Friday, January 9, 2009

January Princess Challenge

It’s time for my January Princess Challenge results! This month’s challenge was to set clear goals.

First, let me say that the blog I posted on New Year’s was a perfect example of how I don’t like fleshing out goals. I love writing lists, organizing (you wouldn’t know it from my apartment; it’s more of a list/spreadsheet fix), and preparing. However, I’ve found that goal-setting is like punishing myself. I have too many goals, too little time, and very high standards, which often starts out well and ends in a day of stress and tears after which I step back from the goals entirely (then repeat). The way I handle my goals is almost like doing crunches until you puke. I see myself doing it, but it’s hard to stop.

Part of my problem is that I want (or have) to complete goals quickly. School won’t wait for me, and life is short. However, I think it’s high time that I learn to set proper, realistic goals. Before I got back into college last year, I had been really getting on myself for never finishing anything. I need to stop turning things I love into work and figure out what’s really important to me.

The first step is giving myself more time, so the 101 in 1001 goal-setting system that I saw linked from the Princess Portal looked perfect! Still scared of it, but as they say, 1001 days is a decent amount of time, not my usual (finish in one day or one week), so I think that will help with the problem of being overwhelmed. If I check my progress on a weekly basis, maybe I can actually have a normal, organized blog because I’ll have something to talk about! And, the count down will start from the day I post this as a widget to the side there (because, ha ha, I need more of them ;) I do love my widgets!). And, I’m going to be brave and write down my goals here because I think that will help me to complete them. I highlighted the gist of each one for convenience.

Here I go!

1.) Complete the master book of L5R rules and house rules for the RPG I’ve been working on and keep it up to date. (I actually may need to start over because of formatting issues, but we’ll see!) I’m calling it “World of Rokugan,” though the title may change with the new release of the Burning Sands core rules. It’s just a book for Terinati and I so that we can find things easier (and correct editing mishaps, though most of those have been fixed in the new edition! Thanks, AEG! :) )

2.) Finish composing “We Are One” for the wedding in June so that it can be recorded in the studio.

Progress in January!


3.) Work toward recording my other songs (this will start with getting decent recording equipment in my home).

4.) Get my BA in Psychology with a high GPA (already doing well there!).

5.) Focus on communicating better through study of etiquette, psychology, and linguistics.

Completed Negotiation and Conflict course book and took skills from there in February.

6.) Learn Japanese (I don’t anticipate being fluent without living in the country, but I’d like to be able to get the gist of things, especially for reading and writing!).

7.) Get rid of the stuff in the apartment I no longer want! It’s time to remove the clutter and be who I really am. Time to let go!

Old clothes donated.

8.) Get down to 115 – 120 pounds (won’t be sure until I see how it looks on me; I don’t want to get too skinny!).


9.) Find as much stuff to unlock in Wii Fit and My Fitness Coach as possible (I’ll warn of any spoilers when I post about this in the future, because I really don’t like having things spoiled for me).

My Fitness Coach: bronze membership.

Wii Fit unlocks and perfect scores, unlocked 10 reps of single arm stand and 10 reps of push up and side.

10.) Exercise regularly. I don’t like scheduling it on M, W, F or anything like that, but as long as I do it 3 or more times a week, I think that’s good. Monotony of using the same days every week makes me just plain not want to do it (one of the problems I have with My Fitness Coach).

Schedule set-up.


11.) Make time for relaxation, even if I don’t think that I have it. A couple hours each evening. I’m too afraid of being lazy, and I need to let that go because otherwise I have regular mental breakdowns, and that just can’t be healthy.

Home spa.

12.) Create one piece of artwork a month.

13.) Learn to draw people to my liking. I don’t care what you think. ;)

14.) Learn to draw cats. This is Kitty Island, after all! ( I mean other than Doodle Kitty, who I will love and cherish forever)

15.) Get my MUSH really up and running with people and at least one monthly activity to share that will bring the community together. The MUSH is up, really; I’m just scared to show it to anyone right now. :} Because there’s nothing to do in it other than role-play table-top games.

