Every time I set a goal, it seems like I blink and four months have gone by, and I haven’t made any progress on the goal. It happens with the smallest and biggest things I try to do. Looking back at the last four months, I’ve had some successes and some failures—or “fails” to Internet folk. I still plan on finishing each of my new year’s resolutions, albeit modified versions. Of the things I’ve accomplished, I’ve learned that they were all pretty easy and gratifying at the same time. Here’s how I am doing on my 2010 new year’s resolutions
1. No TV/Internet – Win!
In January, I called up Comcast and told them that I no longer needed its services. I canceled both the Internet and cable, returned my little cable box, and have been enjoying a distraction- and trash TV-free life. I’ve read more, exercised more, socialized more, and have enjoyed the frosty State College winter more. Also, the cable-free life has saved me over $250—in just four months. Dig it!
2. Buy Local – Semi Fail!
I’m getting there. I’ve been able to get a lot of my groceries locally, but I still have a ways to go. (i.e. cereal, fruit, juice, etc.) I put the kibosh on my plans for a CSA. It was too much food for just me. Once the farmers’ market opens on May 28, I’m there. I am also proud to say that I’ve been chain restaurant-free these past four months. That’s right. I’ve been enjoying some great meals at unique places all over the northeast.
3. Buy American – Semi Win!
I am not a big buyer of things in general. My big purchases this year have been a winter headband and...that might be it. My ears were freezing on my bike rides to work, so I got the headband to cover them at Appalachian Outdoors. I love it. It’s North Face—made in USA!
4. Getting Involved – Semi Win!
I put this at semi win, because I have been a lot busier than last year. I’ve been playing pickup basketball in Rec Hall once a week. I’ve picked up racquetball. I’ve volunteered my proofreading skills to Voices of Central Pa., and I’ve been regularly attending State College Young Professionals events. Not bad, but I am still looking for more. Something more direct. Perhaps the Centre County Historical Society or a bike club? I’ve also heard about an ultimate Frisbee club. Any ukulele clubs out there?
5. Send Birthday Cards to My Nieces and Nephews – Win!
Success so far. Of my nine nieces and nephews, five have had birthdays so far. I’ve gotten cards to four of the five on time—and the other one was only a day late. This is my resolution every year, and I’ve got a good streak going.
6. No More Driving to Work – Win!
In January, I handed in my parking permit at work. I’ve enjoyed four months of riding my bike into the office. I am really looking forward to see how much gas I’ve saved at the end of the year. Right now, I know that I’ve saved at least $140 in parking fees. I like that. There are so many great things about riding into work. You can go a different way every day. You can say hello to other bikers and walkers that you see each morning. You’re out in the sunny, crisp spring mornings. You can enjoy a lunchtime ride. It’s been great, and it was made even better by the spectacular spring we’re having here in Happy Valley.
Overall grade: B.
I still have some things to figure out. Is it possible to phase out the supermarket altogether? Even if it’s just for the summer? If I can do that, can I phase out my car? Do I have time for more activities and groups? When it comes time for a big purchase, can I find one that’s made in America? Three years ago, I bought a new Pontiac because it was made in America, and than they went bankrupt. I can’t complain though. They’ve treated me very well over the past few years. For my next car, I still plan to buy American, but I hope they can stick around longer than a year after I buy it. Have the Ford Taurus SHO’s dropped in price?
Well, we’ll see how I am doing in August. Hopefully I am enjoying the beach at that time.