101 in 1001 ~ update the eleventh

It’s time for the 11th update on my 101 in 1001 Challenge! If you haven’t been following along on this journey so far or have any questions about what the challenge is, you can check out this link for details.

Happy birthday month to me! No details, except that I got to spend some time celebrating with family and friends. That’s the best gift I could ask for.

Here’s this month’s challenge progress:

May 2017
1 item completed this month
30 items currently in progress

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Personal #67: Visit 3 museums ~ 5/16/2017

I do enjoy museums, but when I’m the one making the excursion plans I often forget that we have so many interesting ones so close to home. It’s one thing to plan to visit the Smithsonian during a trip to Washington DC; it’s another to remember the museums in my hometown. So I’m glad this was one of my challenge items, because it made me remember museums as an activity! There are still many in the area I haven’t visited yet, though. Here’s hoping I continue to remember to plan time to visit them.

Not tons of completion this month, but there has still been progress at least!

I hope you had a great month!

101 in 1001 ~ update the tenth

It’s time for the 10th update on my 101 in 1001 Challenge! If you haven’t been following along on this journey so far or have any questions about what the challenge is, you can check out this link for details.

I find it amazing that I’ve been at this for 10 months already. (Well, 9 1/2 if you’re being specific.) In the past, I’ve often gotten bored with my year-long challenges well before the year was up, and this challenge runs much longer than a single year. I think it’s because I’ve been tracking things a lot better this time than I ever have before. (I’m using a combination of an Excel sheet and my Bullet Journal to track my 101 in 1001 progress.)

Here’s this month’s progress:

April 2017

2 items completed this month

30 items currently in progress

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Professional & Financial #73: Find a way to enjoy my day job more, instead of just tolerating it ~ 4/10/2017

I decided that the only way I am going to truly enjoy my day job is to get out of my current field. I am an admin assistant at present, and do. not. like. it. I started admin work because it was easy and I needed a job. And then I would grow within a company and get a more interesting job, and start to enjoy my job. And then I would switch companies (for one reason or another, whether layoffs or the company closing or me quitting) and start all over at the beginning again. And I recently realized that even though I’ve been doing it for most of my jobs, I don’t like admin work. So I’m going to totally switch up my career path – aka actually HAVE a career path – and will move forward from there. And you know what? Ever since making that decision I have been so much happier about the thought of work.

Food #42: Try 5 new vegetarian dinner recipes ~ 4/21/2017

Random stats about these recipes: 2 have contained lentils, 3 have contained quinoa, and 1 has contained chickpeas. (1 had both lentils and quinoa.) 2 were soups. 2 were Mexican-ish flavors (but only one had “Mexican” in the name). 1 was a curry. Of the new recipes, the One Pan Mexican Quinoa was our favorite.

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I had hoped to have one other item finished this month (the Invisalign), but one tooth in my lower jaw was stubborn and so needs some refinement. The good thing is that’s included with the initial cost of the treatment; the bad thing is it means I’m not done with the aligners yet. Ah well, it should be soon! And the difference between where I started and where I am now is amazing. So glad I decided to do this.

Have a great May, everyone!

101 in 1001 ~ update the ninth

It’s time for the 9th update on my 101 in 1001 Challenge! If you haven’t been following along on this journey so far or have any questions about what the challenge is, you can check out this link for details.

I was hoping to get in 30 minutes, 3 days a week of yoga in this month, but I’m partly too out of practice – and partly too distracted this month – and so didn’t quite manage that. I did get in several sessions this month, though, and maybe this is one of those challenge items that needs to be worked up to before I can do the entire thing well.

I am also thinking that I need to focus on the 7 hours of sleep challenge item. I feel like I have been sleep deprived for way too long. And yet, I don’t think I’m really sleep deprived. Perhaps my sleep has just been too erratic, since I go to bed at vastly different times during the week and over the weekends.We’ll see, I guess.

Anyway, enough rambling. Here’s this month’s progress:

March 2017

2 items completed this month
29 items currently in progress

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Food #38: Replace my Crock Pot and try 10 new recipes for it ~ 3/1/2017

I replaced my Crock Pot with an Instant Pot, and the IP has a bit of a learning curve when it comes to the slow cooker feature. Recipes that say to cook on “low” don’t necessarily mean “less” for the Instant Pot. I’ve found that most “low” setting Crock Pot recipes should cook on “normal” in the Instant Pot, or you end up with under-cooked vegetables. And cooking rice in a soup/stew in the Instant Pot in slow cooker mode hasn’t worked well for me at all. (Crunchy chicken & wild rice soup? No thanks!) On the other hand, I do enjoy the Instant Pot’s delayed cook settings. It’s so nice to have a timer feature on a slow cooker.

