52 things in 52 weeks – The 2014 Edition – Update 2 (Week 6)

This is my second update…my real life has become so comical, that I think I should really just right a book or sell the rights and live off royalties.  I’m hoping to write another post to cover everything that has happened since the Ice Storm, life permitting.

52 Things in 52 Weeks

Colour Code:
In process
Complete

1.  Take the next step in my career path. 

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): I have meetings set up in the next couple of weeks, after which I’ll have a better sense of where things are heading.
  • Update 2 (February 11, 2014): My meetings are all done…now, it’s wait and see.  Can I tell you…I.hate.waiting! (*mental note* – work on patience)

2. Communicate with three people from my network a week (4/52).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): I have not been very good at this – mental note to be better.

3. Complete the 52 Week Money Challenge (6/52).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): I have been very good at this.  In fact, Husband and Liger are also participating (well, I’m contributing to Liger’s portion).
52 Week Money Challenge

52 Week Money Challenge

4. Make a donation to three charities (0/3).

5. Complete the 52 Weeks to an Organized Home Challenge (1/52). 

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): I have not been good at this and it may be this might be one left on the back burner.  Stay tuned.

6. Prepare one new recipe a month (1/12).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): As I have said before, I cannot cook.  So, anything I make that is edible is a feat unto itself and, an even bigger feat if Liger (who is a super picky eater) eats it.  This month, I made not just one, but TWO, dishes: (i) spaghetti and meatballs layered with fresh mozzarella; and (ii) egg fried rice.  I’m going to try something a bit more challenging for February.

7. Make, bring and eat a lunch from home at least once a week (6/52).

8. Eat one vegetarian only/fish meal a week (6/52).

9. Eat one piece of fruit a day (10/365).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): So.not.good.with.this.one.  I realize that 31 days have already passed.  Will.need.to.do.better.

10. Drink a glass of water with each meal.

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): Am.so-so.with.this.one – I’ve lost count.  Will need to do better.
  • Update 2 (February 11, 2014): Doing much better with this – I have reduced my consumption of Diet Pepsi (hooray!).

11. Take the stairs where available/possible.

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): Am.also.so-so.with.this.one – certainly better than the fruit challenge.  Will need to do better.

12. Start a “learn-to-run” program by April 15.

13. Thoroughly clean the house for Chinese New Year.

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): COMPLETED!!  Chinese New Year was on January 31 this year – strict timeline and really, I didn’t want to f*ck around with my luck this year. 

14. Participate in a fast or giving-up of a luxury for Lent.

15. Take a family photo shoot.

16. Write a love letter to Husband.

17. Write a love letter to Liger.

18. Have a date night at least once a month with Husband (0/12).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): Fail for January – life got away from us.  No excuse!

19. Go on a movie-night-out with Husband.

20. Go see a baseball game with Husband and Liger.

21. Visit Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada with Husband and Liger.

22. Visit Centreville and/or Canada’s Wonderland with Husband and Liger.

23. Take Liger swimming.

24. Take Liger sledding.

25. Take Liger skating.

26. Build a snowman with Liger.

27. Make snowangels with Liger.

  • Update 2 (February 11, 2014): COMPLETE! After a huge snow dump, Liger and I went for a walk and, like a typical kid, he had to climb every snow bank and make footprints in the fresh snow.  Part of our snow adventure included this:
Liger making a snow angel

Liger making a snow angel

I had just as much fun watching him as he was making the snow angel!

28. Do a new arts and craft activity with Liger at least once a month (2/12).

  • Update 2 (February 11, 2014): Last month, we painted pictures (he has painted at preschool but this is new for us).  This month, we took it one step further and created bugs!
Our bug family

Our bug family

29. Host a playdate for Liger.

30. Pack away Liger’s baby toys.

31. Visit family in Montreal.

32. Visit family in Ottawa.

33. Visit family in New Jersey.

34. Get-together with girlfriends once a month (0/12).

35. Read one new book a month (1/12).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): I’ve actually finished two books this month.  The Second Empress by Michelle Moran and Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot.  Yes, they are pretty fluffy.  I am now reading Catherine the Great by Robert Massie – he is my favourite historical writer.  Massie writes about history in the form of a story which makes it easy to read and become engrossed.  I have a wish list and a hold list for a multitude of books from the library.

36. Complete a jigsaw puzzle.

37. Watch the Planet Earth series.

38. Catch up on The Good Wife series.

39. Visit The Forbidden City Exhibit at the ROM.

40. Purge home files.

  • Update 1 (February 2014): COMPLETE!!!  I did this in conjunction with my cleaning for Chinese New Year.

41. Digitalize all of Liger’s artwork.

42. Organize music on iTunes.

43. Organize photos on iPhoto.

44. Learn how to use Photoshop.

45. Frame and hang artwork from the Art Institute.

46. Host one holiday event.

47. Send out Christmas cards.

48. Watch a Christmas movie picked out by Husband.

49. Write “12 Days of Gratitude – 2014 Edition”.

50. Update my blog format.

51. Post a weekly update of my progress on my blog (2/52).

52. Make a list of 52 things in 52 weeks for 2015.

Summary

4 out of 42 complete and 14 out of 52 in progress – 1 new complete since the last update!

