Yes, I know it not the 1st of January.  I'm just a bit late.  One of the good things about blogging is that it is so easy to check what I have been doing in January for the last couple of years.  I see that last year I didn't make any resolutions at all and the year before I tried to make postive resolutions rather than the usual "lose weight, drink less, exercise more" litany that has been following me around for years.

Reading them now from 2008 I see I didn't too terribly well with the ones I did make.  The resolution to cook more interestingly, using my huge range of cookery books, was the one which was most successful.  I can't say I achieved the one about being glamourous on Thursdays.  I do from time to pull out something which is not the ubiquitous jeans and fleece and dress up a bit, but it is more like once every couple of months than once a week - less in winter because the urge to keep my clothes on when I have got dressed is very powerful.

But I have always been a bit of a sucker for resolutions: the clean page, the new exercise book with its cover still stiff and clean, the sense of giving your life a bit of an overhaul.  So I am going to make some for 2010, just a small number and ones which should not change the world, but some of which might be achievable, some of the time.

So two gardening ones:
  1. Make better use of my greenhouse.  In summer I love my greenhouse and from March onwards it is heaving for a couple of months with seedlings waiting to go outside.  In summer my husband takes over with tomatoes but I have never really cracked growing other things in summer.  By winter it is sad and empty and overflowing with empty plastic pots and half empty bags of compost.  I hate cleaning it so it languishes until the spring when I get carried away with enthusiasm for it all over again.  I was delighted to read that Deb at Carrots and Kids suffers from exactly the same thing, so it isn't only me.  This year I will try to grow more in the greenhouse, look after it more carefully and make better use of the extended season it offers me.
  2. Do more successional sowing.  This is a resolution which is beginning to be up there with the "lose weight, take more exercise, drink less" ones as a hardy perennial.  I made some inroads on this in 2009.  I did have successional sowings of broad beans and peas and mangetout.  If I were the successional sowing queen of my dreams I would not have run out of steam with the peas and beans bed.  This year I will have salad stuff for months on end, I will, I will.
And some looking after myself ones:
  1. more yoga because I love it even though I will never be really bendy.
  2. more walking because I loved my Offa's Dyke walk and have done very little since then.
  3. more nights without a glass of wine in my hand (not too many).
And a couple of what is life for ones:
  1. more Welsh.  I really do want this to be the year I move from partial understanding and an inability to talk to anyone beyond other Welsh learners to the year I can understand S4C and have a real conversation.
  2. less time on the computer.  I know this is ironic in a blog and I love my laptop to bits and wouldn't be without it, but at least a couple of nights  a week this year I shall turn it off, read, talk to my beloved, not see the world through a haze of tweets or an avalanche of blogs.  That will be a hard one I suspect and I would love to hear from anyone who feels they have the balance right between their real and their virtual life, but it is worth a go.
So, there we are.  Let's see how it goes!


  1. One of my resolutions is to visit your blog more regularly!

    My wife and I got a good chuckle from your thoughts on "Glamorous Thursdays."

    Good luck with the garden this year. I too want to be better at successioning!

  2. Good luck! But that still seems like rather a lot. If you could only have two, which would you choose?

  3. I know I'm supposed to be commenting on your post but I've got consumed with jealousy because of your header. How come I am living in the ONLY part of the British Isles with no snow?

    Finding a blogger who has their internet / home life in balance may prove difficult. I'd do better if only my laptop worked properly. It's slowing down and down and down so I spend (waste) a lot of time in front of an empty screen waiting for something to happen. If only I had a super-fast computer . . . then my life would be in balance! Come to think about it, if I could afford a super-fast computer, it would mean my bank balance would be better balancesd too. That would be good!


  4. I like your Thursday approach too. Maybe you should just keep all of these for Thursdays, then you can cook a fab meal dressed in a gold-sequinned ballgown, then go out for a nice brisk walk while talking to your other half. Fridays you can just slob out in front of the screen again.

