Happy New Year, Bloggees!
Apologies that this post has come so late in the new year, but the holidays have brought with them a flurry of fun, a tizzy of tasks, an array of activities. Your girl's been busy!
However, it would be against the Code of Bloggers for me to skip a New Year's post, and I don't want to let anyone down. My NYE was a hilarious mix of my usual activities - a fantastic potluck with friends, coupled with another friend's party, and rounded out by your's truly going home just at the stroke of midnight. They say that what you do at midnight on New Year's Eve foreshadows your upcoming year - does this mean I'll be doing lots of gabbing, lots of cooking, and end every night watching TV in my room? Sounds about right.
I spent five hours (yes, five - I was trying to be precise!) baking Food 52's Double Layer Cranberry Ginger Upside Down Cake for Sasha's potluck. Let me tell you, every minute of that time was worth it. Maybe for my birthday I'll request circular cake pans - everyone is getting cakes! You get a cake, and you get a cake! We all get cakes!
Anyway, it was delicious, and fun. And I love cranberries.
I even made real whipped cream, with a real hand mixer! The hat says Happy New Year on it, I swear - I'm not just trying to go into the hipster light. Although, it does make me look jaunty, doesn't it?
Here's a preview of the finished product - don't worry! I'll be putting the full recipe on the blog this week. And, while there are many many steps involved in making this macrocarpon masterpiece, they're easy steps once you read the instructions accurately. I may have switched a couple of my ingredients in some of the steps but it all turned out just fine, and I'm woman enough to admit it.
Then I headed over to another part of the city to party with Valerie and her boyfriend. "Party" in this case meant more champagne and more hats! And, of course, pictures. Like the fuddy duddy I am though, I decided to head home early so as to miss the cab-calling rush right after midnight -- and I got home just at 11:58pm.
The thing I love about NYE though isn't the parties, or the champagne, or even the cakes - it's the sense of renewed possibility, of undiscovered potential, of starting over fresh. While I wish we all had those feelings of hope each day of our lives, there's something about a big change (like New Year's) to really solidify that sentiment, and it makes it easier to admit you want new things for that upcoming year. Somehow it feels silly to admit that you want to make changes, that you have aspirations, and want to work towards them.
So, while I shall try to approach each day of 2015 as if it has potential and hope and possibility, I have a few specific resolutions I'm going to try to keep in mind:
2015 Resolutions & Goals
1. Cut out added sugar for at least one month
(January, in case that wasn't clear.)
I'm not going to drive myself nuts about this (there's probably sugar in processed bread, for example) but I'm cutting out sodas, sweets, candy, pastries, sugary coffee drinks, etc. These are all off-limits, and rightfully so! I never used to have a sweet tooth but lately sugar has been off the charts addictive for me. I need a reboot.
2. Do a Spending Fast for at least one month
If you haven't heard of Anna Newell Jones's Spending Fast, then go check out her site right now. I have long been a fan of her practicality with regards to finances - I am easily sucked in to buying things I don't need, sometimes before I've even used up whatever item the new product is meant to be replacing. I have way too much stuff, and lately I've been acquiring more of it, and I need to STOP THE MADNESS. I plan on doing this by creating a fixed list of needs, and only buying things on that list for the next month. If I can, I'll try to extend it to two months, and so on. I may not be as restrictive as she is (I'm still going to Tahoe for a weekend with friends, and I'm still allowing myself to buy coffee 2x a week) but it'll be a great refresh for my bank account!
3. Get earthquake state in at least 3 stores this year
While, yes, I admit, I'm still learning to manage running a blog, a shop, and a full-time job, I want to grow my side business as much as I can without going completely insane. As of right now, ESD is sold in two stores in SF (Local Take and Amour Vert), and I would love to put my wares in at least one more store before 2015 is over!
4. Run at least two half-marathons
I need to get back in shape, and it's so much easier to do that when the prospect of trudging along a 13.1 mile course is looming in front of you. I've done the Nike Women's Half-Marathon for four years starting my second year of law school, but this past fall, my friends and I didn't get in through the lottery system. In lieu of spending a couple thousand dollars with Team in Training (I think it's an amazing organization and cause, but I just can't commit to trying to fundraise), I need to branch out and sign up for other, less "popular" races, and do it for the experience of running and not necessarily for the perks at the finish line. I've already signed up for the SF Marathon, and if I don't get in to the NWM this year then I'll keep browsing other events! Do you have any favorites I should check out?
5. Read at least one non-book club book a month
I've been pretty good about finishing my books in time for my book club's monthly meetings, but I'm also a pretty fast reader - I definitely have time to read more if I set my mind to it, and I have a reading list that is definitely up for that challenge. I want to try to read at least two books a month, and one of them not just because I fear the wrath of my book club if I don't finish it. Har har.
6. I want to travel to another country this year.
I have no reason to think this will be possible fiscally or temporally, but I'm going to try my best to make it happen.
I hope you all had a wonderful (and safe) New Year's! Do you have any specific resolutions you've made this year? Feel free to share in the comments - I love hearing what goals people are trying to meet each year!