Wednesday, October 28, 2009

October- Better Luck Next Time

That's gotta be my theme for this month. I'm watching plan after plan fall through, being wished "better luck next time."

Next time? I want my alloted luck this time please. I had this whole grand scheme of going back to school and applying to UIS. That fell through- better luck next time.

Ready to apply to the PC, but darnit, might as well stay and do that Master's International- better luck next time.

Meet this guy who seems pretty cool- artistic, creative and cuddly. . . and married (thanks FaceBook). Better luck next time!

I even contacted PRIDE about getting one of their "Gay? Fine by me." T-shirts and the girl writes me back saying that they're all gone and closed with an essential "Better off next time."

Ya gotta be kidding me, for real.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Head In Hands, Book in Face

I fear that my ambition may be the death of me. Ambition, that very energy which drives me to maximize the value of my life, is surely to be the force that kills me.

How else could I explain taking a challenging semester of 3 classes- none of which I truly need? I already have a degree and I planned to apply for a graduate MPA program for which ONE prerequisite was needed that I did not have. The school offers conditional acceptance, so even if they felt that I was qualified enough for their program without having met the prereq, I would have been accepted and could have taken the class at a later date. But nooooo. Not me. Not only did I want to take the class before I started the program, I also took on TWO other classes that were not required. Two public administration classes in order to become more familiar with the study of public admin- to see what it's really all about, since I had only read about it and never studied it.

Three classes, taken as a Graduate-at-Large which means that the class that is eligible for graduate credit if taken as a grad student (read: more work). I was up for it. It had been two years since I'd been in school but I was ready for the academic challenge, and the sense of accomplishment and academic enrichment that was sure to accompany it.

What the hell was I thinking?? For one, students at large do not receive financial aid of any type, and BOY am in need of some. I obtained graduate tuition waivers through my job, but the fees alone are over $700!! Not to mention books, all of which I still don't have and won't be getting due to financial reasons. All of this expense, paid out of pocket on my measly non-profit salary. Then, it's that very "financial obligation to the university" that prevented me from obtaining my transcript and applying for my graduate program which was the whole point of me taking these classes in the first place. Not to mention the fact that I'm stressed and overwhelmed more so than I ever remember being in my four years of undergrad. My workload is astronomical. It does not help that I admittedly have not managed my time in the best way (though I have done better than in the past).

Then wait, it's not over. No, no my friends. The grad students (which by the way, I am not required to take this class as one, but I chose to) are required to complete a 20-25 page paper (undergrads have the same assignment with a 12-15 page requirement). We had a few options on how to do it- a literature review, cross-cultural interview and a few others. I chose what is likely to be one of the more challenging options- a consulting project reviewing and making recommendations for the volunteering program at a non-profit organization. Of course I'll be using the League. The benefit is that I'm very familiar with the structure and workings of my organization, and idea is that this consultation will be of use to the League. . . hopefully *sigh*. Downside being that I will have to work with others to collect some of the information and insight I'll need. I cannot even begin to expound upon the challenges that will present. . . not looking forward to that part AT ALL. Then there is always the reality that noone at my organization will care. . . or even read the thing for that matter! I could have done something relatively easy like a lit review. Read some journal articles, evaluate them, talk about them. . . collegiate book report.

Ambitious me wanted to do something more meaningful- on top of all that I have to manage in my work and personal life. So, here goes nothing. Even though I don't even need these classes I'm still going to try my best. Scratch that, I'm going to DO my best. . . even though it just may kill me.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Reflection- Focusing On Solutions

After a long, busy day I decided to come to the library to get some studying and work done. You know, trying to be a better student. I have a quiz due this week and I'll have a take home exam issued on Thursday, so I know I need to get at least a little bit ahead of the game. . . or at least catch up with the game as it is.

Somehow I went from studying Public Administration to browsing Peace Corps blogs and imagining myself as the narrator. I think that the Peace Corps has been a dream of mine since I first heard about it, probably in High School. Travel + Service, what better experience could a girl like me ask for? I'm grateful to have returned to a place in my life that facilitates even the thought of embarking on a Peace Corps service- single, unattached, and ready for the world.

Now is the absolute best time.

My application for UIS is due in 8 days, and I will be submitting it, hopefully early. I can't have another repeat of the Knox experience. . . I still wonder sometimes how my life might have been different if I had even finished the application- let alone if I had been accepted. Alas, everything happens for a reason, and learning from those mistakes is a part of growing and maturing.

