Leaping into 2018!

Happy New Year!

When it comes to setting New Year’s resolutions this year, I’m as vague as.

While the calendar might be saying we’ve already launched into another year, I’m on Summer holidays and the motor’s barely running. That is, unless it involves leaving the air-conditioned loungeroom, and ducking in and out of the kitchen (which has aptly been renamed: “The Furnace” and that’s with the oven off!) for supplies. My current NY resolution seems to involve indulging in Maggie Beer ice cream. It’s one of those more exclusive gourmet ice creams which come in the smaller tubs, yet costs more than a tub of good ice cream). I’ve also been enjoying a few Ferro Rocher’s. Yum! I blame the dazzling gold packaging for that, along with a chilhood of sneaking teaspoons of Nutella out of the fridge.

Clearly, being naughty seems to be at the very top of my list for 2018!

My New year truly begins when school goes back. That’s when the rubber hits the road and reality hits.

Yellow taxi

Mum’s taxi.

In the meantime, I have set myself a deceptively ambitious project for 2018, which started today.

Being magnetically attracted to the Swedish stationery shop Kiki K, I bought myself two notebooks for Christmas. One is a 365 photo journal where you paste in a photo a day. The other has a blank page for each day. Obviously, they serve a similiar function, but one is just photography while I’ll focus on writing and might even venture into drawing in the other.

Of course, I felt very inspired by these journals when they were battering their eyelids at me from the shelf, even though I could see right from the start, that committing to print out the photos was going to be an obvious hurdle. After all, I don’t think I’ve printed out any photos in the last six months and I’m terribly behind. Clearly, there’s a problem Houston. Everybody taks about setting realistic goals. Not goals that said you straight over the top of Everest barefoot in your bikini.

The next obstacle might seem silly to you, if you’re one of those very good little urchins who really does have “a place for everything and everything in its place. However, losing the journals is a serious concern for me. Indeed, it’s only January 1 (well it is in some parts of the world and I’ve decided to migrate there for a few hours because I haven’t got started yet and I’ve already misplaced the books. Indeed, I’ve even managed to misplace the books while I’m home alone. Well, home alone with three dogs. Before you go blaming the pups, despite continuously chewing anything in and out of reach, they leave plenty of evidence in their wake. So, if they’d eaten my journals, there would’ve been proof…loads of scrap paper alongside the disembowled cushion, which was clearly deceased.

By the time I reach the third obstacle, you’re probably thinking I should wrap these journals up and give them away. Spare myself 365 days of angst bordering on anguish, while I struggle to live up to yet another unattainable dream. Yes, for yours truly, the simplest things in life, usually turn out to be the most complex. After all, who else has a simple electrical cable blow up in a puff of flame and smoke while their husband and ultimate Mr Fix-it is way on holidays? I don’t need anyone else to tell me I’m jinxed. I already know.

However, despite all of these short-comings, I am an optimist. I am an optimist to the core and despite all evidence to the contrary and although it might be piled up all around me and starting to teeter and totter, I still believe that I can do it. I will do it and I’ll love doing it and possibly even better still, will love reading back on it down the track and seeing what 2018 was all about.

Yet, when it comes to 2018, at the moment, all but the first page remains a blank.

I’m not sure whether I should be excited or terrified by that. While the last couple of years for us have had their ups and downs, it’s been awhile since we’ve had what the Queen so aptly termed an “annus horribulis” A year so bad, that you’re catapulting into the next with no turning back. That door is shut. Shut shut.

There’s much we can do to improve our chances of having a better year, as well as things we can do to make it worse. At times, it is too easy to forget that we have quite a lot of agency and aren’t just hapless victims of fate. However, it is much easier to take our chances and wing it and complain when the house of cards topples over.

Anyway, as I said, all  but the first page of 2018, remains a blank book. I don’t know if that’s how the rest of you see it, but that’s how it seems to me.

Our daughter starts high school in a month.

That’s a fresh start, at least for her and it will free me up, because I’ll no longer be running her to and from the station everyday. She’ll be local.

That is itself is reason to jump and leap in the air.

That’s liberated me to think about returning to paid work. Well, as long as my health doesn’t pack it in. I’m going to contact a recruitment agency which specialises in disability placement. I think I’m my own worst enemy on this front and need to start talking myself up, rather than regurgitating exhaustive mental lists of all my inadequacies. I’d be fuming at anyone else who talked themselves down like this, and yet I do it to myself. So many of us do.

Perhaps, “be nice to self and throttle that inner critic” could be a very good goal for 2018. Not just for myself. I know so many people who are being held back by themselves in this way. Shooting themselves in both feet before they’ve even walked out the door! Perhaps, we all need to get some bullet proof shoes AND to make sure we wear them!

