Goals for 2017

It’s that time again. Time to set some resolutions / goals. I’m averaging a roughly 25% success rate with these. Note, I’m saying Goals now. New year, new way of doing shit (from Fin).

1. Finish paying off my student loans.

It’s far past time for this one. I’ve been mostly ignoring this because it’s a small amount over a large period with low interest rates. Still, it’ll help get the ball rolling and simplify things.

2. Obtain HAM Radio License (Technician Class).

This has been an idea I’ve toyed with for a while, but I’m thinking this is the year to do it. I might also be able to get some help from my employer in paying for this. Something I need to research.

3. Complete a composition and recording for piano.

I’ve got a few compositions I’ve toyed with. The real goal here is to take one of my sketches and actually get it worked out solidly enough that I’d be happy linking it from here. I’m hoping to perform well enough to rehost the Spring Academy recital on SoundCloud. Otherwise, I’m hoping to get something recorded of ye ol’ piano and posted up. Gotta make some ‘fridge art’.

4. Hit ‘advanced’ student class at new Martial Arts Studio, and hit some marks at the gym.

Starting back at martial arts after taking so many years off has been humbling. I’m at a new school, with slightly different style and starting over from white belt. It’s amusing seeing other students shocked at things I know – they don’t think about the potential that someone has training elsewhere.

At the gym, I’ve started doing resistance training and some basic cardio. My goal is to hit a level where I can comfortably move my own current weight around. A secondary goal is to get my body fat percentage down to a more athletic level (<= 18%).

I’m toying with the idea of running one of the local half marathons this year. Not sure how crazy I want to go.

5. Build out some better hosting services for family on this server

I’m looking at what all I can do for image / picture / family news, etc… I’ve got a few different ideas, some that involve using other services such as google hosting. I’m really tired of facebook, but want to stay in touch with people!

6. Complete some online courses

I’ve really enjoyed doing a few courses on Coursera / Kahn academy. I’d like to do a few more, perhaps while it’s cold outside still. Tough, to do, given how much time everything seems to take.

7. Determine exact viability / state for moving out of this house and improve its livability.

Fin and I want to move, and we’ve talked about it for a while. But just talk. I’m not going to set any more goal for this year than simply determining ‘where we are’ and what we need to move. Hopefully, I can amend this goal to make actions after that – maybe even land us a house somewhere.

There’s a fairly long list of home improvement projects I’ve made, and what all should be done in what order. My goal is to start knocking stuff off of this list. Hopefully, that means some improved organization in some rooms, and ability to do a few projects I’ve been thinking about. I’m going to start tracking “things I’ve done” as that’ll hopefully build energy into doing more.

8. Take a vacation.

This fall, Fin and I finally managed to take a much needed vacation. My only complaint is that we did a bit of combining seeing family with vacation activities. We needed to see family, but I’m thinking this year we do something a little more ‘chill’ / low key.

9. Continue my quest to know Kansas City.

I’m going to set my last years goal again this year. I’d like to visit at least 2 major tourist traps in the KC metro area that I haven’t yet been through / seen. There are multiple museums and such around here that I’d like to visit. We’ll see what I can end up dragging Fin around to see. We’ll likely be entertaining our niece for a couple weeks this summer – and I can drag her out to get some culture if nothing else.

It might be interesting to expand the radius of this out a bit as well. There’s some interesting spots within a few hours drive that might be worth seeing.

10. Be more active and helpful with meetup groups

I’m member / organizer of one meetup, and do a few things with other clubs. This is the most ‘resolutionary’ entry in the mix, mostly because I’m not sure how to manage it. It seems lately, people have been less interested in meetup / hobbies in general – vs ranting on social media. Hopefully I can help others get outside and doing stuff. Or at least be a contributing member to these groups.

2016 was not a kind year to Fin or me. It’s very difficult to look back and find things to be grateful for. I think moving through difficult years lets you see things in a new light. I find myself grateful for family – by choice, marriage, and blood. They have given me hope that we’ll have some awesome years ahead. My hope is that the crap of this year will provide some fertilizer for new growth over the next few.

I just wish it hadn’t sucked so much.

2016 Recap…

I’m keeping this tradition alive, but my feelings toward this year are best summarized by a picture:

SCH Fire Department Dumpster Fire Picture
SCH. Haven Fire Dept Dumpster Fire

Fin and I have been through some rough years. This past year, though, felt like an extra special kick in the face. That said, how’d my year end goals go?

See the picture for a summary.

  1. Consumer Debt Free
    FAIL, stalled out in the summer.
  2. Make measurable progress toward moving.
    More FAIL.
  3. Get technical blog running again
    Even More FAIL.
  4. Build wireless temperature sensor system for greenhouse
    Epic FAIL.
  5. Post another piano recording
    You probably guessed it already. (*cough*) FAIL (*cough*)
  6. Take an actual vacation
    Holy shit. We did this one.
  7. Complete an online course
    FAIL.
  8. Learn a web framework (server and browser side)
    You might see a pattern here… FAIL.
  9. Visit at least 2 Kansas City tourist traps
    Well, I saw *both* Sea Life and Lego World? So? FAIL.
  10. Branch out from previous years in a current hobby or find something new altogether
    Hey, I started Taekwondo (Fin calls it Fancy Karate, because she can’t spell it) again. She doesn’t know if it counts, but I’m padding the numbers with a yes.

Well, given all that happened, 2/10 ain’t that bad. Hoping next year goes better.