2018 Year in Review

Goals. Such a terrifying concept for me. I have a thing with starting stuff and never finishing it. I set goals, and never meet them.

Well, back in January, I made known a few of my goals.

1. Meet all the criteria for the Colonel’s Challenge. I did all the weight lifting and exercise, though I didn’t lose the pounds I was aiming for. Still, not bad. Of course, all of my progress was lost when April came and I came down with pneumonia, which destroyed all of my strength, ability to breathe, and even wiped out my time off. I still haven’t recaptured my fitness abilities, but I’m taking steps toward that by doing a quick exercise after I return from a bathroom break. Some days it’s planks, other days it’s squats. I’ve got a plan, and I’m doing it. Maybe come spring, I can start running again.

2. Average at least 700 words a week. That’d be a goal of a little over 36K in a year. Considering I did NaNoWriMo in November and got 50K in 30 days, I have that solidly achieved. I also finished Isto, which was a HUGE DEAL for me, which brings my tally to about 120K for the year. I might’ve sold myself short on that goal.

3. Complete one good digital painting. I put a strong focus on improving my skills in digital painting this year. I bought a couple of Udemy classes, joined a Facebook group, and checked out a few online tutorials. Since my main problem is abandoning my art before it’s done, I am proud to say, I did actually finish some digital paintings this year. My style morphed as I figured out what I liked best. I still struggle with drawing my characters so they’re recognizable from one picture to the next, but that should come with time.

My very first digital painting in June of 2016:

My latest digital painting as of December 2018:

4. Build a better relationship with my children by being more empathetic. HA! I think the attempt to be more empathetic lasted maybe two weeks. I can’t change who I am, and my efforts to do so just left me curling my fingers and flaring my nostrils. So I opted for a different solution–putting my son to bed an hour earlier every night. He gets more sleep, isn’t as whiny, and I’m no longer gritting my teeth because he’s breaking down into a fit over every little thing (now it’s just every other thing). I think he takes after me, since I was a rotten child.

Then there’s my daughter, who simply continues to grow into a thoughtful, responsible older child who I rely on regularly to be AWESOME. That girl is destined to be a teacher, I tell you. Or management. Same diff. No matter where we go, she makes new friends, starts organizing younger kids into activities, and provides directions and suggestions for everyone involved. During Halloween, she kept track of whose turn it was to knock on the door, that way everyone got a fair chance to do so. She’s a lot better kid than I ever was.

Well, that was it. Compared to previous years where Life kicked me in the teeth (alright, so pneumonia was seriously uncool, but what can one do?), this has been a pretty good year.

So what are my goals for next year?

1. Slacklining. It’s probably not a useful talent, but I bought a kit and I want to learn.

2. Average 1K a week. I probably won’t participate in NaNoWriMo next year, since it disrupted everything else in my life this past November. But I’m setting a higher goal than I did last year.

3. Lose 30 pounds. Alright, this one is a lofty one, since any time I’ve tried to change my eating habits, it’s ended up with me spiraling into depression and rebounding with a bunch of sugar and starchy foods. So the goal is to increase activity enough to use up all those excessive bad calories. Let’s hope there’s no illness to undermine all my efforts this year.

I plan on taking off the rest of the year, so I’ll see you all after the new year!

How did you do with your goals? Did you set any goals? Are you going to set some for next year?

Obligatory End of Year photo recap:

Loni Townsend

About Loni Townsend

Wife. Mother. Writer. Ninja. Squirrel.

14 thoughts on “2018 Year in Review

  1. You’ll have to take pictures of the slacklining – sounds like that will be a lot of fun! All the best for the coming year for you and your family.

  2. It sounds like you had a good year overall. All the best with your new goals! (I had to look up slacklining – am I that out of the loop on things? Sheesh!)

  3. Congrats on your goals for this year! I haven’t done my review yet, hopefully I can get to that next week.

    Happy Holidays to you and your family!

  4. Getting pneumonia would totally undermine any exercise routine. Getting healthy after is how that goal resets.

    There’s a reason I won’t sub for elementary school classes. The little kids… I think there’s something to be said for older children. I hope your son grows out of the whiny phase for you.

    I don’t set goals. At least, I don’t set them at the beginning of the year. And I don’t write them down. I’m weird this way, as I know a lot of people talk about how it makes them more accountable. But for me, telling others about them has the opposite effect. When I tell people about them, I am more likely to fail. In fact, I can’t think of a single instance of when I set goals and told people about them that I actually achieved said goals. When I keep them personal, well, it’s hit or miss. Sometimes I achieve them, sometimes I have to reassess and rework.

  5. An hour extra of sleep makes a difference in my mood.
    Just increase the exercise and change what you can eating-wise. We don’t eat much sugary food because we just don’t bring it in the house. Problem solved.
    You had a good year! Merry Christmas.

  6. Congrats. It sounds like you did well despite the illness. And your most recent illustration shows a lot of style.

    Happy Holidays!

  7. I sense that you achieved most of your goals – and with a bit of slack. I’ve yet to assess my goals but suspect that I fell well short as the year was filled with problems. All the best for 2019.

  8. I love reading about your year in review and also enjoyed your pictures. Your family is beautiful (and so are you of course!). I admire your ability to find solutions on helping your son feel better throughout the day by getting more sleep – helping you in return. That’s awesome and your daughter sounds like a true gem.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!


  9. Christine Rains

    Sounds like you had a fantastic year even if you didn’t achieve everything. We had a sick year too, and it does knock everything back. I didn’t make my goals, but I surprised myself these past four weeks with not only doing a post-NaNo challenge and making 50k last night, but exercising regularly. Now I just need to keep up that momentum going into 2019. Your drawings are fabulous! Your daughter sounds like my son. (He wants to be a teacher when he grows up!)

    Have a wonderful holiday season!

  10. Joleene Naylor

    Other then the pneumonia sounds like a great year. And here’s hoping 2019 is even better – and sans the sickness!

    As for how my year went, mine ran about a month behind until October and now I am three months behind on everything and can’t figure out how to catch up without disappointing all the people in my life who expect me to spend time with them at the holidays.

  11. Good luck with your goals for 2019. I haven’t made mine yet, but I know I did well on my 2018 goals.

  12. Girl, it sounds like you did an awesome job. You can’t help the sickness (which sucks!) but look at you pumping out words like a champ! And your digital painting is gorgeous, and a leap from where you started. Good for you for sticking with it.

    I don’t think I had goals for this year, and if I did, well, clearly you see how well I’ve stuck to them. Hopefully 2019 will rock as well! (But maybe without the illness…)

  13. It seems like you had a great year! Happy 2019!


  14. Sarah

    It does sound like a good year (illness aside). I need to go bed an hour earlier, too. I might stop throwing fits. Eh, maybe not. Well, your paintings are awesome. You look healthy & beautiful (and happy) as always. I’d give you some of my empathy if I could. “Take my empathy, please.” But, honestly, you never give yourself enough credit on that count. Anyway. Happy New Year a month late, my friend.

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