Gearing up for 2012

I swore I wouldn’t do this. “This” of course being the 2011 wrap-up, 2012 projections, happy new year post.

I’m determined not to rehash old posts -not because some aren’t worth a second look, but because the ones that are have, for the most part, already had one – and since I don’t really have any 2012 plans yet, that part was out too.

2012 Calendar

Source: danielmoyle

Blame the pilot of the plane I took last night, leaving Madrid as the clock struck 12, looking down on the fireworks from above. He was the one who got all romantic, informing us that we would be starting 2012 in ascent and hoping that it would be a “psychomagical” sign of the way the year would progress. The truth is that while I know that there’s no difference between December 31 and January 1 and that you can start anew whenever your heart desires, I do feel a little thrill of excitement at the thought of a brand new year, just waiting for us to make our marks on it.

While I don’t have resolutions specific to 2012, I do, of course, have things I’d like to accomplish in the not-too-distant future. If success happens to coincide with the calendar year, then that’s just fabulous, but I won’t be racing to finish the following in 366 days (happy leap year!). Mostly I just wanted to share some goals and desires I’ve got in the back of my mind on a day when so many are doing the same.

Maple Greystone [kitchen]

Source: Mirage floors

Make our apartment look fabulous: While I’ll never be one of those women who lives in a design magazine any more than I was one of those girls who could do hair for prom (didn’t you hate them? or maybe you were one of them), a couple little repairs and things like hanging some pictures and buying a few more accents could go a long way.

Travel smarter: I’m proud of how I managed to stick to my goal of doing from last year. I took weekend trips to the south of Chile, Buenos Aires and Rio, when previously I think I would have gotten hung up on travel time and cost. But that doesn’t mean I can relax. Since Rodolfo’s still playing handball, our schedules revolve around the team’s whims. Last year, that meant plenty of travel-ripe long weekends lost after having spent weeks in limbo as to whether or not he’d be free. This year, I’d like to plan ahead more in order to avoid missing out.

Mysterious Globe

Source: Sudhamshu

Travel to at least one new country: It’s not a race. There is plenty to see in countries I’ve already been to. Some familiar countries are probably even more interesting than some unknown-to-me countries. Yeah yeah yeah. All of that may be true, but I think you’re lying if you don’t admit that there’s a certain thrill to seeing a new country that nothing can replace. I had some wonderful trips in 2011, but I didn’t manage to visit a new country since I decided not to travel more in Europe, and my passport needs a little spice in its life.

Keep trying to figure out my back pain: Acupuncture didn’t help, and neither did a chiropractor. I’m not sure where I’ll go from here – possibly exercises on my own, possibly back to physical therapy – but going nowhere is not an option. Experience has shown that ignoring it doesn’t help, so I want to keep being proactive until a find a solution.

Whatever your views on new years and resolutions, I hope 2012 is a great one!

26 Responses to “Gearing up for 2012”

  1. Happy 2012, Emily! I’m hoping this is the year that you and I finally cross paths =)

  2. Sara says:

    I don’t comment often but I saw that you were having back pain. I’m not sure the source of your pain, but as a chronic pain sufferer I can say that yoga has really helped me. Hot yoga is especially beneficial. There are bikram studios in Santiago, although they are a bit pricey. It might be something to look into if the traditional methods don’t work.

    • Emily says:

      Thanks for the suggestion! I actually started yoga as a result of physical therapy the first time around, but I’ve never done bikram – maybe I should give it a try.

  3. Kyle says:

    My resolution is let it be. Let everything be. I need to stop being so crazy goal-obsessed. Because honestly, I’m going to have a great year. I always do. Whether I hit my goals or not. I think if I put less pressure on myself I’ll be a happier person all together.

    And I totally agree about the new country thing. That was a big decision for me this year, going to Barcelona in Spain, which was a new city but not a new country. On one hand. YES, thrill of a new stamp and saying you’ve been to one more country. On the other hand, I knew we loved Spain and reaaaally wanted to go to this city I heard so much about. We did, and we visited my old exchange student, who I adore, and now she’s getting married soon, so hopefully that will mean another trip to a country I love…and while we’re there maybe we’ll be able to buzz off to a new country as well.

    • Emily says:

      Good luck with your goal – relaxing is a hard one, as I well know!

      I’m very much content with my travel choices over this past year. I could have gone to a new country, but I don’t regret any of the trips I took or times I stayed put. That said, I am looking forward to something new this year – it’s time for another passport stamp!

  4. ayngelina says:

    You have good resolutions, very practical and achievable. What will be your new country though?

    • Emily says:

      I’m not sure, and I don’t want to jinx it, but I’d be thrilled with either Bolivia or Cuba…of course now that I’ve said that, it’ll end up being somewhere completely different, but that’s fine too.