  5. I'm going to do less compute too - I've removed google reader from my desktop because it eats time. I love the computer and my blog but there are other things too - like learning the banjo!

  6. "Lose weight, drink less, exercise more" - now where have I heard that before ? :) I am with you on the successional sowing one - if you crack the secret let me know. I am beginning to think that it involves being seriously organised. I am trying to wean myself off the computer but usually do better with that in the summer.

  7. I've come to the conclusion that resolutions are just a useful New Year conversational gambit. Nobody turns to you at a party in May and says 'how are the new Year's resolutions going then?'

    Having said that the mantra 'lose weight, drink less, exercise more' is a familiar one. Not doing too badly on the greenhouse usage. Could do better at successional sowings and must only buy plants if I know where I am going to plant them.

  8. Thank you Elizabeth for visiting my blog which is great because now I have found you!

    I haven't made any resolutions this year because I never keep them anyway but I gradually talk myself into doing more as January moves along!


  9. Less computer, more of another language, more yoga, more walks....I'm with you on those, Elizabeth. Wine makes me cough and I don't have a functional relationship with my garden although I can understand its appeal. Yoga sign-up is tomorrow! Maybe,maybe...

  10. Less time on your computer!! Well, I suppose there has to be one resolution that is in there to be broken to help you keep to the rest...

  11. I can identify wityh that succession sewing thing - we always have fifty lettuces ready at once and then a break of three or four weeks - so silly but somehow when I am presented with a packet of seed, I go mad.
    Hope you manage to keep those resolutions.

  12. I think your idea of taking a few nights off a week from the computer is a great one, and it wouldn't hurt me to follow suit. About your greenhouse... the thing is, I'd like to come tidy it up. I know, I'm strange.

  13. I just read your first and last two posts on your other blog--hope to read all at some point. You are a brave and wise lady. I find your writing wonderful and warm--like an old friend. I like your description: 'Nourished by silence...' I think that is when we learn the most about life.

  14. Hmmn, I know what you mean about computer time. I value all the contact but wonder if I'm missing something really important that's right here beside me.

  15. these are all excellent resolutions! I need to take on a few of them as well :)
    your blog is so lovely...Im glad I stumbled in :)

  16. The word 'more' appears often in this post, Elizabeth. I hope there's room for a resolution or two featuring the word 'less' - it can be very useful!

  17. I'm with you on spending more time in the real world this year, but I'm already finding it extremely hard to achieve.

    As for successional sowing, I've given myself up as a bad job on that score!

    I'm very impressed with your learning (and singing) Welsh. When I was little, my Uncle Sid (an ex-Rhondda coalminer) taught me to swear in Welsh, but I've long lost the ability :)

  18. Don - thank you. I am glad to see I am not the only one who has problems with achieving successional sowing!
    Rachel - mm, if I could have only two they would be yoga and the greenhouse one! I am quite sure I will not make great strides with all these but one can dream.
    Esther - ah, that is what you think now but if you had a faster computer you would just feel you could spend more time looking at things and in no time at all you would be spending half the day on there! At least that is what happened to me.
    sbs - I will enjoy myself! I always do. It is one thing I am quite good at.
    Fran - I love your idea of doing it all on a Thursday (which fortuitously is the day of my Welsh class). Being a bit of an all or nothing sort of person the contrast between frantic resolutioning and slobbing about quite appeals.
    Mark - the jury is out on whether I can do the less computing thing. It is just so addictive. And I need my husband to put his laptop aside on the same evening otherwise I will just sit there muttering to myself for a bit and then go and read a few blogs.

  19. Ah, but Elizabeth, imagine sharing your slow laptop with your husband so you had to take it in turns to twiddle your thumbs.


  20. Anna - yes I guessed I was not along on the perennial health and fitness one! You are right about the organisation. That must be where I fall down.
    Mountainear - I could also add the resolution you mention about only buying plants for which I have a place already identified. wouldn't work though.
    Cottage Garden - Your appraoch of not making any resolutions is probably the one I should go for. I did have a go last year but somehow this year I found myself thinking about them even if I wasn't writing them down. Must be deeply ingrained.

