I rarely make new year’s resolutions. For no real reason, other than that I think the pressure to perform tends to set you up for failure. Or me, anyway. Also, trying to change many things at once normally means I change nothing at all, leaving me feeling like a bit of a failure.
That said, I have decided to take on a few ‘projects’ for the month of January and one or two for the year too, hoping to capitalise on the nesting hormones that should soon kick in!
- The first isn’t really news, as it’s something we do every January – Eat Through The Kitchen.It’s a simple premise, really: take stock of what’s at the back of the cupboard, and lurking in the bottom drawer of the freezer, as well as that odd shelf in the fridge, and find a way to incorporate everything (that’s still edible!) into your recipes this month. It’s a great way to clear out, use up and make space for fresh food. We’ve had a rather frugal December, so in truth, eating through the kitchen is more likely to take nearer to two weeks than a whole month – and include a lot of chickpeas – but the idea remains the same.It’s a great way to prepare for spring cleaning the kitchen, and can be a wonderful way to save money in a generally tight month.
- Project two I’ve titled the 5-5-5 Challenge. I gave this one a test run just before Christmas and again last week to see how it works out and must admit I’m excited about seeing it through most of January. I’ll tell you more about it next week though.My life seems to be dreadfully cluttered. No matter how much I clear up and tidy up, there’s always clutter in every room and no matter how many cupboards or shelves we add, there’s still never enough space. So it’s time to create some order: There are eight rooms in our house – including the living room, conservatory, kitchen, bathroom and hallways with the airing cupboard and under-the-stairs cupboard. For the month of January, I will go through each room once a week and find:
- 5 things to reduce (i.e. combine the two boxes of opened pregnancy vitamins into one, or target and use up one at a time each of the four bottles of almost empty shampoo in the shower)
- 5 things to reuse (and I’m taking liberties with the meanings of reuse here: I’m including items to give away on our local Freecycle network, or to the charity shops, or even sell if there’s any value to doing so. Of course this also includes finding new uses for things – like the empty clothes rail in my cupboard can be moved to Ameli’s room for Squidgey’s clothes, meaning I don’t have to buy a new wardrobe – just give this one a bit of TLC.)
- And 5 things to recycle. (and again, I’m taking liberties with the intended meaning, possibly, and making it mean five things to put in the recycling or general bin bags. We’re really fortunate in our area that almost everything can be recycled and as is we send out two to three bags of recycling to every bag of household rubbish each week.)If I can, for a period of four weeks, aim to do that in every room of the house, I think it’ll go a long way to decluttering our lives – at least enough to make space for an additional family member!’
Looking beyond January, I have two challenges for the year.
- The first is Mamatography 2012: taking a photograph each day of the ‘biggest’ thing to have happened in my day. Whether that was clearing out the study, or doing something adventurous or even just photos of my child(ren) – I want to capture 2012 on film as I did with 2010, and am really pleased to have done. It was a hard thing to do then, and probably harder still now as I don’t have a proper camera at the moment, but still: highs and lows of 2012, here we come.
- And the final challenge for 2012 is this: Introducing a baby into our lives. The having bit is easy. It’s the balancing a newborn with a toddler, while trying to maintain a home, work, blog, marriage and a little bit of me – not necessarily in that order. That might be my greatest challenge in 2012, but fortunately I have a little time still to ease myself into it. Rest assured though: You’ll be the first to know all about it!
How about you? What challenges, projects and changes does 2012 hold for you?