(obligatory end of year reflective post)

I feel strangely satisfied at the end of this year.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s been a mixed bag; I went from being in a long-term relationship with the possibility of marriage hanging like a giant question mark, to, well…not. At this point, I have approximately zero good friends my own age, though a handful of acquaintances/distant friends. I’m still about as messy and disorganized as I was last year, and am increasingly convinced that real, long-lasting change more often comes in quiet, minute intervals rather than hinging on a single decision or event.

But. I feel more comfortable in my own skin, accepting my introversion rather than trying to fight against it (a small aside, I prefer “introvert” over “shy” – my lack of speaking in large groups is generally because I want to hear what other people are saying, not due to social anxiety), and I feel like I have a better understanding of what I want to do and be – even if it’s a long, long road to get there. I also feel much more comfortable with my body image and self esteem.

The latter is probably partly due to my ~20 lbs of weight loss since June. For the graphically inclined:

The plateau indicates I should probably start exercising to get down to where I’d like to be, but I’ll get to that later.

This week I was researching my “ideal” weight for my height, age, and frame size, and had to relearn the freshman year of college lesson that not everything you read on the internet is reliable; most of the calculators estimated my ideal weight range as some variant of 120-150. Even though it was frustrating, it also made me laugh because I realize that without developing an eating disorder or chopping off a leg there is simply no way I’ll be losing 30-60 more pounds.

But all that to say, I’m within six months of graduating college (just got my commencement information today!) and thus having to venture out into the real world. This year will definitely be interesting.

And for all my talk of change coming slowly there is something within me that just can’t get past the whole resolution idea. Something about assessing everything in my life once a year and finding things I’d like to work on appeals to my more linear nature.

Here are my resolutions for 2011:

Get in 30 minutes of cardio three times a week, and some other sort of exercise two to three other times throughout the week

I was initially going to make my resolution to finish the P90X program generously gifted to me by my future brother-in-law, but guys, I hate it. So much. I hate it hate it hate it. Though I’ve finally managed to figure out a way to turn off the annoying announcer guy’s chatter that isn’t related to exercise cues, it still drives me nuts. A common theory in educational circles is that to do anything and feel okay about it we need to have about 70-80% success rate, which is successful enough to make it feel like we aren’t failing but still offers a challenge. My success rate with P90X is, even when I only do a half a workout at a time, more like 50% because I am crazy out of shape. I really need something more suited to my current ability.

Fill up one, if not both, of my new journals

Well, okay. One was given as a scrapbook, and one was intended as a sketchbook, but I already have plenty of sketchbooks that are not nearly as nice, and I don’t plan to take up scrapbooking anytime soon. While this blog is helpful as a journal of sorts, I want to do more of creative journaling to incorporate mixed media. And, frankly, there are lots of minutia in my life that I’d like to note down but don’t want to subject all of you to. (A normal person response to this would be to write a blog and keep it private. My response is to throw paint at it. Huzzah!)

Eat 5 servings of fruits and veggies a day

So, this part’s kinda awkward. You’re suddenly realizing just how unhealthy I am, aren’t you? While I’m sometimes good about getting more color in my diet, I have an unabashed love of carbs, and they are cheap and tasty. My veggie tastes are pretty vanilla, and fruit gets expensive fast. Just for clarification though, I’m talking about 5 servings total, not 5 of both fruits and veggies – the latter would certainly be good for me, but I’m trying to stay realistic.

Organizationally, digitize my information as is feasible and hang my clothes up the same day that I do laundry

See what I told you about minutia in my life? This isn’t really all that interesting. With my sparkly new terabyte external hard drive (wheeee!) it’s helpful for me to store some of my things in a digital format rather than have it collecting dust. For instance, I still have a lot of teacher stuff that I’d like to keep around in case I change my mind, but won’t be using it anytime soon. Evernote to the rescue, and I’ve got a third of it already uploaded, tagged, and easily searchable. As for the clothes, that tends to be what makes my room look so messy. Just getting clothes up off the floor makes a big difference.

Speaking of clothes…

Top off my wardrobe and then stop worrying about it

This is kinda tied to the weight loss, since I’ve had to give away a lot of my clothes. The clothes that are left are largely dark in color and not quite varied enough for me to not feel repetitive. I’d venture somewhere in the range of 1-2 undershirts, 2 pairs of jeans and slacks after my weight evens out, and 2-3 more shirts and I should be set for quite awhile. I’m just tired of looking at and trying on clothes; they’re expensive, many don’t fit my body type well, and I’m annoyed with the whole consumerist gig.

Get my money’s worth out of my sewing machine (if possible)

Since I traded up my old sewing machine for $30 I haven’t found a whole lot of time to use it, and the one time I tried it marred the fabric irrevocably, so I’ve been shy to try it out again. But, if that fabric was just weird and my sewing machine is workable, it seems reasonable to try to get my money’s worth out of it. As I mentioned about how expensive shopping is right before this, it’s worth pointing out that many dresses and skirts are just shy of the $30 mark, so even one of those would make the machine just about pay for itself, and I am totally not above going the Dress a Day route. (I could be wrong here, but that might actually be easier than trying to work off a pattern to make something from scratch. And, wallet and environment friendly!)

On a similar tack, with my Christmas gift of a book full of knitting patterns, I may try and complete one of those. But seriously, for all of the jokes made at knitted sweaters, those take forever. I’m not sure my enjoyment of knitting can persevere over my ADD.

And… that’s all, folks. I feel like that’s pretty reasonable, though probably the hardest one for me will be the fruits and veggies. Having a low food budget makes it a bit painful to spend $4 on a cantaloupe, so I may need to check out some alternatives to grocery stores to see if they’re any cheaper. Or, I could *gasp* eat in season foods, but I’ve been Americanized to want strawberries whenever I please, growing seasons be damned.

On that note, happy 2011!



2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Mom
    Jan 26, 2011 @ 20:31:23

    Hey, when your sewing machine messed up some fabric, could it have been a dull or wrong type of needle? Or what happened?


    • aisle4b
      Jan 26, 2011 @ 21:37:32

      It frayed the fabric up until it was near unrecognizable. I brought the fabric in to the craft store and asked someone who worked there what kind of needle would be good for it (it looked like just a cotton weave but I wanted to make sure), put in a brand new needle and the same thing still happened. I’ll need to experiment with my machine to see if it’s okay with other fabrics.


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