New Years means resolutions, of course. So, as with 256,871,322 other people, I am making resolutions too. I’ll write them down here in prose, of course in no particular order, and later I will write them as a prioritized list and create an image collage of the most important ones.
This worked well for me in 2010, so I am doing it again. So, in no particular order and with some commentary, here are my resolutions. I am very curious to know what YOUR resolutions are too, so comment and leave me (and my readers (Hi Honey!)) a link to your blog post so we can commiserate.
- Learn an instrument, drums, piano or guitar. Or all of them. Guitar being the #1 priority.
- Get to fighting weight. Here’s the rubric: Look at fighters, like boxers and such. When they’re dancing around, do things jiggle, wobble and act generally like Jello? No. This is my goal, pounds aside. I don’t care to be ripped or have a six-pack. I care to not jiggle. And not get winded when climbing three flights of stairs.
- Work on my French. Language, not cooking. I would like to improve my ability to read, write, and pronounce this language, as well as increasing my vocabulary significantly. (I speak four languages and that is not enough. Want to know which languages? Let me know in a comment.)
- Go on Father-Child dates with my kids, both one-on-one and in small groups, at least once each month.
- Get at least 7 hours of sleep every night. (Already doing better on this one. I hear that this can help with fat loss.)
- Write every day. Five minutes minimum. Sky’s the limit maximum. Sunday writing will be in a journal. I need to journal several experiences and thoughts before they fade too much.
- Kiss Her Highness multiple times every day. Make sure there’s a hug involved at least once a day. (Yummy)
- Finish revisions of The Cabin and make every effort to get an agent. Also complete revisions of Servant of the King and start shopping it around.
- Write one new short story. Make it very good. Submit it to at least twelve different lit magazines.
- Get started on that one novel project. (Sorry, no details for now. I have been anxious to get going on it for about a year now.)
- Outline a romance novel in great detail. (Just to see if I can.)
- Total words written in 2011 will be 150,000 minimum.
- Post to this blog daily. Get back to reflecting on my fun, interesting childhood. (I really enjoyed the exercises that I was doing a few months ago. I want to do more– they are providing much fuel for The Cabin and such.)
- 150% home teaching. I know what I mean by this and that’s really all that matters.
- Pray every day, no matter what. On my knees, in private.
- Immerse myself in the Word of God each day.
- Meditate for a few minutes each day. (This and the previous one are different for me. If they’re the same for you, mighty cool.)
- Reduce the shouting I do in the home until it is eradicated by 2012.
- Prepare to find and purchase a bigger house.
And that’s the list that I have been putting together for these first 10 days of 2011.
Life is hard, fun, tiring, inspiring, confusing, beautiful, frustrating, delicious, and all around worth it. To finish this post, I would like to include part of the text of Walt Whitman’s “Song of Myself.” Thanks, Uncle Walt.
I celebrate myself, and sing myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.
I loafe and invite my soul,
I lean and loafe at my ease observing a spear of summer grass.
My tongue, every atom of my blood, form’d from this soil, this air,
Born here of parents born here from parents the same, and their
parents the same,
I, now thirty-seven years old in perfect health begin,
Hoping to cease not till death.
Creeds and schools in abeyance,
Retiring back a while sufficed at what they are, but never forgotten,
I harbor for good or bad, I permit to speak at every hazard,
Nature without check with original energy.
Nature without check with original energy. Magnificent.
I would like to know which four languages and what type of study you did to learn them, please.
English, of course.
Portuguese: I learned this in order to serve a mission for my church. I took 2 months of day-long, intensive courses and then immersed myself in Brazil.
Spanish: This is like the ugly brother of Portuguese. A lot of what I knew in Portuguese helped me with it. I had to study vocabulary and pronunciation, and really had to spend time on the irregular verbs. I can speak it today because of the opportunities I sought out to practice.
Japanese: I took one basic course before moving to Japan and living there for about 1.5 years. I learned plenty there, but then took a few courses when I got home and found that I learned a lot more in those courses.
To maintain the languages, I make sure to hear them often, read them regularly and speak them when I get the chance.
My strategy for French will be to read lots of it, watch videos of native speakers, and focus intensely on pronunciation.
Sorry that none of these are very ‘typical’ approaches, but you see, none of the ‘typical’ approaches work.