2009 To-Do List, in review. Grade: D+ or thereabouts.

It's that time of year again, peoples.  Time to take stock of the year and look at what I managed to accomplish from this list.  In all honesty I'm not sure how I thought I'd ever get even half of this stuff done, and somehow a lot of it seems less important now.  But in the spirit of honoring commitments, I'm making myself go through it again to see how far I went. Btw, if I blogged about it, I linked to it!  See below.

Note to self: 2010's list will be much more reasonable.


  • Summer weekend trip to Lake Tahoe. Wanted to do this for the past 4 years and still haven't done it.  NEXT YEAR.
  • One long-weekend domestic trip: New Mexico, Portland, New Orleans/Texas, Hawaii, Yellowstone, OR DC area.  Went to Boston.  Does that count?
  • Visit LA at least 2x and go to Magic Mountain.  Actually went 3x, here, alluded to here, and here.
  • Visit (or camp at) Muir Woods, Mt. Tam, Bodega Bay, northern CA (Eureka or Shasta), and one California destination I've never heard of.  Addition: Getaway to Sonoma.
  • Fall 2009 trip - China/SE Asia, Japan, South America, Costa Rica, Western Australia OR Spain/Morocco. FAIL.
Health & Wellness
  • Sleep at least 7 hours/night (before 12:30am on weeknights). FAIL.
  • Wear sunscreen daily, and lip balm for my perpetually chapped lips. FAIL.
  • Move my bike from home (in LA) to the Bay Area.  Got a bike from Jimbo.  Doesn't mean I rode it, but I'm counting this one =)
  • Hike once a month. I probably went 1-2x/month in the warmer months so I'm counting this.  Also, "urban hikes" count.
  • Conquer my asthma and my gimp knee (so I can ski by next winter). FAIL.
  • ...and get my weight back down to 120-125lbs., however that has to happen (gymming, walking, eating less). I hit 127, so I came close.
  • Take a self-defense class. FAIL, but I got myself a new can of pepper spray.
Personal Projects

Sewing (skills): Learn one new technique every month, things like: install a zipper, read/execute a pattern, tailoring techniques such as darts, princess seams, etc., create a pattern, smocking and shirring, install interfacing, create pleats, Hong Kong seams, linings for anything, make a pocket, and dye fabric. FAIL.

    Sewing (projects): 
    • Finish my fingerless gloves. FAIL.
    • Alter the $5 sari dress and skirt that I bought at the Lotus Festival and never wore. FAIL.
    • Make a sundress out of the pretty batik I bought in Malaysia last year. FAIL.
    • Make an evening/cocktail dress out of the material I bought at Joann's + all the sewing ideas I've been collecting for the past few months. FAIL.
    • Make an obi-style beltFAIL
    • Organize recipes and start recording family favorites and newly inspired creations in a journal or binder.
    • Master my slow-cooker so I don't starve when I start my new job
    • Recipes to master: 
    • The 'One Great Cookie' recipe for browned-butter cookies in the 2006 issue of Gourmet Magazine. Still time to do this!
    • The Google chef's recipe for madeleines
    • My coworker's famous chocolate-chip cookie recipe
    • A really great gingerbread cookie recipe
    • Addition: my old boss' wonderful recipe for blueberry scones
    • Chili (this one was too tomato-y)
    • Baked butterfish with miso glaze like they used to make in our cafeteria. OMG BIG FAT FAIL.
    • Flan! FAIL.
    Volunteering: Find one great organization/activity to commit to. FAIL.

