35 Things: April Update

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Another month gone, another update post. I hope you guys don't mind these too much, because they really keep me on track.

I did my monthly things, plus:

16. Never go to bed with a dirty kitchen for a month. I won't pretend I was perfect at this, but there was really only 2 mishaps: the first involved me completely blowing it off, and the second involved me completely forgetting until the next morning, when I realized (happily) that the kitchen wasn't really dirty anyway. So I'm checking this off the list!

30. Read 32 books. I read three this month, which puts me at only 1 book behind for being on track for my goal (according to Goodreads), and I'm almost halfway done with a book, so I'm feeling good! I read:

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. This was recommended for people that liked the Hunger Games series, so YA Fiction in all its glory. I really liked it and was only seriously put out by some language. 4 stars.

Better Than You Think You Are by Ardeth Greene Kapp. I read this to hopefully give me a little confidence boost. It worked in the sense that it left me with very positive feelings, but it might not have been "hard core" enough for me. Great for a general pick-me-up, though! 4 stars.

Legend by Marie Nu. Also recommended for Hunger Games fans, also quite good. It was a quick and entertaining read (which, let's face it, is sometimes all I can handle nowadays). And I guess it was a 4 star month, because hey, 4 stars.

Well, what do you know, that's all I did this month! I had some other things planned but I guess they fell through. I was hoping to get the guest bathroom done this month but I'm not quite finished, even though I've made some good progress. Hopefully it'll be done in the next few days.

I'm also thinking it might be a good time to reconsider some of my goals, and decide whether or not they are still important and realistic. There are a couple in particular that I have to do some serious thinking about. And if you have a list of your own, you should do the same. There's no harm (or shame) in reevaluating!

Happy May Day.

35 Things: November Update

I got A LOT done this month, so instead of a big intro about how we are almost done with the year and November just flew by and blah, blah...let's just go!

7. Create a meal plan. And yes, the week of Thanksgiving is totally free game. Bwah-ha-ha!

12. Bake a new cookie every month. This month I made these Oatmeal Cranberry White Chocolate Chunk cookies, which were totally disappointing if you ask me (Dallin will probably continue to insist that they were fine), and also these Pumpkin Cheesecake Cookies with a Maple Cream Cheese Glaze, which were good, although the glaze never set quite right.

17. Clean out bedside drawers. This took me all of about 45 minutes one morning. #whattookyousolong.

18. Go on a picnic. The Saturday after Thanksgiving, we got some Chick-Fil-A and ate it outside at the Gateway Airport. I really don't like eating outside, so it's kind of a big deal that I would choose to do so. Which is kinda why I made it a "thing to do" this year.

20. Go on a hike. Camelback. No, I didn't make it to the top, seeing as how you had to scale a freaking rock cliff to do so, and my non-exercising self was already hating my exercising self, and I really like it better when my selfs get along. But hey, it was still a good hike.

23. Create a grocery budget. I am so not a budgeter. This is probably because I kind of have a built-in budget system, which is the deep, dark fear I have of running out of money. I have always been afraid of this. Like, actually afraid. It even bothered me when my parents would make big purchases because I was sure it meant we would run out of money. But I digress. I made the budget, and I stuck to it. Only time will tell if I continue to use it.

25. Read 30 books. Maybe I'll do a separate post with specific feelings on these books, because I read FIVE this month! Go me! For now, here are just the ratings and a one word review.

-Crossed by Allie Condie: 3 stars. Boring.

-The Death Cure by James Dasher: 3.5 stars. Underwhelming.

-A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith: 5 stars. Moving.

-Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling: 3 stars. Entertaining.

-The Sherlockian by Graham Moore: 4 stars. Intriguing. Also, elementary.

32. Watch 10 movies I've "always wanted to see." This month, I watched Casablanca, which I was totally disappointed in, and also Breakfast at Tiffany's, which I found quite charming and would watch again, even if it didn't quite live up to the hype (which was probably impossible anyway).

33. Send 10 thank you cards for no real reason. What better time than Thanksgiving? I just wrote some cards to some people who deserved to be thanked for just being them. It made me all toasty inside.

35. Complete an act of service every month.

As you can see, I was quite the busy bee. And in case you didn't know it, I am also a poet. (B'dum-ch!)

I'm freaking out a little bit about making everything on my list happen. There are 6 or so things that I'm really just not sure about. But I guess that means it's time to stop whining and time to start doing! Bring it, December!

35 Things: September Update

Another month, another update on my 35 Things to Do this year! Here's what I got done.

