Not To Be Trusted With Knives

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Sourdough Starter

And speaking of pandemic baking, I finally did something that I’ve been meaning to do for ages: make a sourdough starter1!

Well, I’m attempting to make a sourdough starter, at least. I won’t know for several days if it worked out or not. I decided to go old school and create it from just flour and water and whatever wild yeast are floating around. It takes a bit longer – and I’m sure has a higher failure rate – than making it from packaged yeast, but I figure I have time to spare, so may as well go for it.

My plan is to make this sourdough starter and maintain it and pass it along to others, so that generations from now people will say “This sourdough starter was created during the great pandemic of 2020!” And maybe people will search on the Wayback Machine and find this blog posting and say “So that’s what my sourdough starter looked like on the day it was born!”


The recipe is literally to just mix together and 4 oz of flour and 4 oz of water and then let it sit on the top of your fridge for a day, and then you feed it over several days and hope the yeast start doing their yeast thing.

Here’s what it looked like when I mixed it together today:

Sourdough Starter - Day 1

The consistency at this stage is thick and sticky:

Sourdough Starter - Day 1

And here it is, sitting on top of my fridge:

Sourdough Starter - Day 1

I’ve set a reminder to feed it after 24 hours have passed. Very excited to see what happens over the next few days!

Also, like a good scientist, I decided to make a lab book to document my process:

Sourdough Starter - Day 1 - Lab Book

My friend Paul informed me that if this batch doesn’t work, I should try using pineapple juice instead of water, as it’s the right pH to favourite the good wild yeast. So I have a plan B if this batch doesn’t work.

I promised my friend Heather that she will be the first recipient of my sourdough starter once it is ready to be shared. Heather is a public health nurse on the front lines of the pandemic – translation: she’s a freaking hero! Thanks for everything you do, Heather! You are a rock star!

  1. Since sourdough starter something I’ve never made before, it counts towards my 2020 goal of making foods that I’ve never made before. And then when I bake my first loaf of sourdough bread, it will be another thing I’ve never made before and will count towards my 2020 goal of baking 20 times. And I also have “bake sourdough bread” on my list of 101 things to do in 1001 days, so really this is like the most efficient goal achieving act I’ve ever done! []

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Cyberbaking – It’s Not Just for Christmas Anymore!

As you may recall, my family and I love to bake. And sometimes at Christmas, if I’m not in Ontario visiting, we cyberbake: I bake in my kitchen in BC and my mom and my sister bake in my sister’s kitchen in Toronto and we videochat while we do said baking1.

Well, I’m really missing my family while everyone is isolating in our own homes during the pandemic. I know it’s kind of silly, because I often only see my family at Christmastime anyway, but (a) before the pandemic hit, I was planning to go to a conference in Ottawa in June and was planning to see my family then (but of course that is now not going to happen), and (b) it’s different when you don’t have a *choice*. Back in the old timey days where we could just hop on a plane whenever we wanted to, I at least had the option to go see my family. Now, since non-essential travel is a no-no, that choice is taken away, so it feels harder. I know it’s important that we all hunker down at this point to manage this pandemic, but I’m still acutely aware of missing my family. AnywayI digress…

A few days ago, I suggested that we all get on our webcams and bake together today. My mom in her house, my sister and her family in their house, and me in my condo. It really is fun to just chit chat and bake and be “together” even though we are apart.

My sister made cinnamon rolls and two loaves of bread shaped like turtles. She also taught my about “parbaking” – where you bake bread to about 80% of the way done and then freeze it. When you want to eat it, you bake it the rest of the way. So that’s a pretty great idea for when you have the urge to bake a bunch of stuff but you are stuck in a condo with just two people who shouldn’t each several loaves of bread in a day. I also realized that since “parbaking” means “partway baking”, that “parboiling” just means “partway boiling”. I would face palm, but touching one’s face is frowned upon these days.

My niece made snickerdoodles and my nephew made chocolate chip cookies. Last Christmas I gave my nephew a “virtual reality” baking set because I knew he likes baking and apparently he only wants to use the measuring cups from his set when he bakes. So nice to see that he likes his present!

My mom made a modified shepherd’s pie, using up some things she had around the house.

I decided to make carrot cake. I’ve never made carrot cake before, so it counts towards my goal of making 20 new foods this year). Plus I have a giant bag of carrots from the last time we went to Costco, so it seemed like a good way to use some of them up! I got my mom to send me my Uncle Stephen’s carrot cake recipe and I have to say, it is delicious.