3 Character Generation Rooms updated by 01/11/09.

Problems with the computer.

16.) Find a home for Terinati, Stardust, Tatsu and I, where we can have pomegranate trees. YUM . . . =^--^= Oh, and where the kitties can have bird feeders to entertain them all day long!

17.) Try our hands at a webcomic (no regular updates or anything like that, but we’ve had ideas for a while; I think this can count as a “artwork” piece per month, too).

18.) Finish reading the Harry Potter books so that I can be in the loop with my friends who are Harry Potter fans.

Finished Ch. 6 of "Quidditch Through the Ages."

Finished entire book, "Quidditch Through the Ages" by Kennilworthy Whisp.

19.) Catch up on the books that I’ve gotten from loved ones as opposed to only reading for school. Already started on this, but we’ll see if I can keep up!

20.) Get outside of my shell and adventure more, saying yes more often to going out with friends to places I’ve never been to before (The November Princess Adventure, going out and getting manicures and pedicures with Anna, and heading to New York for the first time on 01/03 are examples of me heading in this direction already).

Wicked in NY, Makeover

21.) Change my look to something that I like all of the time. I don’t think I’ll ever change my hair (whenever I think about cutting or dying, I just can’t see that happening), but I want to stop feeling like I’m going outside wearing clothes that embarrasses me. I want to wear something that I think speaks for how I feel about myself and the world around me. More feminine, less uptight, and yet still respectable! Or silly. I think I need some of both. J This ties into the goal of getting rid of clutter (#7).

22.) Find a way to make keeping the apartment clean practical. I’ve read books, tried schedules, but nothing has been practical thus far. Impacted by the fact that Terinati’s work schedule and my college schedule rotate. I still believe there must be a way, however! May have to settle for less-than-perfect solutions, but it will be GREEN, to be sure.

23.) Make some time for Terinat’s games, like LOTRO. I think my first step is getting comfortable playing it by myself instead of just jumping in to everyone who’s really been into it all along, know the lore, etc. When I start something new, I need to take my time, read everything, and really get it for myself before I can enjoy it with someone else. Perhaps an hour a week is a decent starting point. (Heehee, I think most people probably set goals to play games less . . . I feel like Mr. Guder, here)

Installed updates to LOTRO, created a hunter, reached level 10,

24.) Don’t procrastinate with my school work! Sometimes it’s okay when I need to relax, but I know it’s ultimately better to shoot for doing my work early so that I’m giving a better, more relaxed effort.

Week 1 of Negotiation & Conflict good so far.


Did well through my whole course of Negotiation and Conflict Resolution.

25.) Catch up with my webcomics! I lost many bookmarks through the various computer changes I’ve had, and now that I like using RSS feeds, trying to keep up on webcomics no longer requires as much work on my part. Huzzah! Therefore, I can now be a dedicated fan again, but I need to catch up on my strips first. :}

26.) Take more time to listen to myself, silently. This is hard for me, sometimes. I think if I take five minutes a week, that’s pretty good.

Thought about who I am and possibilities for different biological tests.

27.) Continue to work on not taking the negativity of others personally; it’s usually not even about me. Focus on being who I am and doing what I believe is right without participating in the negativity.

Handled co-workers trying to throw me under the bus with grace.

28.) Get a new phone. Ours has done its job well since we moved in to our new place, but the voicemails get garbled and it’s been difficult to manage our calls well on it (not that we get many). Yep, I believe in having a land line!

29.) Learn to make more dishes! Perhaps one a week, because more than that is insane. It’s tedious trying out new dishes, but I’ve discovered many recipes this way.

30.) Make a better system for randomly trying new dishes. Oo! Excel Spreadsheet!


31.) Spend more time caring for Stardust and Tatsu. I need to figure out a less time-consuming routine, though we definitely do our best with them.

Grooming and washing!

32.) Learn to wear makeup. I don’t like wearing makeup most of the time (I really enjoy natural beauty, and I just don’t buy that it is healthy to wear it), but sometimes it’s desired and I want to do better with that.

