2011 Resolutions

So I don’t make resolutions. I find it kind of silly to hinge change on a single day, and on a day when everybody else is doing it as well. Maybe it’s just that latent rebel in me that also wouldn’t let me read Harry Potter or listen to Green Day. Maybe this year is different, though, or maybe it’s just that it’s an 11. I like 11’s.
So here’s how it’s going down. I resolve this year to make resolutions. New Years is as good of a time as any, and I think I’m adult enough to know I’m in a constant process of evolution, but there may be something to setting a few clear goals at the beginning of the year and follow up on them at the end.
To begin with here were my handful of goals from last year that definitely weren’t resolutions.

1. Excercise more and eat better. I did pretty good with this over the summer. I ran some and lost about 25 pounds. More importantly I dropped my heart rate about a third and my blood pressure went down. Not that it was too terribly bad, but I’d been noticing it was getting harder to do a lot of the active things I liked, when I could find time to do them. And when your oncologist points out that your scans don’t show any cancer, but some plaque around your heart, it’s of dubious comfort. Of course since Thanksgiving that’s all gone out on holiday and I’m actually looking forward to the return. I just have to finish off all this chocolate and bacon.
2. Finish the garage. Not so good. Probably because I had to focus on other things, but I wish I had gotten a little more done. With impending weather this fall I did manage to get the outside base caulked (a year later than needed, but better than two) I also got the outlet for the kiln in, so I’m ready for insulation. After that the drywall and siding and I’ll be ‘done’ enough to start hanging the cabinets the Hallman’s so graciously donated after their remodel. At this point I’m really understanding the glacial pace of home improvement I saw in so many friends houses as well as my own. (don’t get me started about the floors in my house)
3. Get a garden established and landscape the back yard. When I moved in the back yard was a grandma’s garden paradise. Not exactly my style but lots of flowers. But it slowly went downhill and when we started garage construction it was pretty much leveled. Three years of slowly getting the new structure to a point where I could start planning a yard really took it’s toll, but I got last years experimental garden planters out for a serious permanent vegetable garden space and grew lots of tomatoes and carrots, a few peas and some strawberries and cucumbers. The zucchini produced like some kind of organic machine gun. Next year it goes in the shade. I got a water line run from the back of the house to a bib midway on the garage and a sprinkler line to the back. As the first snow fell I got most of the sod done. It was quite the accomplishment working mostly alone, except when Debbie took pity on my impending winter doom and helped dig the sprinkler line. Dirty yardwork isn’t really her thing.
4. Climb Lone Peak. Serious fail, but I should be used to it by now. I think I’ve told myself I was going to climb Lone Peak every year since Mark Stringham brought it up when we were in High School, probably in 1984. Actually, the realization that I was in no shape to do this one led directly to action on goal #1 above. I do think this year I have a chance.
5. Artwork. I really wanted to make a bit of an inroad to establishing myself as an artist. I ought to show a little more regularly, or get some gallery representation or I’ll just stagnate as a ‘might-have-been’. Really I think I’d rather fail as an artist than to never really try, but I’m so damn lazy. I did show three pieces I liked a lot at the Patrick Moore Gallery in Salt Lake. I also talked to a few galleries in New Orleans and one on the Coast in Oregon, but with no follow up on my part. Even the Patrick Moore Gallery wanted to show some more of my stuff, but I got caught up in the yardwork at the end of the summer and just kind of let it slide by. Maybe if I had the garage done and could work more seriously then I’d… and if a frog had wings, you know.
So that looks like about 45% for 2010 if you grind it up and add some filler like it was some sort of undertaking hot dog. For the next year I don’t want to lump any of the previous in to the new resolutions except for #1
1. Climb Lone Peak. I don’t know what is so hard about this one. It’s a day up and back and not that bad. Clark ran up with his buddies one afternoon, made a phone call and ran down when we were in Pi Rho. It’s just always been there and since I’ve been little I’ve spent a good part of my time staring at it. I did make it up to the Thunder Bowl years ago, and I’d like to go again, but between those two places I think occupied 90% of my childhood fantasy adventures and I need to get to the other one.
2. I need to take my kayak out at least 5 times this summer. I bought it several years ago, and I don’t think I’ve had it out 5 times total. I made a pretty good prototype outrigger two summers ago out of some 4″ ABS pipe and an aluminum pole. It really stabilized it for fishing, but I haven’t done a thing with it since.
3. Running. I hadn’t really set out to make this some sort of testosterone list, but here I am. I never really liked running. That’s why my second year of track at Hillcrest I decided to be a lazy not-so-high jumper. But getting out a few mornings a week even just to go around Liberty park was kind of fun, and I’m actually missing it now. But I’m not going to run out and buy something warm to run in so I can brave this weather. Not until it starts hitting the 50’s, at least. This year I’m going to run 300 miles. I ran about 40 last year just fooling around, and this year I’m going to get in some distance. Even at just over 2 miles a pop (from home around Liberty Park and back) that’s only 150 times, less than half the year. So it’s a doable goal, and I’d like to start getting more distance in. If I break 300 miles I’ll go for more next year, but it won’t have to be a goal by then.
4. Floors. When I bought this house I was told it had hardwood floors under the living/dining room carpet. They didn’t lie, but when I pulled up the crappy faded blue shag I saw that there was a nail in every floorboard in every joist. Hundreds of poking-up nails and crappy peeling floors. 11 years didn’t help things along and now they’re splintery and dangerous to my preferred bare feet. Despite the garage needing finishing and the rest of the yard, etc., I need to get new floors in. I did some leveling over the last year, and I think it’s about as good as it’s going to get for this 98 year old house.
5. Writing. I used to write more. And sometimes I write even less, but I think I’m generally happier when I’m creating, and that goes for words as well as clay. I’ve got so many ideas and I used to fill up pages of with funny things, or serious thoughts that I could go back to. This blog has languished pretty well just like my back yard. Facebook kind of screwed things up because I go there first for the pithy things and when I try to go back, it’s very hard to find anything there. I had a website, back in the day before blogging where I blogged. If I wasn’t so lazy I might have been rich. Of course, people would have to read what I wrote, and that’s never been a concern of mine. But I guess you need some sort of ego to go on for pages, even if nobody ever sees it. Or maybe especially if…