I posted that before I made the cream cheese icing. Mmmm, cream cheese icing!

As always, the down side of cyberbaking is that you can’t taste what each other are baking! Fortunately, I have a bunch of carrot cake with which to console myself.

  1. As aside: this past December was so busy that I didn’t do any Christmas baking at all. None! That’s the first time in my life that I can remember not doing Christmas baking. I think maybe I upset the balance of the universe and that caused our current apocalypse. If so, sorry about that! []

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#ExtrovertProblems

Those of you who know me in person are probably painfully aware that I am an extreme extrovert. So self-isolation and social distancing are quite a challenge for a social butterfly such as myself. But since lives are literally on the line, I am taking the advice of experts who say to stay the hell away from everyone.

It’s so weird that the best thing we can do from society is literally nothing. Stay at home. So hard to feel like you are doing something important when you feel like you are doing nothing. And yet here we are!

So many things are weird right now. So many things that would be good to do in normal times are the worst things to do now. Like taking public transit instead of cars. Or helping an elderly person cross a street. Or going to the gym. Or visiting a friend or family member who is in the hospital or a long-term care home. Or giving people hugs! The world is topsy turvy.


I’m extremely fortunate that all of my jobs can be done from home. My entire office was put on work-from-home indefinitely starting last Monday. The one face-to-face course that I am teaching this semester was moved to online this past week as well, and my other course was already an online course. I’m developing two other online courses and all of that work can be done from home, so, like I said, I’m very lucky when it comes to work.

In working from home full time for the last week, I’ve noticed that I really miss the little conversations I got to have with my colleagues. Whether it was coming up with a plan to get our work accomplished, or chatting about how our weekends were, or how our families were doing, or sharing recipes for the baked goods that someone brought in to share1, or talking about upcoming vacation plans2 – I always knew that I loved conversations with my colleagues. But I never realized how much I needed them.


In the interest of socializing, I’m making an effort every day to reach out to one or two people I haven’t talked to in awhile to see how they are doing. While we aren’t able to go out for a coffee or go see a movie or anything like that, phone calls, texts, Twitter conversations, and Google Hangouts/Skype/Zoom/FaceTime video call are my lifeline right now. It’s a silver lining that I’m connecting with people I haven’t connected with in a while3.


I also saw on Twitter that some researchers at UBC are doing research on how people are coping with the COVID-19 outbreak ( https://blogs.ubc.ca/coronavirus/ ). So I took their survey and then I signed up for their other study, in which you fill out a morning and evening survey for a week. I think it will be fascinating to see the results of this study, as this situation really is unprecedented and is putting stress on people in so many different ways: worry for ourselves and our loved ones, worry about jobs and being able to pay bills, worry if our healthcare system will collapse under the avalanche of patients that are coming their way, and just the stress that comes from dealing with so much uncertainty (just to name a few).


As I settle into this new way of life that I suspect will be a few months4, I’m trying to do my best to take care of myself, go one step at a time, and make connections with those I care about.

If anyone is up for a call or video chat, hit me up!

  1. Omg, remember the days when you could share food with each other? []
  2. Omg, remember when you used to be able to travel to places?? []
  3. In addition to being an extrovert, I’m also an optimist! []
  4. Oh please, let it only be a few months! []

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Pandemic at the Disco

Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2

I don’t usually write about anything serious here on ye ole blog, but omg, the COVID-19 pandemic is like nothing else I’ve ever seen. SARS, H1N1 – they were nothing like the level of response and the level of people’s attention that’s happening with COVID-19. It’s all anyone is talking about – among friends, in the office, and the news on it is changing so rapidly that it makes your head spin.

Every time you turn around, there’s a new major development. The NBA has suspended its season. The NHL soon followed suit. Universities are telling their students to pack up and leave. Large gatherings of people are cancelled and recommendations are made to not travel outside of Canada. The Prime Minister’s wife tests positive for novel coronavirus. Cities under lockdown. Countries under lockdown.


My friend Cath and I were supposed to go to a show tonight. In the early afternoon a tweet said the show was a go. A few hours later, the recommendation was made by the provincial health officer that gatherings of more than 250 people or more should be cancelled, and so it was cancelled.


