Skip to main content

2014 aims and review of 2013 aims

After all of the Christmas feasting (the fridge is still full of cheese, and sprouts that didn't get cooked), and despite the first cold of the winter, I am feeling the urge to get cracking with some projects, and finish up all of those little lingering jobs that I've been putting off. One of those is to work out what I am aiming to achieve this year...and this is what I have come up with:

- complete first module of C&G knitting course and start second. Save enough money to pay the course fees for the whole course.
- donate 2% (minimum) of earnings to charity. I am planning to donate at the end of each month, and to donate to a variety of causes, local, international, animals, people, conservation- hopefully a wide variety.
- read down the house- I'd like to read 12 books this year, which would leave quite a few books unread. But it'd be nice to establish the habit of reading again.
- reduce stash of knitting yarn from just under 40,000 metres to under 30,000 metres. If I buy no yarn during the year, I would need to knit 27 metres per day to so this, which is manageable. There is one knitting kit that I am going to ask for for my birthday, but other than that I am going to try and go 'cold sheep'.
- house inventory- this is a latecomer to the aims list- when I saw Dar's post about her complete home inventory, I decided it would be a good idea- partly for insurance purposes, but also just to see what we have!

A much shorter list than last year- but it does have the advantage that I might actually be able to remember and focus on my aims! To keep the momentum up, I will do an end of the month round up of how I am getting on.

Now, last year's aims/resolutions:

1. No alcohol- I didn't totally stick to this, but I didn't drink much either. It's quite easy to give up something that makes you feel ill.

2. Riding- I passed Equitation 5, but no progress on the Stable Management as we are no longer having lessons.

3. Exercise- I have been quite sporadic with this, although since June when Parkrun started in Bury St Edmunds, I have been most weeks. Also, before I started my new job I walked a neighbour's dog most weekdays. The most consistent exercise, though, has been from walking to my new job- it's about 25-30 mins of fast walking each way. I'm always better at exercising for a purpose!
As a result, I am fitter and have knocked about 2 mins off my parkrun (5k) time.

4. Save money. I was bad at this. Maybe saving with a purpose will work better for me.

5. Plan meals- this has definitely got better. There has been much less grazing and more proper meals.

6. Sleep- more work to do here!

7. Less stuff- I have definitely got rid of some excess stuff this year (mostly clothes). Not sure there is much more major decluttering to do.

8. Read more- October and November were good, the rest of the year not so much...

9.  Garden- also a bit hit and miss. Didn't get a lot of food from it, did harvest some lavender which is drying at the moment.

10. Knitting course- progress has been made- I just need to actually finish the module!

11. Knitting- I have finished some projects which have been hanging around for a while, but still have four things on the go, and still bought yarn this year...hmmm...

12. Sewing- I made a needle case for knitting needles- that was about it. Fail!

13. Make bread from scratch- I do this all the time now. Bread is a bit dense, but good.

14. No poo- fail! My hair was more disgusting than I was prepared to put up with. Luckily I now work for a company which makes organic, cruelty free products, including shampoo and conditioner, which I am happy to use.

What are your aims/resolutions/key words for the year?

(If I had to pick a key word, it'd be FOCUS...I need to get better at doing one thing at a time!)


  1. Equitation 5? Well done! :-)
    Which shampoo do you use?

    1. Neal's Yard Remedies- at the moment the Nourishing Orange Flower one, and the Geranium conditioner. Hair is good!

  2. OK, I'm totally laughing about your goal of reducing the amount of knitting yarn. I used to work with a woman who was an avid knitter. She lived alone and her children were grown, so when she told me that she was moving I assumed that she was downsizing to a smaller house.

    Nope. Turned out that she had collected sooooo much yarn that she somehow couldn't fit it all into her 3 bedroom home, so instead of getting rid of some, she decided to buy a bigger house to make room for all of her yarn!

    Don't let this happen to you!!! :-)

    1. Wow! This is what I am scared of becoming :) Luckily (maybe!) my yarn doesn't actually take up that much space, as a lot of the meterage is due to very fine yarns.

      There is a thing called SABLE- stash acquired beyond life expectancy...sound like your knitter friend had reached that stage!!

      Perhaps not quite to this stage, though...

  3. A good set of goals! 25-30 minutes each way to work; that is an awesome walk to incorporate into your daily routine. I love that acronym SABLE!

    1. It's so much easier to exercise when your exercise is just part of your routine- it wouldn't actually save me much/any time to drive to work, and I would be paying for fuel and parking, so walking is really the only option. Plus I get to hear birds singing (and traffic, but you can't have everything!)

  4. Hi Nicola
    As I said I have come over again to have a better read of your blog this morning. I see we have the same word for the year - Focus. Lets hope we can encourage each other in our quest to get things done! My stash is magazine cuttings and all things stationery and crafty - far too much to fit into a tiny house!
    I love Neals Yard products I use the Frankinsence Nourishing cream. I use Liz Earle shampoo though - Neals Yard not creamy enough for me - I can't use clear shampoos they make my head itch must be one of the ingredients. That is quite a list of goals - I will enjoy reading your future posts to see how you are doing.

    1. I've managed to get rid of quite a lot of the stationery stash...although I do have quite a few knitting books to go with the yarn stash!

      I'm trying out all sorts of different Neal's Yard products at the moment- the joys of needing to get to know the product range :) I have quite greasy hair, so the shampoos and conditioners are great for me- I can't cope with too creamy!

  5. PS I like your 2% charity donations - I do similar each month and send off some money after I have done the months balancing. I always seem to have a stack of charity request envelopes I keep in my drawer and choose one each month.

    1. Using the charity envelopes and picking one is a good idea- I have a list of bookmarks in my web browser of charities which I would like to support- anything from foreign aid charities to bumblebees!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Book review: Newton and the Counterfeiter

I really enjoyed this book- it was only about 250 pages long, so I whizzed through it. (Well, relatively- it took about a week). It describes the (relatively brief) conflict between Isaac Newton and William Chaloner. I knew shamefully little about Newton before starting this book (other than the obvious 'scientist who thought up gravity when an apple landed on his head'.) The book describes his early life, and rise to fame as a scientist. (Apples are barely mentioned). Later in life, he was appointed Warden of the Royal Mint, at a time when England's coinage was debased and in need of re-minting. Part of his role as Warden was to chase down anyone who was counterfeiting coins- this was punishable by death, as it was considered treason against the monarch (whose face was on the coinage). Thus, Newton came into conflict with counterfeiter William Chaloner, who first came to London as a runaway apprentice, trying to make his fortune. (One of my favourite parts of the b

Belated round-up

Having just re-read my 2014 aims post , and noticed that I intended to write a monthly round up of my progress, I thought it was about time for, err, a three-and-a-half monthly progress summary! - C&G knitting course- I have made slow progress on this- although slow is better than none! I have at least written out a giant list of what I need to do to finish the module so that I can have the satisfaction of ticking things off said list. I've knitted a few more samples and written up the notes on them. I think I need to focus more on this aim, if I am to actually finish the module this year. I seem to have a bit of mental block about it though, and I am not sure why. - donate 2% of earnings to charity. I have been doing this, although more by sponsoring people for the London Marathon and joining the National Trust than by picking a charity each month and donating to it, which is what I originally envisaged. I am wondering if donating less often, say every six months, would b