new resolve

swimming in possibilities
Thanks for all the lovely compliments on my quilt! It was such a fun (and relatively quick) project. It’s good to be back on the quilting wagon (sadly that was the only quilt I completed in 2010) and I’m hoping that this will give me some momentum to complete more quilts in 2011. I’m not normally one for new year’s resolutions (they seem to disappear almost as soon as I make them) but for some reason this year I feel like they are necessary. 2010 was a year of major growth for me professionally but I feel like a lot of other aspects of my life (crafting, photography, relationships) fell by the wayside. I wouldn’t say that I was lazy this past year by any means, but I found myself unable to apply the sort of discipline that I have at work to other parts of my life.

So 2011= the year of discipline on all fronts! I’m hoping that if I share my goals/resolutions here, it’ll keep me more accountable.  I will try and revisit this list throughout the year to see how I’m doing.

  1. Buy less, make more. A *huge* goal of mine in 2011 is to use up my ridiculous stash of fabrics and yarns.  With a few minor exceptions, I’m holding myself to a no new yarn or fabric rule this year.  I’m serious about this…I even joined a group on flickr to keep me accountable.
  2. Reduce, reuse, recycle. Having stayed put in one place for over 2 years now (a long time for me), I’ve managed to accumulate a lot of crap.  I can’t find things, forgot I bought things, etc.  I hate that feeling so I want to streamline.  One suggestion I got was to get rid of at least one thing every single day of the year.  I don’t think I can hold myself to that level of daily scrutiny but this year I’m going to take a serious look at my closets, stash, and books.  If I haven’t used it in a while (1 year or longer) I’m probably going to get rid of it.  Look to see some de-stashing here.
  3. Get a handle on the finances. I started strong in 2010 but after my vacation last May, I got a little reckless with the finances.  This year, I need to really reign it back in if I’m serious about some long term goals that I have.  (That’s the subject of another, much longer post.)  I’m still thinking about the best, practical way to work on this goal.  Any suggestions?
  4. Quality, not quantity. This applies to several areas of my life, but in particular to restaurants and eating out.  Despite resolution #3, I still plan to (judiciously) enjoy as much of the Chicago food scene as I can.  I want to avoid as many mediocre or mindless meals as I can so I can save my dining dollars for the good stuff.  That means more cooking at home and more packed lunches for work.  No reason to lazily resort to take out and pizza when I could be saving that money for some of America’s best restaurants.
  5. Break a sweat. I need to renew my gym membership and get back to working out.   (I ate very well in 2010, but nothing fits really well anymore.  Ooof.)
  6. Hobby monogamy. I’m a consummate generalist, which means that I’m a jack of all trades but really master of none.  This year I want to focus on just a few things and take it to the next level.  The focus this year will be on sewing and baking.
  7. Seam like a pro. A few weeks ago, I signed up for a garment construction and design class at my local art center that will start next weekend.  I’m 99.9% self taught when it comes to sewing.  That has largely worked out ok for me, but I think it’s high time to hone my skills and learn some more refined techniques.  From the class, I’m hoping to a) make at least one garment completely of my own design and b) make a winter coat.  (I already have some fabric stashed away for the coat.)
  8. One quilt a quarter. I have at least four unfinished quilts buried in various parts of my apartment.  (My twitterbee quilt, an hour glass quilt, a bento box quilt, and a quilt for my sister.)  My goal is to finish all four this year.  I figure one quilt a quarter is a reasonable pace.
  9. Bake like a pro. Through lots of practice, I’ve gotten reasonably good at baking, but this year I really want to try some of the harder stuff, like really good french breads and croissants from scratch.
  10. Go international. Though I technically needed a passport for last year’s vacation, I didn’t really think of that trip as being one where I left the country.  It’s been a long, long time (damn near an eternity actually) since I’ve left America.  (If you don’t count last year, almost 10 years to be precise!)  I want to leave the country at least once this year.  Currently, I’m thinking Paris in mid-May or possibly South Korea in the fall.
  11. Read more.  For fun. My current job requires me to read a LOT.  This has basically killed my love of reading.  The last thing I want to see when I leave the office is a book.  I think some part of my brain is dying because I no longer read unless it’s absolutely required (i.e. for work).  This year I’d like to read at least one book a month for fun.  My parents got me a kindle for Christmas (it’s coming in the mail this week, I’m so excited!) so I really have no excuses.

So that’s it.  Eleven things I want to accomplish in 2011.  Seems reasonable enough, right?  Just hold me to it, ok?  What do you want to get done in 2011?


    14 responses to “new resolve

    1. these are great resolutions, sara :o)

    2. so many things on your list are on mine too 🙂 facing another move this year has really made me want to streamline (and my stashes are out. of. control.) financial wisdom. more making. more reading! i am right there with you on books… law school and reading all day at work has made it so hard for me to read anything but a magazine. i finished a novel on holiday last week and it felt amazing 🙂 happy 2011 to you sara!

    3. Can I print out your list and put it on my own list?? I SO need hobby monogamy! I would LOVE to go to S. Korea but if ya need a contact in the Amazon, I will be your girl 🙂 I am getting my book list together for the year, now-what is on your to-read list?

    4. yeah, i think we’re list twins sorta. stay strong, sistah!

    5. A nice list of goals. Good luck! I will enjoy seeing you tackle them. I have been trying to get back to reading. The latest book took me forever! I only read right before bedtime, but I can barely manage 2 pages before falling asleep. I guess I have been very exhausted. Maybe my NY’s goal is to sleep more. But if I slept, I would get nothing accomplished.

    6. This looks like a great list of goals – good luck with them! I’m actually hoping to do a lot of these, too – buy less, make more; destashing; getting the finances under control; reading more for fun – I totally get where you’re coming from on that last one, I’ve basically stopped reading for fun in grad school because I do so much reading for “work”.

    7. good for you! here’s to some great goals for the new year.

    8. Pingback: garment school (week 1) | rhymes with spoon

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