This is a time for resolutions, and I will get to those, but first a reflection on this past year.
On life and family:
We (my family) have had a good year. Out girls turned eight and one. Our eldest started swim team and has progressed tremendously. She has also turned into a voracious reader, which makes us happy. Our youngest has continued to surprise us with her enthusiasm for just about everything. My job has, for the present, remained secure in the face of cutbacks and a lousy economy.
The biggest “event” by far was the accident my wife was in, and her ensuing injuries. Our youngest was in the accident as well but came away with only a scratch. My wife ended up with a broken pelvis and other painful injuries. That was more than six weeks ago and she is still in a lot of pain and needs a walker or cane to get around – plus strong pain meds. It will be a while for a complete healing, if that ever truly happens. We are hopeful and blessed at the continual gift of life.
What has been the most amazing experience of this year has been the outpouring of help and love we have received in response to Maricel’s accident. This has been a difficult journey for us in many ways and on many levels. I don’t know how we would manage without the graciousness and goodness of others.
What is hard for me to get my mind around is just how close my wife and daughter came to death. I am so thankful they are still alive. Once again we are learning how precious and beautiful life is.
I started this blog two years ago. My initial goal was to blog about movies and connect with other such bloggers. That I did, but quickly this blog became a place for me to explore other interests including (in no particular order) music, poetry, family, art, politics, chess, food, architecture, theology, religion, travels, and much more. In short it became an online journal of whatever I wanted to write about. This is what I think a personal blog should be.
I had high hopes of doing more with this blog. I was thinking of switching from Blogger to some better blogging tool (e.g. WordPress) so I could get more creative with the design and layout. I had plans to do more in-depth film studies and to write more poetry. I was also going to take a lot more pictures and do extended photo essays. Alas, like you I have a busy life. Blogging does not pay the bills, and it can get in the way of paying the bills or doing other important tasks. So blogging has been another thing that takes up precious time but also gives back some personal joys. Finding the balance is where it’s at.
I am on the band wagon with most people this time of year. I resolve to lose weight and get in shape. My hope, as long as my knee can take it, is to run (or run/walk) a half marathon sometime in 2009. I am not built as a runner, but I think such a goal will encourage me to eat better, get outside more, lose weight, etc., etc. We’ll see. (Related to this resolution: climb a mountain, ride a century bike ride.)
I also resolve to purge our house and our lives of clutter. We are packrats. We could do better with less. So purging is the game plan. This also includes organizing our finances better, cleaning out the garage, setting up the painting studio again for my wife, and setting up a better music situation (for our guitars, piano, and other instruments). Again, we’ll see how that one goes. We have a lot of inertia to overcome.
I resolve to take more time off work and spend more time with my family. This includes doing more activities like camping and general vacationing. I always seem to have maxed out my paid leave hours (accrued) at work, so I need to use them, and my family needs me to use them. (Related to this resolution: go hiking with my family, take my kids to ball games, have friends over for dinner)
I resolve to finally brew my own beer. My wife got me all the stuff I need, but I’ve just been too lazy to actually do it.
I resolve to blog less and write more. I want to get back to revising my screenplay (and finishing another). I also want to write more poetry again.
Finally, but not really finally, I want to re-connect with my love for the arts. This includes going to galleries and museums more (taking my family of course), as well as read/writing about art. I got a college degree in art history and it still means something to me.
I pray that this new year goes well for my family, for you, and for the world. I am deeply saddened by the violence, suffering, and death in the world. I want my kids to grow up in a better world. More importantly I want my kids to be the kids to grow into the kind of people who make it their life’s work to love their neighbors as themselves, to work for the kingdom here on earth as they long for it in their hearts, and to know that personal freedom is ultimately about character not mere actions. These are also areas in which I need to grow and mature. That, really, is my new year’s resolution. Of course, that should be my resolution every day.