2009 Progress Report

In Self Improvement on January 28, 2009 at 8:05 am

Here is my progress report for my 2009 projects and book list:


  1. The Book Project – This is going like gangbusters, mainly through intentional reading and using Good Reads. I’ve read 9 books in the beginning of the year (and of course that doesn’t count newspapers and magazines).
  2. The House Project – Going nowhere. All I manage to do is keep the kitchen clean (sort of). That could partly be because I’ve read 9 books since the beginning of the year!
  3. The Garden Project – Right now we’re buried under ice on snow on ice on snow–and it’s sleeting right now.  So gardening of any kind is pretty much out of the question.
  4. The Travel Project – We have a trip planned to Orlando in April.
  5. The Writing Project – I submitted one essay; it was rejected. But I’m not giving up. I started to write a story about preacher’s kids. And I’m still blogging.
  6. The Religion Project – I’ve found a church I think I’ll like, but I haven’t gone there yet. (I’ve had to work on Sundays.)
  7. The Office Project – No progress. I’m still using my laptop and the couch as my office. And I have a slew of papers to be filed sitting on top of one of my file cabinets. That’s it.
  8. The German Project – No progress.
  9. The Green Project – No progress.
  10. The Body Project – No progress.
  11. The Friend Project – I’ve actually gotten in touch with some old friends I haven’t heard from in a while, including an hour and forty minute phone call with one of them!
  12. The Family Project – Pretty much the same. I hear from one of them almost every day. Facebook has been helpful to keep me in touch with family and friends.

2009 Book List:

  1. Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader, Ann Fadiman (nonfiction) – I really enjoyed.
  2. Rereadings, edited by Ann Fadiman (nonfiction) – Good, but some of it was hard to get into.
  3. Never Let Me Go, Katzuo Ishiguro – Excellent.
  4. The Crooked Inheritance, Marge Piercy (poems) – I’m having trouble with this one. It’s short but it’s poetry. And I don’t much care for it.
  5. Summit Avenue, Mary Sharratt – So-so.

I’ve also made an additional to-read list on Good Reads of approximately 60 books. Having these lists has been very helpful. I don’t have to get fifty books out of the library at one time because I have these reminders of what I want to read and I can get them one (or two) at a time.

I guess I shouldn’t have expected progress on the body front. That’s always everyone’s Achilles heel when it comes to New Year Resolutions. My kids, who are very health-minded, keep bugging me about eating better and exercising. I think the more they bug me, the guiltier I feel and the more I resist changing my habits! I also spend so much time reading and writing, I run out of time for anything else. I’m going to have to start making time for other things, like cleaning, planning better meals and exercising.

I probably have a hundred German tapes, reference books, workbooks, textbooks, children books and novels. I’ve also been using Mango Languages through the local library. So I have great resources at my disposal. I just have to make myself do this. I do enjoy it–it gives me a real sense of satisfaction–but it’s hard to practice because my husband and I always speak English to each other. The only time I have to use my German is when I speak with his mother. And then I say the same things over and over: Wie geht’s? Was ist neues? Wie ist das wetter dort? Stimmt. Ich verstehe. Ich verstehe nicht!

One thing I have improved on: I’m not sleeping as much as I used to. There for a while I was sleeping ten and twelve hours a night! Now I’m down to eight to ten. Still a lot, but I’ve been making myself get up early more often, like seven or eight o’clock (I usually don’t turn off the light until midnight or later–that’s when I do a lot of my reading). That probably sounds late to those of you who are working outside of the home, but after years of getting up at four or working the graveyard shift, this is a welcome–and much needed–respite. I’ve always needed a lot of sleep and I’m definitely not a morning person, so seven or eight o’clock is a major accomplishment for me. I’m definitely getting more done.

I think the six weeks in my cast got me antsy and now that I’m out of it, I want to accomplish more. I still have a long way to go to be a productive member of society, but I’m not going to stop trying.


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