7. Create a meal plan (at least once a week every month). I did this this month, but found my plans frustrated (once again) by last minute things that would come up. Is meal planning not for me?

12. Bake a new cookie every month. This months yum-ness: Snickerdoodles, ala Picky Palate. Um, hi - these were SO GOOD. I made them twice this month and plan on making them again. Just make sure you don't overcook them, aight?

15. Finish the nursery. You'd better believe it. Separate post to come.

22. Start a savings account for Madelyn. Well, it's for both girls, now. We call it our "trust fund" account. Cool.

25. Read 30 books. Yes, I finally read a book this month! But alas, just one. I can't believe how much reading time I don't have these days. But I read:

-The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer, Annie Barrows: Yes, I finally read this one. And I loved it! The only thing I scrunched up my mouth at was the random romance. I didn't think it fit. But superb writing and lovely characters. 4.5 stars.

30. Use cloth diapers exclusively for one week. My biggest drawback to doing this was asking a babysitter to use the cloth diapers, since I know they aren't exactly crowd pleasers. My mom is our usual babysitter, so I did my cloth diaper challenge while she was in Utah for a week. It honestly wasn't too hard and made me want to use my cloth dipes more. Please note: I only used them on Madelyn. Cloth diapers on a newborn IS hard.

32. Watch 10 movies I've "always wanted to see." Can you believe it's taken me so long to even get started on this one? Well, despite that, I watched 3 movies this month, so I think I'm off to a good start. I watched "Funny Girl" (meh. 3 stars), "Driving Miss Daisy" (really liked it. 4 stars), and "Dirty Dancing" (haha. 2.5 stars).

34. Update my ipod. Took me like 20 minutes at my parents' house (because they have all the best music). I'm so lame sometimes (for taking forever to get this done...but that's why it was on my list).

35. Complete an act of service every month.

And there you have it. The sad thing is that I still have about half of my things left to do...and we're definitely more than halfway done with the year. Oh dear. But never fret, my friends. I shall prevail.

35 Things: August Update

The month of August was largely devoted to making an attempt to accustomize myself to having two children. More on that later. That is, however, my excuse for only blogging twice during the whole month, as well as for once again having a fairly lame report on my 35 things. But hey, here's a quick update for ya.

7. Create a meal plan - at least once a week every month: I did this. We didn't follow the plan...but I made the plan and shopped for it. It's amazing though, how things can "come up" that ruin your dinner plans. Bother.

12. Bake a new cookie every month: This month's goodness - S'mores cookies. Recipe found here. I'd been seeing a lot of s'mores type things around, and it totally made me crave them. So I found this recipe, which is basically a yummy chocolate chip and marshmallow cookie baked on top of a graham cracker. And holy crap (pardon my French) they were yummy. But make sure you eat them all on the same day; the graham cracker gets soggy overnight.

35. Complete an act of service every month: I feel like I was served a lot more than I served this month, but I squeezed in a good deed for someone else. Yay me.

And that's it. No books. NO BOOKS, people! I finally started reading again towards the end of the month, but I didn't finish anything. And the nursery...ugh, if you only knew how close it was, you'd probably just tell me to count it as finished. But I won't. It must be 100% dunzo. I tried to make something to hang over the crib and it didn't work out. At all. So I'm blaming that on it not being done yet. But I promise you guys will get a post on that room when I finish.

Happy September! Here's to a month full of blog posts, eh, Pacha?

35 Things: July Update

Can I just say that July was a rough month? Seriously, towards the end of June, Dallin and I started to realize just what the month of July was going to be like, and it was almost enough to make us quit. Of course, the prospect of post-July ended up being enough to keep us going. And we closed out July with quite the bang, so it wasn't a completely awful month.

Here are the things I accomplished this month:

5. Attend a missionary discussion: Dallin is our ward's Ward Mission Leader, so I'm a little surprised it took me so long to get this one done. I didn't actually go to a discussion with the full-time missionaries, but Dallin and I went to give a new member discussion to a lady who recently started coming back to church. I'm really glad I went, even though it was kind of out of my comfort zone. Hopefully I'll get to go to another one sometime!

7. Create a meal plan (once a week every month): SO PROUD that I did this this month. Go me.

12. Bake a new cookie every month: I actually made 2 new cookies this month. One was crazy good (Peanut butter butterscotch chippers - Dallin especially loved these) and the other was aight (Chocolate chip and peanut butter truffle swirled cookies). {Click on the recipe titles to go to the recipes}

27. Graduate from grad school: Indeed, my pretties. This was the month in which I completed all my coursework, and now, I'm officially DONE. I will post later about how this feels. Rest assured, that post will include words like "glorious" and "freedom."