Earlier this week, I decided/realized that it was time for me to focus on SOLUTIONS. Like everyone else, I have a multitude of problems to deal with on a daily basis. Some are relatively insignificant, like my hair, but others are quite pressing matters academically, financially, personally. . . but the problems are there nonetheless. Now, what to do about them? I also realized that I spend a lot of time thinking about the fact that I don't know what to do about lots of the problems. Not trying to find out what to do, just being concerned that I have no idea where to begin. Now is the time to focus on solutions, and to implement them. Thus being at the library at 1:00 a.m. after such a long day.

I know that I won't be able to fix all of my problems or remedy each single issue, but focusing on solutions will surely lead me in the right direction.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

It's Weird

It's weird. It's just past 10pm. I haven't even gone to sleep yet and I already know that I'm not going to want to wake up in the morning. I already don't feel like picking out what clothes I'll wear to work and how I'll do my hair. Don't want to think about what I'm going to eat for breakfast and if I'll take anything to eat for lunch. I don't want to deal with the inevitable frustrations of my job. . . and there are many. I want to not exist tomorrow, at least not until 6 or 7pm where I can wind down from a day I didn't have and just relax.

It's weird. I keep wondering if I'll be feeling this way throughout the weekdays every week. This feeling of being bogged down with financial concerns, thinking about all of the things that I need but can't get. It's only intensified by my job situation. For the first time school isn't really a source of stress. . . I'd really rather do that than worry about any of this other stuff. Being back in an academic environment is actually a highlight in my life right now. My graduate school application is due next month. I pray that I'll will myself to submit it.

It's weird. I'm ready to watch my dreams come to life. . . even though they still don't have much clarity. But even as anxious as I am to see them manifest, I am equally afraid. I know that's what the dreams are about. The dreams where my car is speeding along so fast that I get scared to death, but never do crash into anything. The dreams where I am uncontrollably floating up into the air and my attempts to come down only take me higher. So instead of zooming in the fast lane I'm creeping along on the shoulder, watching all of the speed racers flash by. . . assuring them that I'm coming when I really only hope that eventually I will be.

Tonight I go to bed, but my concerns won't. They'll be sitting by my bedside watching me while I sleep, hoping to ease into my dreams but I'll toss and turn so they won't hold me down. I know they'll be waiting for me to wake up so that they can tag along with me all day. Maybe if I don't get up. . . well, maybe I just won't get up.

Monday, August 24, 2009

How In The World Am I Supposed To Do This???

Altruism. I kinda knew what the word meant because I had heard it used here and there. As I was lying on the couch in one of my many life-contemplating sessions, the word popped into my head. Altruism. Altruistic. Is that the word that describes me and what I'm trying to do these days? Is that what's gotten me in the place where I am right now?

Altruism (from Latin: alter: the other) is the deliberate pursuit of the interests or welfare of others or the public interest.

Yep, that's it. That's what keeps me working at this organization, hoping that one day I'll be able to build this place up to the point where things will be running so well they won't even need me anymore. Struggling with the whole system from board members to co-workers all while struggling to pay my bills all for the sake of the good of the community. Altruistic indeed.

It's also the force that contributes to me wanting to heap a serving of every good cause onto my plate. NAACP, BSU, MCATF, YP's, business ventures, volunteering, church activities, you name it. It supports a good cause? I'd love to be a part of it! How can I help out?! Altruistic.

Just today I stopped by the local AIDS Outreach office and sat and talked with the staff who runs the organization. They are interested in reaching out to the Black community. . . I am interested in helping them. As we sat and talked about the struggles with our respective boards, funders, and general non-profit organization challenges, I thought about how crazy it is that I'm pursuing a post-graduate education to specifically go into this field. This is the type of work I have a passion for and there's really nothing else I see myself doing for the rest of my life than "giving back" in whatever form that might take.

The problem is, while I'm giving back, who in the world is going to be giving to me? To my wallet and bank account more specifically. Everyone knows that there isn't usually much money in the non-profit sector. It's hard enough to secure funding for your particular program, but what? You wanna get PAID too? Dream on.

I don't want to sell out my altruistic dreams for money. Nope, I'd rather they play in the same sandlot and both come home with me at the end of the day. I would take good care of both of them, making sure my dreams flourish into mature realities and keeping the money safe and well guarded.

But how is this going to work?

Monday, June 29, 2009

This is Worth Writing About

So the pastor (not my own pastor btw), let's call him Passo came into my office again today. He'll stop by every now and again to say hi or even take a few moments to play a game of cards with me. He's a pretty cool guy, but he has a reputation in this community. . . one that precedes him. Baptist preacher, late 40's or early 50's, smooth talker and a fan of the ladies. So I take it as no surprise that he only comes to my office to visit when I am here alone.

