Hello 2014!

I haven’t written in my blog a lot over the past few months, with the exception of my monthly exercise updates…which reminds me, I probably have another one of those coming up soon!  Anyway, I was looking back at my post from about a year ago and wanted to see what my resolutions were for the past year.  Here was my list from a year ago:

  1. Lose weight, or more specifically lose a lot of weight.
  2. Travel, hopefully to New York.
  3. Run a 5k…I figure this will be easier to train for than the marathon I said I would do this year.
  4. Keep writing in my blog.
  5. Start writing a book.
  6. Have a bigger and better garden.
  7. Get better at photography with my awesome new camera 🙂
  8. Survive another year!

4 out of 8 accomplished…50%…those stats don’t sound all that great to me.

✔ For once, I did actually follow through with my #1 resolution…right now I’m about 60 pounds lighter than I was a year ago.  It wasn’t easy and I’m still not done; my goal number is still about 20-25 pounds away.  I did go shopping yesterday to use some of my Christmas gift cards and was completely shocked to be able to fit into size 10 pants!  The past month with the holidays and food everywhere, I’ve been kind of slack on the exercise and haven’t been as strict with my eating as I have been so I was very pleased when size 12 pants were too big.  I was doing a dance in the dressing room 🙂
✘ Unfortunately I didn’t get to travel to New York this past year.  I doubt that will happen this coming year either so I’ll just keep dreaming about it!  I’ll get back up there eventually.

✔ I did run in a 5k.  I think I actually did 2 this year.  For those I probably walked for the majority of them, so that doesn’t count (to me).  But I’ll count it as one of my 4 resolutions.

✘ I have written in my blog over the past year, but not near as much as I wanted to.

✘ Start writing a book…fail!

✘ Have a bigger and better garden…it was bigger but it was definitely not better!  We had so much rain earlier this year that it practically just drowned.  It was going good for a month or two and then everything just died.

✔ I think I have gotten better at photography this past year.  At least I’ve learned some more so I feel like I’ve gotten better.

✔ Obviously I did survive this year, so that’s always a good thing!

This past year was a tough year.  I’ve noticed that the past several years have all been tough and I’m so ready for that to change, but this year was especially tough.  Like most blog posts around this time of year, I shall reflect on what has happened over the past 12 months.  Without a doubt, the toughest part of this year has been our nephew getting diagnosed with brain cancer.  Tears, constant worry, and overall emotions have dominated most of the year.  And that’s just a tiny, tiny, incomprehensible fraction of what my sister-in-law and brother-in-law have gone through, and continue to go through.  They are so strong and remain so positive.  That’s all you can do, really.  I’m trying to force myself to realize that it’s not in our hands and there is no point in worrying.  I’m trying (another new resolution of mine) not to let all these negative emotions get to me and think more positively.

Also, I made a career change this year…just a few weeks ago, actually.  That was a huge, huge, HUGE step for me.  I went back to college in 2007 and graduated in 2010 with a degree in computer programming.  Ever since 2012 I started looking for a job where I could actually use my degree.  I went on interview after exhausting interview.  They would get my hopes up and say that they would call and I would never hear anything back.  I would study as much as I could and refresh my mind with anything I could find on Google…interview tips, practice tests, etc….anything to try to give me the best shot during the interview.  But every single time it would just never work out.  It really seemed like it was just not meant to be so I quit returning calls to recruiters when they would call me.  Then in November, I received a message from a recruiter but our whole family was sick with the stomach flu so I didn’t even really think about it for a few days.  Over the course of the weekend, they called me 2 or 3 times really wanting to speak with me.  So, I decided to at least go in for an interview just for fun.  On the phone interview and even in the face-to-face interview I told them flat out that I was looking for a junior position and that if they were looking for someone with a lot of experience that they were wasting their time.  I was tired of trying to pretend I was something I really wasn’t in past interviews so I was just myself for this one.  I told them I didn’t have much experience but I was smart and was willing to and could learn anything they wanted to teach me.  In the interview I met with a room full of other guys and for the first time ever, it was just a relaxed atmosphere and they were really laid back.  They were joking around and it turned out to be the best interview I had ever had, completely different from all the others.  I started to get really excited but at the same time was completely terrified.  It was a weird feeling.  I had been at my previous job for over 11 years, the owner of the company was awesome, they were flexible with my schedule, I could wear jeans and t-shirts every day, it was only 10 minutes from my house, I had met some awesome people, and had finally made a few friends and had actually started to come out of my shell a little bit.  So, to leave all that for the unknown, starting over, not knowing anyone, having to learn new things, having to dress up for work, having to drive farther, having to find someone to help watch Cayden – it was a very tough decision.  But this was the job I had been looking for…somewhere where I could finally get my foot in the door and learn what I went to school for.  I still wonder if I made the right choice, but day by day I feel more confident about the answer to that question.  I’m learning a little bit more every day, we found an awesome babysitter for Cayden, and this is what will be best for my family in the future.  As tough as it may be now, when I look back years from now I know I will think that I made the right decision.  I love quotes and I think Mark Twain said it perfectly…”Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

Ok, enough rambling…here are my big resolutions for 2014, in no particular order:

1) Lose my final 20-25 pounds!  I really want to be able to wear a 2 piece bathing suit this summer for the first time since high school.2) Gain muscle – or at least be able to see some of my muscles.
3) Pay off some credit cards.
4) Run in a 10k.  No walking.
5) Write one handwritten letter a month to someone special.  I saw this on a website and thought it was a good idea 🙂

Happy New Year!

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