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I'm the mother of four children who hopes to raise them to be productive, compassionate, humble citizens of our planet...who will also use their turn signals.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Go Big or Go Home

Resolutions aren't something that ever appealed to me.  In fact, I've never really found that New Year's Day feels any different than any other day of the year.  I suppose that's a good thing in some ways, because I've always felt that every single day is a new beginning, a chance to get it right...or, in the case of some days, get it LESS wrong.  I think that may be why I've always viewed New Year's resolutions as a silly, self-defeating tradition...that is until this year.

Why is this year different?  I have no idea.  It's not like I suddenly have things to improve on this year that weren't in existence any other year, that's for darn sure.  And I've been receiving Oprah magazine for nearly three years, so it isn't that I've suddenly become more enlightened either.  I did enroll on that online Deepak Chopra meditation class, but I never ACTUALLY meditated.  I mean, I read all the emails -- or I read the subject line of the emails.   Some of the emails.  So yeah, I don't think that really qualifies as a game-changer.

Nonetheless, I found myself making a whole lot of resolutions on January 1st this year.  I hadn't been thinking about a single one before that.  But that day?  Holy smokes, I was on FIRE with the resolutions.  In a timely stroke of cosmic endorsement, I heard a story on NPR about how to increase your chances of success when making resolutions.  The expert stressed the fact that putting them in writing, especially in a public way, can greatly enhance your sense of accountability.  I get that.  And because one of my resolutions was to actually write more in 2015, it was a no-brainer that I'd incorporate my wishes for 2015 as a blog post.

So here we go with my resolutions.  And just like the pile of papers on the right-hand side of my countertop, they are in no particular order:

1.  Drop the Dial for awhile.  Wanna invoke a look of horror on the face of one of those mall kiosk workers?  You know, the ones who stop you to demonstrate their fountain of youth face cream?  Tell them the only thing you use on your face is Dial soap.  Better yet, tell the ladies at the Clinique counter.  Just be sure you have a paper bag for them to breathe into when you do.  I know this because that is all I wash my face with.  I'm not bragging, believe me.  When I was waiting in line at TJMaxx a few weeks ago and made the mistake of looking at my right eye in one of those 15X magnification mirrors they have in the impulse buy section, I realized how desperate the situation actually is.  For a nanosecond, I thought for sure I had dove head-first into a rack of crumpled up tan tissue paper.

So for 12 days now, I've been washing my face with soap that purports to contain olive oil to soften my skin.  I sunk like $4.99 into this bar of hope so I'm expecting quick and dramatic results.  And because I feel like I'm so behind the curve, I'm going all out and expanding my beauty regime to TWO STEPS by slathering on a moisturizer, too.  I know it's extreme, but desperate times call for desperate measures.  Plus I promised Frank that within three weeks, he's going to wake up to a wife that looks like a typical college freshman...not the college freshman he's been married to for the past three months.

2.  Lose weight.  I know, I know.  Predictable and BOR-ING.  But seriously, it needs to be done.   I've gained 12 pounds since we got married.  And we got married in May.  Of 2014.   That's ridiculous.  By my calculations, if I keep gaining weight at this rate, I'll weigh 627 pounds by our 10th wedding anniversary.  While that might land me a nice paycheck from one season of "My 600-Pound Life" on TLC, I think I'll pass.  I already know where I've gotten lazy diet-wise and certainly getting to the gym more frequently will speed things along.  I thought about easing up on the chocolate martinis, but instead decided that I'll allow myself to use them as a meal replacement.  Hey, Slim Fast built a lucrative EMPIRE on that concept so obviously it works.  And unlike the chocolate martini, Slim Fast doesn't have the beneficial side effect of not caring that you're hungry.  Bonus!

And not that I'm trying to blame my shriveled up ovaries, but it sure is different trying to lose weight at 47 compared to 27.  Back then, I'd eat one less Pop-Tart and substitute one green apple for a bag of green apple Jolly Ranchers and call it a day.  These days, it's a little more complicated.

