Enjoy Not Knowing

Just another American living in Sweden


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finally 2017 (a look ahead)

Don’t think I’m late to the party on this one, I am aware that it has been 2017 for many weeks now. (Despite the fact that I recently wrote 2002 as the date.) That’s neither here nor there. What is here and there is the fact that I took an impromptu blogging break – as is wont to happen from time to time. Which is why I’m just now getting to posting about my upcoming year. Last year I looked ahead and focused on these three questions:

  1. What’s working?
  2. What will I improve upon?
  3. How will I specifically work to make these improvements?

In order to answer the first question I’ll take a look back on 2016, a nice way to do that is my reverse bucket list. Not familiar with the concept? Just click that link back there (reverse bucket list) to see my take on it. All in all 2016 was pretty bad ass.  Continue reading


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2016 looking forward

As you know, I didn’t do any resolutions in 2015. Whether or not that was intentional or not is up for debate. Along with celebrating my accomplishments in 2015 I’d like to take the time now, at the beginning of this year, to do a retrospective.

I got the idea from Nate Green who runs a fun little blog over here. The idea is to focus on three questions:

  1. What’s working?
  2. What’s not working?
  3. How can I fix what’s not working for a better result?

 

With this in mind I’ll be focusing on my personal life in the following points.

I’ll take another look back over 2015 to figure out what is working:

  • I have a good idea of where I want to be going in 2016 and have laid the ground work in 2015 to get there
  • I’ve taken responsibility for my own health and happiness and work daily at these two things
  • I’ve had the chance to travel, and taken advantage of that chance

Now on to what’s not working. Personally, I choose to focus less on the negative and more on the positive, so I’m going to take this question to be instead what I hope to improve and/or what I’d like to be better at.

  • Strengthen the current relationships in my life
  • Refocus my eating habits
  • Continue to rehab my shoulder mindfully with appropriate increases in difficulty

So, how can I fix what’s not working for a better result?

  • Strengthening the current relationships in my life: My first thought on this one is less phone time. Phone  world is fun and entertaining but also a huge time suck. I’m going to research apps that track phone usage and will give a reminder/alert once I’ve reached a certain amount of phone time for that day.
  • Refocus my eating habits: Though I have yet to write my final posts about PN I’m going to use what I learned there and continue to improve my nutrition. First thoughts on this is more vegetables in my life. Mid PN journey I was eating vegetables at every meal consistently, I want to get back there and beyond.
  • Continue to rehab my shoulder mindfully with appropriate increases in difficulty: I’m going to print out my rehab schedule (up until now I’ve used a version on my phone). After each completed session I’m going to cross off the workout. I did this one summer and saw huge increases in my consistency, and consistency is key for rehab. (And any lasting change).

Nate recommends that you write for 15-30 minutes on the three questions found at the top of this post. I say write for as long as you like, until you feel you are done. Though this exercise probably isn’t meant to take hours on end, so keep that in mind.

I’ve also tried to give concrete actions that I can take in order to work towards my new goals/improve what’s not working as well. If you check out my answers to the third question you’ll notice three things that I can do (basically immediately) to get the ball rolling. To reiterate:

  1. Download phone time tracking app
  2. Buy vegetables for my fridge/freezer
  3. Print rehab schedule


What’s in store for the future? One thing is for sure, more sneak attacks!


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do you remember

Do you guys remember my first blog post ever? I certainly do. (And if you can’t be troubled to click that little link and read up you’ll get the gist of it anyway.) Not to say I can predict the future, but I totally can.

What did I say in that first post ever? That I didn’t want this to turn into 10th grade English class? Well, it has, my friends, it has. I am both behind on my reading and my writing. Although this time it is all self-inflicted, it seems to matter all the same.

Side bar: Does this mean I actually enjoyed 10th grade English…if I keep bringing myself back there…? What would Freud say?

Anywho. What I feared would happen has happened. I have promised many a promise and post, and have yet to deliver. I’m here today to tell you about ALL of the posts I’ve said I’d post. (And haven’t yet.) In list form of course, I love lists. I’m going to Tarentino this bad boy and start at the end…which is really the beginning:

Let’s start with 2012:
In a post entitled things i’ve been up to I’ve listed a list of things I had been up to (as my listy list suggests) the following is what has yet to be written about.

  1. Celebrating birthdays
  2. Visiting Spain part 3
  3. Last week at my job
  4. Working out
  5. Gardening
  6. Trying out DIY stuff off of Pintrest
  7. Germinating lemon seeds, trying to grow avocado and hoping my pineapple bush won’t die
  8. Riding motorcycles
    .

Moving on to 2013:
If you check out my book of the month list for 2013 you’ll notice a few things. First, both June and August have yet to be posted. These are now, seriously, delayed. If you were to start clicking on some of the links you would notice a couple rather incomplete posts. These are the, soon to be more complete, BOTMs coming to a screen near you:

  1. February – Läroplan för förskolan Lpfö 98 by Skolverket
  2. April – Godnatt, Alfons Åberg by Gunilla Bergström
  3. June – The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
  4. August – Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
    .

