Happy New Year, folks! I hope your new year is off to a great start. Do you make new year's resolutions? I don't really, but I think the new year is a great time for a fresh start, for setting goals, making plans and contemplating the previous year.
One of my goals for 2017 is to blog more often. I'm sad to say that in 2016 I created fewer than 50 posts. Compare that to 2011, the first full year in which I was blogging, when I created 74 posts. Blogging is a pastime I enjoy, but to be honest, sometimes I stress over it. What should I blog about? Will people care enough to leave comments? How much (or how little) should I write? How can I find the time? I don't want this hobby to become a chore. It's also hard not to feel pressure when there are so many great blogs out there with exciting stories of travel and home renovations -- with amazing photographs to boot.
The blogs I find most enjoyable are those that feature real lives. Blogs like Jones Design Company; For the Love of a House; Classic, Casual Home; Nine & Sixteen and Posie Gets Cozy, to name just a few (see the sidebar for links to more of my favorites). These blogs feature real stories, great photos and personal details. Even though we haven't met, I feel like I know these folks. I would like for my blog to provide that same feeling. Real, honest and personal. So in 2017, I'm going to attempt to post more to my blog and worry less about creating the perfect posts (and how many comments they will or won't generate). I need to remember that I have many readers who don't leave comments, but who enjoy my posts. For this I am very thankful.
Another goal for 2017 is to read more books. Do you know about Goodreads? It's a great place to keep lists of books I've read and those I'd like to read, as well as read member reviews and get recommendations based on books I like.
Last year I set a reading goal (I'm not even going to share with you the pitifully low number of books I aimed to read) ... needless to say, I didn't meet my goal. Not even close. This year, I have a new reading goal (the number's even higher!), and I am off to a good start already. Yesterday I began reading an Alice Hoffmann novel called Blackbird House, and so far I love it. I read 73 pages in one sitting, which is really good for me, considering that reading almost always puts me to sleep in 20 minutes or less. That's probably one reason I didn't meet my 2016 reading goal. Ha!
A third goal for 2017 is to exercise more. I'm an avid swimmer, and have been lap swimming regularly since 2015. But I slip into periods when I don't work out for a week or more. And a week can easily turn into two weeks or three. It's really hard to get up at 5:00 on a cold winter morning, pull on a swimsuit and get into a cold car to drive oneself to the gym. Then there's getting into the chilly pool ... There are too many reasons to stay in a warm bed snuggling with my hubby until 6:15! But swimming is the best thing for me physically and mentally, so I need to make it a priority. It takes diligence. But I can do it, if I just remind myself of the benefits, like the 5 pounds I lost this past year and how good I feel after a 30-minute swim.
So what resolutions, goals or plans do you have for 2017? If you'd like to share -- and I hope you will -- just click on "Comments" below. I look forward to hearing from you. Thanks, as always, for following My Little Bungalow. Here's to a great year ahead.