Today when Passo opened the office door I wondered what he would be up to today, but I always put the same smile on my face. After cordial greetings, he sat down and became gravely serious. He should be an actor, because his performance would have been great for the stage. Maybe he could try out for the next Madea play. He started by talking about my position now at the League. . . how he knew I wasn't completely happy with my position and not making much money. He makes eye contact with me as if he is reading my thoughts through my eyeballs and is silent for what seems like the longest time. He then cocks his head slightly to the side and without cracking a smile says in a low voice, "Would you like to work for me?" One would believe that he has already played out this scene in his head many many times.

I'm behind my desk, concentrating on what type of facial expression I'm displaying. His mannerisms already seem so scripted and fluid. . . I need to act in just the right way to fit the situation. I want to laugh and smile because this man is so ridiculous, but he's making it quite awkward for me to do so. Especially the way he keeps staring so intently. "In what capacity?" I respond. Another long, serious pause, and he begins to explain how he needs someone who will keep his calendar- and more or less keep track of his every move. Someone who will be aware of where he is, and know what to tell those who would like to know. Scheduling his flights and other travel arrangements, setting and reminding him of appointments with individuals in the community and elsewhere, and something else about church bulletins. "So basically a personal assistant?" I said. That's what it sounded like to me anyway. He kind of nodded his head side to side.

"Isn't that what Joann already does? Or is she not going to be doing it anymore?" He continued to look at me and said, "So does it sound like a job you could do?"
"Oh. . . so I don't get my question answered huh? Ok. That's cool." I let it slide. I started to think about what working for Passo would be like. I didn't even ask him how much the position would pay, because I don't want to make a financially motivated decision with this one.

In fact, although I will think about his offer, I already know what I want to do. I knew as soon as the words came out of his mouth, "Would you like to work for me?" It's funny though, that he would want to hire me as his PA, when I can hardly keep my own calendar lol . . . he doesn't have to know that though. I'm pretty sure that I would deliver in the position. I am a professional, and I always deliver my best work in a professional setting. I'm sure he'd pay pretty handsomely too, especially considering the level of confidentiality the position entails. And undoubtedly right off the back I'd need a BlackBerry and laptop. . . and of course a personal assistant must look presentable at all times, so I would have to have a monthly allottment for clothing and accessories. That's only reasonable. Regardless, I have a feeling that whether I take this position or not, the story with Passo will not end here. Stay tuned.

Friday, April 03, 2009

This Is My Life

I have had a mentally and emotionally tiring week. Monday I decided to stop by my ex's apartment to see how he was doing. We hadn't talked in months, and I had definitely taken deliberate measures to ensure that we had no lines of communication. I deleted his phone number and I even took him off my friend list on Facebook, the first time I've ever deleted anyone. But I had been thinking about him, so I went over there. I was a little bit nervous, especially as I drove up to his place and saw that he was indeed home. Would the atmosphere be tense? Would conversation be strained? Would I ruin months of dilligent progress? I really didn't know what to expect.

He opened the door and greeted me with a warm hug. It was a hug I knew so well and being in his arms for that moment was like putting on that old comfy pair of jeans that you know you need to get rid of but you just don't. Stepping into the house, I was flooded with memories of all the time I'd spent there what seemed like just a short while ago. I sat down and we caught up on life for a few moments. He has joined the National Guard and he told me that life was going well for him. I was pleased. There was a moment in which we looked at each other, both of us not knowing what to say, and we just started to laugh. An ounce of it was nervous laughter, but mostly it expressed how strange it felt for us to be around each other again after so long, but here we were. Chatting up kinda like old times. And even after knowing each other so well, a lull in the conversation just feels far too awkward.

Then he told me that he wanted to introduce me to someone. He went into the kitchen and I heard him speak to someone, but it sounded like inaudible mumbling. He came back out with this girl . . . he placed his hand on her shoulder, and with a nervous smile he took a breath and said "Chiliz, this is my fiancee . . . " I didn't even hear her name.

Smile Chiliz, Smile. Don't you dare be anything less than happy. Not right now. Not in front of her. "Woooow, fiancee!?! Oh wow, that is . . . great! Congratulations to the both of you." I kind of meant it. I really can't even imagine any other response I would've had. I asked, and he told me that they've been engaged for 3 months. My how time flies. After congratulating them once more and doing my best to wish them the best for their future together, I left. This time I let myself out and walked to my car alone. The man who once would have opened my car door for me and watched to make sure I drove off safely remained tucked in his cozy home, his hand probably still on her shoulder.

