2013! A brand new year! Ah, how exciting!
And it's beautiful here - bright sunshine and perfectly mild. I went out as soon as I got up to take some pictures (just a few, here on Facebook). There were some remnants of frost: in the picture on the left, the water has a very fine sheet of ice over it, but despite that, it felt almost like spring. I walked back home, had a cup of coffee, and here I am on this wonderful day!
Of course, I'm thinking about New Year's Resolutions, and I thought I had hundreds of them, but actually I don't. Not as such. Just one - not to waste so much time. I've always been a procrastinator, but last year (how odd to write of 2012 as "last year"!), I got pretty bad. It's so easy to let life drift by. But then I read this by Seneca -In December, I actually got into one very good habit - the practice of writing "to-do" lists. This is something I want to keep up, because it is so good to have a focus; it keeps me from idling. My resolution, then, for 2013, is to do things as and when they need to be done, and to stop not when I'm tired of it or bored, but because I have finished.
Life is long enough, and a sufficiently generous amount has been given to us for the highest achievements if it were all well invested. But when wasted in heedless luxury and spent on no good activity, we are forced at last by death’s final constraint to realize that it has passed away before we knew it was passing.
There are other things I want to do as well: pick up Ancient Greek, re-write the 2011 novel, and various other little things, however one thing I've learned over the years is that it's no good launching into a new way of living, and I know well if I decide to wake up early, do an hour of Greek, an hour of writing, followed with an hour of exercise then it's hard to stick to. Good or not, I have my routine and things have to be eased in. This is why I love the new year - I don't have to begin all at once. Over the next few months I can develop these new habits so they slowly become a way of life.
I loved being up and out early this morning, and some of my favourite blog posts have been written in the morning rather than the evening, which is my normal practise. I don't intend to set the alarm clock to 7:30 every morning (and certainly not tomorrow, which will be my first opportunity for a lie-in since late November!), but to do it slowly, over the course of the year is entirely realistic. As for the other things: I'm not ready yet to begin re-writing, but I am wanting to pick up the Ancient Greek, so for the next month or so I'll work on making that part of my routine. Once it becomes normal, I'll start re-writing and getting into that way of life. Fortunately, I do have a vague exercise routine so that isn't an issue!
As for books! Oh books! So many books for 2013! I have my challenges and I resolve to stick to them as I did last year. And like most of you, reading is a way of life, and that is one good habit we all can congratulate ourselves on! I'm beginning the year with To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - it's one of those books that everyone else has read apart from me, so this is exciting! And, tomorrow, I shall pick up The Faerie Queen by Spencer.
And blogging, again, it is normal. I do want to write more reviews, and at some point, just for fun, I would like to do a vlog, as well as the usual keeping up to date with what everyone else is writing.
There's lots to look forward to this year, spring and summer, and a trip to Paris next month (which I'm entirely focused on now!), plus I'm waiting for some new Zolas to come in the post. And in blogging, there's a readathon coming up on the 5th, plus Katherine's Turn of the Century Salon - I can't wait to start reading Parade's End by Ford Maddox Ford!
Until then, well, it's quite a "normal" day here. Big C is working today and isn't off until tomorrow, so I shall be spending New Year's Day with my mother and my friend Bev, and then coming home this evening to relax with To Kill a Mockingbird. I love that today is quite normal. Last night was, too - for the first time in possibly ten years, I wasn't out for New Year's Eve and I enjoyed watching the firework display from London. Perfectly quiet and peaceful. This is how my 2013 has started. I'm so excited and full of anticipation for all that's to come, especially Paris, but at the same time, the pace is slow and calm. A perfect perfect start.
So, then, let me take this opportunity to wish you all a very happy new year! I hope it's truly wonderful for you :)