Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Where Did 2006 Go?

Looking back at the year, the theme for me was a lack of time.

It's a rather odd theme, considering that I had a shorter commute and Lori took on a larger share of the household chores since she's now working outside of the home now. Sure, for April through September I was working a little late each night to make up time so that I could attend chapel (temps don't get paid for chapel). But where has all my time gone? I'm not quite sure... I've been reading a lot more but I suspect I've also watched more TV this year, which is kind of sad, considering I've watched far less HGTV and DIY.

Once again, a lot of electronic "ink" was spilled over the weather. I kind of find that amusing. I wonder if that has to do with my complete lack of interest in sports. I didn't talk much about my diet because it had its own website which I folded when I abandoned the project. I wish I hadn't killed it off, I'd like to go back and look at it now. The good news is that my goal was 30 and I got 27. I've gained 7 back since then, but that's still impressive. On March 1 I'll start the diet again and this time the goal is 20. I'm hoping that some others will join me and I can see how well my experimental diet works for others.

January 27 - Snow Day
But today's a day I would have really liked a snow day. Our financing plans have fallen through on the new home purchase, our home still has not had any offers, Rachel is recovering from a nasty fall (eye was still swollen shut today), I didn't get enough sleep last night (stayed up with Rachel for awhile) and this morning I had to bring the websites back to life after an upgrade last night that we knew would hose them all.
February 7 - 36 Hours
We figured it out... in the past 36 hours, we have sold a house in California, purchased a home in Washington, and I was offered a job. It's a contract job, but a job nonetheless.
March, part 1 (Los Angeles)
So here I sit, on my last day of work, in a very quiet office, with my Starbucks, my doughnut and some Seattle music while it pours outside. Yesterday I paid off all the credit cards and today I'll pay off Lori's car. Later today they're having what sounds like is a big production for my surprise going away party.
March, part 2 (Seattle)
My diet today wasn't that great. In order to try to change my eating habits, I've done some rather odd things that may or may not actually by themselves do anything good for me, but rather represent a change in thinking.

Current events and introspective... coming soon. One of my goals for the new start is to read more. Each week I am going to consult the New York Times Bestseller List for Non-Fiction and if it's a new one, then I'm going to purchase and read it. For my birthday Lori got me a really interesting book called "Blink" which I notice this week is #5.
April - I can't wait for Christmas
The affair is over. To anyone I ever told "I'm a native Southern Californian accidentally born in Seattle," I apologize. It was a lie. It's like that period of time when I thought Lowes was better than Home Depot. I fell in love with a place I could not afford to enjoy. Only now that I don't live there will I be able to enjoy it again. Trips to Disneyland will be more magical, traffic will the minor inconvenience while getting between destinations, not the norm of life. The heat, the smog, the pouring rain, it'll all be something I won't be able to see again through the palm trees. We'll say "I miss the area." and then we'll fly home and say "Nah, I don't miss it." Maybe someday, San Diego. But I can't imagine ever calling Los Angeles home again. It has a beauty, a hope, a promise, but it's better seen on the silver screen than lived by the general masses who inhabit it.

This is home.
May - A Day at Target
So that's going to be something that's gonna bug me. Here, another opportunity to catch up with an old friend, blown because I'm still just as socially inept as I ever was.
June - The Phone Call
Finally a moment of creativity. Click to read.
July - Blech
I have a bad taste in my mouth. It was a bit of pastry. Tasted good at the time. But now it's unpleasant. I think it was too much sweetness and I've been trying to decrease my intake of sweets as I try to lose weight. But it just feels heavy and I feel bummed that I gave in. Losing weight is tough and not at all fun.
August - Mine to Lose
About two weeks ago my boss came to me and took me into a private conference room where he told me that my permanent position had not yet been approved and there was an unforeseen delay. However, instead of just waiting, he recommended I apply for a new position that had just been created. It would have been more responsibility, more pay, and a great stepping stone to more and more.

And I blew it.
September - The End of Passion
Well I was washing my car today and noticed some rather unpleasant scratches on the back door, down towards the bottom. All the way to the metal. I can't imagine what from, maybe a tricycle, maybe some strong bushes, maybe a curb? I'm not quite sure.