I’ve legit started doing the elbow bump with people in the place of handshakes. Like, two days ago I had two meetings in a row where me and the other person instinctively stuck out our hands to do a handshake and then, half way to the shake, we both froze and said “oh, we better not”. Today I had a meeting and me and the other person both looked at each other and said “Elbow bump?” and then we did it. Later another colleague told me some tough news and I said “Can I give you a hug?” and they said, “I still have a bit of a sore throat and I don’t want to pass it to you.” So we did an elbow bump. When Cath and I met up, we did an elbow bump and then the waitress complemented us on our elbow bumping, so we gave her elbow bumps too. Life is really weird in 2020.


I know this blog posting is really scattered, but I feel like the whole world is a mixed up, topsy turvy, scattered mess right now, and all I can think to do is getting my scattered thoughts out onto the page.


I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that I think the best thing we can right now is listen to the experts. There are public health professionals whose job is to know how to respond to things like pandemics. They are experts on the science of tracking diseases and responding to the emerging situation in a way that gives us the best chance to protect the population. Want information on the pandemic and what to do about? Go to trustworthy sources, like the BCCDC and the WHO. Don’t believe random stuff you see posted on Facebook and Twitter. There’s a lot of misinformation out there and there are lots of unethical people who are trying to profit off of people’s fears. Listen to the experts.

Which reminds me – I saw this on Twitter the other day and thought it was pretty great:

Also pretty great is Dr. Bonnie Henry, BC’s provincial health officer. She keeps the public informed with facts in a rational, calm, and human way, which is pretty freaking amazing when you consider that this situation is rapidly evolving, so there is a constant need to respond to new and unexpected things. So co-wrote Canada’s Pandemic Plan and has been on the front line fighting H1N1, SARS, and Ebola and honestly, BC is really luck to have her leading us in this really difficult time.

While Googling Dr. Henry just now to add a link to the paragraph above, I learned that she wrote a book all “Soap and Water and Common Sense.” Which brings me to something I’ve been thinking about in the past few weeks as people have been arguing about whether we are overreacting to COVID-19. The main messages we’ve been getting from the very beginning is wash your hands properly, cough/sneeze into your arm1, and stay home if you are sick. This is something that public health professionals have been saying for years! Even if the COVID-19 pandemic had not happened, we all should be washing our hands properly, coughing/sneezing into our arms, and staying home when we are sick. It helps prevents colds and flus and other random pathogens from being passed around.

I’ve been working in the healthcare sector for over a decade – and I spent five of those years working in Public Health specifically. So perhaps I’ve lived in a bit of a hand hygiene bubble, where my office spaces have always been replete with hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes. And where how to properly wash your hands is actually training that we get.

I’ve also seen first hand the incredible and tireless work of epidemiologists and public health nurses and medical health officers and a whole host of others during an outbreak, though what I saw was on a vastly smaller scale than this. I can’t even imagine the amount of effort and the toll it takes on public health professionals all around the world dealing with this crisis.

And then there are those who work in long-term care facilities and in acute care. Long-term care facilities are seeing outbreaks among the people most vulnerable to the virus. These facilities are often understaffed to begin with, but now we are talking about having even less staff – with some staff being quarantined – and having to care for sick and vulnerable people. I can’t imagine how hard it is. Acute care also faces hardship, especially in places where there are large numbers of cases. In Italy they literally do not have enough ICU beds and ventilators to treat everyone who needs intensive care, so healthcare staff have to choose which patients get treatment and which are left to die. Imagine having to make that decision.

Healthcare professionals are goddamn heroes.


There’s a been a lot of talk (at least among the nerdy science bubble in which I live) about “flattening the curve”. The idea here is to follow public health recommendations (like social distancing and hand hygiene), while public health does their critical work of tracing contacts and tracking the disease and all the other countless things they have been doing since this crisis started, to prevent everyone from overwhelming the acute care system all at the same time. If we spread it out over a longer time, we don’t end up in the situation where those working in the acute care system have to pick who gets to live and who has to die, like is happening in Italy.

To do this, we need adequate resources in public health, and in acute care, and we all need to listen to the advice of the public health experts.

Of course, following the advice of the experts is easier for some people than others. Like pretty much everything, the most vulnerable in society are the ones who are hardest hit by this. They are also the ones who are least likely to be able to follow the advice. For example:

  • Stay home when you are sick. But how do you do that if you don’t have paid sick leave and you can lose your job if you call in sick? And you live paycheque to paycheque, so losing your job means you can’t pay your rent or buy food or buy medicine?
  • Work from home to avoid crowds. That’s fine for many tech workers and office workers who can do that. But what about people whose job physically can’t be done from home? Anyone in the service industry can’t just work from home, for example.
  • Avoid public transit, especially during rush hour, to avoid crowds. Easy enough for someone who has a car that they can drive instead. What about people who are dependent on transit? And those people who can’t work from home, who have to physically be at their jobs to perform them – they probably also can’t just shift their work hours to avoid rush hour.
  • If you have COVID-19 but don’t need to be hospitalized, isolate at home, in a room with no one else. What if you don’t have a home? What if you have a home but it’s not a safe place to be, due to domestic violence or inadequate housing? Where do you go? What if you live with multiple people in an SRO?

