The Year of Settling In

By | January 3, 2015

I love having a new year spread out before me, with so much potential and no mistakes in it yet. I love imagining how I want the year to go, and thinking about the ways in which I can make that happen.

There's nothing like a cup of coffee at an awesome coffee shop to help you plan your future!

There’s nothing like a cup of coffee at an awesome coffee shop to help you plan your future!

I love picturing gobs of money flowing into my wallet, hordes of handsome men pounding at my door, free airplane tickets to exotic destinations falling into my lap, screaming fans waving my published book and begging me for my autograph, millions of blog readers anxiously awaiting my next fantastic blog entry, and myself strolling leisurely through my mansion, stopping to look at myself in the mirror to say, “Well done, Evelyn, on another successful year.”

If you have been following me for a length of time, you know that I like to set goals, and I like to look back at what I’ve done in previous years. This entry sums up the last few years for me.

Embarrassingly enough, I look at it and realize I fell far short in this past year. Did I touch my mandolin? Maybe once. Did I do anything with my Peace Corps photos and ideas? I certainly didn’t edit all my photos, or create any products to sell or work on my book much. But I did print 2 albums worth of pictures and label them. That’s something!*

It's interesting to revisit a place once a year and think about what has changed and what has remained the same. Same big family... :)

It’s interesting to revisit a place once a year and think about what has changed and what has remained the same. Same big family… 🙂

Was I at least courageous? It’s hard to talk about this, but YES, I was! This manifested itself in 3 major ways for me this year, which, by publicizing them here, is continuing to test my courage.**

  1. I wrote a blog entry about dancing. It was my most-read blog entry of all time, and generated the most comments, private messages, and emails I have ever received.
  2. I performed in an annual event at the Institute where I work, as a member of a dance group. See the video here. This was my first time ever dancing on stage. I messed up. And I survived. And I had an absolute blast.
  3. I shared the first draft of my November novel with you, for the first time ever. And some of you read it and liked it!

So good. I can pat myself on the back for pushing myself far out of my comfort zone last year, AND I can look ahead to an even better upcoming year, where I do more of the things I intended right from the start.

How will I approach this year, 2015?

I already gave you a spoiler in my second paragraph. My approach to the year is in visualizing what I want, keeping that front and center, and making my decisions based on that vision. I’m curious to see how closely my vision matches up with reality at the end of the year!

In a less-exagerated fashion than that which you’ve already read, I wrote down a list of “What I Want by the End of 2015.” It includes broad goals for money, a relationship, travel, writing, work, and education.

But I also made another list, which is even more significant to my long term plans.

I am making plans to “settle in” to my life here. I am looking at what it means to live in the same place for the next five years. Yep. For the foreseeable future, I am not going to move away. I want to stick around to see what it means to build a community. I want to be part of something that I can see change and grow around me.


It’s going to be exciting, in a non-travel, non-foreign-experience, non-exhilaratingly-strange, kind of way. And that’s what I’m looking forward to this year the most–learning what it means to “settle in.”

What are your goals for the new year? How did you do last year? Let’s talk about it in the comments section!


* Always remember, something is better than nothing.

** I don’t know how I feel, posting this, especially number 2, but I’m going to do it anyway.


Back to work on Monday. It’s been a nice long break, and I’ve had a lot of fun hanging out with my friends. But now it’s time to get serious again and think about how settling in will affect my life at work!

See you again on the blog soon!

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year! I tried on a pair of very high heels for a photo shoot and could barely stand in them. Here’s hoping the new year brings some balance to my life!


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3 thoughts on “The Year of Settling In

  1. Carrie

    What a fabulous blog! Well written and entertaining, it’s a pleasure to read it! Thank you. C

  2. Karen

    Settling in – cool! Sounds like a new adventure. Good luck! 🙂

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