2020 New Year's Resolutions

It’s the final day of January and at long last, I am sharing my 2020 New Year’s resolutions. Before we dive into this year’s list, if you’d like to revisit the goals from years past, I’m sharing all of my year-end recaps here: 

I can’t believe this will be my sixth year publishing my resolutions here on the blog. When I first started doing this, I wasn’t even sure if anyone would be interested. These posts have turned out to be some of the most fun to write, and among the ones you all engage with the most! 

For 2020, I am going to continue my resolution to stay home at least one night per week during the work week. I first made this goal in January 2016, and with each year it’s gotten easier. In fact, now the pendulum has swung the other way, and I have to push my butt out the door at least one night a week! 

I am also going to keep sending my grandmother one piece of snail mail every week, which was a goal I set in January 2019. I’ve had the best time picking out postcards and note cards to send to her from all of my travels. Because she is hard of hearing, when we talk on the phone, she often doesn’t retain any of the information I share with her. This way, she knows everything I am up to, with the added bonus of having something fun in her mailbox every week. I know she really loves a card when she brings it to my parents’ house to show them. 

For brand new goals, I have spent a lot of time thinking about what’s important to me for the next 12 months. It took me a while to cement my list because to be honest, I feel very stable and content right now. I have a great job, I am able to travel, I have a supportive family and the most wonderful friends - I don’t find myself wanting for anything. Which I suppose, is the best place one can be in. With all of that in mind, this year’s resolution list reflects mostly things I want to do for fun. 

Without further ado, here we go! 

1. Improve my Hebrew 

I’ve just returned from 10 days in Israel visiting family and friends. Here I am just before I boarded my flight. 

Israel

It was an incredible time and I am working on an eight-part series that will share so many of the awesome adventures I had on this year’s trip. While I was there, I couldn’t help but wish I spent more time before the trip improving my Hebrew.

As a kid, I was in Hebrew school three days a week. Starting in kindergarten, I went Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday, and one hour of each of those days was spent learning Hebrew - reading, writing and speaking. When I stopped going to Hebrew school (in the 10th grade), I also stopped practicing my Hebrew. 

When I visit the country now, I understand a lot, but I don’t have the vocabulary to speak back in the way I’d like to. So, I am resolving to improve my Hebrew this year and am committing to studying a minimum of 10 minutes per day. 

I have already downloaded the Duolingo app and am six days into my streak! 

2. Take the ice cream-making class at Gracie’s 

It’s no secret that ice cream is my primary food group. While it’s my one true love, I have never actually tried to make my own flavor. I follow Gracie’s on Instagram, a scoop shop in Union Square in Somerville, and last year they started sharing photos from their ice cream-making classes. I didn’t even know they offered that! 

Gracies Ice Cream

I really want to take the class and design my own custom flavor. Maybe for my birthday in September? 

3. Eat at Orfano 

Orfano is the newest addition to Queen Tiffani Faison’s restaurant empire. The former Top Chef contestant has completely taken over the Fenway dining scene with her beloved spots like Sweet Cheeks Q, Tiger Mama and Fool’s Errand. 

Orfano is Italian and from all the pictures I’ve seen, the decor, food and cocktails all look fantastic. 

Orfano BostonOrfano Boston

Tiffani was recently a guest on The Food Lens podcast and I found the interview really inspiring. Highly recommend! 

4. Finally make it to Charleston, SC 

In January 2018, I made a resolution to visit Charleston, SC. I have been wanting to go for quite some time and was positive 2018 would be the year. Spoiler alert: I never made it.

In December of that same year, my cousin and her family moved to Charleston, so I was sure I would get there in 2019. Failed again. 

I am stating it here: third time’s a charm, 2020 will be the year! 

Charleston SC

5. Read 30 books 

Last year, I resolved to read two books per month, 24 for the year. I closed out 2019 with 28 books on my list and I am confident I can up that this year. I’ve set my goal at 30 and I already have a monstrous stack of books next to my bed to work through.

Books

So far this year I’ve read One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus and The German Girl by Armando Lucas Correa. Blog posts to come about both! 

6. Listen to more music 

Over the past two years I’ve really become a podcast addict. You can see my list of favorites here. I listen to them while I drive, while I walk Scout, on planes - basically anytime I’m on the move. While I love listening to interviews, learning about new topics or getting the latest celeb drama, I also completely lost touch with music. 

For me, podcasts have replaced listening to music entirely. There was one day in December where I just didn’t feel like tuning into any of the shows I had downloaded, so I opened my Pandora app and started streaming some of my favorite artists (let me tell you, I have perfected my Pandora stations with over a decade of thumbing up and down). 

I didn’t realize how much I missed music! On that one dog walk, I felt more energized and happy than I ever have listening to a podcast (sorry, Guy Raz). So, I am resolving to try to work music back in at least 25% of the time. 

7. Expand my list of dog sitters 

This resolution is a bit more personal. As you all know, my pup, Scout, is the love of my life. I absolutely adore him.

Here he is being cute in our entry way:

Scout

Here we are in our happy place, Truro on Cape Cod:

Scout

And here's one of our reunions after I came home from a work trip: 

Scout

Most of the time, I relish in all the joys of being a dog mom, except when I have to travel. 

If I am going to a place where I can’t bring Scout or I am traveling for work, I cannot get into a good head space about the trip until I know who will be taking care of him. To be completely honest, finding dog sitters is the greatest source of stress in my life right now. 

When I first adopted Scout, I had tons of friends and family members who were eager to help. They spoiled me with their willingness! Over the years, those people have had kids or moved away (in one year, I lost three dog sitters to Chicago!), causing me to have to rebuild my roster entirely. 

I have already started expanding the network and have added one new person to the list. In fact, she is going to stay with Scout while I travel in both February and March. With a few big, week-long trips coming up later this year, I am hoping to lock people in well in advance, so in the weeks leading up to these trips, all I feel is excitement, not anxiety. 

And there you have it! My seven resolutions for 2020. As I have in the past, I will share updates on my progress throughout the year. 

If you have suggestions, particularly for places to go in Charleston or books to read this year, please leave a comment below or shoot me an email. I love hearing from you. 

Tell me, do you have any resolutions for 2020? 

*Gracies image courtesy of @icecreamgracies on Instagram, Orfano images courtesy of Boston Magazine, Charleston image courtesy of Business Insider and book stack image courtesy of Unsplash

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