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52 things in 52 weeks – The 2014 Edition – Update 1 (Week 4)

So, a couple of weeks ago, I completed and posted my list of 52 things in 52 weeks.  Number 51 was to post a weekly update on my progress, which I’ve only begun now.  January 2014 was a brutal month (more to follow) and I’ve been very distracted by Real Life.  Here is my first update.

52 Things in 52 Weeks

Colour Code:
In process
Complete

1.  Take the next step in my career path. 

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): I have meetings set up in the next couple of weeks, after which I’ll have a better sense of where things are heading.

2. Communicate with three people from my network a week (2/52).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): I have not been very good at this – mental note to be better.

3. Complete the 52 Week Money Challenge (4/52).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): I have been very good at this.  In fact, Husband and Liger are also participating (well, I’m contributing to Liger’s portion).

4. Make a donation to three charities (0/3).

5. Complete the 52 Weeks to an Organized Home Challenge (1/52).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): I have not been good at this and it may be this might be one left on the back burner.  Stay tuned.

6. Prepare one new recipe a month (1/12).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): As I have said before, I cannot cook.  So, anything I make that is edible is a feat unto itself and, an even bigger feat if Liger (who is a super picky eater) eats it.  This month, I made not just one, but TWO, dishes: (i) spaghetti and meatballs layered with fresh mozzarella; and (ii) egg fried rice.  I’m going to try something a bit more challenging for February.

7. Make, bring and eat a lunch from home at least once a week (4/52).

8. Eat one vegetarian only/fish meal a week (4/52).

9. Eat one piece of fruit a day (5/365).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): So.not.good.with.this.one.  I realize that 31 days have already passed.  Will.need.to.do.better.

10. Drink a glass of water with each meal.

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): Am.so-so.with.this.one – I’ve lost count.  Will need to do better.

11. Take the stairs where available/possible.

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): Am.also.so-so.with.this.one – certainly better than the fruit challenge.  Will need to do better.

12. Start a “learn-to-run” program by April 15.

13. Thoroughly clean the house for Chinese New Year.

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): COMPLETED!!  Chinese New Year was on January 31 this year – strict timeline and really, I didn’t want to f*ck around with my luck this year. 

14. Participate in a fast or giving-up of a luxury for Lent.

15. Take a family photo shoot.

16. Write a love letter to Husband.

17. Write a love letter to Liger.

18. Have a date night at least once a month with Husband (0/12).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): Fail for January – life got away from us.  No excuse!

19. Go on a movie-night-out with Husband.

20. Go see a baseball game with Husband and Liger.

21. Visit Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada with Husband and Liger.

22. Visit Centreville and/or Canada’s Wonderland with Husband and Liger.

23. Take Liger swimming.

24. Take Liger sledding.

25. Take Liger skating.

26. Build a snowman with Liger.

27. Make snowangels with Liger.

28. Do a new arts and craft activity with Liger at least once a month (1/12).

29. Host a playdate for Liger.

30. Pack away Liger’s baby toys.

31. Visit family in Montreal.

32. Visit family in Ottawa.

33. Visit family in New Jersey.

34. Get-together with girlfriends once a month.

35. Read one new book a month (1/12).

  • Update 1 (February 1, 2014): I’ve actually finished two books this month.  The Second Empress by Michelle Moran and Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot.  Yes, they are pretty fluffy.  I am now reading Catherine the Great by Robert Massie – he is my favourite historical writer.  Massie writes about history in the form of a story which makes it easy to read and become engrossed.  I have a wish list and a hold list for a multitude of books from the library.

36. Complete a jigsaw puzzle.

37. Watch the Planet Earth series.

38. Catch up on The Good Wife series.

39. Visit The Forbidden City Exhibit at the ROM.

40. Purge home files.

  • Update 1 (February 2014): COMPLETE!!!  I did this in conjunction with my cleaning for Chinese New Year.

41. Digitalize all of Liger’s artwork.

42. Organize music on iTunes.

43. Organize photos on iPhoto.

44. Learn how to use Photoshop.

45. Frame and hang artwork from the Art Institute.

46. Host one holiday event.

47. Send out Christmas cards.

48. Watch a Christmas movie picked out by Husband.

49. Write “12 Days of Gratitude – 2014 Edition”.

50. Update my blog format.

51. Post a weekly update of my progress on my blog (1/52).

52. Make a list of 52 things in 52 weeks for 2015.

 

Summary

3 out of 52 complete and 14 out of 52 in progress!!  Some of my challenges have been better met than others.  So far, this has been a very useful exercise.  With a combination of my challenges in writing and trying to make myself accountable with weekly regular updates, it makes it easier not to stay focused and accountable.

52 things in 52 weeks – The 2014 Edition

Clipboard with Check Mark

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

New Year…New Better You!