Driving home, at first I was okay. I was checking on my emotional self, "Are you really ok? I mean, for real? Yes, just a little bit sad, but I think I can handle this." No music the whole way home, just me and my thoughts. The closer I got to my house the more difficult it became. Two alligator tears streamed down my cheeks, blazing a path for more to follow, but they only came two at a time. I was still okay.

Until I got home. I stepped in the door, and my mind flashed back to his place and the memory of us departing with a kiss. Realizing that now all of his kisses, love, and affection would only be for her, I broke down. I knew this feeling well. My heart was breaking yet again.

The funny thing about that heartbreak feeling that is so distinct is that it is the type of pain that you know cannot be soothed. You just have to suffer through it, it forces you to feel with every ounce of your being until time lifts the burden.

The next day the weather was rainy, dreary, and gray and I was so grateful that God loved me enough not to mock me with sunshine. But today- today is bright and the sky is blue and though it is chilly, spring is in the air. Spring is the time for new beginnings- just ask the buds on the trees. That old pair of jeans? I lost them and I know for sure that I will never get that same pair back but now . . . now I can pick out a new pair, and get some more things while I'm at it.

I'm ready to pick up my bags and move on to the next destination in life, and the future looks bright my friends!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

You Don't Get Paid For Thinking

I was supposed to go out tonight. I had been looking forward to going out to hear this smooth jazz band play at a local spot. I always enjoy going there because the atmosphere is very mature and laid-back and I love seeing and being with grown black folk just chilling and vibing. After that we were supposed to go downtown and do the party thing. Totally opposite environment, but I was up for the balance.

Or at least I thought I was. I got dressed and realized that I didn't want to go anywhere at all. So now here i am, dressed like I have somewhere to go, with no plans but to stay on my couch for the remainder of the evening.

I have been craving unhealthy food lately. Burgers, fries, pop. I even craved a HOT DOG and I really don't get down with hot dogs like that. Beef hot dogs of course, Chicago style with onions, pickle, relish. . . everything. So juicy, so delicious.

And now that I am home for the evening, I just want a bottle of cheap champagne (Andre) and my laptop and I will be all good. Should this be the life of a 23 year old?

I think I have a touch of the blues.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Guess What I Did This Weekend!


I started a new blog- So Much 2 Make !!!! I couldn't help it, I just couldn't! I know, I barely keep up with this one right?

Well, this one is my craft blog. Crochet, sewing, someday knitting, maybe even some cooking and fashion stuff on there. It's my right brain spot :D I'm just super excited about it, and I luuuuurve the template!

Anyway, I won't be abandoning this one or anything. Hop on over there if you wanna see what I'm up to creating!

Friday, February 20, 2009


Word.Up. Yo, if I had access to THISSSS on a regular basis, I'd be pregnant too and I would not mind. Gone head Kimora Lee, I ain't mad atcha! I wonder if it will be a boy or girl? Either way, that baby will be too cute.
Back to the subject at hand:

Djimon, stop playin boy *giggles*! Lookin like, "If you want it, come on and get it." Boy. . . you . . . ooohhh!
That is some sexy chocolate right there, I don't care who you are. Images like that make ya girl wanna do thangs . . . Thangs that will remain untold for the sake of maintaining my reputation.

*SIGH* I do miss having some deep, sweet, velvety, dark chocolate in my life. Skin glistenin' in the moonlight. . .
Ima go take that cold shower now. *blink*

Saturday, January 31, 2009

How To Get Over Your Man

Well, make that your ex. If you're trying to get over him, he's no longer your man right?

1) Stop going to his house. Especially at night or when noone else is home. The more you visit, the more often you'll see him and this will make it harder to forget about him.

2) Try not to drive in the area where he lives. Or at least not down his street. If you must drive down his street, don't look to see if his lights are on or if his car is there. It doesn't matter if he's home, you're not going to see him anyway.

3) If he stops by your house unexpectedly, it's alright to let him in, but it's best to be short with him while making small talk. Don't engage him in real conversation. This will make him uncomfortable and he will want to leave.

4) If he calls unexpectedly, see #3.

5) Don't find any reason to call, email, or send a letter or card to him. Even if it's his birthday. It is essential that you limit all contact.

