Looking Ahead to 2023

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January is coming to a close. I’ve spent the month thinking about what I would like to do, accomplish, or not accomplish in 2023. I’m thinking of 2023 in both low level goals and high level goals. Low level goals means things that may be insignificant to others but still important to me. Things that don’t take a ton of energy but are still worthy of my attention. High level goals are those things that are going to take a lot of planning and saving and effort. Big things that can feel both exciting and overwhelming.

Looking Ahead to 2023

Low level goals:

In 2022 the only goal that I really stuck with and made an effort all year was no plastic shopping bags. I’m really happy to say that it went fairly well and didn’t take that much of an effort. I keep reusable grocery bags on a hook in the garage right next to the door. I also keep a reusable bag rolled up in my purse for boutique purchases. One change that was necessary and mildly inconvenient was no longer using grocery pickup at Walmart or Target. Walmart pick up is so easy and convenient but the amount of plastic shopping bags they use is ridiculous. Sometimes there would be one item to a bag. As the year went on with out using plastic shopping bags the more aware I became at how useless and unnecessary they are and how terrible they are for our landfills. I can’t think of a single reason any store should need to use plastic bags. I pray for the day when we live in a world free of plastic bags and look back and wonder at the idiocy of it and how crazy we were to let them be a thing.

  1. Since no plastic shopping bags was a success, I’m continuing into 2023 and leveling up by adding no plastic water bottles. As with plastic shopping bags, disposable plastic water bottles are completely unnecessary and a tragedy for our oceans and landfills. My collection of Yeti tumblers and Hydroflasks has my family covered in the way of hydration and most public places have water fountains with a water bottle filling feature. 
  2. Spend more time in a dry sauna. There is a dry sauna at our gym that I recently rediscovered after fighting the freezing wind to get from my car into the gym. It was glorious. Sometimes when you’re chilled to your bones nothing is as soothing than the dry heat of a sauna.
  3. Let go of obligations that no longer give me joy. I’m finally ready to admit that I’ve had enough say goodbye to a few things that were once enjoyable but have become a burden and emotional drain.
  4. Get rid of stuff. Every drawer in my house of cock-o-block full of stuff and who the heck even knows what all of it is?! I just want the clutter gone. I have a feeling that if I tossed 90% I wouldn’t ever miss it.

Mid level goals (goals that are more than just not drinking out of a plastic water bottle but less than a major time or monetary investment)

  1. Write more. Last year I actually considered shutting this blog down completely. Blogging (in general) is dead and nobody reads mine so why keep it? But I realized that this blog has become my online scrapbook. It’s also the one place I can practice something that I feel sort of good at; writing. I never plan to be a professional writer or blogger but I can’t seem to quit this medium.
  2. To that end I would like to figure out how to transfer this entire blog and all it’s contents to wordpress (dot) com or another free platform. I’m reluctant to do it myself as I would most likely make a simple mistake that would delete the entire thing for all eternity. Dear internet gods, please send me someone who will walk me through the process. Amen.
  3. Figure out what to do with the Recipe Archaeology website. We started it back when I was on Chopped and we thought we would need a landing place for all of the thousands of new fans we were going to acquire. Turns out being on Chopped translated into tens of new fans instead of thousands of my dreams. I’m not entirely sure paying for a website is really necessary. Dear internet gods, please give me clear direction…should I close of the Recipe Archaeology website and just focus on trying to make videos semi-regularly? Amen
  4. Organize a block party. For a very long time I’ve had a feeling of disconnect from my neighbors. I mostly just see them in passing while going to and from the neighborhood or walking the dog. There has to be more to being in a community than just a friendly wave to a stranger. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays because we make an effort to be super welcoming to our neighbors and the people to come to our neighborhood to trick or treat. I would like to create that feeling of festive goodwill more than once a hear. Hopefully, a block party will get that ball rolling.

High level goals:

  1. Swim four lengths of the pool at the YMCA. Not only is this a goal but a necessity. Harry and I are attending a Boy Scout camp in Florida this summer and we have to pass a swimming test before we’re allowed to go. Yes, I can swim. But can I swim four lengths of a lap pool without stopping? Currently, no. Pray for me.
  2. Paint and hang wallpaper in my dining room. We hung wallpaper in the area where our kitchen table is and fell in love with it. We began looking at all the rooms in our house with eyes set in wallpaper mode. However, wallpaper can get pricey so I have to pick and choose strategically where I can get the most bang for my buck. My dining room has slowly become a catch all for things that I don’t know what to do with. It also has a wall that I’ve never really known how to style and is a perfect size to become a wallpaper accent wall.
  3. Enter Photowall. This website has wallpaper, mural wallpaper and can turn photos into large canvas prints or posters. Photowall offers all sorts of options to design art for a room and tons of wallpaper choices. Browsing all the beautiful wallpaper designs gave me the kick in the pants I needed to do something with my dining room. Unfortunately, updating a room is also like giving a mouse a cookie. I will need to paint the rest of the room to match my new wall paper and of course the paint will need to transition into the entry way so we mind as well paint that. Plus, I’ve always hated the light fixture in the dining room so time to search for a new light. And the windows are damaged from a severe rain storm several years ago so maybe it’s time to finally replace them.
  4. Find more opportunities for singing. Since I am trying to be intentional about letting go of obligations that no longer bring me joy, I want to invite opportunities into my life for more joy. Choir is one of those things. Singing in my church choir is one of the only things that I feel I’m truly good at (all the other stuff I’m just faking being good at). I would like to expand the joy of church choir beyond church.
  5. Launch Addison from his senior year into whatever comes next. He has been accepted to OU and is taking the steps to make that a reality. There are so many thoughts and feelings swirling around the concept of Addison being old enough to attend college that I can’t really nail any of those feelings down. While I’m not ready to own the reality that is looming, I can say that I’m proud of the way he has handled most of the admission tasks himself.

Low, medium and high. Let’s see what 2023 brings.


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