Tag Archives: New Year’s Resolutions

New Year, Same Old Resolutions

photoIt’s January—time to make a comprehensive list of all the areas in our daily lives that desperately need improvement, or at the very least, tweaking. For many of us, that means dusting off the list we made LAST year. I for one have taken an inventory of my shortcomings these past few weeks and pledge to keep at least a handful of the New Year’s resolutions I’ve made AGAIN, despite the unlikely nature of lasting success. Here are the highlights.

For starters, I’ll be kinder. More specifically, I’ll stop harboring ill will toward the people who seem to take an eternity to put air in their tires at the gas station. No longer will I wish that a chunk of space debris would fall upon their heads, effectively ending their stint at the pump, making my wait that much shorter. Perhaps instead I’ll use the time to meditate or make a grocery list. Who am I kidding? I’ll play the bazillionth game of solitaire on my smartphone or count the appalling number of Trump for President bumper stickers I see in the vicinity.

Secondly, I’ll stop enabling my kids. Even though it pains me greatly, I’ll refrain from harvesting gobs of toothpaste from their bathroom sink each morning, followed by removing wads of hair from their shower because, quite frankly, this practice has done nothing but teach them how to be unaccountable in life, not to mention, horrible at housekeeping. Instead, I’ll ignore their domestic failings (as intolerable as that might be) and bank on the notion that eventually they’ll become SO GROSSED OUT they can’t help but be inspired to do the job themselves. Probably.

Related: I’ll try to be a better parent. Translation: I vow to stop yelling: “THE YELLING IN THIS HOUSE HAS GOT TO STOP!” Please reference my Twitter feed or the previous paragraph for insight as to why such behavior might be warranted (i.e. my teens DRIVE me to it and my parenting tools are decidedly defective). Needless to say, the irony here isn’t lost on me and I recognize fully that I won’t be nominated for Mother of the Year anytime soon. However, I’d be thrilled if I could simply spend less time yelling about the yelling I do.always_wear_a_helmet_mug-ra6b7ec3d4a404964aa3284832d622f23_x7jg5_8byvr_512

In addition, I resolve to spend less time using my iPhone and more time interacting with humans. More specifically, I’ll curb my penchant for texting and sending Facebook messages to those who happen to be in the same room with me, sometimes within arm’s length. In lieu of that, I’ll engage in actual face-to-face conversations with the people I love, allowing words and phrases to fall from my lips in a cascade of spontaneity. Technology be damned.

What’s more, in 2016 I’ll attempt to rid my world of unnecessary stress. No longer will I feel guilty about sleeping in or taking a mental health day on occasion, which, of course, will be defined by watching an embarrassment of HGTV while spooning with my dog on the couch. All day, if circumstances warrant. Don’t judge.

Furthermore, I promise to finish at least some of the projects I start, beginning, of course, with hauling our artificial Christmas tree and outdoor lights to the attic. With any luck, that will transpire before Groundhog Day. The most challenging project I’ll likely tackle in the coming year, however, will be indoctrinating my dear husband on the finer points of organization. Pray for me.

And because no one’s list of New Year’s resolutions would be complete without referencing the pathetic nature of a diet and exercise routine gone awry, I pledge to walk more in the new year as well as add more greens to my plate. I won’t give up my peanut M&M fix or my frappés, however.

I haven’t gone COMPLETELY mad.

Planet Mom: It’s where I live (welcoming a brand new year, striving to achieve the same wretched resolutions). Join me there, at the corner of Irreverence and Over-Sharing www.facebook.com/NotesfromPlanetMom.

Copyright 2016 Melinda L. Wentzel

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Filed under I Pretty Much Suck at Parenting, Welcome to My Disordered World

January: A Fine Time for Resolving to Do Something about Those…Um, Flaws

Jettison. If I accomplish but one thing in the coming year, I pray to God that it involves discarding that which I no longer need, want or will ever use. Otherwise my humble abode will be featured on A&E’s Hoarders in the very near future. I’ll be the crazy lady in the corner, babbling incoherently while clutching a dilapidated pot holder or some such foolishness. My husband will be the nut case hermetically sealed to a bucket full of antiquated tools—mumbling something about the very real possibility of fixing our antiquated schlock. And thanks to the wonder of DNA, our children will be the ones refusing to part with their dear playthings: good ol’ Headless Barbie and her charming beau, One-legged Ken. Furthermore, our closets, basement, refrigerator and beloved garage (i.e. the Home for Wayward Toys) could use major purging as well.

Attend. When it comes to parenthood, I would do well in 2011 to talk less and to listen more. What better way to acquire vitally important information from my increasingly private-ish progenies? For instance: Evidently fourth-graders “…don’t need help with their tangles anymore, Mom,” and apparently the aforementioned smallish beings are also perfectly capable of choosing their own library books, lunch menu items, friends and (gasp!) love interests. However, it’s rumored they still benefit from occasional (read: very nearly constant) reminders to flush toilets and whatnot.

Nurture. In my mind, success as a parent is defined in a great multitude of ways, but among those I value most are these: to cultivate within my children an enduring love of books, a willingness to stretch not only their muscles but their minds, a desire to explore the unfamiliar, to embrace change and to reach out to those who are less fortunate in this world. If 2011 includes steps that take me the least bit closer to achieving those goals, I will consider the year a glowing success. Moreover, if, during that same time frame, I happen to stir within my heathens a compelling sense of duty as it relates to the aforementioned flushing-of-the-loo, all the better.

Unearth. It’s a brand new year and an ideal time to rummage around this chaotic place in the name of recovering that which was tragically lost in the field—like my sanity, fortitude and inspiring tolerance of kid-related tomfoolery. With any luck, I could also awaken from the depths of dormancy my ability to bring order to my world (i.e. just once I’d like to find my stupid cell phone without having to wander aimlessly or—Heaven forbid—dial my stupid self).

Actually finish something. Here’s hoping 2011 will inspire me to “…open up a can of getting-it-done,” like that do-it-yourself ad so cleverly suggests to people like me who probably rifle through their pantries in search of said can. I’d also like to finish a stinking movie, a book, a household project that may or may not claim my sanity, a slew of yet-to-be-signed-and-mailed holiday cards—before the actual holiday, an email with a string of coherent sentences and/or a slightly brilliant 140-character tweet.

Read. That’s right. I’d like to think that the coming year will hold for me more time to read…between the lines, people’s minds, my dog’s pitifully vague I-have-to-pee signals and books, of course. Justin Halpern, David Sedaris and Sloane Crosley mostly—because I simply can’t get enough of their irreverent brand of humor. In fact, if I happen to meet an untimely demise in the next 365 days, for the love of God, please see to it that SOMEONE tosses the collective works of the abovementioned in with me before anyone lights any damned oven.

Yearn. As is the case with embarking upon any new year, I yearn to be healthier and happier in 2011, more spontaneous and unfettered. To get more sleep and to eat more vegetables. To spend less time with my gadgets and more time with my family. To be a better cook and citizen. A better friend and confidant. A better soul mate and lover. A better daughter and eradicator-of-dust-and-disorder in this circus called home. A better scheduler-of-events, listener-of-troubles and giver-of-love-and-guidance. A better mom in so many ways.

Planet Mom: It’s where I live (resolving to make January the start of something good).

Copyright 2011 Melinda L. Wentzel

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Filed under Home for Wayward Toys, Home is Where the Weirdness Lives, The Natives are Decidedly Restless