6) Throw away his toothbrush. You may have kept it in your bathroom just in case he happens to spend the night, because "you just never know." He won't be spending the night anymore, so you don't need to keep it. Throw away anything else you might be keeping for his sake, this includes food that you have in stock just because he likes it.
6a) It is acceptable to continue wearing clothing such as T-shirts, shorts, etc. that was previously his. It is yours now.

7) If you stop by your mother's house and a car that looks similar to his is parked in front, come back later. It's probably his car and he may have found out you were coming and made an excuse to stay until you got there. You don't want to see him, but if you are looking especially cute it's ok to go in. Reference #3 for rules regarding conversation.

8) Let other men do things for you e.g. scrape snow off of your car, give you a ride, or buy you things. This will alleviate some of the frustration you may feel by not having your ex around to do these things for you. Also, it will make you feel good to know that you've "still got it" (even if the men offering these services are undesirable).

10) Try to date other people. Even if you don't know anyone, or don't get out enough to meet someone new, keep trying. Ask friends if they know someone. You don't need to try to replace your ex, just get out there and have some fun being single.

Follow these simple guidelines and soon your ex will be a distant memory. If all else fails, move out of town.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Dream A Little Dream

I hate this dream. Each time I have it, it's so vivid, so real, unlike my other dreams. Reocurring dreams are strange enough in themselves. I used to have the one where I was shrinking. Not just smaller than everyone else, but smaller than everything- to an almost microscopic size. The more anxious and agitated I would become with shrinking, the smaller I would get.

Then there was the floating dream, which was sometimes fun but still scary. I would usually be in a room, lying or sitting down. All of a sudden my body would start to levitate. Only me, noone else in the room would be affected. Before I knew it, I would be headed toward the ceiling and there was nothing that I could do to bring myself down. Just floating like a helium balloon. I would strain and strain and try to tilt my body in a downward direction, anything to come down. Nothing worked, and the more I tried to fight it, the more I would rise. In this dream, I always just wanted to be close to the ground again, to be with everyone else and stand upright on my own two feet. But there I was, floating in the air with no support, no control over my situation. Nothing holding me, just hanging there. I never did fall though.

But this dream is the worst of all. I've had it at least 3 or 4 times in the past few years, and strangely enough when I told my mother about it, she said that she'd had the dream as well. Weird.

I was in London having a great time with this group of people. We were touring, eating, shopping, just enjoying London. At the end of the day, I came back to the flat where I was staying and while running my tongue across my teeth, I noticed that one felt a little loose. Hm, that's strange. I looked in the mirror and wiggled the tooth with my tongue again, and it fell out.

Just fell out. I became very nervous, checking the mirror to see if the loss of this canine tooth would be noticeable if I smiled. My tongue could fit in the gap, but maybe I could wait until I got home to have this checked out. Just then, the tooth next to it broke in half and fell out of my mouth. It fell to my hand and I began to panic. The remainder of the brittle molar began to crumble, and again I ran my tongue against it to get it out. I bumped the tooth next to it, and it began to crumble as well.

My teeth started to crumble and fall out from both the top and bottom rows, and here i was by myself, looking in the mirror, spitting out teeth and bits of teeth into my hand in disbelief. I didn't know what to do! I was too embarrased to talk to anyone about it because I hardly had any teeth, and sharp pieces of tooth littered my tongue and mouth enough to make talking near impossible anyway. I wanted to rinse my mouth. I kept spitting the teeth bits out, but there were too many. I didn't want to risk rinsing my mouth and losing even more.

Should I call my mother? What should I do? I can't go out in public like this! I was so afraid. I knew that if I called my mother she would tell me to go to a local dentist, but I had no dental insurance (besides, who wants to go to a British dentist?). I was stuck by myself with broken teeth in my hand and crumbles in my mouth. I just knew that this time it wasn't a dream.

I snapped awake and checked for my teeth before my eyelids fully opened. Thank God, they were all there. It felt so real that time.

The first time I had the dream and found out that my mother had also been terrorized by it, I immediately went online to find out what it meant. Common interpretations include experiencing a difficult time in having one's voice heard (check), a sense of powerlessness (check), insecurity about personal appearance or ability to financially support onesself, or even fear of being embarrased publicly. Biblically, dreaming of teeth and the loss thereof can indicate that you are putting your trust in the beliefs of man and not in the word of God. I could be guilty of that. boils down to having something to do with insecurity. Everything from insecurity about one's personal appearance to insecurity bout being able to support oneself financially. I am not sure where this apparent insecurity lies for me personally, but I do have a few ideas.