    General Know-how:

    • Learn about the import/export process and more about retail distribution. Working on it.
    • Read some of those motivational books and start a learning journal of sorts.
    Just for Fun
    • Taiko drumming classes. FAIL.
    • Organize and post my photos from my trip to Asia last year Haven't quite posted all of them yet though.
    • 3x the average traffic-per-post on my blog
    • Use my new 40-min. commute to learn some things.  Get Spanish-language and Chinese-language tapes.
    • Work on an indie film. Bug former coworker Tony about producing his next movie OR get involved in a theater production (ask Annie). FAIL, though I did talk to a girl once about putting on some kind of production.
    • Film footage and piece together a 5-10 minute short of any kind. FAIL.
    • Work with my mom to translate my grandmother's life story, and interview my dad about his family history. FAIL.
    • Send out Christmas cards next year. THERE'S STILL TIME TO DO THIS!
    • Take 1 class with Doc Wong, and learn how to drive stick shift. FAIL.
    • Mail out DVD copies of the play I produced 5 years ago to the cast/crew, which have been sitting on my desk for the past 3 years -___- I gave some out in person but overall I'd call this one a FAIL.
    • Don't buy any more clothing or home stuff until my birthday (in February).
    • Pay off my car loan. I'm pretty close I think.
    • Read www.fool.com or other other educational resources once a week and take a couple seminars about investing.  Learn about stocks and all that, because it's Greek to me now.  And identify 3 areas to invest in.
    • Donate at least 10% of my net earnings to church and some non-profits that are doing great work. Still time to do this - stay tuned.
    Spiritual, Personal Improvement, and Miscellaneous
    • Develop a daily prayer life. Pray regularly for my daddy. Le sigh.
    • Re-join a small group at church and go 2x/month. FAIL.
    • Forgive and let go of some specific, debilitating things from my past
    • Work on communication (synthsizing/clarity) and listening skills.
    • Give up something that matters for someone who truly needs it
    • Buy only clothing made of natural materials: cotton, linen, bamboo, leather, silk, wool.  This will force me to get fewer things of higher quality, rather than synthetic blends like the cheap stuff from Forever 21 that pills after 2 wears.  I didn't stick to this 100% but have gotten much better, so I'm counting this.
    • Clean out/reorganize my closet twice
    • Read: The Far Pavilions, Malcom X's Autobiography, and at least 2 other novels OMG I can't believe I forgot to read the Far Pavilions!
    • Watch: After Life, Carnivale Season 1, Hellboy 1 and 2, Elizabeth 1 and 2, It's a Wonderful Life, Waking Life, Slumdog Millionaire, the Orphic Trilogy, the Decalogue, Brazil, M, Wild Strawberries
    • Organize my mp3s and create a handful of playlists so I can start using my iPod again
    • ...and the one thing that will make it all possible: STOP WASTING SO MUCH TIME.  Spend less than 1.5 hours/day online--do less online shopping and find a way to blog more efficiently! BIG. FAT. FAIL!
    10 responses
    I am always fascinated by these end-of-year posts you make. At the beginning of 2009 I actually did something similar but 2 differences: my goals were for a 6 month period and I reviewed them every fortnight. I found that the fortnightly reviews seemed to help and I accomplished significantly more than I expected to at the beginning.
    hahah, steph, this was awesome to read. the "FAIL"s made me laugh out loud. but don't worry, you have the rest of your life to do lots of things! and yes--your list was too long to begin with. =) consider all the things you DID do!
    @Tony I'd love to see your list!
    @Jean haha, well, I guess I tried and didn't expect to finish it all..
    @Kevin excellent article - thanks so much for the link! I may just use this to craft my 2010 resolutions...ahem...calibrations =)
    Here are some of them:

    • Reduce the amount of superfluous paper in my life: got off a bunch of junk mailing list and opted into paperless billing and statements for all my financial accounts.
    • Learn how to climb outdoors: went climbing outdoors twice.
    • Get my paperwork together for my greencard application: done, although I subsequently decided to abandon the process.
    • Write a useful app for the Palm Pre: I'm almost done writing my first app, although it's a game.
    • nterview a few homeless people to discover their life stories: interviewed two.
    • Gain a sense of place: I think I might have backpedalled on that one!

    I'll show you the rest of them in person ;-)

    Its great A+ for creating the list of resolutoins. Good start is a great start.
    @J Kaur thanks for the encouragement =)  Stay tuned for my 2010 list!
    You are hysterical. And I admire you. :)
    Thanks, tlyons =)  Btw, sad you moved your blog from Posterous to Wordpress!  BOO!
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