Thursday, January 1, 2015

taking stock

Did anyone make it to midnight?  I almost did.  Curled up under the sheets, half asleep, book tumbling out of my hand I believe I turned off my light around 11:49. This morning I have my 2014 bucket list* beside me.  Last year was a mix of success and failure. In the interest of full disclosure, here's the lowdown on last year before I write my 2015 bucket list:

I published Kicks Like a Girl,and despite not marketing it (due to working full-time--which you'll soon see is a Major Theme and Excuse for 2014), sold a reasonable number of copies. The book turned out well, I'm proud of the quality and the reader response was enthusiastic.  I didn't finish edits on another manuscript as I had intended. Getting hired full-time (see?) put a cramp in my writing time, so I should be gentle to myself on that count, right?

Speaking of failures, I didn't complete my plan to run around our country block.  I trained and nearly got to that point, but knee issues knocked that goal off the page.  I did participate in a 5K--the Dirty Dog Mud Run with Mr. T (which barely counts, but I DID finish it).  Shed Yoga continues, that's something affirming on the fitness end of life.  In fact, a few new people plan to join our little Saturday morning yoga class this weekend.

The fix-it list got knocked down to one item (pesky doorknobs!).  I repainted two rooms, fixed broken stuff and got the greenhouse going. I haven't given the greenhouse project the attention I'd like, something that should change next year when I'm done working overtime (more excuses), but at least it's functional.  Team Testosterone took a couple of road trips and we managed to squeeze in four cultural experiences, including their first musical--Bye Bye Birdie.  I got to visit Concord, Massachusetts and take a dip in Walden Pond but I didn't get far north enough to meet Jocelyn. I DID get to Skype with Cheri, Suzanne, and Stephanie, so that was pretty cool--and I'd met Mary IRL but got to Skype with her, too.

2014 is the first year I didn't accomplish my bucket list, but I got hired out of the blue to teach again (I know--shut up about that already), we added a kitten to our household and I continue to put my editing skills to work on a wonderful project--the Discovery Land Global curriculum is teaching kids about Jesus in dozens of churches both stateside and worldwide.  As I finished edits on the spring installment Tuesday, I appreciated how awesome that project is--both in its impact and its quality. That involvement is a huge blessing that I often forget to count.

Now it's time to begin my 2015 bucket list. 

*  Earn my mandatory 6 credits by the end of June so I can keep my teaching license (and, consequently, keep my job).
*  Finish editing my YA novel and come up with a good title.
*  I hate adding this one--it's so cliche and I NEVER like writing items that sound like self-improvement resolutions, but working full-time has really skewed the balance:  exercise more so I can stay strong. My weight is fine--but FEELING energetic, that's another story.  I have to get my rear in gear more often than twice a week.
*  Repaint two more rooms.  (We're down to just four rooms needing paint here!)
*  Landscape around Mr. D's ginormous shed.  It must be done.  Plus, planting is FUN!  And there will be blackberry bushes involved in this endeavor.
*  Get in the woods at least three times a month.
*  Take Team Testosterone on at least five adventures.

I'm getting started on that last one this morning when we pack the Momvan and head to the Dells for some indoor waterpark action--water slides, laser tag and a lazy river. 

Happy 2015!

Mr. G and I took a blurry Christmas Eve selfie.
Spill it, reader.  Do you write bucket lists, resolutions or just keep rolling one year from the next?

*I don't do resolutions.  Self-improvement isn't fun, but bucket lists are, so I make a list each year of what I want to DO.  My list might include things that are good and useful and helpful, but they can also include enjoyable things.  Really, anything that makes me feel accomplished in any sense of the word can end up on my annual bucket list.

© 2014 Melissa Westemeier All Rights Reserved 


  1. My list rolls over from year to year as they are big things...and thanks to the Twilight Zone marathon,I did stay up till midnight. Soon it will be time to get up for the Rose Parade. I'm already ready for a nap!

  2. Good morning. I'm still working on my list of goals for 2015. I've been pondering it for a few weeks -- vacillating between wanting to accomplish a lot but wanting to keep things realistic. There are a couple of things still in play, but I'm hopeful that I'll have my list ready to go by a week from now.

    Happy 2015 to you and yours!

  3. No staying up for me --and Emma didn't really have any interest either. I'm sure she'll want to go to parties as she gets older, but for now she's quite happy wishing Happy New Year to her instagram group and texting her best friend. Rob made it to midnight, but only just, because we had a contractor showing up at 8 am this morning to finish framing one last window.

    We have one major event on our list for 2015 --taking Emma to Scotland and England. We're working on that now, and just got sticker shock last night when we started investigating flights. Wow, is it expensive to fly!

    Good luck with your 2015 list!

  4. Happy new year to you and the team!

  5. een heel mooi en gezond nieuwjaar.

  6. Happy New Year Melissa. I love the idea of a bucket list :-)

  7. General goals are more my style--and I have plenty of those. Happy New Year!

  8. Happy New Year, Melissa! I hope this year you're able to find more time for yourself. I don't usually do bucket lists, but it's a fun concept, so I might try it. I do usually make some resolutions, and this year I'm going to be more mindful of my response to things. I am SO reactive, which leads to a lot of unnecessary drama and stress. Also going to try not to worry about things that are outside of my control.

  9. What a great idea! A bucket list for every year. Fantastic!
    I don't make resolutions or bucket lists. I over analyze myself too much as it is. I think every year my goal is to "let go" a bit more so making even more lists than I already do might not be a great idea. ;) But I do have very loose general ideas that I'd like for each year.

    I think getting hired full time is a perfect reason not to have completed your bucket list. That definitely changed the game plan and that is understandable. Part of life is rolling with the punches.

    I hope 2015 is a wonderful year for you and your family. Wishing you health, happiness, peace, and love!

  10. Happy New Year! I made it to midnight, but only because the book club and spouses got together to celebrate.
    You have every reason to mention the full-time job as often as necessary. It was a huge change for you and your family, so of course things you bucketed in January would get deraied a bit or completely.
    I don't make resolutions or bucket lists. I just go with the flow and see what happens.
    Have fun at the Dells!

  11. GOOD GOLLY all that, wow...I mean, the work and kids would be enough to kill most people, but you have some PLANS!

  12. I really appreciate that you value fitness and the energy that comes from it; your list is such a fine illustration of how thoughtful and aware you are about all the facets of life, from working with others to feeding your own needs.

    I'm not one for resolutions or even for "It's a new year, so what do I want to accomplish" goal-setting, even. I do better with trying to make every day one with value, which then leads to a consistent sense of contentment.

    I hope that last didn't sound priggish. I just mean, it's what works for me!

    Happy 2015 to you, my great chum. We'll meet one day. Either I'll get down your way...or you'll come enjoy some Duluth.

  13. Happy New Year!
    I don't do resolutions or goals. I just try to out wait the resolutioners crowding my gym this time of year.

  14. Teaching full time takes a lot of energy - both physical and mental. Cut yourself some slack when you don't have the mental energy to write or edit. You're accomplishing a lot!


Spill it, reader.