Archive | December, 2012

New Year’s Eve

31 Dec

Ok, I’m going to go ahead and say it; New Year’s Eve is the absolute worst holiday for a single person.  For the past six years that I have been single, I’ve been forced to watch couples ring in the new year all cuddley and be lovey dovey while I sit back and watch and push my cynicism and bitterness to the depths of my soul that I didn’t even know existed.  I’m feeling extra lonely out here in North Dakota given the geographical boundaries between me and my old life, but I will power through this New Year’s Eve just as I have the past several; with a smile on my face and many alcoholic beverages.

The difference between the past and this New Year is in the year that I have layed out ahead of myself.  I’ve decided to take advantage of the fact that I am a single person and have no social life by filling all of my free time with working my two jobs, finishing my last two Master’s degree classes, exploring possible business opportunities in Boomtown, USA, and many other goals to help complete my work/life balance (Of course the areas of love and my social life might be a bit lighter than the rest… let’s just say it’s by choice).

For instance, I am committed to develop my writing skills.  I would like to write at least one blog post per week (now, I’m just sounding like a broken record!) on the Bonanza blog, to write articles for all six issues of a local publication in Michigan called Simply Hers magazine and also to write at least one article to be published on a national forum (lofty goal, I know.. but what the hell), either print or online regarding the social, economic, and environmental impacts of a Boomtown or the Oil Industry.

I’ve also decided I want to learn to play my new guitar this year.  I have planned to practice at least 3 times per week with my two coworkers who also are just learning how to play.  Another goal is to finish at least three books this year that are not school related.  I’ve also written down spiritual goals; I’d like to attend a fellowship group at least once per month . I’m not necessarily super religious but I think it’s important to maintain a spiritual connection with a higher purpose.  This may also be substituted for being out in nature.  You really cannot find a truer religion than by being out in The Great Outdoors.

There’s always that pesky fitness goal.  I try to set the bar low on this one because this goal is a real son of a bitch.  I’ve decided to focus on things such as taking my vitamins on a regular basis, run a 5K this summer, do any sort of physical activity at least three times per week, and to drink less beer (which basically means switching to whiskey and maybe adding “drink less” to my goals list… baby steps).

That leaves my travel and financial goals.  Travel wise; I want to explore the Dakotas and middle of the country while I’m here.  Such as Deadwood, SD, Mt. Rushmore, Yellow Stone National Park, and Theodore Roosevelt National Park.  Also, I’d like to make it out to visit new friends in the Seattle area, take a trip to Ireland, and finally, make it back to Michigan at least once next year.

Financially, well, you know my financial goals.  Pay off those devil loans.  My first step is drafting an animation plan.  Laying out every dollar and how I’m going to spend it.  That has also never been a strength of mine, which is probably why I’m in this predicament to begin with.  But no use crying over signed promissory notes.

What I’ve come up with so far is pay off all loans under $8,000 in the first six months of 2013.  That will leave the large ones to start chipping away at.  I also want to start an emergency fund of about $7,500 by the end of 2013.  That just leaves creating a very detailed budget and then sticking to it.

Mostly I vow to dedicate all 365 days of 2013 to these goals and to better my life, not just one night of the year. Now, I realize I do have some fairly high goals and that statistically speaking, only about 8% of resolution makers are successful but on the flip side of that coin people who are intentional and make resolutions are 10 times more likely to achieve their goals than non-resolution makers (Static Brain, 2012).  I’ll take those odds any day!

I hope that all of you agree and have pledged to at least attempt to make one positive change in your life for 2013.  You can do a lot in a year, and I plan to take full advantage of the time I’m gracious enough to get on this Earth.   Happy New Year to you all and whether you are single, married, or indifferent, make sure to eat, drink and be merry!  Bring it on 2013, let’s see what you’ve got!

Bye, bye Bonanza

10 Dec

It’s official… I sold The Bonanza.  It was definitely a bittersweet moment but just as every thing else in life, we must move on.  Not only did I make a nice profit off of the old gal but I owe my future to her as well.

That old motor home was the catalyst for my new found life out here on the prairie. Had I not found it, been able to afford it, and had friends to help me fix her up, I’m almost certain I would have never made the move. And I’m so glad I did.

I have created a nice life for myself here. I have abundant opportunities, made a lot of meaningful connections with people from all over this great country, and I’m learning endless lessons about myself and the world. Finally, I can take a proactive stance in planning for my future. I am old enough and wise enough to know that life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans, but it’s liberating to finally take some control over my life!