In October I mentioned my own personal troubles getting on SJ trains, and promised a future story.

Also in 2013 I made five New Year’s resolutions. Two have yet to be completed:

  1. Paint a painting
  2. Find a lasagna recipe Evelina likes as much as I do
    .

Finally, 2014:
A trend has started, and I have yet to post the following BOTMs for 2014.

  1. March – Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
  2. April – The Flame Alphabet by Ben Marcus
    .

In January I talked about throwing a sun party, if you’re curious how that went, stay tuned.
In March
I mentioned lördagsgodis, a future explanation is clearly on its way.

I also wrote a post only a few weeks ago expressing my regrets in my absence from writing. There I listed the following future posts.

  1. Wrapping up my Swedish as a Second Language course
  2. Running like a mad woman
  3. Travelling across the Atlantic
  4. Hosting a friend
  5. Party planning
  6. Taking my driver’s test
  7. The end of the school year
    .

As I’m sure you realize, this is quite the list, but it actually doesn’t include it all. I will also be updating previous posts, and editing and fine tuning what needs to be edited and fine tuned. If you like math you will see that this totals 26 up and coming posts.

This whole idea, posting all of the things I’ve said I’d write about, can be found on my 30 before 30 list, number 14. I know I’ve been talking about this for a year, but I feel new motivation coming on. When I’ve posted all these posts I’m hoping my blog will have a more complete and cohesive feel. That I can actually pretend that I have a bit of focus and thought behind what I do. I like pretending.

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twenty. paint a painting

This is one of my New Year’s resolutions. I had planned to complete this one in early April. I’m here today to tell you that did not happen. I do still hope to complete this bad boy before the turn of the year. I will just not be able to complete it before I turn 25. Sadly.

I do have it all planned out though. I don’t want to give everything away, but it involves black, white and grey, and birds. I hope I’ve piqued your interests! I’ll be sure to keep you posted. Until then, here’s a teaser:

photo (6)

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an apology

I have been away now for over two months. Those of you who have followed this blog for a while can attest to the fact that this tends to happen occasionally.

Life gets busy.

In the recent months I have been wrapping up my Swedish as a second language course – the final exam is tomorrow. I’ve been running like a mad woman. I’ve travelled across the Atlantic, which was lovely, I’ve hosted a friend here in Sweden, and I’ve been party planning. I’m well on my way to taking my driver’s test at the end of the month. Work has also made a big appearance in my scheduling, as we’ve entered the busiest time of the year – the end of the school year. Meetings galore!

I would like to say that you’ll all soon get to hear more about these exciting events soon. But there are no guarantees. Especially with the exciting announcement that’s coming up.

Tune in tomorrow to see what’s in store!

In the mean time, I will leave you with this lovely thought from Brian Andreas:

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My own picture, Brian’s words.

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i have a plan

Time to dust off the tools.

Time to dust off the tools.

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I have a plan. A plan for the future.

The future of my painting. As mentioned in my 25 before 25 list, and my New Year’s resolutions, I want to paint a painting. I haven’t painted for a long time, and this summer Evelina bought me canvases for my birthday. It’s really just a matter of time.

The plan started out in my head with an idea, which I slowly developed, after lots of pondering. Pondering is a key first step in painting. Now I’m ready to make it a reality. But first I’m going to draw my painting. A little.

Let me explain. I’m going to sketch onto the canvas the basic idea of what I want my painting to be. I’ve managed to bring my easel and paints across the vast Atlantic, so my tools are waiting. I already know what my painting will be called. But that’s going to remain a secret a while longer.

Stay tuned for pictures.

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achieve your financial dreams

I’ve noticed that a lot of people I know, and stalk over the Internet, have made resolutions involving money-saving. This is great, I say, I’m all for saving money.

money money money

more money

While banks and financial groups tend to release money-saving tips, or money spending don’ts this time of year, I feel I have something extra to bring to the table. So I want to share that with you. In my years, I have implemented quite a number of money-saving strategies, and I feel I have now been able to wade through the get-rich-quick schemes, and the save your way to millions ploys to deliver you what really works, in three simple to follow steps:

Tips on saving money for 2013:

  1. Cut up all your credit cards. The trick to saving money is to stop spending it. While you’re at it you should cut up your debit cards, and increase the security on your bank accounts so that it is required to take a week or more to withdraw any sum of cash. That’ll teach you.
  2. Minimize shopping, only buy the necessities. In today’s day and age marketing and advertising is just screaming for you to spend all your money and spend it now. In order to avoid temptation it’s probably best you never go outside. Or watch TV. Or read.
  3. Create a budget and stick to it. On the surface this may seem like the most difficult of the three tasks, but I think you’ll find without access to money and no temptation whatsoever to spend it, it’ll become wonderfully easy to follow the plan you lay out for yourself. In fact if you can survive never leaving your living space with an excruciatingly limited access to your funds this third task will be the easiest of them all!

Live long and prosper.

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