Don't wear too much foundation,

33.) Stock makeup that I like and works for me.

Powdered foundation, blush, and a powder brush.

34.) Learn to knit, loom, or some kind of activity that involves craftiness and thread. There’s something therapeutic about doing it, and I really do want to make things like that.

35.) Start having regular Girls’ Night Outs with my local friends. We all need to chill out from time to time.

36.) Update my L5R core spreadsheet for characters and skills (I’ve only been updating my personal spreadsheet; shame on me.).

37.) Get my ID updated for what my married name will be. EE!

02/28/09 - COMPLETED! :)

38.) GM Cyberpunk 2020 for Terinati on a weekly basis or so.

Set up maps on Google Earth. GM'd the beginning of the next arc.

39.) Update my Netflix List more regularly. Sometimes I forget about it. Not a big goal, but there is an agenda behind it. :)

Checking for updates,

40.) Research fixing my eye. My right eye has been watering heavily since I was 13 years old. It’s horrible, because really, I can’t wear most makeup on the right side of my face (or sparkles), I have to constantly have tissues with me (and they have to be lotioned, or I bruise), and it’s frustrating because some people act like it’s a disease that they’ll catch and are really grossed out by it. Of course, that’s not to mention all the people who think I’m crying (sometimes finding delight in it) when I’m not. I kind of find it interesting, personally, as I am always half-“crying”. It is like a natural statement about my feelings regarding life. However, if there’s a safe way to fix it that doesn’t involve needles going into my eye or glass being inserted in my face (real recommendations I’ve had before), then we’ll see!

41.) Get a working ATM card. My current card doesn’t have a working pin (it’s the company; recurring issue for over two years), and I’m getting sick of not having cash on me because the bank is too far away and then feeling like a bum when I’m in a cash-only place and have to mooch off of my friends. Yuck. :/

Finally done! :D

42.) I want to create a record of my recipes. I already downloaded a free online application to use, but I’m pretty bad at entering anything into it. Shame on me.

43.) Practice guitar and piano regularly. I don’t have much time for this, but if I set a weekly goal, I think that should be reasonable. Maybe. :}

44.) Get or make a stationary and use it.

45.) Always write legibly. Sometimes I allow myself to feel rushed, and then I write a bunch of gibberish . . . which really defeats the purpose of writing. :}

February, feel like I'm always conscious of this...

46.) Talk less and listen more (inspired by Princess Skye’s New Year’s resolutions for this one). Going to use some techniques I learned in my Interpersonal Communication course here! I can do it!

Making progress and learning things about people. :)

47.) Believe in what I am, and what my accomplishments make me. Sometimes, I find it hard to think things like, “I’m a musician,” when I compose music and can play some pieces pretty well, all because I’m not as good as I’d like to be. But, that’s not fair to me and how hard I’ve worked for certain things. That would be like an Olympics medalist denying the title they’re given because they don’t think they deserve it. There is a time to be humble, certainly, but there is also a time for self-acknowledgement and rewarding the self for a job well done!

48.) Look into selling products (baked goods and such) and what licenses I need to get and what-have-you.

49.) Do romantic things for Terinati more often. <3>laptop! Remote note-taking for class and good temporary storage unit for our poor, out-dated camera. This is a must for Japan!

50.) Get a laptop! Remote note-taking for class and good temporary storage unit for our poor, out-dated camera. This is a must for Japan!


51.) Do a better job keeping in touch with people (family and friends alike).

52.) Keep my nails short. It’s a prerequisite for not stumbling on keyboards or issues with guitar playing, but I do let them get wild sometimes, just because I like their wildness. And then I cut myself on them. :} I’m too clumsy for long nails! :}

Cut off my nails 01/11/09.

53.) Be more green. I’ve worked hard on this in the past year, both at work and at home, but I can do more, and it’ll help with reducing clutter. (lol, I’ll defy gravity!)

method's squeaky green dryer cloths, used less paper at work, recycled toothbrush,

54.) Visit my dad for the holidays. I haven’t been back there for over six years! :( Sorry, Dadoo.