35. Complete an act of service every month: Been there, done that.

You may or may not have noticed one gaping hole in my accomplishments this month - no new books. Seriously, I didn't read a single book in the month of July. So awful. I look forward to getting back on track with that, though!

Also, the nursery is sooooo close. I just need something perfect to go over the crib. If I haven't found that something perfect by the end of this month, then I'm just going to call it good. I LOVE how it's turned out so far!

Also also, do you guys want a birth story post? I started writing one, and it was pretty long, and really, what do you need to know more than that I went into the hospital pregnant and came out with a baby? But I dunno, I like reading other people's birth stories (for whatever reason), so I might just write one no matter what. TBD.

Thanks for reading, friends. Happy August!

35 Things: June Update

Well, here we are. The end of our month of seeing each other daily. Who knows when you're going to hear from me again?

I'll be honest: I don't. Hopefully within the next few days.

So hey, let's update you on how I'm did with my 35 things list in June, shall we?

I've done my meal plan, and my monthly cookie, and my act of service.

I've also *almost* finished one measly book this month. Seriously, self? One?! And only *almost?* I am ashamed.

The book I've *almost* read is The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I really, really like this book. I won't give it a final rating yet, since I'm not quite done, but I'm thinking it's in the 4 1/2 star range. I'll probably finish it tomorrow. I love the writing style. It's very unique and full of character without being super weird or modern. And the story is moving and powerful. I kinda love it.

I also completed:

21. Throw a party. Flag Day party! It was epic.

28. Write one blog post every day for a month. If you haven't realized yet that I've done this...uh, where have you been?

I know, I wanted to finish the nursery this month too, but it just didn't happen. I'm making progress on it, but not quite done. Maybe next month.

Well, I guess that's it. Thanks for sticking with me this month. You guys rock, as if you didn't already know.

35 Things: May Update

Hey, it's your favorite part of the month! The part where I use my blog to keep track of the things I've done on my list.

The problem is...I haven't done anything other than the monthly stuff, with which you all are undoubtedly familiar by now. A meal plan for at least one week (#7), a new cookie every month (#12), and an act of service (#35). I did them all, and I'm proud that I'm keeping up with them!

Before I present you with my June plans, let me just say that the cookies I tried this month were so.good. No really, they were very good. Everyone loved them, with a capital L and probably 6-7 Os. So check out the recipe here. Yummm...

I also made progress on my book reading goal of 30 books (#25). Here's what I read:

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini - Really, really good. I was amazed that a book in which so many depressing things happened could leave me with an overall positive feeling. I guess all the heartbreaking stuff was broken up with enough joyful moments to make everything see more inspiring than depressing. 4 stars.

Delirium by Lauren Oliver - Following the currently popular trend, this book features a female protagonist who slowly comes to realize that the limits of her society are, well, limiting. It's a storyline that I'm getting just a little tired of, which takes off a star by itself, and then I despised the ending, so another half star for that leaves this one at 3 1/2 stars. Pretty good, though.

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner - The sequel to The Maze Runner, which I read last month. I would say it is better than the first one, but maybe only slightly. They are very similar. I like this series, but am kind of starting to feel like I'm reading a reworked version of Lost. It's a lot of questions and not a lot of answers. Which gets kind of frustrating. I'll give it four stars, though.

That takes me up to 15 books. According to Goodreads, that makes me 3 books ahead of my goal. Sweet.

So, June. I really need to get going on some of my one-time-thing stuff. And I've known all along that June was going to be my best chance, since it's in between student teachings and also pre-baby. So look out this month for:

-A blog post every day (#28) - lucky you!
-A party thrown by yours truly (#21)
-Finishing the nursery (#15)

Those are at least the ones I'm committed to. Who knows - maybe I'll have time to do some others, too. Happy June, everyone!

35 Things: April Update

To say that April has been a crazy month would be an understatement. So much time, so little to do. Strike that, reverse it.

BUT I was able to keep up on my stuff that I'm supposed to do every month for my 35 things, including (#7) making a meal plan (even if it included pizza/take-out for two days that week...ha!), (#12) baking a new cookie (yummy oatmeal chocolate chip, adapted from the amazing Emily's recipe, found here), and (#35) completing an act of service.

I also did...

