One hundred twenty-one days left in the year.
It's September already. The summer was a blur. I've not been in the best of moods, grappling with an ennui I recognize. It seems to have settled in and I find myself preferring to just sit or sleep, rather than stay in touch with friends. "Wouldda, couldda, shouldda" has the siblings "can't" and "won't" with them.
So, I look at my resolutions, crafted back in the snowy start to the year, and I'm assessing how I'm doing.
Read a book a month. I have completed 4 books but the remaining 8 for a full year, aren't going to be read. Still, this is a mild success since I hadn't really read books at all last year.
Read a magazine a week. This is a definite success. I finished 6 magazines last month. I have chosen not to renew Mac/Life so that's not even coming in anymore. I gave them an additional try after I said "no more" and the one magazine I received was filled with iPhone and iPad stuff. Not all of us have this technology and it's a waste of my money to pay for something not useful to me.
Write a friend a real letter once a week. Abject failure. I'm writing, but it's not letters.
Add one more fruit or vegetable to my daily diet. This is a mild success. I read an article a month ago that said one of the problems with getting people to incorporate fruit and vegetables into their diet is that they cost so much more than chips. I'll attest to that. As much as I like fresh fruits and vegetables, they cost much more. And if you would prefer to buy local or organic, add 10-15% to the cost. I try to plan for that in the budget. I do try to have frozen on hand if I can't afford fresh so that I'm eating fruits and vegetables. Why don't people like peas? Just because I put them in everything...
Pay off one credit card. I am really close on this one. $150 and it will be gone. I have decided I will not use this card the rest of the year in the goal to get it paid off. Their minimum monthly payment is ridiculously low and that could entice me to stretch it out, but I'm not going to. It's an important mental victory for me to not have a bill from them every month. It's probably going to take through the end of the year as I try to make the income stretch, but it's going to be gone.
Pay for everything with cash. Successful except for gas and a few minor emergencies. And I bought that purse at Penney's. As we approach the massive gift giving orgy that is Christmas, it's going to be tempting to whip out the plastic. I'm going to do my level best to resist. I was able to use my salary to pay all but 3 bills yesterday. Those 3 will be paid next week. It's coming. It's a glacial pace, but it's coming.
Not stay up past 11:30 on work nights. This is mostly successful. I think I have done a decent job of telling my subconscious that "You are getting sleepy when you see 11:00 on your clock". I have, actually, been in bed by 11 lately. I am positive the ennui I feel contributes to that, but I have been sleeping much more soundly of late and I'm sure it's because I'm not going to bed at midnight and expecting to be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at 6 when the alarm goes off.
Finish a craft project. Abject failure. My friend, Jessie, posted her craft projects to her blog and I had a huge twinge of "I have so many I want to finish". And then I wandered the aisles at Hobby Lobby thinking, "Oh I could use that to do this". Plus, I cleaned out the storage unit in the basement that holds my sewing patterns as well as cleared out two boxes that had junk in them. I found stuff I had forgotten I had but I found all my printing supplies. I just need the linoleum blocks and the ink and I can make my cards. Will I get beyond that? Who knows. Those steps in organization were huge on their own. This weekend, I'm off to Dick Blick Art Supplies for the linoleum block.
Don't get down on myself. 50-50 is about the best I can do here. I'm not plagued as much by the above "wouldda, couldda, shoulddas" as I used to be. I recognize the pothole for what it is. I can still fall into it or even stand in it, but it's not the gaping sinkhole from which there is no escape that these things were in the past. I wish I had someone I could hang around with, to take off and do stuff with. The loneliness gets to me. I've learned so much about myself this year, so much that makes me stronger. You'd think I could learn to be my own best company. When I'm standing in the kitchen, eating Cheerios out of the box, you know I'm glad there's no one around to "tsk tsk" at me. And yet, that would be rather nice.
I've learned not to pity myself. I've never had a use for pity anyway, but I would do the "oh, woe is me" even privately. I allow myself to feel bad and to be sorrowful and sad. Things aren't the way I would like them. But then, I force myself to sit down and write in my "Luck Journal" and I am reminded that I do have good luck and I can make good luck for myself. Life is what it is.
So, the end summation is that, while I have clearly failed in a couple of areas, I have succeeded in others. I am happy with the path on which I find myself. As I head into my favorite season, I am excited at what that season may bring.