It’s that time of year…resolutions, resolutions, resolutions.  I have such a challenging time keeping my resolutions – when I hear “Don’t”, I end up “Do”-ing.  Resolutions and I don’t get along.  I much prefer checklists/to do lists.  Inspired by Kincavel Korner, I’m listing my 52 things to accomplish in 52 weeks.

Since we are well into Week 2 of 2014, my list will be somewhat annotated to provide an update as to where things are.

Colour Code:
In process
Complete

  1. Take the next step in my career path.
  2. Communicate with three people from my network a week (1/52).
  3. Complete the 52 Week Money Challenge (2/52).
  4. Make a donation to three charities (0/3).
  5. Complete the 52 Weeks to an Organized Home Challenge (1/52).
  6. Prepare one new recipe a month.
  7. Make, bring and eat a lunch from home at least once a week (2/52).
  8. Eat one vegetarian only/fish meal a week (1/52).
  9. Eat one piece of fruit a day (5/365). [I haven’t been very good with this one.]
  10. Drink a glass of water with each meal. [Or this one.]
  11. Take the stairs where available/possible.
  12. Start a “learn-to-run” program by April 15.
  13. Thoroughly clean the house for Chinese New Year.
  14. Participate in a fast or giving-up of a luxury for Lent.
  15. Take a family photo shoot.
  16. Write a love letter to Husband.
  17. Write a love letter to Kid.
  18. Have a date night at least once a month with Husband.
  19. Go on a movie-night-out with Husband.
  20. Go see a baseball game with Husband and Kid.
  21. Visit Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada with Husband and Kid.
  22. Visit Centreville and/or Canada’s Wonderland with Husband and Kid.
  23. Take Kid swimming.
  24. Take Kid sledding.
  25. Take Kid skating.
  26. Build a snowman with Kid.
  27. Make snowangels with Kid.
  28. Do a new arts and craft activity with Kid at least once a month (1/12).
  29. Host a playdate for Kid.
  30. Pack away Kid’s baby toys.
  31. Visit family in Montreal.
  32. Visit family in Ottawa.
  33. Visit family in New Jersey.
  34. Get-together with girlfriends once a month.
  35. Read one new book a month (1/12). [I’ve actually finished two this month]
  36. Complete a jigsaw puzzle.
  37. Watch the Planet Earth series.
  38. Catch up on The Good Wife series.
  39. Visit The Forbidden City Exhibit at the ROM.
  40. Purge home files.
  41. Digitalize all of Kid’s artwork.
  42. Organize music on iTunes.
  43. Organize photos on iPhoto.
  44. Learn how to use Photoshop.
  45. Frame and hang artwork from the Art Institute.
  46. Host one holiday event.
  47. Send out Christmas cards.
  48. Watch a Christmas movie picked out by Husband.
  49. Write “12 Days of Gratitude – 2014 Edition”.
  50. Update my blog format.
  51. Post a weekly update of my progress on my blog.
  52. Make a list of 52 things in 52 weeks for 2015.

What about you? Resolutions? Challenges?

Sisters

No, I don’t have any sisters…well, not blood-related sisters that is.

Last night, I was out for dinner at Ding Tai Fung at First Markham Place in Markham, Ontario (yummy Shanghai style dim sum in a nicer atmosphere but pricier than some other places I’ve been) with two of my best girlfriends – my 37 week pregnant girlfriend got hit with a bad cold and bowed out.  We try to get together at least once a month but it’s become more challenging over the years – each of us is married, most of us have kids and we all have many work and family commitments.  This evening was scheduled over 6 weeks ago – it was the first available date that we were all free!

We first met in high school and we have been friends for over 25 years (please don’t do the math – yes, we are getting older but trust me, fortunately we do not look it – we are blessed with Asian genes).  Those were the years when we cemented our bonds – we would meet daily, sometimes at our communal locker to watch crushes go by or at the donut shop across the street.  We shared classes and spares, crammed for exams together and experienced lots of firsts – first kiss, first loves, first heartbreaks, to name a few.  They know my secrets and guard them better than the Royal Jewels.  They know what I am thinking and can respond with a look.

Since high school, we have taken separate paths as well as had our share of challenges – we split off to different universities.  After graduation, The Girls found jobs and the loves of their lives.  I went on to post-undergraduate school in the snow belt of Ontario. They each got married and moved further into the suburbs while I had many first dates living the single life in my trendy downtown condo.  It may seem that I led such a “sexy” life during that time period – but The Girls knew that I longed to be part of their club.  Often times, our separate busy lives left us little time to see one another, never mind confide in one another but we would always find a way to connect.

These are The Girls who know the good, the bad and the REALLY ugly and yet, they accept me the way I am with my strengths and my shortcomings.  They listen without judgment and will tell me the truth that sometimes I don’t want to hear.  They celebrate my successes and cry at my disappointments.   I can’t imagine where I would be without them as they helped shaped me to be the person I am today.

People from our past often remark that it’s amazing that we have not only kept in touch but that we have remained friends for so long.  Not really, I think, after all, we are more than friends, we are sisters, we are family…and you don’t lose your family.

This post is dedicated to the three lovely ladies who know me the best and the longest.

With love…Care xo