I only like one of these interpretations, and that is the one that states that dreaming of teeth falling out is symbolic of money. Let's just hope it's my money and that I get to keep it! Anyhow, it's a very common dream. As disturbing as it was, at least I'm not alone.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Dear Love,

I write this letter in hopes that it will find its way to you. I know it's been a while, but I still think about you often, and I must admit-sometimes I miss you. That's kinda hard for me to admit, because I think we both know I'm not the sappy type. Well, I didn't think I was, but when you came . . . that all changed.

Sometimes I still can't believe that I let down my guard. You found the cracks in my cement walls and persistently chipped away at the stone until you were able to slip in. Thanks for not leaving me wide open and vulnerable. Then you left. Your departure was much more prolonged than your entrance. It's like you wanted to go, but just couldn't bring yourself to leave. I even still have some of your stuff at my place. . . Man, we had some good times. Warm summer nights under the moonlight and stars, chilly fall days cuddling and staying warm. You brought me feelings of joy, security and peace, and I did my best to nurture you as well.

We had our rough times too, which is to be expected. I never thought that it would always be a bed of roses, but I needn't focus on the negative. I just wanted to let you know that I simply miss you being around. Everyone is always talking about you, how wonderful you are, how horrible you are. . . I guess I'm lucky enough to know both sides.

And I think I'm ready to know a little more. I wouldn't mind seeing a little more of you in 2009. I mean, you made a few cameos in '08, but maybe you can stay around for a little longer this year. I learned so much from you the last time you stayed and taught that introductory class- I believe it was called LV 107- First Love. I was taking a look at your catalog and you have a couple more 100 level courses, there is one called LV 109- Have Fun with Love that looks pretty interesting and something that I should be able to fit into my schedule. Seems like it would be a nice follow up and I could build upon what I learned in LV107. I also think it would be good preparation for LV 210- Second Try.

I'm willing to make the time if you are. It would be so nice to see you again, and to have you around. The stuff you left last time, I'll keep it safe for you but it would be helpful if you didn't bring as many bags this year (but I do love gifts, bring as many of those as you want!).

Thanks Love. I hope to see you soon.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

2009 Will Be Divine

I usually end the ear off with a recap of the past year's events. Well, it's now the 1st, so I missed that. Plus, I don't remember a lot of what happened in '08. I'm a bit too young for my memory to be fading so quickly, but that's neither here nor there. What is here though, is 2009. Happy New Year!

2008 was a great year for me. I'd almost say that it was one of the best years of my life actually, and I knew that '08 would be special from the beginning.

Now 2009. I don't usually make resolutions, but I applaud those who do- those who are courageous enough to face their inadequacies and resolve to change themselves for the better. I have shortcomings of my own, and while I can't say that 2009 will be the year that I make that 180 degree turn and become the proper, put-together person who I know lives inside me, I do know that this year will be about change.

In 2009 I will work to be less lazy. That's right, I said the L word. LAZY. Coming home from work and sitting on the couch surfing the internet knowing that I need to be washing dishes, doing laundry, mopping, etc. Keeping dishes in the sink for days? No more! Letting laundry pile up until my underwear drawer almost runs bare? Uh-uh.

I will work to be more dilligent about keeping up my personal appearance. Now, don't get me wrong, I won't be walking around looking like a diva 24/7 although you can expect a more consistent level of fabulosity. Keeping up with my hair and setting goals for growth (shout out to the ladies at LHCF), maintaining my nails, definitely keeping my eyebrows groomed (although I swear the Indian ladies in town are determined to keep me out of their threading circles!). I might even shave more often . . . no promises there though! I am also going to drink more water and hit the gym to get my sexy on- not only for the cruise this summer, but for the benefit of my overall health.

I will work to be more organized. Use a calendar and personal planner. Put things in their place when they are no longer in use. Get rid of things that I don't need/no longer use (Freecycle it). Plan out my activities to ensure that I get everything done in a timely fashion, and also to ensure that I don't forget anything. Know when the bills are due, keep up with my account balances.

I will also do more blogging in 2009. I need to get back to my writing, to expressing myself. I am thinking of starting a travel blog to document my experiences before, during, and after my trip overseas.

If I can do all of these things, I will have a very productive and satisfying year which is exactly what I need for 2009 to be. I am ready for change in a positive direction and the excitement that 2009 will hold. I will reach out my hand and take advantage of the opportunities that I am so blessed to be presented with. I will be walking through doors that lead me to success and fulfillment. Oh yes, 2009 will be divine!