I have to say that 2013 has been one of the greatest years of my life.
Here is how I did on my 23 things for 2013:
- Be more positive
At the beginning of the year, I was kind of a grump and I wasn't happy about it. So I made a concerted effort to be a little bit more positive. Sure I am still sarcastic and snarky, but I try to be less sarcastic and snarky around people who don't appreciate it. ;-)
- Lose ~13% of body weight (or eat healthier and exercise at least 3x a week)
I am much healthier now than I was at the beginning of the year. I started running again and have been eating much better. Although I haven't run in a few weeks, so I'd better get back to it.
- Start a few plants from seed for the garden
I never had a chance to do this because of my trip to Australia.
- Come up with a new budget and stick to it
We've been doing a good job with this and have started other savings accounts using Smarty Pig. We have been socking away about 10% of our net income into savings, which is a great habit to get into. Technically, we're putting away more than that because Jay and I also contribute part of our paychecks into our 401k plans.
- Get rid of the red couch and chair that I freaking HATE
Ugh. These are the bane of my existence. Since we have been trying to be better with money (pay no attention to our DR vacation or SCUBA certifications and equipment), I haven't had room in the budget for new furniture. No wait, I'll be honest. Experiences mean more to me than crap. I would rather spend money on a vacation (or scuba equipment to take on vacation) or other activities than I would on a new couch. Even if I hate aforementioned couch. There. I said it.
- Purchase new furniture and decorate downstairs
We are getting there. This goes along with number 5 really. I think what we'll end up doing is moving our existing couch and recliner in our chocolate room (aka TV room/den/family room) to where the hated red furniture lives. Then we'll get a sectional, something kinda like this, but not as ugly. Maybe this. Or this. Or this.
- Put together a time capsule for our house
I did this earlier this year, but now I'm thinking of adding some stuff. We have the jar and everything, but since we have two closets that aren't finished, I thought we would put it in there once we finish the closets.
- Blog at least twice a week
I've accomplished this goal... as of this posting, I think I have 105 posts. Over the weekend, I brought up to Jay that I've done a pretty good job accomplishing everything on my list. He was like, "You've blogged twice a week this year? Am I a bad husband for never reading your blog?" I thought it was pretty funny.
- Get organized - important documents, books, seasonal items, etc.
This is a work in progress. We are still trying to figure this out, but setting up our home office has been quite useful in getting closer to accomplishing this goal.
- Be in good enough shape to hike the Tongariro Alpine Crossing (aka Mount Doom) in New Zealand
We would have done this if it weren't for the crazy weather and snowstorm happening during our visit. Maybe on our next trip, we'll visit during the summer. Our NZ hosts Sally and Chris hiked it with their kids on six hours, so I'm pretty sure we could do the same.
- Raise a small flock of chickens for meat (at least six)
I'll check this off. We did eat one of our roosters finally, in Buffalo Chicken Dip. It was delicious. My girlfriends' dad has been raving about it since the party and wants the recipe.
- Sell some eggs, otherwise we'll be overrun when the new chickens start laying
Yup, did this.
- Snorkel the Great Barrier Reef, even though I'm scared of being eaten by a shark
Even better, we dove the GBR, and we saw a shark. It was one of the coolest things ever. I have an entirely different perspective of sharks, now that I'm a diver. However, I still wouldn't want to snorkel and hang out with sharks - I would much rather dive with them.
- Snuggle a koala
Oh Tiger Lily, you were one of the highlights of this year.
- Install the heat pump downstairs
Done! We also ended up having to buy a new pellet stove this year. And I'm not so sure about the heat pump that was installed... it keeps icing over. :(
- Make room in the budget for a cleaning service
We made room, but have decided that it's better to keep up with it ourselves. Maybe we'll decide to do it next year.
- Get the crawl space insulated
We ended up not doing this, opting for seeing how we do this winter with the new pellet stove and heat pump. The crawl space is insulated - it's just that some of it is coming out.
- Have photos done and send Christmas cards out this year
Well I failed at this. We just never got our act together. :(
- Fence in yard
Still at 95% complete. When the ground thaws, we'll finish the fence... especially since we'll have our dog in a few weeks.
- Hatch out some silkie and black/red star mixes
We did this, and then we ate one. Too bad all the ones we kept turned out to be roosters!
- Say no and not feel guilty afterwards
I am doing way better at this. A big relief was when I resigned from my Treasurer's position with VGIF. They're a great organization, but I just didn't have the time or energy to fully devote to doing a good job.
- Have an awesome time at the Mardi Gras Ball
It was fun, but I was happiest when it was all over! Next year, I'll have to do all of the work, but we have a wedding to attend on the same day... so I won't be able to enjoy my hard work.
- Can tomatoes from our garden
Since there was no garden, I couldn't can them!
- Print "before" collages to frame and hang in the house
I finally printed the collages from Shutterfly. Now all I have to do is frame them and hang them.
- Use at least one week of our time share
For all intents and purposes, I did this. Lots of fun was had in the Dominican Republic during our 3 year anniversary week.
Twenty five things for 2014 will be coming out soon!