Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Year in Review

The year is over and it's time to retire the to-do list that has so plagued me for the last 12 months. Let's take stock of how I did.

1) Finish my book.

Not there yet, but I have written 24 chapters since October and that's no small feat. It'll get finished soon.

2) Maintain my weight loss.

I maintained my weight loss until I got pregnant again, and even pregnancy hasn't been the cataclismic event it might have been. I've gained 6 lbs total and I'm 16 weeks now. I figure if I can limit myself to gaining 3 lbs a month, I won't be in bad shape come June.

3) Go to the gym at least 3x a week.

Have failed miserably at this one. It will be back on the list for 2008. (And maybe changed to 2x.)

4) Improve my cardiovascular fitness.

Probably no change since this time last year. Maybe 2008 is the year for physical fitness?

5) Keep Sam's baby book updated.

I think it's important to give yourself some managable goals, so that it's possible to actually achieve something by the end of the year. This is that goal.

6) Become really adept at managing our household expenses.

... Because of goals like this. Horrific crash and burn on this one. Although I'm not going to accept complete responsibility for its failure. If the bulk of our budget goes to gas and groceries, and the prices continue to go up at ridiculous rates, I can't be expected to keep up if they rise faster than I can budget for them.

7) Finish decorating downstairs.

What I can do, I've done. Nearly everything downstairs has been painted. Only the entry way and the powder room need to be re-done. Yesterday Tom finished tiling the dining room, so we have tile throughout the entry way and dining room now--but no grout yet. There's still gazillions of square feet to tile in the kitchen, living room, office, and powder room. I'd like to see progress before the baby is born, but who am I kidding? If I didn't live in a perpetual construction zone, I wouldn't know what to do with myself.

8) Reorganize and rebuild my office so that it's no longer a dumping ground for household odds and ends.

Look for this one in 2008 too...

9) Create workable organizational systems in the house.

And this one...

10) Write well in my children's lit class this spring.

This class was cancelled, so I didn't have an opportunity to work on this one. I did, however, write well in general this year, so I consider this a task completed.

11) Write a few short stories to submit to contests.

This wasn't the year for that. My energies have pretty much been consumed by novel writing. And I've been plugging away at my novel now for 2 years, so it's time to take stock in that whole process. To be perfectly honest, I prefer playwriting I think. I basically live to write dialogue. On the other hand, I cannot begin to describe the rush I feel when I get well into my novel and realize that the person who was able to sustain all the plot turns and suspense was me. You don't get that in playwriting. It's a different ride completely. So I think I'll be schizophrenic and do both.

12) Submit my play "A Day In the Life" to some contests.

I submitted it to one contest - The Carrie McCray literary award in playwriting/screenwriting and won 2nd place. Not too shabby when you stop to consider the subject matter. It occurs to me that I have never written a play that was not award winning in some way. The Whistling Woman was one of two plays chosen to be performed by the UNCC drama department. That doesn't sound like much until you stop to consider that it was a contest only open to drama majors (which I wasn't), that my playwriting professor insisted they let me submit it, and my play was selected despite all of that. Things Said Before was one of 3 plays that won the annual playwriting contest at The Fitton Center for Creative Arts. And now A Day in the Life is a contest winner too.

13) Keep Sam happy and healthy.

I am very fortunate on both counts. Sam is exceedingly happy and healthy. I could wax poetic indefinetely on that little man. He's a fire ball come to light my way through the world... and spirit me away from my computer. :-)

14) Become more involved with my friends and the groups I belong to.

Okay, I admit it. I vastly prefer to hang out at home by myself 99% of the time. I'm a horrible friend... the friend who never calls, never extends invitations, the friend who quite possibly could have been eaten alive by a rampaging pack of hyenas and you would never know about it because when months go by and you haven't heard from me, it wouldn't seem suspicious. Sad as that sounds, I'm also the type of friend that when you call and say "Let's go here and do this," I'm almost always game. I would hope that that balances out my more reclusive qualities.

This has been a good year social-calendar-wise. After living in the neighborhood for 2 years, I've made good friends here that I can rely on for anything. I have the friends I see for play dates, and the other friends I go to lunch with. I have the out-of-town friends I see occassionally and the out-of-country friends I write emails to obsessively. I do not want for friendships and for that I am immeasurably grateful.

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