New Year, New Beginnings

It's the eve of a new year, and everyone's talking about their New Year resolutions. Except, I kind of stopped making resolutions ages ago. I got kind of tired of making them just to break them a few months in. And I guess in general, I figure that each day should be a journey toward self-improvement and so what's the big deal about the new year?

If I'm honest though, new years ARE a big deal. For me, they've always felt like a new beginning. A chance to sort of clean the slate and start fresh. And seeing as 2010 has probably been one of the suckiest years of my life (2002 is either tied or a close second... senior year of high school was pretty miserable), I'm really excited for 2011. I figure it just can't get any worse, right?

So while I am still not exactly making New Year resolutions... I am looking forward to a few things, and have a few goals and stuff too. They are...

  • Starting student teaching: In 2009, I did an alternative teaching certification program and while I finished the classes, I never actually got my official certification. Well, starting January 6th, I should be in a 4th/5th grade classroom teaching English and by April I should be officially certified. Whether or not I will go on to teach full-time, only the year will tell. But it's an exciting possibility for 2011. So I'm stoked! 
  • Beginning my MFA: If I don't go into teaching full-time in 2011, it's because I got accepted into an MFA program and will be going for that instead. It's been my goal in life to be an author and spend my days working on stories and novels, and after this year began spiraling downward for me I decided to suck it up and seriously think about pursuing that goal. I know I don't need an MFA to become a published author, but I'd like one. That way I can also use the degree to teach in a school or within the community as well. I won't find out if I get into a program until March/April. Hopefully the waiting won't kill me. 
  • Write more: Even if I don't get into am MFA program. I want to write more. For me. It's something I hadn't done in a long time until I began applying for programs, and it felt sooooo good. So, don't ever want to let that go again. 
  • Learning to sew: I don't know how to sew on even a button. It's pathetic. And I've been dying to make a t-shirt quilt for the last two years. So, the plan is to get on it! A few friends have expressed interest in helping me, so... we'll see. 
  • Letting music overrun my life again: I used to play the piano. In fact, I own a piano. And I haven't played it in probably 6-8 months. I know that I am no where as good as I should be, or used to me. But I've decided to stop letting that feeling on inadequacy stop me from playing. Because I miss playing the piano. A lot. I also miss singing without abandon. I used to sing all the time... and while I'm a bit shy about performing for people, I miss doing that too. So, somehow this year, I'm going to sing more. And maybe (since I also own one) I'll learn how to play the guitar, too?
  • Be more green: This... well, this is more of a challenge I'm doing the first week of January. A friend of mine is the web editor at Yes! magazine, and they are doing a No Impact Week, which she convinced me to participate in. Now, while I am in no way anti-green, it just seems like A LOT of work. I mean, the guy who started this whole thing went a year without toilet paper!!! I don't know if I can be that hardcore! But, it should be interesting... and hopefully I'll learn some things that might change my life for the better (which is kind of the purpose of the whole experiment). I'll be blogging about my week, and I'll try to keep you updated on here, too. 
  • Take more pictures: I've been having a lot of fun with my SLR camera, since I got it in September. I have a lot to learn though. And I definitely plan to spend the year becoming more and more of a photographer
  • Being a better daughter, sister, aunt, and friend: No explanation needed here, I think. Just hold me accountable if you think I'm slacking, please! :)
  • Seek God more and more and more: Like I've mentioned before, this past year was tough. And I don't really expect 2011 to start out super easy or anything, but regardless of whatever happens I really want my every minute of 2011 to be committed to God. There are a lot of things I want to happen in 2011. It'd be nice to have a steady income again; it'd be nice to get into my first choice of graduate school; it'd be nice if my student teaching led to some really cool opportunities; it'd be nice if I was dating. But it'd only all be nice if it's in God's will. That's probably the most important thing to me for 2011--to seek God and live in God's will. His plan for me is so much greater than I could probably even imagine. So... 2011 is Yours, God. Do with it what You will.

I hope everyone has a wonderful New Year's Eve! Here's to all of our new beginnings. 

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