I’m not bringing this stuff up to criticize these recommendations – they are evidence-based, they will help flatten the curve and I think that people who can do these things should do these things. I’m more bringing them up to criticize the system in which we live – a system that is set up so that so many members of our community don’t have adequate housing, don’t have access to sick leave, don’t have the ability to save up money to see them through hard times, that live paycheque to paycheque and are just one small incident away from losing a precarious job or home.


Again, apologies that this is super scattered. I needed to dump all these swirling thoughts out of my brain. And apologies that I didn’t actually proofread this either, so there’s probably eleventy thousand typos. I’m too tired to even proofread!

  1. As opposed to your hand, which you will then use to touch stuff, or not covering it at all, which will cause droplets to go everywhere, where someone else might touch them []

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Champagne Gymiversary

Beth at the Gym

Three years ago today I became a weightlifter.

I wasn’t particular good at it at the start- the 20 kg barbell was heavy and awkward for me to lift and my abs were never engaged when they should be and my gluts were lazy. I had to learn all the basic movements. I had to learn how to breathe properly.  To breath! Like, the thing I’ve been doing all day, every day since I was born. But, seriously, there are better ways to breathe and less good ways to breathe. Oh, and often when I would lift a weight I’d forget to breath altogether!

But despite it being the basics, I really enjoyed it. I was learning a lot about how my body works – and how I can make it work better. I saw progress from my efforts and not just in the gym, but in life too. From mundane things (it’s easier to carry groceries) to fun things (my hockey game is better (faster skating, harder shot, better able to fight for the puck with players from the other team (who are always bigger than me)).

I remember when I first signed up at this gym (Strong Side), I signed up for 6 months because it was a cheaper monthly price than if I signed up for 3 months (and I am nothing if not a cheap, cheap woman). And I remember thinking “I wonder if I’ll really make it 6 whole months”. And here it is, 3 whole years later, and I’m still loving it.

I started a new program this week and yesterday I got to try my first Olympic style lift : a push jerk. It’s super awkward because there’s so much that you have to do simultaneously, but it’s a super fun challenge. You basically start with the barbell in front of you, holding it on your collarbones, then you do a little dip down and then as you come up, you lift the bar straight up as you squat down low – essentially, you are trying to duck under the bar. It’s hard to describe, but it looks pretty bad ass when you do it right. I’ll take a video of me doing it once I’ve got the pattern down properly.

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2020 Still Sucks and I Still Hate It

In the continuing saga of 2020 sucks and I hate it:

  • I started off my trip to NYC by losing my belt at security. I took my belt off and put it in the bin with all my other stuff. And when the bin came out the other side, there was no belt. I’m guessing that it must have fallen out of the bin at some point in the process, but I didn’t want to cause a fuss at security, plus it was an old belt and I wasn’t overly attached to it, so I just went without a belt (and had to continually keep pulling up my pants).
  • I got sick on the Thursday night of the NYC trip – I’m talking fever and chills. Like the kind of chills were you have to sit in a hot bath – with a touque on – to not feel like your bones are made of ice. And then you go to bed in multiple layers – t-shirt, hoodie, long pants, socks, and again the touque – and you still feel cold. So I lost Thursday night and the whole day of Friday of my trip where I had to just sleep until my fever subsided.
  • I’ve had a wicked sore throat ever since then (so that’s been 11 days and counting). Like, swollen lymph nodes and it hurts to swallow. Like, it feels like my throat is some combination of on fire but also covered in ulcers that someone also took sandpaper to. And just when it starts to feels a little bit better, the pain comes back with a vengeance. It was so bad that I even went to my doctor because I was worried it was strep throat, but my doctor tested me and the culture came back negative. So basically it’s just something viral and all you can do is treat the symptoms and wait. Basically, the exact same advice as I was given about Crick.
  • And Crick still isn’t fully better from whatever she’s been sick with. Her coughing/sneezing isn’t as frequent or prolonged as it was, but she still sneezes or coughs at least once a day and for the past few days she’s had a runny nose. I wish there was something I could do to make her feel better.
  • More than half my team at work has also been hit by whatever plague has befallen me, which is just adding injury to insult given the super crappy stuff that’s gone on work-wise.
  • Also, I lost my wallet.