55.) Handle stuff that I left behind in the old house.

56.) Manage Hoshi’s experience points better (my character in L5R). I’m learning how my old techniques are leading to a jack of all trades master of none situation, and I just need to make sacrifices in some areas that aren’t as much in tune with her character and not be afraid to go with the other ones.

Saving up for Traits in February.

57.) I will look up words that I don’t know so long as I have access to some sort of dictionary. I don’t anticipate remembering them all, but I’m not satisfied with using context all of the time anymore. I’ve already learned that doing a word a day doesn’t help me.

Thanks, Carl Rogers!, 8 words, 20 words, 30 words, done!

58.) Do more logic puzzles or hemi-sync exercises to work out my brain. Just as important as the body!

January logic puzzles,

59.) Get more hemi-sync to study to on my “lunch” breaks. Need variety!

60.) Will stop and think more often rather than feeling rushed.

Saved me from making a horrible mistake in February in my class!

61.) I will work on my etiquette. I purchased a book a long time ago, but I kept on feeling discouraged, so I never even got through it. Ick?

62.) Check this list once a week and,

Week 1

63.) Make a regular, non-spammy blog.


64.) Convince Kyriel to finish writing a book/movie script, even if it’s a frightening children’s book. Friend support, FTW!!1! C’mon, Roller Joust!

65.) Convince Terinati to write a book, or at least publish the frightening children’s book we did together for one of his high school projects: “Everybody Dies.”

66.) Keep up with Illuminique’s art work! She’s got some kind of style! :) I love it!! Make a website, darn it!

67.) I want to experiment more with cooking. Make my own recipes!

68.) I will work with Rainshine on making the mix CD!

Established goals.

69.) I will get a sufficiently large, me purse so that I no longer nest bags within bags. :}

70.) I will continue to give back, even if I’m no longer able to do so through TOPs for whatever reason.

Donated clothes, give back more than we realized! Done!

71.) They say that meeting our goals is a reward unto itself. However, I also know that positive reinforcement is important for our relationships with ourselves because we tend to be harder on ourselves than anyone else could ever be. In order to stop the “I suck” voice, I will implement a reward system for completing my goals (the small ones on the path to larger ones and the larger ones).

Charm bracelet? Definitely getting a charm necklace and a 2009 charm!

72.) Find prettier ways to package my baked goods that won’t compromise their integrity.

73.) Find out what’s wrong with my right ear. No doctor’s ever find anything, but I suspect it’s something deeper, perhaps connected to my eye issue. It has constantly felt slightly clogged since I was about 9 years old, and for the first several years the doctors told me repeatedly I had an ear infection and I was on antibiotics, but the “infection” never went away. It doesn’t hurt, so I don’t know what it is. It’s just constantly uncomfortable and makes me want to pop my ears all the time, which usually just leads to further discomfort.

74.) Learn more about L5R CCG.

75.) Win a game of L5R CCG against Terinati. (I’m really bad at these types of card games, mostly from lack of experience I think)

76.) Check Soft Paws on Tatsu and Stardust daily, even if I can’t get to the other stuff (goal #31).

I've been SO on it! Valentine's Day colors for Stardust, tuxedo colors for Tatsu.

77.) Get up to date with cleaning up the L5R logs of our game play.

78.) Make my work environment appear more respectful. There is too much stuff on my desk, and not enough organization.

79.) Make my work environment reflect me more.

80.) Try to scream less at scary parts of video games. :} I tend to get too involved with the characters, methinks.

Not the expected ending, but done!

81.) I will not rush myself or allow others to pressure me into rushing. I need to slow down and think things through.

82.) Find a bikini to wear on the honeymoon that makes me happy and doesn’t offend other people. :} I’ve never really had one (I’ve had two-piece swimsuits, but they weren’t the same), and it’s one of those things I need to do to really claim acceptance of my appearance.

83.) Fast more. It’s good for you, when done properly.

In February, started every-other-day gradual food reduction with the ultimate goal of alternate-day fasting.

