It’s a New Year!

I’m not one for resolutions really, but I am goal oriented so usually as the year begins I try to set up some goals for my year.

This year I want to read more of the “classic” books of literature.  I was talking to someone at work recently and I realized that I haven’t read many, if any, of the classic works of literature.  For example, I was reading this list of top 100 novels of all time and while I have read a few of the works, I haven’t read enough for my liking.  I think I’ve read To Kill a Mockingbird and the Lord of the Flies when I was a kid.  I’ve read Memoirs of a Geisha (much better than the movie) and possibly Huck Finn, and I’m reading The Hobbit and Sinclair Lewis’ Main Street right now,  but that’s it from this list of 100 top novels.  I think that’s a little sad.  I’ve got Robinson Crusoe in the queue.  Then I think I’ll pick up Atlus Shrugged, which has been on my to read list for years.  Then I’ll just start picking and choosing from that list and we’ll see where I end up at the end of this year.

I’m going to expand my garden space by another 200 sq ft.  Yesterday I ran out of onions, and soon potatoes will be gone.  So I need to both grow more and buy more to store.   I’m also going to focus on some certain items to grow enough to store just from my garden.  With more careful planting and care I could have canned just tomatoes from my garden this year.  Same with green beans.   So if I can plant a little more of those and focus on keeping them picked I think I can exclusively store these items from what I grow.  I’m hoping to do the same thing with potatoes, onions and garlic as well.

If I’m able to acquire a plot in the city garden area all bets are off on what I’ll end up being able to grow and store.  There is usually a waiting list for these spots but 2K sq ft area for $30 is a very nice price.

Become even more proficient at storing more food through the winter.  I think this is prett self explanatory.  I’m doing very well this winter, but as you could tell above I still need to acquire more items to make it through the winter.  I’ll continue learning on this one.

Get more involved locally in action to make change and educate.  I’m already involved with a local eating group, and I’m getting involved with another group focused on education of environmental issues.  I believe I’ll be getting more involved at church with education of environmental issues, and, time allowing I’m going to try to talk to the PTA at school about a school garden plot that we can set up and perhaps teach children about growing food.   This is a big goal but it won’t require my total involvement all the time.  I’d like to teach people about all the different techniques I’ve read about, how I’ve implemented them on my small plot, and how they could too.  I’ve been working on a pamphlet about this, but I’m not such a good writer at re-writing things that are already somewhere else.  Maybe this year it will get done.

There you have it.  Those are my four main goals for this coming year.  If you are interested in prognostications for what this year might hold you could read Sharon or KunstlerBart says he’ll have one soon also.

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6 responses to “It’s a New Year!

  1. I didn’t look at the list of books, but I recommend The Great Gatsby, Tom Sawyer, and I have been reading a TON of Clive Cussler books. He wrote the book that Sahara the movie was taken from. Movie sucks, but the book was ok. I didn’t think it was one of his better books though. He writes adventure/environment books, so you might like the topics of them. I suggest starting with Flood Tide or the Treasure of Khan.

  2. Did a quick glance at the list and guess it is the differences in required reading for different age groups. We had to read several of them for reports when I was in high school. Oh, the changes of requirements..

    Enjoy!!

  3. I’ve read thirty-two out of the hundred. Interestingly, this list is very similar to the 100 Best English Language books of the 20th Century (http://www.infoplease.com/ipea/A0776722.html), of which I’d only read about twenty-five (earning a B.A. in English helped ;). I guess good books are good books, no matter who is compiling the list ;).

    I loved the Jean Auel books. She did an incredible amount of research and the story, at least the early stories of Ayla, were completely believable. I also loved Barbara Kingsolver’s book, The Poisonwood Bible. I second Ben’s recommendation. The Great Gatsby was very good.

    You should also read 1984, Brave New World, Animal Farm, and Fahrenheit 451, which are about oppressive governments (right up your alley, I think :). The Grapes of Wrath will interest you for the economic aspect, and The Stand, if you’re interested in post-apocalyptic points-of-view is a good story.

    Happy reading!

  4. cleanerplateclub

    Great resolutions. As for the reading, I’d totally recommend you Start with Crime and Punishment. You won’t be able to put it down and you will wonder why you didn’t read it decades ago…that’s how I felt, anyway. I’ve read a bunch of them, though a few of them I haven’t touched since high school. Other ones that I think fall into the category of great-literature-meets-really-fun-reads are Poisonwood Bible, Brothers Karamazov, Franny and Zooey, Catcher in the Rye, Lolita, Dunces, Gatsby, and Mockingbird. To the Lighthouse is one of my own favorites, but it’s not light reading (though it is short). Don’t start with Joyce or you’ll never get past it to any of the others.

    The only one on the list that I actively hated was Time Traveler’s Wife. It’s a fast read, but I found it dopey (I was alone in my book group for that, however, so who knows).

    I think I’d like the oppressive govt. ones, too – haven’t read any of those yet.

    Happy new year to you!

  5. Thanks you all for the great recommendations. I’m going to keep this list handy!

  6. I hit the used book store for a few books today. I got 6 for $13! Gotta love that.

    1984
    Grapes of Wrath
    Animal Farm
    Crime and Punishment
    Slaughterhouse 5
    The summer of our discontent (I think)

    They didn’t have Catcher in the Rye or Atlus Shrugged. Next time maybe.

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