14. Donate old clothes to DI: Hoo-freaking-ray. This has needed to be done forever. I expanded my donation to include shoes, books, etc. It felt so nice to de-clutter a bit. I swear I'm totally nesting. I want my house to be an clean, organized dream. Sigh....baby steps.

25. Read 30 books: added two more books to my list. Not as much as I would have liked, but one of them was by Cormac McCarthy, so you gotta cut me some slack.

-The Road by Cormac McCarthy: Hard to get into, hard to read, pretty disturbing. Very...different. Also very...depressing. Also very...3 stars.

-The Maze Runner by James Dashner: The story kept me going, the writing didn't. What happened to character development in this book? Did it even exist? The answer is no. I didn't so much care about any of the people. Any of them. That's sad. I'm usually a pretty caring person. Thanks a lot, James Dashner, for making me not care. I've heard the second book (The Scorch Trials) is better. True? False? Anyone know? I'll probably read it. But this one gets 3 1/2 stars.

Can you believe it's MAY already? It blows my freaking mind, I tell ya.

35 Things: March Update


6. Try a food I've never tried before - I'm a pretty picky eater, so I was moderately worried about this one. I also had to decide what qualified as "a new food," like, something I'd never ordered before at a restaurant wouldn't count. I had my mind set on trying guacamole (nope, never tried it), but then when I was presented with the opportunity to have a hot dog with some sauerkraut, I went for that instead.

Verdict: I didn't hate it, I didn't love it. It wasn't nearly as flavorful as I had always thought it would be. I don't know what I was expecting, considering the main ingredient is cabbage (fun fact), but I found that it added more texture than taste. And I didn't love the texture. But hey, I've tried it now. I still kinda want to try guacamole.

7. Create a meal plan - at least one week every month - yep yep.

12. Bake a new cookie every month - In honor of St. Patrick's Day/Girl Scout cookie season, I made some homemade thin mints. I really liked them! Recipe found here.

**Side note: Oh, and for the love, please don't use super dark chocolate. I dipped a few cookies in 85% cocoa content chocolate and whoa. Too much. Sometimes I just don't think things through. Of course it's going to be bitter, Katie! Sheesh. Side note over.**

25. Read 30 books - added three more books this month, bringing my grand total up to 10.

-The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls: This book pretty much gave me the creeps. I just wrote a pretty long paragraph as to why, and I just deleted it, because you probably don't want to read it. If I decide it needs to be said, I'll make it its own post. Deal? Okay. So, the creeps. 3 stars (good writing and fascinating (but creeps-inspiring) story).

-Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale: This was a quick read that had a lot of good things about it. Writing was a little juvenile in my opinion, but the main character was young and it's told from her point of view, so I can't really dock points for that. I liked it! 4 stars.

-The Princess Bride by William Goldman: I don't give 5 star reviews lightly, but wow, did I love this book. I can't believe it took me so long to read it, because so many people have been recommending it to me for so long. But I really enjoyed it. Don't be like me. Read it now. 5 stars.

35. Complete an act of service every month: done.

So, this month was mostly just keeping up with the stuff I do every month. I'm going to have to change that if I want to make it through this list! But with my student teaching in full swing, it's going to be tough. Stay tuned.

35 Things: February Update

And it continues...

2. Have one month when I go to the temple weekly (halfway done) - Tell me if you think this is cheating: my bro-in-law (who is leaving on his mission to Paraguay in May...yay...that rhymes) visited the temple for the first time ever on Feb 19, and we're supportive and all, so we went. The next week, my little sister (who is getting married March 3) visited the temple for the first time ever, and we're supportive and all, so we went.

And I thought to myself, "Self, you could have planned this out better and gone to the temple every week for the month of February!"

And then my self responded with "Well, self, you could still make this work...just go for 4 consecutive weeks"

And I thought, "By golly, self, you're right. After all, I made these rules."

So I hereby decided that 4 consecutive weeks fulfills the "every week for a month" requirement. And so it is written.

So I'm halfway done with that one. Cheating? Bah.

7. Create a meal plan - at least once a week for every month - check.

12 Bake a new cookie every month - February's cookie: Rolo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies, found on My Baking Addiction (click the cookie name to go to the recipe). And these were every bit as yummy as they sound and look. Yumzo.

25. Read 30 books - while I didn't make as much progress as I did in January, I read a couple books this month, bringing my grand total up to 7:

-Fire by Kristin Cashore: not a sequel to Graceling, but a "companion" to it. Really, really liked it. I plan on reading the third one when it comes out, thanks so much. 4 1/2 stars.

