discussed yet.  However, he is fantastic and I would be a lucky woman if that was something he wanted to pursue with me.  We spent New Year’s Eve together at his friend’s house (we share a mutual friend who invited us), and I had such a great time.  I’m hopeful that good things come with this man… but if we decide that we aren’t relationship material, I truly hope that I find someone that I can have a relationship with.
  • Reading.  I know it might sound silly, but I really want to read more this year.  I set a goal of 50 books last year, which I did not meet.  Perhaps it was a little lofty… especially considering I couldn’t really afford to buy 50 books!  I believe I’m going to set a goal of 25 this year.  It’s important to take the time to read, at least for me, because it quiets my mind and gives me some very necessary downtime.
  • Creating.  This includes writing, scrapbooking, and photography.  I have two novels that need to be finished this year… my NaNo pieces from this year and last year.  I have put off finishing last year’s simply because I’ve been so upset about losing the work.  I have a strong desire to draw closure to those projects so I can begin others.  I have scrapbooks I would like to get caught up on… maybe even finally start work on my own Disney albums!  I also need to work on my horseback riding albums and the album for my trip home last summer.  I would also like to get my craft room well organized, and plan to dedicate a portion of my tax return to the purchase of a shelf from Ikea that is perfect for scrapbook storage!  I want to set aside at least one day per month that is my “scrap day”, whether this be with my close friend Dana or whether it is time by myself working on projects.   I had an “ok” year with photography in 2013… however, I’m going to be forced to make some difficult decisions due to a lack of patronage at some of the horse show series that I’ve been affiliated with for several years.  I really want to push myself to take more photos this year that are for me.  I spend so much of my time working on photos for customers, that I don’t take the time to visit places and photograph things that inspire me.  I immediately think about my visit to the Conservator’s Center for my photo safari and know that I have to do things like this more often.
  • Riding.  I competed all season and did fairly well, even though I was stuck at a low level in the jumping.  Injuries and other setbacks made that challenging.  There are some complications coming up (financially and otherwise) that are going to set me back once again, unfortunately, but I do want to continue to ride and compete this year.  I will be hearing soon about year-end awards for the one series I competed in, and I should be named Grand Champion for the year in my jumping division, and should be third for the adult flat.  These are big accomplishments for someone who went 10 years without doing much riding.

I’m sure there are other things that I will think of that are important as the year goes forward.  I feel as if this can be a very fluid list that grows and changes as I need it to.  I have been very blessed over the past year in friendships, opportunities and an amazing family.  I am looking forward and hoping for nothing but good things in 2014.

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