I am an alternate-day faster!

84.) Save more money. We still have lives to try and live and save up for after the wedding, too (that house won’t buy itself! Goal #16).

85.) Stop creating clutter as much (which, in turn, will result in less cleaning).

86.) Keep better records of my routine appointments so that I can be on time each year and get the preventative care I need.

87.) Get a stainless steel water bottle. None of the woes of plastic use, but still keeping hydrated!

COMPLETED! Got a blue, stainless steel water bottle.

88.) I will stop multi-tasking when doing something I know takes concentration because I feel the need to get as much done as possible (this includes spacing out at inappropriate times :} ).

89.) Collecting things, such as thoughts, ideas, or symbols, which motivate and inspire me, reminding me of what really matters to me and who I am. I think it’s important to be myself inside and out, and that’s part of it.

90.) Stop saying ignorant things out of habit like “that’s so gay” or “that’s so retarded” that I just picked up while growing up and don’t really mean that way. :p

91.) Get rid of subconscious undermining thoughts (usually dealing with my memory). I can accomplish more than I’ve trained myself to believe in the past.

Testing; Zicam or Dream Recall seems to be increasing my joy and decreasing these undermining thoughts. Or, perhaps, increased sleep from being sick. Going to explore this.

92.) Make solid goals with Terinati to work through conflict resolution better in the future (a process that we’re constantly doing better, but I’d like to clear out really old communication problems that are still lingering).

February - success with getting Terinati's groom outfit chosen! We can do ANYTHING! ;)

93.) Be more aware of power distribution in relationships and the perceptions of those power distributions (including my own).

Requires conscious effort, but making progress (February).

94.) I will keep up with the real world news at least once a week.

95.) Monitor my work goals with the weekly dedication I intend to give to these goals.

96.) I will make more personal phone calls. Usually, I allow Terinati to handle this part of our affairs (it’s a good way to make sure that he approves of the decisions I make and include him in things), but I know he doesn’t like doing it all the time. So, I’m going to prove to him (and myself) that I am capable of handling phone calls with vendors to relieve stress on his part and improve my sense of security with talking to others. This probably seems minor to a lot of people, but a decade ago I was scared to talk to anyone, and even considered hiding the first time I met Terinati in person. :} To be fair to myself, though, I have no problem handling at work (most of the time).

97.) I will acquire better cooking implements or implements we don’t have to improve what I can do for our little family.

98.) I will learn more about herbalism.

99.) I will learn more about making soap.

100.) I will learn more about candle making.

101.) I will stay faithful to these many goals in the years ahead until my time ticks out!

Using Google Docs to track

Wow. I’m not going into this with a lot of confidence. As I meet goals and blog about them, I will link back to here and also add links to this blog so that if someone finds it later for some odd reason, they can see if it worked out for me or not. :} haha.

Wish me luck! This Princess has quite the quest log!


  1. See, this is why there's a cap of 45 quests in the quest log. By the time I got to 101 I couldn't remember what 80 was anymore, much less what 1 was. ;P Still, I approve and support my ambitious sweetie. I love you!

  2. WoW has a cap of 25 quests, we have a shorter attention span. "Right, destroy trappers that are threatening local wild--ooh, shiny!"

    I'm a little scared that I'm one of your goals. Now it's not just myself that'll be eternally disappointed in me if I never write! But yeah, ditto on the support. Nobody'll say this little black gryphon wasn't there for her best friend's ambitious projects. :D

  3. It never was just yourself, Sarah! Get to it! lol
    Wow. That is a crazy huge list! Is it pathetic to say that a couple things in there inspired me to work on them too... but that by the end, I forgot them? I'm with Jesse on this one. lol
    Good luck tho!!!

  4. lol. It wasn't an easy list to write. I had it in a document first and had to double-check things several times for duplicate goals, and it took from the time the challenge was posted on the 2nd to when I actually posted the blog to do. Now, on the other hand, I can think of even more goals to add to the list, but I think this is good enough. :} It's a fun challenge!