See Hatsie Plan

Plan: I Resolve 2014

Today marks my Four Year Anniversary in blogging.  Four years ago, I sat in my tiny, tiny apartment after eating yet another pasta dinner for one and decided to make a change.  I decided to get out of my rut and into my kitchen.  I decided to push myself and learn how to cook something other than pasta.  This blog was born from the resolution to cook and try two new recipes a week then document my adventures and misadventures here to keep myself accountable.

This blog has gone through many a change since then.  First, I realized that someone other than my mother was reading.  That was a start.  Then, I started writing my own recipes after my instruction to add “a little bit of cayenne” led a reader to add more than 2 tablespoons of the stuff.  I learned to take better photographs and to construct an appetizing plate after realizing that my yellow Fiesta plates made everything look sickly.  I began documenting my travels, writing about my family more, and telling you a lot about my little life.  While I still try to make two new recipes a week, this has become so much more than a resolution.  I’ve grown with this blog in the past four years and you have been here to witness that.  It’s pretty cool, really.

Even still, every year on January 10th I mark the anniversary of my first resolution with my intentions for the coming year.  It does me some good to take the first week or so of January to really think about how I want this year to go, and then to write it here with the same goal: accountability.

This year my resolutions look a little different.  There are so many things I want to accomplish this year and in trying to narrow them down into attainable goals, I made three categories: Blog, Skill, Life, and a bonus category, Bucket List, for those things I want to do, try, or attain just once.  My resolutions aren’t because I think I’m lacking something, or am unhappy with the status quo; my resolutions are to inspire me, and you, hopefully, to try at least one thing new this year.  That’s a success if you ask me.

With that in mind, here we go.

This year I want my blog to grow even more.  The past few months I have been using an editorial calendar to plan my posts so that I am not only more consistent but also so that I won’t forget about the backlog of recipes I’ve been meaning to share with you.  I hope to continue this trend and in doing so, post at least 10 times a month, with the majority of those posts being new and simple recipes for you to try.

I want to add more videos to the site and become more comfortable in front of the camera overall (yikes.  Prepare yourself for a lot of second-hand-embarassment.) I want to bring in my Facebook Page and Fans even more with weekly menu posts on Mondays that will give you a look into my totally OCD dinner journal, and hopefully provide a little inspiration should you want to take the Two Recipes Challenge with me.  All of these things will hopefully provide a more interactive and enjoyable experience for you, while keeping me challenged and inspired.

Also, redesign. This space needs a major facelift and has for a while.  I’m talking easier searching, an awesome recipe index, clean new design, better–no–working comments, and overall awesomeness.  I love my site as it is, but after four years, I think it’s time for it to mature a bit.

I believe you’ve heard about my trip to Napa Valley?

I came home crazy inspired and eager to learn.  It was the first time in a while I’d felt that spark of true interest in a thing I know very little about.  The last time I felt this, I went and changed my major to History, so, it’s a powerful little spark.  That said, I really want to learn about wine.  My grandfather was passionate about the subject, as is anyone who has really immersed themselves into all of it’s nuances.  It encompasses travel, history, science, and taste.  These are all things I love.  I want to start by reading a few books about it, then maybe take a class or two.  Who knows, maybe in a year you will be reading from a certified Sommolier, but I wouldn’t hold your breath.

I really just want to learn something new, and wine seems like the perfect thing.  Plus, wine tasting?  That’s the coolest homework ever.

Here’s a sort of all-encompassing category that includes all the ways in which I want to better myself.  I want to read, a lot.  I want to read at least 4 books a month, preferably more.  I love reading and there are so many good books that I am eager to dive into.  Plus, ask any writer.  Writers need to read.

I want to continue to build my savings and continue to try to be my best, healthiest, and kindest me.  You know, you typical New Year’s Resolutions.  Monthly deposits into my savings account and fitness goals will help me keep track of the measurable parts.  The others will just need to become a habit.

I want to really foster my relationships and reach out to friends.  That’s been my favorite part of {Signed and Sealed} and I’m going to continue this into 2014.

