I don’t think I’ve ever made a New Year’s resolution. I always have high hopes that a new year will usher in new and better habits, but as a rule, I like to avoid making big pronouncements about things I WILL do for fear of feeling shitty when I don’t follow through. The declaration of a resolution is just an invitation for those good intentions to morph into an albatross that haunts you all year, squawking, “Are you going to workout today? Do you really need another glass of wine on a Tuesday night? Didn’t you want to do your taxes early this year?” And I hate birds. I’m not a fan of anything that shits from the sky. Plus, I’ve got a blog that I regularly neglect to remind me of failed creative endeavors.
But this year, I’m feeling emboldened to record the things I want to get done. Mainly because, for once, I’m motivated to accomplish them but too busy with work to devote time to them yet. Also, I love list-making! My Type A-ness (formerly Virgoness, but since now I’m apparently a Leo, I don’t know what to attribute my anal retentiveness to. Thanks, zodiac, for crapping all over the belief system that allowed me to justify my shortcomings! Now I’ll have to find religion.) loves making a list, particularly the satisfying act of crossing things off a list. WordPress’s handy strikethrough feature is only enabling this neurosis.
So in an attempt to scratch the itch left by the creative/organizational ants in my pants, I shall now declare my resolutions for 2011! For those of you not interested in reading someone’s boring list of upcoming failures, now would be a good time to watch videos of keyboard cats on YouTube. Better yet, check out my new favorite Internet video here.
1. Get mah kraftwerk on. I’m a terrible crafter. An unfortunate mix of perfectionism and impatience means that I quit most projects almost before they begin, convinced that I’m too incompetent to make it work and I might as well stop now before I end up throwing my knitting needles across the room and just fix myself a drink already. But all the design/craft blogs I read are constantly inspiring me to try new things. In particular, I’ve been wanting to learn how to cross-stitch. And spray-paint lots of stuff! Apparently, you can use that shit for anything! Here are some things I’d like to try:
- Book/Song Lyrics Cross-Stitch from Yellow Brick Home. I also love this.
- Make a Hank Silhouette (they’re just so sweet), like this one from Young House Love.
- DIY Bathroom Stepstool from Prudent Baby (because ModPodge looks awesome).
- Build a DIY Parsons Dining Table. No, I don’t do power tools, so this is actually an Adam project. He’s been wanting to build something substantial for years. For this project, I’ll act as art director and cheerleader. Which means I’ll sit in a lawn chair drinking boxed wine and slurring orders at Adam while he labors away.
2. Address the ever-growing list of inexpensive (and easy!) house projects. Or, Let’s Get Organizized! I worked at a hair salon when I was in high school and one of the stylists was a body builder named Cheryl. She used to confirm client appointments while I sat at the receptionist desk, and I would listen as she left messages for clients: “Hello, this is Cheryl at French Accent. I’m calling to confirm your Tuesday at 2pm. If you need to make a cancellezation, please call 24 hours in advance.” She also thought organize was organizize. Bless her heart. Cheryl once did a nude photo shoot and shared the contact sheet with me. “Don’t my implants look great?” Indeed, they did. So at least she had that going for her.
Anywho, here are some things on my cost-conscious home-improvement list. By recording them here, you’re now obligated to make sure I follow through on them.
- Paint fireplace white. Yes, I got Adam to agree to this! But it’s going to suck, for reals.
Paint guest bedroom the same light gray (Benjamin Moore “Sweet Innocence”) as Hank’s room. I love the color, and I’d like to give the bedrooms some color consistency (the master bedroom is a darker shade of gray). Plus, we still have a can of this from when we did Henry’s room, which means cost = $0! Frame and hang the awesome Love from Above Charley Harper print that Adam made me for my birthday last year. Prints of this piece are hard to find and pricey, so Adam actually scanned an image of it from my Charley Harper book, spent hours painstakingly tweaking and correcting the vector art in Adobe Illustrator, blew it up, and printed it (it’s over 4-feet long). We want to hang it on the rectangular wall behind the light fixture in our entryway. Which brings me to . . . Replace entryway light fixture. I’ve noted before that I managed to break our current fixture right after we vowed to tighten our belts in preparation for me quitting my job. And this is the type of thing you want to spend a little dough on. But I found a pretty affordable replacement that’s minimalist enough for Adam’s taste and modern enough for me. I bought it, but it’s on backorder. Boo. Spray paint unattractive city-installed and required sidewalk light/electric meter a glossy black. Everyone in our neighborhood has one of these, and I’m pretty sure the same ones have been in place since the 70s. They’re awful, but I think a coat of black would mitigate its awfulness. Plus, fun with spray paint! Oraganizize the beejesus out of our bedroom closet. I’ve got big plans for this. Our master bedroom closet is super tiny. So I plan to do some general organizing, purging, and donating, but also to paint the closet and maybe add a snazzy new light fixture. I love makeovers of tiny spaces. For inspiration, see here, here, here, and here. Get the damn office in order. Adam and I are the Felix and Oscar of office roommates. There’s basically a line of rubble separating his side from mine. We’ve got unmatching office furniture and one of us can’t part with a really big, unattractive office chair. I can’t replace the furniture, but I’d like to make things look a little more cohesive. Maybe pretty up the space with some art and a new light (would love to put in a glossy white industrial-like light). Perhaps Adam will let me help (read: not automatically trash) organize his side. 3. Exercise more. I know, what a terrible New Year’s resolution cliche. But it’s been a while. Let’s just that the last time I exercised, it was with a rhythmic gymnastics ribbon, a pink exercise mat, and a pink sweatband across my forehead, while listening to “You’ve Got It All” by The Jets. My goal isn’t to lose weight, just to do something physical to get out of my head more. And some tightening and toning of body parts that have gotten decidedly schmoopier since having a kid couldn’t hurt. 4. Weniger, aber besser. If I’m not butchering the German here, this should translate to “Less, but better.” And indeed, this will be a year of making do with less. But I think great creativity can come from structure and limits. So I’m hoping I can still achieve everything on the list above while spending less and buying more thoughtfully.
Donate more regularly. Volunteer time. Be a better person. You know, the usual sure-to-epically-fail life goals. I donate most stuff here, but I need to research more good places. Suggestions welcome!
6. Blog more. Lucky you!
7. Give more blog lurve. I regularly hit up a lot of blogs. Most of these are read by a bajillion people, so it’s not like they need a shout out. But I feel like I should express some gratitude to these people who open up their homes and personal lives for my entertainment and work-shirking fodder.
So that all seems doable, right? I mean, there’s only seven things on the list. Well, and all those damn bullets. And yeah, I’m going to predict right now that #3 just isn’t going to happen. But I’ve got mad hope for 2011. Of course, I’ll track my home improvement progress and failures here for your own amusement!