2016 In Review Pt. 2: Goal Achievement

Last year I said that 2015 was chaotic… But had I known how 2016 would turn out for me, I likely would have chosen better words to describe last year; while it went great for the first half, everything went downhill fairly quickly after June. In all honesty, 2016 has been the hardest year I’ve experienced in a while… But how did I do? What changed? Did I make any of my goals? Important questions require answers!

This post will be an analysis of the goals I reached- and didn’t reach- this year. A generalized overview of my year and the major events that occurred has been recorded in Part 1.

———- Fitness ———-

  • Establish a regular exercise routine and stick with it
  • Lose 20 pounds; get to my goal weight of 120
  • Get back into Yoga at the very least
  • Go Hiking at least 5 times this year
  • Go Camping at least once this year
  • Go Swimming at least twice this year
  • Purchase a Fitbit Surge

I wouldn’t say that I failed miserably this year when it came to my fitness goals… Certainly, I didn’t accomplish most of them but it could have been worse; there were a lot of extenuating circumstances that prevented me from accomplishing them to the extent that i would have liked- like the switch to night shift, the release of information concerning the reliability of the Fitbit Surge, the severe decline of my Mental Health, and even the atrocious weather we had during prime hiking season.

I did, however, manage to hit my Swimming and Camping Goals. I also dropped from 160 to 150 pounds and maintained it for the majority of the year. And while we never officially went Hiking this year, I did walk enough between the Biker Rally, working for my Mother, my Photography, and Pokemon Go that I’m comfortable checking it off the list regardless.

I would say that it was a decent enough success that I’m comfortable with what I did manage to achieve in this area.

———- Health ———-

  • Quit smoking for good by June at the latest
  • Do better at staying hydrated
  • Look into getting all of my teeth pulled for dentures
  • Go see a primary care physician for a checkup and ask about my Asthma

Quiting Smoking never happened. We did manage to reduce our smoking for a while, but eventually it picked up again… And with such a stressful year who can really blame us.

I also didn’t see my primary care physician, either, since we’ve bee pretty financially tight this year. But the one thing I did do was look into having my teeth pulled and getting dentures. The ballpark estimate is somewhere around $3,000 usd just for the removal procedure- before finding out how much Insurance will be willing to pick up on the tab.

With all of the walking and stuff this year, though, I did do a great job staying hydrated for a while- much better than I did last year.

———- Food ———-

  • Try at least one new thing a week
  • Use my Cookbook collection more often
  • Look into going back to VoTech for Culinary?
  • OR Participate in the GBBO Challenge
  • OR Participate in Baking Bootcamp (rules)

Of all the places I didn’t expect myself to do well, it was the food area- doubly so since i didn’t cook hardly anything the last few months of the year. Still, I did really well with my cooking goals when I was actively cooking and so I’m comfortable checking them off the list.

Some accomplishments I’m especially proud of are my mastering of the notoriously difficult Thanksgiving Turkey- as well as my mastery of Choux Pastry Puffs on the first try.  I also found out that I cook one mean Pork Shoulder Roast, too… Still haven’t found a pesky Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe that I like though- much to my Husband’s dismay!

———- Beauty ———-

  • Establish a morning appearance routine and stick with it
  • Pamper myself at least once a week with something small
  • Remember to moisturize regularly
  • Complete The Refine Challenge

I expected myself to do better here, I really did. But when my Mental Health suffers my appearance is usually the first thing to suffer with it and so i’m not terribly surprised that I failed here; I accomplished absolutely nothing I set out to accomplish in this area this year… Except completing The Refine Challenge, which I honestly wasn’t all that happy with.

———- Clothing ———-

  • Focus more on blouse and shoe purchases this year as opposed to skirts and dresses

I did buy two pairs of shoes which pretty much take care of my shoe needs. Unfortunately, I bought zero blouses due to the financial instability we faced later in the year; you win some, you lose some.

