December 31, 2010

New Year's Resolutions With No Weight Loss or Exercise OH HOW ELSE CAN PEOPLE IMPROVE???

Okay! Are we ready? It is time.

Last year I resolved to use my reusable bags more often, and even though I totally forgot I had resolved it, I nevertheless did it. I am now at Current Maximum Reusable Bag Usage for me, which means I use reusable bags at the use-percentage that still leaves me with enough plastic bags for my various plastic-bag-needing needs. I carry two fold-small reusable bags in my purse, and I take a big huge sack of reusable bags with me to the grocery store. I don't use a produce bag if I'm buying just one or two of some non-messy produce (like a green pepper) and/or I use reusable produce bags, and I say "Oh, I can just put it in this other bag" if I'm buying an item at the mall that can be put into a bag I already have. To sum up: mold a golden idol in my image.

I resolved last year to think more before buying something. Again, I forgot that the motivation for doing this was a resolution, but I still did SOME of this. I tried to think to myself, "Yes, $1.74 is a great deal for a shirt, but he does not actually NEED any more shirts," and "A whole bunch of $1.74s add up to extra sent to the mortgage" and "Won't it be nice for someone ELSE to find this deal?" and "You know, actually I need to get rid of some of the shirts he already has because there isn't room in the drawer on the rare occasions I get caught up on laundry." On the other hand, it led to several regrets, like when William grew into the same size of shirts and pajamas Rob is wearing, and now they each have half of the supply.

I forgot to drink champagne more often, and in fact I haven't had any since last New Year's Eve. I will see if I can cram a whole year's worth of champagne into this evening.

I resolved last year to at least open my Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Workbook for Dummies to where I'd left off, and I did, and in fact I skimmed to the end, but I didn't find any other gems of insight. So actually I was right when I stopped reading it the first time.

I'd resolved to throw out the $5 giant bottle of lotion I hated and replace it with the $5 giant bottle of lotion I liked, and I did that.


Now! Time for 2011 resolutions! And I know this will seem CRAZY, but I'm going to ONCE AGAIN do resolutions that do NOT involve losing weight or exercising more! Not only do those sorts of resolutions tend to be extremely boring (especially when made year after year with no follow-though), there are many, MANY other parts of a human being that can be worked on!

1. I will try to be less of a self-conscious sissy about hair dye. I keep intending to go, say, burgundy, and then thinking, "Oh, wait, but there is a parent-teacher conference coming up!" or "Oh, but it'll be Christmas!" It seems totally reasonable to avoid going a crazy color right before a wedding in which I'm a member of the bridal party, or maybe before a childbirth where I want to look a certain way in new-baby photos, but there are very few other occasions that require this level of burgundy-avoidance.

2. I will try to be more caught up on trimming/editing digital photos. I tend to be three or four months behind, just chronically. And as I regularly think when someone is tailgating me: if you're going at a steady pace regardless, you might as well be at a more pleasant distance. For tailgating, that's FARTHER; for digital photos, that's CLOSER.

3. I'm going to try this fish tank thing enough to see if it's something I want to pursue or if it's something I want to give up.

4. I'm going to act with less inhibition on generous impulses. I'm going to spend less time wringing my hands wondering if my impulse to send someone a present is going to make them feel uncomfortable or obligated, or if a fun giveaway will make some people roll their eyes and write about how stupid they think blog giveaways are. What a stupid waste of hand-wringing.

5. I'm going to find more Bath & Body Works discontinued lavender-vanilla conditioner on eBay and see if it's worth buying. The ones I bought 2 years ago are almost used up. If it's too expensive or hard to find, I will try experiments such as mixing Bath & Body Works lavender-vanilla oil/lotion with unscented conditioner, or using the lotion directly. [Same-day follow-up: I researched on eBay and you would not believe what people think they can charge for this stuff. FORTY-ONE DOLLARS for four TRAVEL SIZE bottles. Bitch, please. So I'm moving right on to experimenting.]

6. I will no doubt add some sixth thing.

7. And probably a seventh thing. It happens every year, so I might as well add place-holders.

I'm also resolving to frame my resolutions and hang them on the wall, but I don't want to put that as one of the resolutions because that is too meta for my current fill-level of champagne.

If you still need some resolutions for your own list, perhaps you would like some of these others I've used in the past?

1. Try ONE cloth pad and see if it's something I like or something I can stop thinking of as "something I want to do someday."

2. Try ONE cloth napkin and see if it's something I like or something I can stop thinking of as "something I want to do someday."

3. Pretend to invest $1000 in the stock market. Choose stocks and follow them as if I'd bought them. At the end of the year, decide whether to invest real money or if it's something I can stop thinking of as "something I want to do someday."

4. Have a baby.

5. Learn to knit, enough to see if it's something I want to pursue or something I can stop thinking of as "something I want to do someday."

6. Try Postcrossing, enough to see if it's something I want to pursue or something I can stop thinking of as "something I want to do someday."

7. Pass along nice things I hear about someone.

8. Use reusable bags more often.

Happy New Year, everybody! I better post this before I start typing embarrassing songs.


Lisa said...

I have resolved to have a baby in 2011! (At the very least get pregnant in 2011. I am running out of time on this activity.) My husband is not yet on board with this resolution, so this resolution may be a bust. Stay tuned.

I have reusable bags, and I leave them in the car every.single.time.

Leeann said...

Hello Dear Swistle!

First of all, Happy New Year to you! Your words and your humor and your way of writing nearly every F'ing thought that I have is awesome and I am grateful for you!

