Friday, January 6, 2017

New Year, Same Me.

Snapchat improved me
My kids have gotten me onto Snapchat. So, I suck at it...forget to send things, send them to the wrong person, navigate the wrong way... I'm not a teenager anymore and the whole thing boggles me a bit. But it's a great way to connect with my three teens--especially the one in college. I was 'snapping' her on New Years Day, and one of the filters that came up said. "New Year, New Me!", all bubbly and smiley and celebratory--like it was super-cool to change everything up about my life and show it in one bizarre deer-faced picture.

Not so improved.
I cringed. Really. I should have used it and saved it and shared it here like a super-cool snappy mom, but I was so weirded out, I flipped on and forgot to send the snap in the first place. I get that the idea was to change all of those horrible things about myself...starting right then. Um, no. I am not a fan of New Year's resolutions. I've mentioned it before here on the blog, and my dislike hasn't changed. Why set yourself up with unattainable lists of distant possibilities? The NEW ME is skinny and organized and goes to the gym and has a spotless house and makes a five-layer cake every Tuesday! Even if I liked baking five-layer cakes, I could never eat the whole cake and stay skinny. ;)

I am, however, a huge fan of making goals and ATTEMPTING to stick with them, recognizing that circumstances change, and sometimes it's just not possible to reach those goals in a year.

What I also love about New Years is the opportunity a new year brings to reflect upon the previous one, and recognize just how much has been accomplished. When things get busy I forget to celebrate the smaller achievements, and they add up! 2016 was a crazy year, that's for sure, but a lot of good and exciting things happened in the many aspects of my somewhat crazy life. Here's Dunne-central's list of good things from 2016 in rough chronological order...

*Watched as the wonderful Canadian Military Wives Choir Comox celebrated it's 1 year anniversary.

*Recieved my rights back to DEPENDENT

*Published SKIN, my third novel with an amazing launch party surrounded by friends and family. 💙

*Supported my eldest daughter as she graduated High School with many awards and scholarships

Sea turtles!!
*Had an incredible family trip to Oahu for two weeks during which I had a VIP tour of the USS Stennis (aircraft carrier), swam with sea turtles and visited the Pearl Harbour memorials.

*Packed up another home, and drove for 10 days from Vancouver Island, Canada to Northern Virginia, USA--visiting Mount Rushmore, Craters of the Moon National Monument, Old Faithful and Devil's Tower.

*Dropped eldest daughter off for her first year of university (back in Canada)
Dependent: New and improved!

*Was privileged to take part in a three state west coast military tour, visiting Arizona (Grand Canyon), Nevada (Las Vegas) and California (Napa Valley and San Francisco).

*Published DEPENDENT's second edition.

*Continued work as the President of the Canadian Military Wives Choirs Association while working part-time as a physiotherapist and writing in my spare (?) time.

New Years, Ottawa

*Visited a grand total of 24 states and 3 Canadian provinces in one year--not to mention the many embassies and international events I've been privileged to attend.

*Had a wonderful New Year's Eve on Parliament Hill in Ottawa.

See? At the time, it didn't feel like I was doing that much. But as I write it down, it's like, WOW. I did all that. How did I manage to get it all done and still stay relatively sane?


2016 was a busy year. 



So now, looking ahead, I see how much can be accomplished, merely by picking small goals (publishing a new book, republishing another, enjoying our move, sucking the marrow out of life)

Just being me, without the new, is more than sufficient.

My New Years goals?  I've got four right now. Start small, right? But they are serious goals.

1. FINISH at least one manuscript. All of these crazy things have meant less time at the keyboard, difficulty focusing and difficulty putting words down on the page. I don't even care how much I write. I just need to write. At least a few days a week.

2. ORGANIZE my inbox. And my writing area. And my basement. Okay, maybe not the basement. That's hopeless. But I have over 7000 unread emails that need to go (not kidding), and I need to unsubscribe from those hotels I stayed in 8 years ago in Austria (also not kidding). And if I'm going to do goal number one, I need to have a place to work that is not looking like a disaster zone.

X-scream. Insanely
high up. Why do I do this
to myself? 
3. LIVE healthier. I know, this is bordering on the new year, new me mentioned above, but I did okay in 2016. I actually did a gym-organized health challenge last year and felt soooo much better. I don't need crazy diets, just healthier choices and a more active lifestyle. As I write this, I'm eating chips (also not kidding), so I've got a way to go.

4. SUCK the marrow out of life. It takes effort for me to leave that comfort zone and get out there and live. My comfort zone is so comfy! Why would I leave it? But 2016 has proven to me that life doesn't always turn out the way I planned, and I need to enjoy it anyway. I'm going to love more. Get up earlier. Hug my kids. Ride the roller coaster (unless it's X-scream. I'm never doing that again). Read the book. Take the chance and recognize that big changes start small.

So there you have it. New Year, same me, but with goals.

What are your New Years goals? Are you looking for a complete change? Do any of the above sound familiar? Let me know below!

Happy New Year!

Brenda





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