3.  Stop it with the over-analyzing.  (I think this may be Frank's favorite.  Or at least the one he will profess to be his favorite, because he fears that if he says 1 or 2 are his favorites, he won't be around to see the MIND-BLOWING moisturizing results.)   As much as we have technology assisting us in 2015, I swear it's made us all more crazy.   I feel like nothing is simple any more.  Remember when we were younger and our parents planned a family vacation?  They looked at the budget, decided a destination, called a hotel or two, and checked that task off of their to-do list.  Now?  You (and by you, I mean me) have to go online -- which we all know is the hugest time suck in the history of time sucks.  You start reading TripAdvisor, which then links you over to Hotels.com, where you price hotels, only to realize that your best bet is to go on Priceline and bid for a hotel.  But only a FOOL bids for a hotel without first checking biddingfortravel.com to see what other people bid.  While you're in that forum, you realize (again, by you, I mean me) that you don't even really like hotels.  You want culture!  You want experience!  You want to meet new people and build relationships that will no doubt lead to world peace!  You totally need to go to AirBnB.com and find a house to rent.   Oh, stop.  Wait. Just. A. Minute.  AirBnB has an Instagram?  I am all about Instagram.  Let me quick follow them.   OMG, look!  A recipe for peanut butter chocolate truffles.  I have to "like" it.

As you can tell, this whole process completely takes on a life of its own and spirals into weeks on the computer until suddenly you have 37 tabs open on your desktop, have started following 6 new travelers on Pinterest, and bought 3 Groupons for a city you weren't even going to three days ago.

Unfortunately, I can't blame this behavior solely on technology because I often find I have a similar number of "tabs" open in my brain at any given time.  Say I'm in Target and I see a pair of winter boots I like and they're on sale.  It should be a no-brainer!  I mean, I do need boots.  I've been wearing Rowan's when I go out to shovel the snow and he's a 10-year-old boy.  Okay, I should just get them.

That's when what could probably be considered traits of mental illness begin.  What if they mark them down again in two days?  I shouldn't be such a greedy, ugly American!  You know that woman from Kenya who won the Boston Marathon a few years ago?  She ran like 30-some miles, BAREFOOT.  You do NOT need boots to have a good life.  You have some nerve even "liking" the Becoming Minimalist guy on Facebook when you're standing here looking at boots!  And what if your furnace and your transmission and your kidneys all give out next week and you went and spent $19.99 on a pair of boots?  It would serve you right if that happened for being so frivolous.  Not to mention that the tag says they're made in Indonesia!  We all know what that means.  Some poor 7-year-old child was being hit with a stick while he sewed these boots.  I should be ashamed of myself.  I only came here for milk and copy paper anyway.  I'm nothing but a big, fat, selfish jerk.

4.  Ease up on the Coke Zero.   Kind of self-explanatory.  I've never tried Crack cocaine, but I have tried Coke Zero.  I'm pretty sure in a few years, the Today show is going to be doing an investigative report that reveals that Coke Zero is Crack in liquid form.

5.  Write more.  I have mad respect for all the serious bloggers out there who come up with fresh, new posts every single day.  That is no small feat.  And it's not just coming up with material, it's sitting down and taking the time each day to drain your brain onto the screen and make it entertaining, or at least readable.  I can't tell you (no really, I can't tell you - because I honestly don't know) how many pieces of paper I have on my desk with blog topics written down.   My goal is to try to post something once a week, which seems doable and the rewards, I think, will be great.  I truly enjoy writing and love when I hear from my friends and family that I've given them a reason to laugh with me...or at me.  I'm not picky, I'll take either.

My original intention was to post my top ten resolutions, but since this is quickly approaching a blog version of "War and Peace," I'll leave you hanging as to 6 through 10 until next week.  What about you?  Are you a resolution person?  Did you make any you'd like to share?  Surely one of you plans to outdo that mom of three who blogged last year about having sex with her husband every single day for a year.  Don't be shy.  Anyone, anyone?

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