2012: Pretty OK So Far, Minus All the Trips to Walgreens

4 Jan

Sorry for the posting hiatus – this holiday season has been a whirlwind grand tour of the Southeast, a distant region where most of my family members and friends insist on living. I just got home from a New Year’s celebration with my closest friends in North Carolina, and I can tentatively say that 2012 is looking good so far, although my friends clearly didn’t eat whatever food it is you’re supposed to eat on New Year’s for good health (turnip greens? pickled eggs?), since we spent an inordinate amount of time browsing the cold and allergy medication aisle at Walgreens. I’ve got a suspicious tickle in my throat and may need to seek out some turnip greens myself.

I make resolutions every New Year’s. I know that a long list of vague, undissected goals chosen on an arbitrary night  is not a path to behavioral success, but there’s something traditional and comforting about making that list, and I have an agreement with myself that I can say it’s been a highly successful year if I accomplish 60% of my goals.

Last year I only had 2 resolutions, which were:

1. Use canvas bags when grocery shopping

2. Defend thesis

I utterly failed number one. I think I remembered to use canvas bags once, after Ted reminded me. Full success on number two. You might say that puts me at 50% success, but in 2011 I also proposed my dissertation, successfully married off a sizeable proportion of my friends, and trained my cat to give me a high five, which officially puts me at 99% success or something like that.

Anyway, this year’s list of resolutions is a little longer, with separate divisions for professional goals and personal goals. Without further ado:


1. Accept internship match news with minimal drama if it’s not exactly what I want (or not an internship at all). I’ve got a good backup situation if I don’t get an internship, and if I do get an internship but it’s not one of my top choices, then I can still have an excellent year. There’s no need to flip out.

2. Complete my dissertation. I don’t technically have to have it done until spring of 2013, but I really want to knock it out before I move.

3. Write in blog at least once a week, excluding holidays/vacations. 


1. Use canvas bags for at least half of grocery trips. Clearly I was too ambitious last year. We’re going to shoot for 50% this time. This will be my anthem: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EVh15aUt8-c

2. Do at least one fun thing a week with the friends I’ve made during grad school. If I get an internship, Ted and I are moving this summer, and I want to maximize the time I have with the awesome people we’ve gotten to know here.

3. Stage and sell our house (internship dependent). Depending on how the housing market behaves in our area over the next 6 months, this may be the toughest one on the list. I should probably spend more time watching HGTV.

4. Try at least one new recipe a week, excluding weeks when I’m traveling. I’m mostly trying to trick myself into cooking more with this one. It makes me feel less depressed than making a resolution like, “Make all meals at home except on weekends.” I like cooking OK, but I like eating out a lot more. We’re not even talking vaguely upscale dining here; I could happily eat the same sandwich at Subway for multiple meals a week. (And sometimes do. I have no explanation for myself.) Unfortunately, my bank account demonstrates a definite preference for cooking. And since I’m married to someone who is also willing to cook and knows how to make fancy-pants things like creme brulee, and I have a large box of plastic straws to put into my Diet Cokes to simulate the restaurant experience, there’s no good reason for us to eat out so much, unless we’re celebrating something or going out with friends.

5. Get a puppy (internship/job/house-selling dependent). If I get an internship, Ted gets a new job, and we sell the house, we’ve agreed that  we will finally get a puppy. We’d like to have a giant or semi-giant dog, and our current living situation and frequent travels are not conducive to giant puppy ownership. But if all goes according to (admittedly complex) plan, we’re getting that puppy this year, suckas!

6. Contribute to my friend’s startup nonprofit in a meaningful way. I don’t think I’m allowed to talk about the nonprofit before it goes public, but you can trust that it’s awesome and that details will appear here eventually.

And that’s it. I hit the ground running by taking my canvas bags to the supermarket this afternoon, which was much more appealing than sitting down to work on my dissertation. What resolutions have you guys made?


One Response to “2012: Pretty OK So Far, Minus All the Trips to Walgreens”

  1. Wesley Holland January 4, 2012 at 9:32 am #

    Laurie uses canvas bags 100% of her trips to the grocery store. You should ask her secret – I think she always remembers to put them back in the car after she unloads the groceries. My resolution is to only use single-spaces after periods. I’ve been doing pretty good so far.

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