-City of Glass by Cassandra Clare: the third of The Mortal Instruments series, which I had to finish, but I'm pretty glad is behind me now. 2.75 stars.

29. Do not drink soda for one month - you.guys. If you don't know how huge this is, then you don't know me. I HAVE NOT HAD A SINGLE SIP OF SODA FOR AN ENTIRE MONTH. This is amazing. I am incredibly proud of myself for doing this. I won't blubber on about it, but it was not easy. BUT I DID IT. Holy crap. Go me. Now where's my DP?

30. Babysit for free - done. Just because it's done doesn't mean I won't do it for you and your kids. I'm willing to do it again. I probably will do it again. Cool.

35. Complete an act of service every month - again, won't go into detail, but I didz it.

So there you have it. I'm doing all right, no? Plus, I got started on several others on the list, including cleaning out/organizing the pantry, finishing the nursery, and donating old clothes to DI.

I'm really liking having this list, y'all.

35 Things: January Update

So I'm off to a good start on my 35 Things to do in 2011! Here's a quick update:

7. Create a meal plan - at least once a week for every month - done for 2 weeks in January. Holla!

12. Bake a new cookie every month - January's cookie: Oreo Cheesecake Cookies, recipe found here. They were okay. Not as great as the name would leave you to believe.

13. Clean out extra room - Dallin's aunt and uncle stayed with us one night this month, and since they needed a place to stay, this kind of needed to be done. And guess what? Dallin did it the weekend that I was deathly ill. Because he's the bomb(dot)com. Now I just have to refashion it into the cutest little girl room for Maddy. But it can be crossed off the list because it is definitely "clean."

25. Read 30 books - Obviously, not done yet, but definitely in progress. Here's what I've read, with a sentence or two on how I felt about each one:

-And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie: Actually very enjoyable, a little creepy (not really a bad thing, in my opinion). It kept me guessing. I'm glad I finally read something by the famous Agatha. 4 stars.

-Graceling by Kristin Cashore: Kind of a teen candy read, but an awesome one. I like the characters and I think the idea of "graces" is clever. 5 stars.

-Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout: Meh. Never really got into it. Great writing though. 3 stars.

-Matched by Ally Condie: Another teen read (they're fast and fun, ok?!). Futuristic setting that shows what society might become if we let it (I love that). Poetic writing. Loved it. 5 stars.

-Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta: A little hard to get into, and somewhat confusing at times. But it is a very touching story. 3.5 stars.

***Side note: Dangit it's embarrassing to admit that I like those teen reads so much. And both the ones mentioned above are the first in their series, so I've got to keep reading them. AND there's other ones on my list. Oh well. I shall not be ashamed. More refined stuff is on my list too! Side note over.***

26. Buy skinny jeans - Yep yep. Got em, like, the first week in January, with an American Eagle gift card I got for Christmas. Have I mentioned that American Eagle jeans are just the best for me? Well, they are. And I'm actually loving the skinnies. This was a big confidence thing for me, by the way. I've always thought I couldn't pull the look off, but I'm just going for it.

35. Complete an act of service every month - I won't tell you what it was, but trust me, it was done.

So yeah, feeling pretty good about this!

Also, I've chosen February for my no soda month. I'm calling it Fizz-Free February. And it's only partly because February is the shortest month of the year. But yes, that definitely had something to do with it. Anyone want in?

35 Things to do in 2011

Hello, all.

So I read this very adorable blog written by this very adorable girl I knew in Junior High and High School. Her name is Emily and she just has the most cheery disposition ever. If only I could be as positive as she is...

Anyway, several months ago she and her husband created a list of 101 things to do in 1001 days.

When creating my New Year's "resolutions" this year, I decided following in their footsteps was the way to go, for a few reasons:

1) If you remember from years past, I'm not really into the traditional "resolution" stuff. I think it is setting yourself (ok, myself) up for disappointment.

2) Making a list of "things to do" keeps things specific and measurable. I've made too many "I want to be better at X" or "I'm going to do Y every day!" goals. Those end up getting me down because either I miss one day and the whole thing goes out the window, or I have a hard time defining what "better" is. Either way, it's discouraging. Hopefully, having "things to do" will keep me more on track.

I changed things up a bit, which you've probably realized if you read the title of my post. I decided to scale it down for one year instead of the 2.74 years that is 1001 days, which means I also scaled my list of things to do down by 2.74, coming out to 35 instead of 101. (Okay, so it is technically 36...but 35 is...rounder.) I think keeping it to one year somehow seems a little less overwhelming to me; plus, it will hopefully keep me from procrastinating.