———- Art ———-

  • Draw at least one art piece a month
  • Get better at sewing; learn to sew Lingerie
  • Learn Embroidery and Beading

I kept the art going for the first three months, but after that I kind of fell off of it. Mostly this was due to my renewed interest in Photography, but a large part of it was also because of a lack of motivation. I’m not upset that i didn’t reach this goal, however; I can feel myself leaning away from Digital Art and more towards Photography- a change I’m more than happy to make as i find it much more emotionally and artistically fulfilling.

As far as sewing went, that never happened either. The two sewing machines I did possess didn’t work, and I discovered that I have no patience at all for hand sewing- one reason I didn’t get too into beading and embroidery this year, either; I gave it a shot, but ultimately it’s just not for me.

I did do a lot of research on Lingerie and Couture sewing, however. Enough so that I’m fairly comfortable saying I have a basic grasp of a lot of the skills and methods of creating them. We’ll have to see how it goes once I can actually put the techniques I learned into practice… Which should be a lot easier now that i have a sewing machine; I receive a Singer 201-2 model sewing machine from 1952 this year as a gift from my Mother In Law. However, I haven’t been able to finish the restorations on it yet. I have high hopes, though, that next year will be much better for sewing once the machine is fully restored- especially with the technical knowledge I gained this year.

———- Writing ———-

  • Take a writing class
  • Refine my writing and blogging
  • Blog more frequently on both blogs
  • Journal more

Writing classes simply aren’t available in my location without going to the local college- something I have no interest in nor money to do. As a result, those are out for me… Though I do have plans to check into online classes, and I did use a lot of free resources this year to improve so I’m comfortable checking it off the list regardless.

Speaking of improvement, I did notice an improvement in my writing this year. Most notably, I’ve seen improvement in my ability to actually describe my thought process and more concisely define my beliefs in words. As a result, I did rewrite several articles of blog series’ this year. I blogged more frequently as well- though it did pitter off around the time that my Mental Health did. Still, I kept up with it for quite a while. Doing so even became easier once I merged my two WordPress blogs into one singular one.

I picked up Journaling as well- going so far as to make an attempt at the Bullet Journaling method. Unfortunately I quickly discovered that Journaling and I simply don’t get along and the attempt was abandoned. For now I’ll stick with WordPress and Tumblr.

———- Publishing ———-

  • Publish the 5th Edition of The Lavender Herbal (now retitled “A Verdant Introduction”)
  • Write and publish The Sisters Grimmoire Volume II
  • Write and publish The Witches’ Cupboard Volume II (actual title to be determined)
  • Work on completing and publishing my own Cookbook
  • Publish at least one solo book this year from my “Writing“, “Brainstorming“, or “Backburner“groups

I excused myself from The Sisters Grimmoire II this year. I was simply too busy to work on it. Later my Co-Author Bree and I decided to split the two series’ between us- with her taking over The Sisters Grimmoire and me taking over The Witches’ Cupboard.

I didn’t publish anything that I had aimed to work on this year. Once again, my Mental Health certainly didn’t help in that department… But I did manage to republish The Lavender Herbal (A Verdant Introduction), plus came up with a few more recipes for my Cookbook… And I got a lot of work done on an old fantasy novel that I had put on the backburner ages ago. So all in all, it wasn’t a complete loss.

———- Religion ———-

I only made it a few months into the Grimmoire Challenge. I am proud to say, though, that the reason I stopped wasn’t because of my usual penchant to keep forgetting and slowly slide away from things… Instead, this time it was actually because few of the exercises pertained to anything that I did or believed.

Unlike my final thoughts on The Refine challenge, however, I do fully believe that The Grimmoire Challenge is one of the few amazing ones out there; where it was relevant it did help me greatly. The problem was simply that not enough content was relevant. Still, anyone who needs help with their practice should definitely look to it for inspiration at the very least.


All in all, I would say that despite the terrible turn the year took for me… This year was significantly better than it could have been in regards to achieving my goals; in the grand scheme of things, I consider it a win.

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