I’m also trying to keep a clear head and house this year to keep focusing.

Strangely, I actually managed to get about 6 bags of household rubbish out beside the road tonight and booked a council clean up. This has been much easier with the rest of the family away. It simply needed to happen. BTW a few bags of kids clothes also headed North with the family, so I’ve actually made quite a bit of headway.

I also managed to give the dogs their worm and flea treatments. We’re going to be on top of that this year. 1st of the month every month.

Indeed, in 2018, we’re going to become a clockwork family, with all of our components working in synch…a well-oiled machine.

Oh no we’re not!

That’s why we write, dance, sing and sail off against the wind.

We don’t want time to be our master and we don’t want our hearts to beat like a clock, but with expression.

While that might take us against the flow and we might miss a few beats and wander right of track, that’s what it means to be human and perhaps that’s the best resolution each of us can make for 2018.

I am going to be a human being.

Rowena escapes the maze

What are your thoughts about routine, schedules and goals? How do you try to reach a balance?

I look forward to hearing from you!

xx Rowena

15 thoughts on “Leaping into 2018!

  1. pensitivity101

    It may sound daft, but our routine revolves around the dog! She is such a creature of habit, but she keeps us fit and is a subject of many of my posts!
    Schedules are put on a calendar in the kitchen so as we don’t miss or double up on vital appointments, and goals are to keep in touch with our friends, take each day as it comes and enjoy it. All the best for 2018

  2. Corina

    I don’t have a schedule of a routine so I end up aimlessly going through my days. That’s one of the things I want to work toward changing this year.

  3. Rowena Post author

    You sound like me, Corina and the school holidays are the worst for this, and yet having that freedom of movement is a wonderful thing. There’s a balance between being too scheduled and aimless. Let’s hope we can find it and sooner rather than later.
    Hope you aren’t freezing to death over there. We had an incredibly hot day here today, but there’s been a bit of a cool change tonight.
    xx Rowena

  4. Rowena Post author

    I have to watch out giving my dogs a clockwork routine. My last Border collie would pester meso much, that I decided I needed to mix it up for him.

  5. pensitivity101

    Maggie would automatically turn right out of the gate before we’d even locked the door, so we had to break that. We deliberately turned left, then when she caught us up, we turned right, until she joined us, then left again and kept on doing it until she realised we were probably more confused than she was so she’d better stay with us to keep us safe!

  6. New Journey

    I bought a trio of cute blank journals….I am trying, not beating myself up if I don’t get to it daily, but trying….routines make life easy, but boring, sometimes we have to keep a routine, school, job, life….but for those of us that are not bound by any of that, I say. throw your hat into the wind and chase after it….make it fun….eat breakfast for dinner, lunch for breakfast…..shake it up…keep shaking it up…I remember the school holidays, you just start to relax and get used to getting up when you want, and bang!! you are up at the crack of dawn begging the kids to get a roll on….breakfast, book bags, lunches made and out the door with time to get them to school before the bell and then your off running for the day….I can remember it all towel…boy did I get off topic…LOL second half of school year will soon turn into the what we call summer break, and let the fun begin….xxkat

  7. Rowena Post author

    You describe school madness so well. We’re currently on our equivalent of Summer break. It’s a wonderful time of year once you get passed the Christmas madness. I’ve just packed up all the decorations to go back up into the roof until next year. Hope I can get back into the excitement next year. Just coulldn’t get into it. Too much to do.
    Geoff’s just arrived home with the shopping so I’d better get moving.
    xx Ro

  8. New Journey

    You should try a new style of Christmas next year…pick a new country and try out there tradional Christmas decorations….put a different twist in it…my daughter and I have gone to putting up small trees with only one type of decoration, last year was owls of all different types, I had a friend who decorated her tree with home made ornaments from paper, it was breathtaking after it was done….just a thought my friend…might add the special and the want to back into the season….

  9. Rowena Post author

    Thanks so much for those suggestions, Kat. I think that’s what was missing from this Christmas…making something. I’d made so much Christmas cake the year before, that I had a cake already in the fridge and I haven’t even touched it yet. I did make Geoff some mince pies. However, I always made decorations growing up and then there were the decorations the kids had made and I still have a stash of those I hang up each year, but the kids have grown up so much since they made those, that they seem like they were made by someone else. I know you get the weird meanderings of my mind. It doesn’t always make sense, but what does?
    Think of me please this week as I make several long trips driving my daughter to and from camp. I dread a bad coughing attack.
    Love & best wishes,

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