Anyway, enough justification. I don't have to justificate myself to you anyway (no offense).

So here's my list, divided into categories and listed in no particular order:

35 Things to do in 2011


1. Read the whole Book of Mormon...twice
2. Have one month when I go to the temple weekly
3. Reread all 2011 Conference talks
4. Memorize the Family Proclamation
5. Attend a missionary discussion

Food (yep, it gets its own category)

6. Try a food I've never tried before
7. Create a meal plan - AT LEAST one week every month
8. Make hi-hat cupcakes
9. Make homemade bread
10. Build food storage (3 month supply)
11. Grow herbs
12. Bake a new cookie every month


13. Clean out the extra room
14. Donate old clothes to DI
15. Finish the nursery (really finish it!)
16. Clean out and organize the pantry
17. Clean out bedside drawers


18. Go on a picnic
19. Sing in the ward choir
20. Go on a hike
21. Throw a party


22. Start a savings account for Madelyn
23. Create a grocery budget
24. Save up to buy something I want


25. Read 30 books
26. Buy skinny jeans
27. Graduate from Grad school
28. Write one blog post every day for one month
29. Do not drink soda for one month
30. Use cloth diapers exclusively for one week
31. Babysit for free
32. Watch 10 movies I've "always wanted to see"
33. Send 10 thank you cards for no real reason
34. Update my ipod
35. Complete an act of service every month

I'm working on more specific planning, like deciding which books I'm going to read and which movies I'm going to watch, or deciding which month to make my "no soda" month (EEK) or which month to write a blog post every day (lucky you). I think planning it out pretty specifically will help me stick to it even more.

For now, I'm really excited about my list. I think it is a good motivator without being overwhelming (and I get overwhelmed easily). It's amazing how quickly time passes and I think this list will help me do the things I want to do before the whole year slips away.

Happy 2011 everyone. Let's make it a good one, shall we?

Reflections and Pre-flections

Sure "preflections" is a word. Don't trust the dictionary that says it "can't be found," or whatever. Everyone knows those dictionary people are out to get us. Trust me. I'm not out to get you. Just out to write a little blog post. Far more trustworthy than the dictionary people....

All right, I made it up, ok?! Lay off me.

Despite economic crises and Obama getting elected (who said that?) and such, I personally am in love with the year that was 2008. If you have to ask why, you haven't been reading my blog for very long.

May 10, 2008.

This one day made the year a success!

Other things helped, I guess. I've made new friends (hello, ward people!) been to Disneyland a time or two (or lots), read great books, seen great movies, travelled to the Bahamas, Mexico, Vegas, Utah, and Seattle, and welcomed a new cousin into the world. In short, 2008 was a year of love, family, friends, and memories.

So 2008 was great.

And 2009 is gonna be fine.

(You know- fine as in fiiiiiine. Not fine as in, "Yeah, I'm doing fine." Get the difference? I knew you would.)

A quick word about New Years' Resolutions: I'm so not about them. This is the first year I've actually admitted this, but really, I've always believed it.

Here is Katie's recipe for disaster when it comes to New Year's Resolutions:

1) Come up with several awesome resolutions

2) Keep the resolutions for a short while (varies)

3) Totally forget about the resolution (NOT don't do them on purpose, which I'm proud of. I seriously just forget that I had the resolution in the first place)

4) Get really discouraged that I forgot the resolution.

5) Ditch the resolution.

It's a pretty foolproof way to end up hating New Year's Resolutions.

Now, this isn't to say that I hate goals in general. That would be silly. Goals help me better myself and my life, and are important to my (and anyone's) progression. Just saying "I'm going to do this ALL YEAR!" makes me feel a little overwhelmed. Perhaps that is a personal problem. Whatever the explanation, there are better ways for me, personally, to set goals. I'm kind of a month-to-month kind of person (something that Dallin has really helped me with). And if there was something that took more than one month to accomplish, I'd reset the goal the next month. It might just be an issue of semantics, but it has been more effective and more satisfying for me.

I hope you enjoyed my rationalizing of my laziness/procrastinating-ness. Welcome to the inner most thoughts of my mind.

There are things I want to do with this year. I've got big decisions to make, new things to try, maybe new places to go, etc. And I'll embrace all those things, and whatever challenges crop up along the way, with open arms. (Thankfully, it's been pretty warm lately, so my arms can literally be open instead of wrapped around me trying to keep me warm. Love Arizona).

Anyway, I'm ready. Bring it ON, 2009!