I want to nourish my writing and just sit down and do it.  I’ve been talking about all these ideas I have in my head for years, it’s time to start doing something about them.  I found a quote on Pinterest that says “The dream is free, the hustle is sold separately.”  It’s time to hustle.

This is new for me; most of my yearly resolutions are things I want to work on all year.  But this year as I was thinking about what I wanted to accomplish in 2014, so many of those things were something I wanted to do just once.  My resolutions started to look like a bucket list, and so, they are.  Some are serious and require equal amounts of guts and determination, some are silly, because as any list-maker knows, you want to put some things on there that you know will be easy to cross off.  There’s nothing better than crossing off something on your list.

  1. Research and try a juice cleanse.  My mom’s whole-heartedly against this one, as I have a wee-little blood sugar issue, but I’m going to research low-sugar cleanses and just do it.  Worst case scenario, I feel terrible and don’t ever try one again.  I really want to know what the fuss is about!  If you have any recommendations, please let me know!
  2. Redesign the Blog.  I mentioned this above, but it’s going here too.  Writing it twice means it’s twice as likely to happen, right?
  3. Take a vacation to a warm beach.  Warm might seem a redundant adjective here, but last year I went to quite a few beaches, none of which were over 60 degrees.  I want to be propped up in a beach chair with a big floppy hat listening to waves.  And I don’t want to be in a coat.
  4. Go to my two wonderful friends’ wedding in March.  One of my favorite high school friends is marrying one of my favorite college friends which means it’s probably going to be the best wedding ever.  I’m going to be there, with bells on.
  5. Meet Tom.  Then continue to visit Tom (and company) as much as possible.  Tom is the cutest little red-head kid in all of the land, and is the son of my best friend Amy and her husband.  I haven’t met him yet because I live in pesky Pennsylvania, but that all changes.  Before his 1st birthday.
  6. Participate in Rachel Ray’s Great American Cookbook Contest.  This scares me just to write it here, because I can think of all the ways it won’t or shouldn’t happen, and self-preservation tells me to keep it under wraps until it does work out.  But I’ve been dreaming about writing a cookbook for a long time, and this seems like a good place to start.  This is the hustle!  More on this later.
  7. Write a book proposal.  This kind of goes hand-in-hand with No. 6, because I’ll have to write a proposal to enter the contest, but if the contest doesn’t work out, I want to explore other venues.
  8. Go on the 2nd (hopefully annual) Girls Trip with my Mom and Sister-in-Law.  We had such a great time this year and are already throwing around ideas for next year.
  9. Buy a new bed.  See?  A silly one.  I’m still sleeping on the bed I “bought” when I moved into a furnished apartment (I can see your judgment from here) and it’s time to upgrade.  Beds are a big purchase, and I’ve been dragging my feet because I can think of so many other ways to put that money to good use (see No. 3) but in the end, it’s time.
  10. Visit my tall blonde friend as much as possible.   I had a blast in Abilene this year with Katy and Amy and want to make sure this happens as much as it can this year.  This goes along with fostering relationships, a life resolution of mine, and while sending mail can certainly do this, there’s nothing better than a good ol’ face-to-face, three day talk.
  11. Go to a concert.  Billy Joel is coming to Pittsburgh in February.  Just saying.
  12. Make Homemade Pasta.  I recently purchased a pasta roller and seeing as there’s not much in this world I love more than homemade pasta, I intend to use it.  A lot.
There you have it.  My goals, plans, and schemes for 2014.  Some are seriously scary (book proposal) and some are going to be to easy (pasta has never been a problem for me).  I’d love to hear what you have in store for 2014.  Let’s compare notes.  Let’s keep each other accountable.
But most importantly, you nice people do so much for me and I hope you know how appreciative I am.  Onward to (the rest of) 2014!

2 thoughts on “Plan: I Resolve 2014

  1. I just stumbled upon your new blog. What a fun person you are (and always have been!) I loved reading your goals. I have recently had a “stop making pasta” (expect with tacos) moment and am trying to be more productive in the kitchen. Do me a favor and share some books your reading! I love a good read, but never make the time to do it. love you so and am so proud of all you’re doing.

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