|My "Best Nine" from Instagram is a good look at the last half of the year - blue hair, handspinning, Rhinebeck and yoga.|
It's been awhile since I had a moment to write here. The latter half of 2015 was truly a whirlwind for me, with a ton of new developments, some happy, some sad. I'll give you the footnotes:
In May, I moved from Iowa to Murfreesboro, TN. We moved again in October into the city of Nashville (West Nashville area, for those who know the area) and Andrew and I are loving every minute of exploring such a fun and vibrant place to live!
In September, I quit my three-year job at Yarnbox. This was a really hard decision. When you work for a company for a long time and put everything you have into it, leaving isn't something that you take lightly. The company and I were looking in different directions for growth and change, and that usually means that it's time for someone to move on. I was ready to stop being an independent contractor and put down some roots! This meant looking for a job that provided benefits and paid my taxes. Because, seriously, doing your own taxes really stinks!
Shortly afterwards, I got news that a book proposal I had submitted had been accepted. This is a beyond exciting development and I will be writing a knitting book over the next year for publication sometime in 2017. We're aiming for Fall, but we'll see how the timeline changes as it goes along! I have worked on several books, as well you all know, but this is the first one that I get to put my name on the front cover of, so I am pretty thrilled.
I went to Rhinebeck for the first time. It was magical. I meant to write about it, but now I worry that it's been too long and nobody will want to read my ultra-belated Rhinebeck musings. I'm going again next year, it is my new must-attend event for knitting goodness and rejuvenation.
I started a new job! I'll be announcing more about this really soon -- I want to tell you all about it in full -- but it's a lot of fun and surprisingly non-yarn-related. This gives me the time that I need to focus on the book and also work on personal knitting projects. For such a long time, it's seemed like my personal knitting time has been non-existent, so it's exciting to have that back.
Andrew graduated from college. This is a huge development in our lives and called for a lot of celebrating with his family and friends. He has a degree in Computer Science and is now working full time for a multi-national company with a home office here in the city. We're looking towards some big future stuff now that college is out of the way and we can save money and plan.
All in all, I feel that most of the changes and choices were the right ones, and I'm looking forward to 2016 and all of the new things it will bring!
In 2016, I'd like to embrace a beautiful thought set forth by scrapbooker Ali Edwards called One Little Word. While I didn't buy her lovely kit (see one of the goals below), I have decided that my word for the year is going to be discipline. I know it's not a particularly magical or thrilling word, but discipline is the ability to choose between what you want and what you need. It is restraint, self control, and motivation. All of my resolutions this year are based on this word:
Resolution 1: Pay down debt
Last year, I paid off two credit cards and some medical bills. It felt really good. For the first time in my life (I'm going to get really honest here with you guys), I felt like I was able to make all my bills on time, in full, and raise my credit score by 300 points. I know many people in this world have financial issues -- my problems are not unique here and I am trying to keep that in mind as I move forward. This year, I want to put my mind towards keeping my credit score up and paying off more of my student debt, with the goal of paying off ALL my student debt in the next 5 years. This is a huge undertaking and a very scary one, but I know that if I commit myself to making it happen, I will be able to breathe so much easier headed into my future!
Resolution 2: Live with less
I am not good at being a minimalist. I'm trying to embrace this fact about myself -- I will probably never be the person with an all-linen, fully-versatile wardrobe. I can go a whole week only wearing a single color, but often that color is black, and I have cats. I can't restrain myself to 'sensible' knitted pieces, and I like picking up lots of different interests -- knitting, spinning, crochet, quilting, garment sewing, cooking, scrapbooking, video games and embroidery, to name a few. This means that my little 700 square foot apartment sometimes feels very crowded. I have elected to give myself the year to work my way through as much of my craft stash as is possible with the goal of consolidating it down into a smaller storage area for next year. I think I can do it!
Resolution 3: Replace attitude with gratitude
Like most people, I can get pretty whiny when things aren't going my way. I always feel better after 'airing' my issues to a spouse or family member. While I don't consider myself a massive complainer, I did read a study earlier this year that talked about how gratitude -- the act of being thankful -- is the exact opposite emotion from anxiety and you cannot experience both at the same time. This year, I want to strive to be more about what wonderful things I happen than those that are not so wonderful.
Resolution 4: Document
I love scrapbooking. I love looking back at the pages of things that happened over the year and remembering them and seeing how things have changed for those close to me, how my attitude has changed or my ideas got altered throughout the year. Last year, I started a 2015 album that never really took off. This year I am going to work harder to follow Project Life more closely and document more of what happens on a day to day basis (and not just on important trips and holidays.)
Resolution 5: Develop healthy habits
I'm going to strive to write every day, cook more healthy meals, exercise more frequently, get outside more and be less glued to a screen! You only have to do something every day for 21 days for it to become a habit, so this shouldn't be as impossibly daunting as it sounds, right? I'll see what we think in February.
Do you have resolutions this year? Tell me about them!