My Goals and Dreams for 2012

Yeah, I know I am a little late for this kind of thing since we're already rocking out in 2012. But according to my calendar, we still have lots of the year left and plenty of time for me to attempt to accomplish some goals and realize some dreams.

1. Be an amazing father to Everett: I am of the belief that being an "amazing father" can be a little subjective depending on what matters to you as a person. Over the years, my goals will be to make sure that Everett is loved and provided for, but also make sure he is not sheltered and allowed to make mistakes. I'm pretty big on ensuring my son has a large world view and is informed enough to make his own decisions on how he wants to live in it. But I also know that at 2 weeks old, he isn't quite ready to make those kinds of decisions and my role is a little less subjective. Right now, my job is to make sure he is safe, healthy, and comfortable. I am really looking forward to this year and watching Everett grow. I am also pretty excited by the fact that I work at home, and so I'm far more likely to be able watch all the major developments and 'firsts' that will take place this year.

2. Take Summit carting more: The few times that we have taken Summit carting, the breeders have remarked on how smart and "quick-to-learn" he is. The problem is that a "few times" means he has gone about a grand total of 3 or 4, which isn't even close to enough for him to be ready for certification (which I assume is a pretty piece of paper that signifies my dog can haul ass). We've got some pretty decent reasons for why he hasn't gone out enough, but I'm hoping this summer becomes the year Summit can cart around my son and nephew (which may take some convincing of a few people on top of getting Summit prepared).

3. Write a novel: So this becomes the goal that is the running joke that was never meant to be a joke. I keep saying that "this will be the year I write a novel" then there is no novel to be seen come December 31st. I've actually put a schedule together this year and allotted some time to make sure this is the year I have something written up in long form. Now, if it will be publishable is a totally different situation.

4. Write a non-fiction book: I've got several plans in this category. The potential for something to be available in published form in the next few years is lot closer than it was a year ago. I definitely want to lay out several future ideas and start to formulate what I hope to be the first of many books.

5. Watch way more movies: This was a goal from last year too, and I think I achieved it by one or two. I have three main reasons for this being a pretty big goal of mine. The first being that I just enjoy movies, and sometimes it is nice to just have goals aimed to make you happy. The second being that I find that watching films help invigorate me creatively and give me more ideas for my own writing. The final reason is that I'd really like to land a film column, write a book on film, and maybe even do reviews for a paper or magazine -- in order to be in a spot where I'm marketable in that area, I have to have a pretty good idea of the current film landscape, which is done by watching current movies.

6. Write another weekly column:
It was a pretty big personal achievement for me to land the twice weekly parenting columns with Pregnancy & Newborn magazine. I would love to be able to get a column about another subject, such as film, TV, history, sports, politics, world news or bacon.

7. Pet a llama: Because why not.

8. Increase my current level of handiness: Which basically means I want to be able to change my own light bulbs.

9. Continue to make this blog a daily must read: When I was compiling my list of the best of 2011, I started to think that I wrote far better posts back in 2010. I'm not sure if that was due to having more time to dedicate to the blog or if I ended up writing more pieces that had been close to my heart that year. But based off pure visitor statistics, 2011 was a far better year than 2010 as I landed about four times the amount of daily visitors. This doesn't account for several days where I achieved a huge spike in readers thanks to particular interest garnering posts. I hope I can continue to find time to devote to this blog, and I will aim to write some of my most interesting and unique content this year.

10. Convince my sister-in-law that bacon is a vegetable: Because she is a vegetarian and so she has been denied the sweet, sweet, sweet magical taste that is bacon. I just don't know how you can have a fulfilled life without bacon. And Warren Beatty.

11. Join a theatre group: When I was a kid I'd narrowed down my future career aspirations to storyteller, journalist, actor, and Indiana Jones. I've come much closer to achieving the first two, and I've sort of come to terms with the inability of ever being a fictional archeologist living in the 1930s and '40s. I really enjoyed acting as a kid and I was even part of a drama club for several years. I did a few plays in high school, but then stopped acting for many years. I then performed in a play in 2006, and it really reminded me how much I loved the craft. I know there are a few local theatre companies, and I hope to be able to find the time to perform in a play this coming year.

12. Join a local writers group: I've had the chance to have lunch with a few other freelancers (not writers per se) and I've joined a few writer groups online, and it is really inspiring to be able to discuss and socialize with people with similar goals, interests and career paths. The act of writing can be a very isolating thing, and so I think it is paramount that I find the time to actually get out and interact with other people. I know there is a local writers group and I need to check out if it is something I am interested in. I think it will also be good for my own writing to have a group of people to bounce ideas off and just talk about the art of writing.

13. Wrestle a yeti:
Because how will Everett ever respect me if he finds out I haven't?

14. Have more super-secret projects: The whole point of being a writer is starting up projects that you can't talk about for a while, and so you're forced to just tantalize your blog readers for months. Of course, this is only fun if your super-secret projects don't fall through but rather your actually able to eventually reveal them.

15. Spend time and demonstrate love to those who matter: Now this is the whole point of even being alive.