Secondly, you should know that because of you, we are a cloth napkin family now AND we use thermoses in lunch boxes ANNNND we use cloth-with-washable-liner baggies in lunch boxes as well. They are the BOMB and I love them! So thanxsomuch for all your good ideas this year.


Maureen said...

Swistle, because of you I got into Postcrossing, which I LOVE! Reminds me how the world is really a place populated with some very nice people. My word for the New Year is content-which I think I am lucky to be most of the time, and a state of mind which provides much peace.

Heather said...

I started postcrossing because of you. I've now sent 450+ and all because of a post you did a couple of years ago. I love it, so thank you and I hope people will see that resolution and give it a try! BTW, I'm hmassese on there if you want to be nosey.

I also had reusable bags as my goal. I did it for all this year for the most part. While I was successful with the weekly shop, the corner store was another matter but like you, it keeps us to a necessary level of plastic bags. I also kept one fold up bag in my handbag but really only started using it in the lead up to Christmas.

Instead of new years resolutions, I'm working on my 101 list. Have you heard of the idea? You write 101 goals to achieve in 1001 days. They must be quite set, rather than things such as 'be a better person' because when would/could you exactly cross that off!? I've had some amazing experiences come out of it and it seems like something you might enjoy. My list is on my blog, I've got a year left and lots to do!

Barb @ getupandplay said...

Pay off our debt. Have a baby. Visit Hawaii or any beach with my husband (no kids allowed). Call friends more often.

Swistle said...

Heather- "IF" I'm nosy? OBV I am nosy! I went right away! And now I'm trying to see if there's any way to tell if either of us have sent the other a card! Because wouldn't that be cool??? Also, geez girl, low 30s for all of Australia??

L said...

My resolution I'm excited about is switching to tap water, after almost 10 yrs (yikes) of bottled water and water cooler water. Happy New Year and good luck with your resolutions.

Nicole said...

Happy New Year Swistle! xox

I JUST recently discovered the olafactory delights that are Bath and Body Works. I can't imagine how amazing vanilla/lavender must be. Right now I'm kind of obsessed with Moonlight Madness and Brown Sugar and Fig.

g~ said...

Your resolution suggestions crack me up! I am not a strict resolution maker because resolutions make me feel like a failure. BUT, I do have yearly themes and goals. This year, we are embracing freedom. Hey, that's a good post. Will have to write that once I am "free" from the 47 loads of laundry I haven't finished since our return from the Harry Potter trip.

GratefulTwinMom said...

I definitely used reusable bags more and I'm going to continue that, like you, in the new year. I like a resolutions list that is really more like a goals list. Last year I did one and left it with a friend's church. It was mailed to me in November. Big eye-opener. This year, goals will be more achievable. I'm going to run over and check out Heather's 101 list. That sounds pretty cool.

Jenny Grace said...

This year I just didn't feel very resolved to make any goals beyond don't kill or be killed.

I like yours.
They are concrete and doable yet still goal-worthy.

Shelly Overlook said...

I think I am going to try Postcrossing in 2011!

Lorraine said...

Do you have a Bath & Body Works Outlet store nearby? You might find the lavender-vanilla lotion there!

Stimey said...

My stupid resolution is to "be healthier." That includes several sub-resolutions of less soda, more exercise, and better eating skills. But I also kind of refuse to call it a resolution. My real resolution is to purchase and install a doorbell.

Hotch Potchery said...

Due to your post about cloth napkins, we are now a cloth napkin family! I love them, love them. We also don't use paper products even when we have 9 people over for dinner and we only have a counter top dishwasher.

I still have to resolve to lose weight and exercise.

JEN said...

I would love to have a baby. It's not like I haven't been working on that though. Sprinkle some dust my way, will you?

Maxie said...

i've done post crossing! i was kind of meh because you don't really get a connection with anyone, but that's a pretty easy one to fulfill, so why not!

CARRIE said...

I generally don't make resolutions because of the typical "resolve and then promptly fail" bit. I think it's the word "resolution" more than the actual doing.

Anyway, I agree wholeheartedly that there are plenty of ways we can strive to be better all-around people instead of focusing solely on our butts.

el-e-e said...

Your resolutions are helping me refine my own. I hope to post about it late tonight. I just couldn't muster up the motivation while I was at my MIL's "celebrating" the New Year. But maybe today. :)

Good luck with the photos. That's a doozy.

Tess said...

YES! I came DIRECTLY to this post as my very first read on this First Monday. High praise indeed.

Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

I so want you to go crazy with your haircolor!


Tara said...

These are great! I might take one from your "extras" list and try a cloth pad (TMI for a new commenter?) I finally got around to buying the diva cup (after a year + of thinking about it) and I LOVE it. Which is kind of extreme to say about such a product, but I do.

ixBeths said...

It is late January 4, and I still have not crafted my own resolutions. I am only now catching up on blog reading. This clearly should not be a resolution of mine (duly noted).

1. Do it! It's only hair! Fun hair!

4. Perfect. I try to live by the idea that if it's a kind thing to do, and my intentions are good, who cares what the receiver thinks; I should go with kindness. Only "who cares what the receiver thinks" is said a little softer in my mind, so I don't sound like a sociopath.

5. Bitch, pls.

I really want to try cloth pads this year, and maybe a Diva cup, but do I want to do this enough to make it a "resolution"? I dunno. I am still miffed that pregnant Sam won your cloth pads last go-round. Harumph.