But I look at the scratches and all I can say is "Wow! Look at these scratches." Lori comes over and is at least a little better in saying "That sucks."

But is this what it's come to? Sure, it's an object. Most of the world doesn't have a car and we have two, so should I be lamenting minor damage? Or is that all the more reason? I'm fortunate enough to have a car and so shouldn't I be upset when it gets damaged? I think most people would side with Lori and suggest not seething is actually the correct response.

But I find that hard to accept. This is my car. The biggest, most expensive object I've ever owned. (The bank or my dad owns the house, I'm not sure.) So I should take care of it and be upset when it's been damaged. Where is the passion? Where is the emotion? Should I not be upset, and shouldn't it just be expected?
October - Busy Day
I sometimes wonder what people would think if they could peek into my brain. I often feel like the best description might be an butterfly on speed with ADD. Flitting from idea to idea without even stopping to complete one before moving to the next. I think it's why it's hard sometimes to talk because I get too excited and get so far ahead of myself that I have to stop and figure out what I just said and remember what I had been thinking at the time I started speaking. I wonder if I would be a high-functioning mental case or something. But that's ok, I find it kind of amusing. I just wish I could do something with all the ideas in my head.
November - First Day of Christmas
Well, the tree is up and it's got lights on it. And maybe one ornament, I'm not sure. And there's one small tree outside with lights on it. But after a drive through the neighborhood, I know I need to do more, but there are also a lot of slackers in the neighborhood.
December - Unwritten
Wow, it's getting really bad this year. It's already December 8 and we've collectively completed 3 Christmas cards, I think. I would like to come into the season once where I'm not wishing it were over and done with long before Christmas ever arrived.

Last December I said...
So what's next? I'm going to try to get back to the diet, back to the creativity, and maybe some more regular introspective and real posts, not just commentary on the news.
I think I was mildly successful.

So how will I re-orient for 2007?

I aim to post in my blog more frequently. Overall my posting is down for the second year in a row, but we'll make the quality versus quantity arguments later. Honestly, posting isn't that difficult but I guess it doesn't always occur to me. I certainly want to post more on Rachel's blog, there have been some great recent developments.

I want to take more artistic photos. Lori and I put up a frame in our entry way that holds five photos. At the end of the month I pick out the best non-people photos and then we choose one to go into the frame, bumping the oldest one. So every month there's something new and interesting. But I want to up the ante. Less photos at the zoo and more photos out in the world. Since we replaced the broken digital camera, I have the broken one with me often so I can to snap more "life." We'll just see if I can do that without the LCD screen.

I plan to do a lot of reading. My original goal for this year was to let everyone else do the picking for me. Try to see movies with the highest box office, buy music on iTunes that was highly purchased, read books at the top of the New York Times Bestseller list. That didn't work as well as I had intended, but thanks to Jeff and Mark and Lori's recommendations I've found myself heading down a really interesting track with my reading (planned reading list in a separate post). I hope that I'll someday be able to apply my learning to my career.

I intend to be more social. I won't say much on that subject, except to say I've improved but I have a ways to go. It's becoming easier and coming more to the forefront.

The diet will return. After last year's success, I'm excited to go for round 2.

I will figure out how to be less busy. Not sure what that even means, but I intend to "re-orient" and figure out how to be less tired and feel less busy. Especially next Christmas. I essentially "missed" Christmas this year and I'm noticing how many posts I selected to recap talked about Christmas in some fashion or another. I'm a little bummed by that and hope to do better next year.

I will be a bigger help around the house. I think I've kind of slacked a little bit and I didn't mean to. I think I can do more. Sometimes it's all we can do do get the basic chores done, let alone attack the clutter. If I can de-clutter, I think that will help me re-orient.

And the little things... make it to The City monthly, try a new restaurant each month, eat at the same restaurants less often, send Lori flowers more often, don't waste time with chores or computer stuff when watching Rachel, find a new home for the dog, get the finances under control, talk to Lori's dad at least once a month, her mom at least twice a month, my parents and brother at least twice a month.

And I will revisit this list regularly to make sure that needed course corrections are smaller.
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