I know that the whole idea behind New Year’s resolutions is self-improvement, but I’ve always wanted to read a resolutions list that included fun or decadent commitments that had nothing to do with whipping the self into better fiscal/physical/mental/relational shape. Things like, “drink more wine,” or “play more laser tag,” or “eat good chocolate.”
This year, I decided to make that kind of fun list myself. I still have my same old list of self-improvement resolutions, of course, and it is remarkably the same from year to year (sad but true). But this year, I decided to make a more whimsical list, too. A list of “whimsolutions,” if you will. And here it is.
I’ve played around with these a little bit in the past, mostly for Halloween costumes, and it’s always super-fun. My normal eyelashes are light, short, and sparse, so false eyelashes are a very fun change. I’ve been experimenting with individual lashes recently (and not nearly as heavy eye makeup as I’m wearing in this shot). My favorite false eyelashes tutorials are from Lisa Eldridge. (I don’t mean I’ll wear false eyelashes all the time, but I want to play with wearing them more.)
2. Learn to speak elvish
Wait! Before you geek out on me, I know – “elvish” is not itself a language. But it would have sounded much less fun and interesting if I had said I wanted to learn to speak “Sindarin,” right? Anyway, my husband just finished reading The Hobbit to my kids and me, and we’ve also now watched the first Hobbit movie and the first LotR movie, and I think it would be fun to be able to toss around a few phrases in Orlando Bloom’s native tongue. So why not?
3. Play the Wii U
This one really isn’t for me but for my kids, and part of my effort to take myself less seriously and quit thinking I have too much to do all the time. My kids really, really want me to play the Wii with them more. I am not a gamer, and if I’m going to be hanging out on the couch, I would rather be knitting or spinning (i.e., getting stuff done). But my kiddos are only going to want to play games with me for a few more years, so I need to just get over the fact that I don’t understand half of what’s going on in the games (and care very little), and just play already!
4. Watch some hockey
I’m a baseball fan through and through, and I have little to no interest in any other spectator sport (most notably football, about which I agree with George Will – “Football combines two of the worst things in American life. It is violence punctuated by committee meetings.”) Well yeah, hockey is violent, too, which is one of the many reasons I’ve never been interested in it. However, hockey is the one sport at which Detroit pretty much always wins. And after the heartbreaker that was the Tiger’s postseason, I’m ready to see what all the fuss is about. Also, the NHL Winter Classic is being played this afternoon in the Big House, right down the street from the Little House (i.e., my house), and it’s hard not to be excited about something that is such a big deal in my town. So I plan to watch today, at least a little, and root for the Red Wings. I don’t really know anything about hockey – I have truly never watched a single game (where I come from, hockey is just not a thing). But I plan to consult this handy guide for How to enjoy hockey when you really don’t understand hockey. One of my kiddos really wants to watch more Detroit sports of all kinds, and I think it would be fun for the two of us to learn about hockey together.
5. Paint my nails
When I was in my early 20s, one of my professors told a group of us in casual conversation that he could never take a woman with painted fingernails seriously. For some reason, I allowed that bit of ridiculousness to lodge into my psyche in such a way that I quit wearing fingernail polish for more than a decade. I wanted to be taken seriously! It makes me mad to think of how I let his tossed-off comment shape what I did with my own body for years. (I still painted my toenails, always, but never my fingernails).
A few years ago, when I realized how stupid that was, I began to buy nail polish. A lot of it. In fact, over the last few years I have collected a lot of nail polish, and sometimes I wear it. But mostly I don’t feel I have the time to paint my nails and let them dry – I rarely keep my hands still enough for that (as I’ve said above, I am always focused on getting stuff done). Well, that’s ridiculous! That’s me, once again feeling I don’t have time to do something fun and whimsical. And that stops now.
6. Play music
This is meant to encompass both the playing of music on CD, iPod, Pandora, etc. and the playing of music on the piano and guitar. I love music, my family loves music, we all play instruments, and I want us to do more of it together. Every day should have some shared music in it, shouldn’t it?
7. Read more fiction
I read a lot, but I’ve noticed that this year, almost all of my reading has been nonfiction – for school, for work, and for my own edification. In my free time, I read a lot of news, and then my other reading tends to include crafting, cooking, and health/nutrition/fitness. This is all to the good – I love that kind of reading. But I miss fiction and don’t want to just save it for vacation reading. (By the way, if you are a reader and you’re on Goodreads, find me there).
So. That’s my list of whimsolutions, a common theme of which is “take myself less seriously” and “have fun” and “quit thinking I don’t have time to do stuff that doesn’t seem to accomplish anything.”
I hope you have happy goals for this new year, and that 2014 is a year full of good things for you and yours.