Personal #56: Go through my mug collection and only keep the ones I (we) intend to use ~ 3/18/2017

This one was relatively simple, but it required getting off my butt to actually do it. I didn’t get rid of many mugs, but I did reorganize some of them – for instance, one of the smaller mugs that I don’t use but don’t want to get rid of (it doesn’t hold enough liquid for frequent use) is now a teaspoon holder on my kitchen counter. And one of the mugs I enjoy but which doesn’t fit in my closet well because it’s an odd shape is now at work to be used there. And there are a few which don’t get used for one reason or another which are in the donation bag to get re-homed. All-in-all, a good, quick, successful project.

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And that ends the first quarter of 2017! I hope the year has been good to you so far, and continues to do so. Happy April!

101 in 1001 ~ update the eighth

It’s time for the 8th update on my 101 in 1001 Challenge! If you haven’t been following along on this journey so far or have any questions about what the challenge is, you can check out this link for details.

February is a short month, but I still managed to get a bunch done. More than I anticipated, in fact…

Here’s this month’s progress:

February 2017

5 items completed this month
29 items currently in progress

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Professional & Financial #75: Look into requirements for Project Management as a career ~ 2/13/2017

I have been looking into this for a while, and I recently decided that while it sounded interesting it didn’t sound like what I wanted to do. I have a different direction I want to grow my career, though, so I may eventually talk about that on here. The result, though, is that this challenge item is complete.

Reading #80: Move my entire TBR list into my TBR Journal ~ 2/13/2017

I have been working on this for some time now, and finally got it done this month. Yes, I will have to work on keeping the journal updated – I’ll probably update Goodreads more often than the paper journal – but at least I have reached a point where it’s all current. That’s a better place to continue forward from instead of having the list spread out in lots of different places.

Blog #23: Visit my blog friends at least once a week for 3 months minimum ~ 2/28/2017

I’ve been managing to visit my blog friends weekly since December, so that challenge item is done as of today. Granted, some friends do get more frequent visits than others, but that’s partly due to posting frequency and partly due to where the blog is hosted. I’m a lot more likely to visit often if I can add your blog to my WordPress Reader.

Food #32: Cut back to 1 Starbucks chai/frap per week max, and maintain for 2 months ~ 2/28/2017

This happened in January and February of this year. I intend to mostly stick to this for the rest of the year, because I had been spending too much money (and too many calories) on Chai Lattes. However, when I am running late the Starbucks mobile app ordering is a way too easy method to make sure I get breakfast. So I have no guarantees.

Writing #98: Organize my hard-copy writing folders and notebooks ~ 2/24/2017

This one involved a lot of purging. Yes, I know, keep it for reference later. But some of the ideas were plain old not good, and others are not a style that I have determined I am good at writing. And I don’t need to keep multiple drafts of the same work, either. One reason or another, it was a lot of purging, and very cathartic.

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Hope your February was productive, and have a great March!

101 in 1001 ~ update the seventh

It’s time for the 7th update on my 101 in 1001 Challenge! If you haven’t been following along on this journey so far or have any questions about what the challenge is, you can check out this link for details.

And now we start 2017! Here’s hoping for lots of continued progress on this challenge. I am enjoying it so far, especially how it’s keeping me accountable on some of the things I want to get accomplished in the near future.

Here’s this month’s progress:

January 2017
3 items completed this month
31 items currently in progress

Arts & Crafts #6: Finish crocheting Babette blanket

I just picked this one up again this month after a hibernation of over a year. I’ve been enjoying working on it again, and want to get it done by the end of this calendar year. So far so good on the progress! I don’t have that many (comparatively) individual squares left, and then the joining should go fairly smoothly. I hope.

Arts & Crafts #7: Finish knitting the 2016 GAL blanket

Still working on it, but didn’t get it done in time for the official 2016 completed blanket drawing. I’m hoping to have it finished by the end of 2017, but since it’s a blanket for me and not for a present, that might not happen either. Besides, it’s more important to me to get the Babette blanket finished this calendar year than the GAL blanket. If they don’t both get completed this year, I want the Babette to be the one that gets finished.

Personal #57: Have a game night with family ~ 1/6/2017

 For Epiphany, we have a tradition of getting together for a family event. This year was no different, and we ended up playing games (first computer and then board) chosen by my niece all night. It was fun – and now I want to have another game night. There are so many games to play! (Including Wizard School, a game that I wasn’t aware of in time to back on Kickstarter, but which I got in on post-Kickstarter pre-order and which has art by Karen Hallion. Yay!)

Fitness #25: Complete the 30-Day Crunch Challenge ~ 1/18/2017

This started out as the 30-Day Plank Challenge, but planking for 60 seconds (or longer) hurt my back and I had to stop. I switched it to the crunch challenge instead, and was able to get it done! Hopefully I can include crunches in my regular exercise routine (which was the point of the challenge for me) but time will tell for that part. This part (the Challenge) is complete. Yay!

Fitness #27: Participate in 1 more Hogwarts Running Club Race ~ 1/30/2017

This is done! I did the Mad Eye Moody Constant Vigilance 5k (walk) – and I did it in Hogsmeade, so that felt extra appropriate. (I was visiting Universal Studios over the weekend, so even though I didn’t have my medal yet, I brought along a print-out of my race bib.) Felt appropriate. And the timing too… we all need to be vigilant right now.