      • Cuba sounds like fun and its definitely somewhere I want to go on my list. However I’d recommend not going for tax reasons. If you are filing your US taxes for holding your US passport and claiming the 94K (or whatever amount it is) for income earned out of the US, if you set foot in Cuba (as well as a few other countries) that amount disappears and you need to pay taxes. Such a shame :( I can dig up the article somewhere if you want.

        • Emily says:

          Good to know, thanks! I had no idea. However I would be traveling on my British passport, so I don’t think the US government would know.

          • Yeah I’m not sure exactly how it works, but I know you have to claim it more when you file taxes. Either way it scared me away from doing it – I suppose I like my salary here too much. :P Just thought I’d pass it onto you anyways.

  5. Andrea says:

    Oh no! Is your back still bothering you? I remember talking with you about this. John is currently seeing a neurosurgeon here in Perth, trying to get to the bottom of his pain and numbness in his arm and fingers. Could be a surgical solution – poor thing had to have an MRI today and he’s really claustrophobic. I felt awful for him. Let us know how you go with it!

    • Emily says:

      Oh gosh, I hope John gets some answers! He and I can commiserate…so far I’ve been told that an MRI isn’t necessary, but who knows, it may get to that point. I hope 2012 brings solutions and a pain-free 2013 for both of us!

  6. Cata says:

    I have been doing the one country per year for a few years now. Of course I want more than one but I get home sick and end up going to Colombia at least once a year. Now im in trouble bc my husband gets home sick and wants to go to Ecuador. It was easier when I was single! He loves Colombia so at least he doesn’t mind that I want to go so often. Those trips mean less vacation days for the new country. I will try not to go home this year and maybe I can finally travel to china or somewhere in Asia. Happy 2012!

    • Emily says:

      That’s exactly my problem – I want to go new places, but I’m not willing to give up the time I spend on trips home. So far this year I’m thinking I might be able to get away with using just 1 week on vacation in California, which would leave me 2 weeks for exploring elsewhere.

      Hope you get to go somewhere exciting this year!

      • Cata says:

        GRacias!! Tu tambien!! Me encanta California. Mi hermana vive en san José y siempre voy a visitarla. Otro motivo x el q siempre tengo tan pocas vacaciones!

        • Emily says:

          Por si acaso la vas a ver en abril? Nosotros vamos a estar en the Bay Area, sería increíble que nos coordinaramos!

          • Cata says:

            Seria lo máximo encontrarnos. Semana santa? Voy a tener en cuenta la fecha. Andre(mi esposo) no conoce California y TENGO q llevarlo! amo SF, napa y quiero conocer tahoe!

  7. Charu says:

    Love your goals! One of my goals is sprucing up the apartment too–for real! Can’t wait to meet you IRL. When is that goal happening? :)

    • Emily says:

      I don’t know, sadly! I would love to get back to NYC one of these days – especially since Rodolfo’s never been – but so far it hasn’t worked out schedule-wise. You never know, maybe 2012 will be the year.

  8. Jenn says:

    So we weren’t the only ones gearing up for takeoff when December 31 became January 1! If anything, it was a different way to ring in the new year, fireworks included!

    Congrats on articulating your resolutions. I think that process of thinking them through is a measure of success, even if it’s just the intention at this point. They’re bound to evolve, but I think the awareness of the changes you might want to bring about can be a good thing. My resolution is pretty straightforward: Finish this novel!

    In the meantime, let’s resolve to meet up soon! And a most Happy New Year to you and your hubs!

    • Emily says:

      I actually know a couple other people who were on planes for NYE, so maybe we’re just trendsetters!

      I completely agree with you that more than anything, the importance to me of resolutions or goals or whatever you want to call them is taking that second to look up from the daily grind and think a little longer-term. Otherwise I find that time rushes by, and things like decorating the apartment never get off the back burner.

      Yes to meeting up soon, I’ll check with Rodolfo and let you know!

  9. I’m so sad that acupuncture didn’t help. Back pain makes up about 50% of my practice and I see the MOST amazing results. Wish I could treat you!!! I’ve had back pain on and off my entire life and I know how awful it can be. For the last 5 years I’ve had the goal of seeing 3 new countries a year and last year was the 1st time I didn’t make my goal! I only went to 1 new one: Dominican Republic. I did travel a hell of a lot though. I HIGHLY recommend Bolivia and I sooooooo want to go to Cuba with you babe.

    • Emily says:

      The two of us in Cuba would be amazing! I’m game if you are :) Although I could also be talked into somewhere that would be a new country for both of us so that we can both meet our goals.

  10. Suzy says:

    I love this idea, making a list of things you want to accomplish rather than a recap. I too need to visit more new countries. I have trouble with that. I tend to think I need to see it all in one place before I can move on.

    • Emily says:

      It’s hard to balance depth over breadth when it comes to travel – I’ve loved seeing more in certain places, but at the same time I like whirlwind trips to see something new. Clearly the answer is winning the lottery and traveling as much as our hearts desire :)

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