So this year sucks and I hate it.

But. I am nothing if not a glass half full person. So on the bright side:

  • Other than getting sick, NYC was fun. We did and saw lots of super fun stuff. If I ever catch up on all my side jobs that I’m hopelessly behind on enough that I can spend some time uploading my photos and writing, I may even do a blog posting about it.
  • When I got a fever in NYC, I was worried that (a) I’d not be able to fly back into Canada due to the COVID-19 epidemic (even though I’d had no exposure to any of the cases of COV-19 in BC and New York had not yet had their first case at that time) and/or (b) I’d get sicker and need to use the American healthcare system, because even though I have travel medical insurance, I’m never confident that it will cover everything. Fortunately, neither of these things happened.
  • None of the credit cards in my lost wallet got used and none of the most important things that could have been in my wallet (driver’s license/health card, main credit card, debit card, Compass Card, passport, Nexus card) were in my wallet. These were all in my cell phone case, except my passport and Nexus card, which were in my backpack. So I canceled the credit cards that were in there and I’m just out a little bit of Canadian cash that was in there, plus a few minor cards that are no big deal. So it could have been much worse.

OK, can 2020 start being nice to me now?

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Remembering

Speaking of things that suck, it’s been eight years since the day my dad went into the brain surgery that, ultimately, resulted in his death. I know I say it every year, but I can’t believe it’s been that long.

Today when I went to the gym and thought about the weight bench and the weights that my dad had in our basement. I don’t actually remember him using them, but my sister says she remembers. She remembers him telling us that we could look at the weights, but we couldn’t touch because he didn’t want us to get hurt. That definitely sounds like something my dad would say.

Tonight I’m watching the Leafs-Habs game. My dad would have loved watching this – his beloved Leafs against his hated Habs on Hockey Night in Canada. I can just picture him with a bag of chips and Pepsi, yelling at the TV. Right now as I type this, the score is 1-0 for the Leafs, with 8 minutes to go. I hope my dad’s eyes are watching this.

I miss you, Dad.

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2020 Sucks And I Hate It

So far, 2020 has not been the year I expected it to be. I went into it with high hopes – it’s a repdigit year after all! When have numbers ever let me down??

But I got food poisoning. The day before my birthday. Like the kind that hits you suddenly and then you barf on the bus. And then you still have to get on the Skytrain to complete the rest of your journey home, with a little bit of barf on you. And then you have to cancel the massage appointment that you were so looking forward to so that you can lie in bed feeling hella nauseated until you barf more. I managed to get through my birthday party the next day – I felt a lot better after all the barfing on Bethmas Eve – but then after that I continued to have an upset stomach. For weeks. And that’s put me behind on a bunch of side projects I’m working on, because I’ve needed to rest to try to get better. And I hate being behind on things.

Also, Crick has been having sneezing fits for a few weeks. I thought it was just a cold and that it would pass, but it’s still happening, so I took her to the vet on Friday to figure out if it’s something worse than that and/or if there is something we can do about it. But the vet said “It’s probably just an upper respiratory tract infection. There isn’t anything to do but let it run its course. Sometimes that can take weeks. Now give me $90 please!” Ok, she didn’t say it exactly like that, but that was the gist of it.

Then there’s big time crappy stuff going on at work. Stuff I’m not going to get into the details of here, but it’s crappy for a lot of really great people. That stuff is still new and raw and it’s unpleasant and making me sad.

So this year sucks and I hate it.

But. It can turn around, right? (Please tell me it can turn around). I’m trying to remind myself of the good things. Like Crick’s sneezing fits that had me worried are not a big deal and she will be fine. And people at work have been reaching out to me with kindness and offers to help and offers of commiseration, and it reminds me that I have many good people around me. And a friend of mine got a kitten and I got play with it.

Also, I have vacation carry over time from last year that I have to use up, so I have two weeks of vacation starting on Monday. The first week will be used to catch up on the side projects that I’m behind on. The second week, Scott and I are going to NYC. On my previous (and only so far) trip to NYC I had a blast, but it was short and I didn’t get to see and do so many of the things that I wanted to see and do. So I’m excited to go see and do some of those things. Recommendations accepted1!

And wish me luck that the year will get better overall!