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There are other things I’m working on, of course, but those are the ones I feel like highlighting. I’m still enjoying the 101 in 1001 Challenge. Are you doing this (or another similar) challenge? Let me know in the comments so I can visit your blog and cheer you on!

101 in 1001 ~ update the sixth

It’s time for the 6th update on my 101 in 1001 Challenge! If you haven’t been following along on this journey so far or have any questions about what the challenge is, you can check out this link for details.

December is always a weird month for challenges. Many of them run over a calendar year, and so December is the last chance you have to finish them. And even if the challenge runs over a different timeline (like the 101 in 1001 challenge) there’s still a feeling like you need to finish ALL THE THINGS in December before the New Year starts. And yet… there’s also so much going on with the holidays and such that it also seems harder than usual to get long-term-goal things done. Oh well. All things considered, I think I did pretty good this month. Have a great New Year’s Eve, and Happy 2017!

Here’s this month’s progress:

December 2016
1 item completed this month
25 items currently in progress

Food #41: Try 3 new wineries in my local area ~ 12/4/2016

Our local winemakers got together this year for an annual holiday thing where they all collected Toys For Tots, had tastings (sometimes with extras not usually on their menu), and – in some cases – had holiday-themed music or craft vendors onsite. It was a lot of fun, and provided the excuse we needed to visit our local winemakers. We only made it to 4 wineries over the course of the weekend, but since we found out about it last-minute, I think we did good. (Found some amazing new wines, too.)

Writing #94 & 97: Complete the first draft of the 2016 NaNoNovel Find a writing schedule that I can keep going for 3 months minimum

This one is in progress. Sadly, I think it might take a while yet to complete the novel – but I am determined to do so. I am loving my story, even if progress on writing it is a lot slower than I’d hoped. Also, I have yet to get a writing schedule worked out. I’ve been trying writing at different times to see what works, but haven’t really made it a “schedule” yet. Hopefully soon, once the holiday stuff tapers off and our routines all get back to normal (whatever “normal” is…) I’ll be able to get something figured out.

Arts & Crafts #7: Finish knitting the 2016 GAL blanket

I’m working on this one, but I’m not sure I’ll be finishing it in time to enter it into the official GAL drawing. Still, I’ll keep working on it until it’s done.

Health #49: Use Invisalign to get my teeth straight

I found out that this should be done sometime this spring, if everything goes as scheduled. My teeth might need more adjustment after the process is officially “finished”, so it might go longer than this spring. However, it should still be finished relatively soon. Yay!

Anyway, here’s to some more good progress in 2017. Have a Happy New Year, everyone!

101 in 1001 ~ update the fifth

It’s time for the 5th update on my 101 in 1001 Challenge! If you haven’t been following along on this journey so far or have any questions about what the challenge is, you can check out this link for details.

It seems like I both got a lot done this month, and nothing at all. It’s been a very weird month. (I took a vacation during it, plus there was the Thanksgiving Holiday, so I guess those things contributed to the weird feeling of the month, but I’m not sure that was all of it.) Anyway, I guess I’ll let the numbers speak for themselves instead of trying to explain them. Here’s this month’s progress:

November 2016
3 items completed this month
22 items currently in progress

Food #31: Bake a pumpkin pie ~ 11/23/2016

Since I hosted Thanksgiving dinner this year, I could choose who would be providing which parts of the meal. I decided I would provide the turkey and the desserts – which meant I had the perfect excuse to bake a pumpkin pie! I used the basic recipe from the back of the pumpkin pie filling for this one. Simple, basic, and pretty good. I will make tweaks to the recipe next time I make a pumpkin pie, because it was good but not perfect. Since I like pumpkin pie, I will be on the lookout for the perfect pie recipe. Hopefully the perfect recipe won’t require me to start from a pumpkin, because that sounds like just too much work. I will make a pie crust from scratch next time, though. (I ran out of time for this one.)

Food #36: Go a month without eating fast food ~ 11/30/2016

When you have a long vacation in places with yummier food options than fast food, this challenge item becomes a lot easier. It helps when you have just finished a show that left you with no time for any dinner options except fast food, and so you are sick of fast food and will go out of your way to eat something different.

Writing #99: Participate in NaNoWriMo in 2016 ~ 11/1/2016

Technically as soon as I started writing on November 1st, this one was done. Didn’t plan out the challenge requirement for this one very well. Oh well, I’m glad I didn’t put anything about word count (especially winning NaNo) for this challenge item, because I had a miserable word count this year. I still participated in NaNo, and I intend to keep going on writing the novel, but it’s going to be a bit slower going than the at-least-close-to-50k in one month that I had hoped for.

Hard to believe there’s only one month left in the year, isn’t it? Hopefully 2016 will be kind to us in December.