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I've often heard the adage that how you spend the first day of the year is how you will spend ALL of it, but I don't think it's necessarily true. However, if it is, I will be sleeping, eating, reading, listening to music, doing laundry, having computer issues and relaxing. Which, apart from working and my social life, is basically a thorough summary of how I spent LAST year so maybe the adage is backwards!

I don't really do New Year's resolutions...I find, like most people, that the motivation disappears quickly, and so I try to set some manageable goals instead. Some of them are only in my head, where I can keep them to myself, because really I consider most such resolutions to be extremely personal and no one else's business. But some goals are things that need to be put out there, where I can not only see them, but also have them acknowledged and reaffirmed by others.

Some of my manageable goals were written in my last post, the last post of 2011, which makes them seem to be part of the last year and because I want to be sure to note them again for myself for THIS year, I'm repeating them here:
  • Midsummer with my entire first family in northern Germany!
  • Possible family vacation to Greece
  • Thorough clutter cleaning in the whole house
That first one seems to show up in my goals/resolutions list every year...I don't know why I can't make a habit of it.

In addition, I have some other goals for 2012:
  • Rejuvenate my creative side
  • Consider happiness as a given
  • Discourage negativity in myself and others
I recently read an interesting and thought-provoking book, The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin, and while I don't have the time or inclination to start such a thorough project on the same kind of scale, it did give me a lot of things to think about. I intend to explore and adopt some of her ideas in my own life and see how much I can stretch.

Some people pick a word for the year and try to apply it in all aspects of their life. I find that a little limiting in some's the same feeling I get when someone (usually my daughter, who is preoccupied with favorites right now) asks me what my favorite (insert category) is. I find it extremely difficult to give a single, definitive answer to those types of questions. How can I narrow it down when I have so MANY? I can't even handle those "what 10 books would you want with you on a desert island" type games, much less having to choose only ONE.

She asked me the other day what my favorite song was, and I couldn't give her an answer. Finally, frustrated, she said, "Okay, well how about just ONE of your favorites?!" and when I finally extracted a song to tell her (Build Me Up Buttercup), her response was a withering teenage, "Seriously??" *grin*

But I guess if I had to pick a word for 2012, I would pick "stretch" since that seems to be applicable to many areas of my life: personal, home, work, social, creative, spiritual, etc. It's the first day of a new year, and the first day of the rest of my life and a good stretch is how I started it (late late LATE in the morning), so I'll go with that and see where it gets me.
mood: optimistic
music: The Strokes—Call Me Back


Interesting. I found The Happiness Project so dull, so poorly written and so woo-woo dumb that I couldn't get even a third through, as much as I was curious about the project. Now you've sort of inspired me; give it another shot? (there's a good meme for a new year, at any rate). Wishing you the best one yet, Liz.


I didn't like a lot of the book, and I agree her writing wasn't the best. I wouldn't recommend reading it if you tried and found it so lacking, but I did find a lot of what she had to say valid and interesting. I don't usually read these kinds of books at all, and avoid the entire self-help genre like the plague, so I was surprised at my own reaction, actually :)

If you want a dog to help you with all that walking, I know one you could borrow for up to three weeks in Jan/Feb ;)

We usually only do a week, because of allergies, but I can check with Anders and let you know! We'd love to have Mental again! What dates?

Even a week would be great. The dates when we have the greatest need of help otherwise are Jan 29 - Feb 11

Anders is gone on a business trip then, but the kids say they will help out, so we can take Mental those dates :)

Woohoo! Is your Amazon wish-list up-to-date?

Haaa! Yes, yes it is :)

Have to double-check though, will he be okay being home alone most of the day? The kids are in school then, and I'm working, so he'd be alone from 7:30 until around 3...except Friday, Martin gets home around 2:30...will that be okay?

I find "Consider happiness as a given" very interesting. I will have to ponder that one a bit. I do hope you will keep us posted as you endeavor to "explore and adopt some of her ideas in my own life and see how much I can stretch."

I too have much trouble usually, with this 'favorites' thing. Favorite movie? Well, the one I last saw and loved, of course, but that will change with the next one viewed. And there are just too many favorite flowers, colors, books, cookbooks, foods, etc....TOO MANY I say.

And now dear Liz, lucky you are to be across the pond so I cannot throttle you for getting that song stuck in my head! Stretch that one...heehee


From Megsie

Okay. I am disappointed that this Happiness Project book is not a good read. I think I should still read it, because I tend to get lost in my own negativity from time to time. Hmmm. I will have to go to the bookstore and look at it and see.

I love your word. Wonderful! I am thinking mine will be "procrastinate" because then, I will surely be successful in something this year.

Re: From Megsie

Even if it wasn't the best read, it still had a lot of interesting ideas and things to think about. She has a blog too, though I haven't checked it out.

I'm thinking your word is much more realistic :)

From Megsie

Oh, I forgot to say: Belated Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!! xoxo

Re: From Megsie

Right back at'cha!! :)


Stretch is a great choice. Happy new year too :-)!


Same to you!! Happy new year! :)

What does "Consider happiness as a given" mean? That you should always be happy or find something to be happy about in everything? I'm not sure if it's a striving thing or a find the silver lining thing.

Anders frequently asks me what my favorite color is but I don't have one.

It's mostly from the idea that happiness is really all around you if you just look a little harder, and that if you BEHAVE as if you are happy, you often BECOME happy. I find that even if I'm initially not in a good mood, ACTING like I am often puts me in one. Silly perhaps, but it works!

Things that I like: STRETCH! Such a good word. And also... hearing that you're aiming to rejuvenate your creative side this year!


We shall see how it goes! :)

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lizardek's obiter photos
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Feeling generous? Be my guest!

I can complain because rose bushes have thorns or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.

Abraham Lincoln

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