It has been over 2 years, 2 months, and 27 days, if anyone was counting, since I’ve graced my own my page with new written content. I’m always putting material up via twitter (@jacobkthomas) and on Instagram (@jacobkt225), however actually putting words to a page, hadn’t really happened. The question of why/how this happened is first question. That answer is kind of easy to answer, that little thing called life. Also, I didn’t have anything to live up to my mission statement. I’m supposed to be providing things about my travels, my food, and my life in Germany. I am still traveling from time to time. I’m still eating and making excellent food, look at my Instagram, seriously, I’m not ashamed of the food. Lastly, I’m still living here in Deutschland. I guess when it all came down to it, providing new content that I thought people would like to read wasn’t something I felt up to doing.
However, after over 2 years of nothing, I feel like now I’m able to finally put something up. That feeling of wanting to put up new material just happens to coincide with bringing in 2017 with renewed hope and brand new motivation. I also felt like this place is the best place to review my 2016 resolutions. I’m still putting the finishing touches on the 2017 resolutions, which will probably go where the 2016 ones were. That location was my refrigerator. The idea was simple. What place do I spend most of my time in my apartment? That would be my kitchen. I decided to put it there because I felt that I would come in there everyday and be reminded of what I wanted to do. I’ll be honest for the first part of the year, it worked. Needless to say like a lot of things for a lot of people, even when you have something looking you straight in the face, you can find a way around it. With all of that though, I put down 13 resolutions, goals, things I wanted to change. Whatever you want to call it, I put down 13 of them.
Literally decided to handwrite these, out of the 13 things I wanted to do, I can say I was able to accomplish 8 or 9. Why 8 or 9, it comes down to the second resolution, lose weight, target weight of 165 lbs. I did lose weight, however 165 was a pipe dream. As I was told by my girlfriend and a few other people, me getting down to that weight is a bit much. I did get down to around 170 or 171. I was happy with that, though with the holidays and all, who knows where I’m at now. My reasoning behind that was that I wanted to feel healthy. I really feel like a healthy body can provide you with a healthy mind. I have read that when you workout, it gets your mind going. I can say that when I worked out, my mind was clearer and I felt happier at times. Not to say that working out alone led to weight lose, but I also wanted to eat better and watch my portion sizes. With that being explained, let’s review the 2016 resolutions:
- Empty my Keller, storage area (achieved)
This was something that was years in the making. I wish I had pictures of how bad my keller (storage area) looked. I had so many things which I needed to organize or just get rid of. The plan for emptying out the keller was throwing away stuff. I also purchased a shelf. It allowed me to give everything a place. I can now go down there and have a clear walking path, which allows me to get to things without a problem
- Lose weight, target weight of 165 LBS (achieved, kind of)
Like I mentioned, I lost weight, didn’t get down to 165, but somewhere around 170 or so. I was happy with this. I was able to do it with a combination of eating healthy and watching my portion sizes. I also started to find out about new grains. Towards the end of the year, I started to eat rye berries. Yes, the same rye that rye bread is made from. I have read several ways of cooking it. I still need to work out if it really works just cooking it without soaking, but we will see.
- Stop drinking for 30 January 24th to February 23rd (achieved)
This was a fun challenge, that I’m happy to have completed, and I will do it again. I like a good beer and a good cocktail, but making a nice lemonade, or having a flavored water helped out. Also all of the things that come with not drinking kind were of were true for me. It also helped me through the year. I was able to get up earlier and easier. I also had more energy in some cases.
- Practice and improve my German, 1 hour a day to start (achieved)
Mein Deutsch ist ein bisschen besser, my German is a little better. I’m saying I did this one, though there is some gray area here. I started off doing duolingo daily, along with using Pimsleur on audible.com. I understand a little bit more, though German isn’t easy, so I still have a lot to go.
- Read more books 12 books for the year (fail)
I didn’t even come close, as my girlfriend would point out. Not coming close should read, I didn’t read one book. I like to read articles, other random things online; getting me to read a book, that’s got to be worked on for sure. My girlfriend read almost a book a week, I will totally need to try this one again.
- No more new debts, pay everything in cash, or make sure to be able to pay off credit card within a month (achieved)
This took a lot, but for the most part, I was able to cover everything I did in cash, or at least without the use of a credit card. I also have learned about different loan websites, which are going to allow me to finally have a plan to pay off my debt in a few years.
- Learn a new word and use them (achieved)
Do you know what psittacism is, how about titivate? I do, along with a few other words. Using them can be fun also, like having a glass of wine and saying it’s plonk (cheap) can be fun for you, however make your friends roll their eyes, but you can’t win them all.
- Bake more bread (achieved)
I have had fun baking, I always have fun baking. Baking bread was the new element that I wanted to throw into the mix. I have baked a good amount of loaves. My girlfriend though gave me a great present in giving me My Bread by Jim Lahey. This book makes baking easy and has allowed me to look into different techniques that have built off what Jim Lahey tells you to do.
- Cook more from my cook books (achieved)
Another cooking related activity, that I was happy to do. I have a good amount of cookbooks and printed recipes. The funny thing that I feel like a lot of us forget, is that a lot of those recipes that you find online, come from a lot of books. I still find and look at a lot of recipes online, but I will continue to use my books to continue to make really tasty food.
- Go to bed at 11pm or earlier on work nights (fail)
I really tried to do this, but when it came down to it, going to bed at 11pm happened here or there, but a lot of nights, it was midnight or later. I’m a night owl, also a lot of the things I wanted to watch were coming on when I should be going to bed and I’m horrible at going back and trying to watch things again. I just like to see things in real time.
- Learn to take better pictures (fail)
I still need a lot of work on this one. My girlfriend takes great pictures, you have to check out @elkasmelka, so the challenge is to take pictures as good as she does. I’ll see if I can get this one done in 2017.
- Write more on my blog (fail)
Seeing how this is my first post in over 2 years, we all know how that one went.
- Sell or give away old clothes (achieved)
This one tied in with the emptying of the keller. I had several bags of old shirts as well as other things, which are way to big for me now. I decided to donate or just giveaway that stuff. I tried to figure out methods to sell things, but when it came down to it, I just wanted all of the stuff to be gone.
So these are resolutions from last year. I’ll be putting up 2017’s soon, once I figure them out and all. Being able to say that I’ve achieved a majority of the things I wanted to do, means a lot to me. I haven’t been someone who has done a lot of these in my life. However, as you get older you see that you can make changes. That’s what these things have meant to me.
Well, I think I’ll be more consistent this time around. Let’s hope this is a resolution that I’ll stick to for this year.
Happy New Year! Let’s make 2017 awesome!!