Major Changes and Small Improvements

I’m not really sure how it happened, but I managed to miss my one year anniversary of becoming a vegetarian. I had been thinking about it on the days leading up to the 13th, and I knew I wanted to post about it. But, somehow, I got busy, and let it slip by me. So happy anniversary to me!

Over the past year, I’ve learned a few things about eating meat: I don’t miss it, and it was easy to give up. Along with feeling better about my body overall, becoming a vegetarian inspired me to try things I never would have tried if I had continued to eat meat. If I had not become a vegetarian, I never would have had the opportunity to write vegetarian-friendly restaurant reviews for the newspaper I freelanced for over the summer.

Reading Eating Animals a couple months ago really solidified my decision to continue living a vegetarian life-style. Over the past year, my friends and family have been very supportive of my decision, and I’m grateful for that. I can’t wait to try more vegetarian recipes this year!

Dove

2011 Goals: A New Stage of my Life

Thinking about my anniversary also made realize that I never outlined my 2011 goals on the blog. Last year, I accomplished most of the goals on my list. I had an awesome 23 birthday, landed a great summer internship (which turned into a freelance-writing job), and graduated from college in December.

A few days ago, I wrote out my 2011 list of goals knowing that this year is going to involve some major life changes. I’ve graduated from college, and I’m entering a new stage in my life. I’m excited and scared at the same time. While my biggest goals have to do with my overall future, a few of them are all about making small changes to improve my life on a day-to-day basis.

So, here’s my list, in no particular order, because all of my goals are equally important to me.

Find a job career: Remember all those resume books I showed you a couple days ago? I’m moving out of the part-time job application phase of my life. I have a degree in journalism and English, and I plan to do some major job searching over the next month or so. I’m not really sure what I want to do, but I’m going to do a lot of research to figure it out.

Move from Albany to a new city: Our lease is up at the end of March. It was originally up on December 31, but we signed a short-term lease so we could figure out what we’re doing. I’m not sure where we’re moving yet. We have some places in mind, but it really depends on where we find jobs.

Build muscle through weight-training and yoga: As I mentioned in a previous post, I’ve lost some muscle tone because of my ankle injury in July, and my surgery in October. I’m already working on this goal. In fact, this morning, I did Jillian Michael’s 50-minute No More Trouble Zones DVD. I have plans to go to yoga next week with Jen, and I’m going to try to get back to a body pump class by the end of the month.

Body Pump Super Stars!

Stay at my happy weight: I’m maintaining right now. My goal is to build muscle, not lose weight. I feel happier and more satisfied in general when I feel good about my body.

Read more: I really love reading, but I don’t do it enough. Right now, I am halfway through an amazing book called Sleeping Naked is Green. I love getting lost in books. Plus, I need to spend less time in front of my laptop staring at Facebook.

Books

Eat healthy 90% of the time: Like most people, I indulged a bit too much over the holidays, and my mood suffered because of it. I’m a lot happier, and have a lot more energy when I eat nutritious meals. At the same time, I don’t want to deprive myself. When I want a piece of chocolate cake, I’m going to have one, and that’s it.

Cook and bake more: For the past few months, Jeff and I have been working opposite schedules, and I’ve been eating most of my dinners at work. Lately, however, we’ve had nights off together. What that means is that I have more time to cook, and bake! Just the other night, I spent three hours in my kitchen making Black Bean and Wheat Berry Chili. It was glorious. I hope to do this more often this year

Bowl of Chili

Eat out less: I love eating out. Always have, always will. But, Jeff and I like to eat out a lot, and that means two things: our wallets are shrinking, and I’m spending less time cooking. Not good. Therefore, I want to limit eating out to a couple times a month instead of a couple times a week. That way it will be more special when we do eat out. 

Save money: Along with eating out too much, I also like to shop. I really want to increase my savings by a lot this year by cutting back on unnecessary spending. 

Savings

*Crosses fingers* Buy a new car (or move somewhere where a car is unnecessary) This doesn’t really need much explaining. My car is old, and I need a new one! That’s all.

Be more organized and decorate: This is a big one. I’m a neat freak at work, but not at home. I feel less stressed and generally happier when things are clean. I also love decorating. I plan to check out home & living blogs to get ideas.

Closet Organization

Continue to not eat meat: This goes without saying. I will remain a vegetarian throughout 2011.

Have a great 24th birthday in March: I love birthdays, especially mine (not going to lie). Because my birthday is at the end of March, I plan to merge a birthday celebration with a going-away party. I’m already planning it out in my head. :-)

Vegan Cupcakes

Get back to waking up early: I’ve already improved on this. I was waking up at 9 every morning in the beginning of January. This week, I’ve started to set my alarm between 6 and 8. I love having extra time in the morning to get things done. I feel more accomplished overall when I wake up early.

Improve this blog: This always makes my list. I love writing this blog, and I want to continue to improve it this year. Suggestions welcome!

Make new friends: Because who doesn’t want to make new friends? Plus, in moving to a new city, I’m leaving some good friends behind (sad!)

CDNY

Today Show

Figure out if I want to pursue a second degree in nutrition: I’m still on the fence with this. I think this is five-year goal. I don’t want to go back to school right away, but I would love to become certified in nutrition since it’s one of my passions.

Get the lump in my breast removed once and for all: Last, but definitely, definitely not least. If you’re new to my blog, you probably don’t know about the medical issues I’ve been dealing with for the past year. Honestly, I’m still angry and bitter at the doctor for not removing the lump in the first place. But I know that thinking that way won’t get me anywhere. I plan to have it all sorted out this year, and I promise to give you updates along the way.

And that’s it! That’s my list of goals for the year. It’s a long list, but I’m confident that I can complete everything on it.

With that said, I’m off to walk to the post office in the snow! Wish me luck!

Have a great Wednesday! <3

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