  21. My resolutions are to do yoga regularly again, and to start running again. My belt keeps shrinking!

  22. The problem with resolutions is that we lack an enforcer. We call them resolutions but they are really no more than good intentions; a bit like a government target even when we try to quantify them with prescriptors such as 'glamorous' and times such as 'Thursdays.'

    What we need, I can't help feeling - are life coaches - you know the sort of people who ask you what you want to do and then ask why you aren't doing it thus leaving you feeling rather silly and deflated so you are forced into carrying out whatever it was you had resolved simply to save your face.

    We bloggers I suppose could all become each others coaches, randomly allocated of course or chosen because they knew nothing about successional sowing. My own problem with this bit of worthiness is that I have never had gardens big enough to accommodate a second, let alone a third crop. And in the end I decide that it's better to buy from the farmer's market anyway.

    Gosh I could write a blog on this and perhaps I shall, so I shall wish you goodnight and, without a glass in my hand, goodluck.

  23. Deborah - well the yoga resolution didn't start well this morning as the snow prevented me from getting there. Try again Friday.
    SS - I am pretty sure you will be proved right. Certainly haven't done that well with reduced computer time today. Hi ho.
    Weaver - yes, my problem is that I never believe everything will germinate so end up with a huge crop of something and can then not motivate myself to sow more, even though the old stuff is rapidly going to seed and ending up on the compost heap.
    Joy - you like tidying greenhouses? Come over any time. Shame you are so far away. I'd happily bake you a cake in exchange.
    Chris - the computer time thing is really tricky. Is it any different if he is on his laptop and I am on mine than if we were both reading? Probably not, and yet I sometimes feel odd about talking to other people across the world rather than here at home. We do quite a lot of talking mind!
    Heather - thank you. If I were a betting woman I would not be putting money on my keeping these, not all of them at any rate!
    Pondside - you are quite right of course but I did a good bit of achieving the "less" of things when I gave up my job!
    VP - glad I am not alone in feeling the virtual world needs a bit of reining in! I would love to know how to swear in Welsh. Our classes are far too decorous to teach us that.

  24. I'm with you on a lot of your resolutions, good luck with them.

  25. My greenhouse is rather neglected at the top of the garden - it's too far away from the house. I keep resolving to A) clean it and B)use it more.

    Less time at the computer? You wanted to hear from those that felt they'd got the balance right. I think I've sort of got it right. I don't tweet (not enough time and my life's not that interesting and I don't feel the need to communicate every fart). Also, I can't work out how it all works! AND I don't (yet) have all the mobile communications gagetery that it seems to require.
    I would love to spend more time reading people's blogs but if I did, I would never get anything else done, so I just have to be tough and stick to the ones I really love or identify with (like yours!). Instead, I allow myself time enough on the computer to write what I want to write when I really feel I have some stuff I want to commit to words and/or pictures. That's my creative outlet in a domestic world full of chores and nurturing and being there for husband and family. If I go too far the other way i.e too much time in virtual world I 'go a bit funny' and feel too removed from my real world - and I hate that feeling. I get disturbed if I read too much about other people's lives rather than getting on with my own. And I hate then to feel out of control with my own life situation where everyone runs out of clean socks and pants and the house is in chaos!
    Facebook? Good way of catching up with long lost mates or those that live abroad, but again, I am very mean with my time on it. Just the odd quick dip in and out to see what everyone's up to and to fling a few comments or messages around.
    It's a tough discipline, but it keeps you sane in the end.

  26. PS: I've just read Pondside's comment and it's very wise. Less is more.

  27. Oh Elizabeth, all the very best with your resolutions. I particularly like the one about spending less time on the computer, I can totally relate to that, even though I have only just started blogging. So the nights without blogging and computer use, could be used for yoga, learning welsh, walking etc. etc. Killing two birds with the one stone, is a great approach. Best of luck.

  28. 愛情是盲目的,但婚姻恢復了它的視力。.........................


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