Monday, January 7, 2013

A New Year Merits Some Goals

The other day I declined to make any solid resolutions, but as the first week of the year has passed, I couldn't help but come up with some goals for the year that I'd like to share.

1. Write honestly about life as it is.
One of the most refreshing things I saw in the blogosphere last year was a series of posts by my favorite bloggers called "Things I'm Afraid to Tell You." The bloggers let the veil of their picture-perfect lives come down and revealed some pretty serious truths that lurk behind their instagrams: they're broke. they're struggling with weight. they got divorced. they aren't satisfied in their careers.

It was really inspiring, and while I think it's healthy and necessary to keep some parts of my life not on the internet, I also think it's important to remember why people write and read blogs, which is to connect. I've found it more and more difficult to connect with bloggers I loved in the past because, frankly, their blog content has become completely disconnected from their identities. And while I love to indulge my inner fashion magazine editor on occasion, I also don't want my blog to get far away from why I started it, which was to document my life.

At the end of the day, I do it more for me than for anyone else, and I believe if I'm more true to that, you might find it more relatable in the end. So that's goal #1...less worrying about whether my blog is "pinworthy" or has enough original content and more focus on using it as a creative outlet and personal motivational tool.

2. Get serious about saving (food).
We have regular transfers set up from our checking account to our savings account. I buy most stuff on sale if I can, but I suck at remembering and using coupons. But we don't go nearly far enough trying to save money, and I have one particularly bad habit I want to break.

I waste too much food. It's a combination of poor planning/impulse purchasing at the grocery store/indulging cravings. I realized it was a problem when the cabinet where I keep my pantry staples was overflowing with types of flour, because I have accidentally bought flour several times without realizing I already had some at home. That's ridiculous.

So, for January, I'm challenging myself to limit my grocery trips until I have sufficiently used up some of the food in the freezer and pantry. I save it all up like we're going to have some insane emergency and it just doesn't make sense!

I think this will take me to the next level of cooking. Since I first started learning, I would choose recipes that sounded good and design my grocery list around recipes. That's all fine, except I end up with leftover ingredients that, for whatever reason, don't get used.

I also have a tremendous problem with my own pickiness. I have always been someone easily brought down by cravings and resistant to repetition within a given week. Let's just say I'll never be the person who has lasagna two nights in a row. I have to get over this to reduce food waste.

I also buy a bunch of food expecting to be making dinner four nights of the week and then end up accepting spontaneous dinner invitations, coming home later than planned and too tired to cook or covering meetings I didn't expect. It's just the reality of our lives that we can't keep a lot of fresh food around, or it gets tossed. I have to accept that and plan for it.

Those are the two biggies that might be impacting this blog of mine. I'm so grateful for every single one of you who checks in with me every day (or every week, or every once in a while), and I'm excited for another year together.


Heather said...

I love this post. I think we're all guilty of wanting to make our recipes, projects & blog posts pinworthy. This past year I've decided I'm never going to be one of my favorite food bloggers, and God knows I'll never be Sherry from Young House Love. And all of a sudden I'm okay with that.

As for the food thing, I know you said you have a problem with repetition, but what has worked for me is using leftovers solely for lunches. One of my resolutions is to get our budget under control since we're moving in June, and I spend a ridiculous amount on fast food lunches. So I'll make a healthy pot of soup on Sunday's and portion it out for lunches through the week. I don't like leftovers for dinner, since that's when I get creative in the kitchen, but I don't mind them as much for lunch.

Good luck!

Amber said...

Thank you Heather! Everyone tells me that making soup on Sundays is the way to go...someday I might actually plan on it! Good luck to you, too.