  1. So far, at the top of my list are the 9/11 memorial, the Empire State Building, The Top of the Rock, MOMA, the Met, Natural History Museum, and finding a few shows to watch. And food. All the food. []

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More Than You Probably Care To Hear About My Laptop

Crick standing on my laptop

Once upon a time, I bought a Macbook Pro. Where by “a time” I mean “6 years ago”. I named that computer Daenerys and, much like her namesake, eventually that laptop became somewhat unhinged. Where by “unhinged” I actually mean her hard drive was inexplicably full all the time, though I couldn’t quite figure out with what, so she was running super slow and constantly telling me she couldn’t do stuff because there was no room left on the hard drive. I was on the brink of buying a new one, but my sister and brother-in-common-law said “Why don’t you wipe it and do a factory reset?” And then Kalev got me a 4TB external drive for my birthday (to replace my previous external drive that died of old age), so I backed up my overly full harddrive to that, then saved all the things that I wanted to make doubly sure I didn’t lose (like my Photos library and all my documents), made sure I had the necessary codes to reinstall any of the software I wanted to be able to keep using and then I took a really deep breath and wiped my hard drive clean.

I’ve now reinstalled a fresh version of the operating system, put my Photos library back into Photos, and started downloading the software that I want to use.

Kitties

Prior to this reset, I was using Microsoft Office for Mac 2011. As it turns out, Microsoft doesn’t support software from nearly a decade ago. Who knew? So I decided to try out LibreOffice, which is a free open source product that has equivalents to all of your Microsoft favourites (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.). I figure I can try it out for a bit for free, and if it doesn’t meet my needs, I can always pay for MS Office later 1. I believe Microsoft is trying to make everyone use Office 365, which requires you to pay a subscription rather than just buy the product, and I hate software as a subscription (I know I’m probably fighting a losing battle on that front). So wish me luck!

  1. In a pinch, I can always borrow Scott’s computer, as he has Office 365. []

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Goals for 2020

2020 is such a good number, isn’t it? It’s got the repeated 20, so it’s just fun to say. There’s 20/20 vision and the TV show 20/20 and in Roman numerals it is MMXX. And it’s a leap year, so we get to enjoy an extra day of it. Twenty-twenty!

OK, so since it’s 2020, I’m going to set 20 goals! I’ll write them as if they are already completed, which allegedly will inspire me to complete them (and seems to have done a decent job since I started writing my goals this way two years ago).

Carry-overs from Last Year

  1. I’ve KonMari’ed all the bathroom stuff (including toiletries, make-up, and towels).
  2. I’ve KonMari’ed all the kitchen stuff
  3. I’ve painted the inside of both the front hall closet and the office closet.
  4. I’ve compiled a list of all my accounts and other relevant information for my executrix

Similar To Ones I Completed Last Year But Want to Do Again (And, In a Few Cases, Take Them Up A Notch)

  1. I’ve squatted 100 kg (220 lbs).
  2. I’ve made 20 new foods and/or beverages that I’ve never made before – and blogged about each of them.
  3. I’ve read 20 books – and blogged about each of them.
  4. I’ve written in my journal at least one time per week, on average.
  5. I’ve had people over for dinner 10 times.
  6. I’ve slept an average of 8 hours per night.

Similar to Goals From Other Years

  1. I’ve learned 20 new things and blogged about them.
  2. I’ve canned/jammed 5 new food products that I’ve never made before (in addition to the 20 new food items mentioned above). I hardly did any canning in 2019 and I want to get back into it this summer.
  3. I’ve made 20 things (not counting food products). It could be sewing projects, painting, knitting – just anything creative.
  4. I’ve published 80 blog postings (that’s a bit more than 1.5 per week, but I like that it’s a multiple of 20).

Totally New Things That I’ve Not Had on a Goals List Before

  1. I have fixed my laptop situation (either by doing a factory reset or, if that doesn’t make it run well enough, by buying a new laptop).
  2. I have completed the 3 online courses that I am currently developing.
  3. I have bought and installed new blinds in my condo.
  4. I have baked 20 times this year. I barely did any baking this year and I really enjoy baking. Bonus points if I bake some sourdough bread!
  5. I have made a list of 100 things that I’m grateful for. (This is from my 101 things to do in 1001 days list – on which I haven’t completed very many items and the 1001 days ends in 2020!)
  6. I have done an average of 20 mins of mindfulness meditation per week.

Image Credit: Jamie Street on Unsplash