End of Year/Decade Apologies

My friend Lori (L) and I with Antoni Porowski from Queer Eye at the LA launch of his cookbook, Antoni in the Kitchen

Hi everyone,

I got sick a couple weeks ago (nothing too bad--migraine+sinusitis which usually takes a few days to recover from), however I also had a weird bout of anxiety and ended up not publishing the remainder of the gift posts/reviews I had planned for the past couple of weeks. (I am getting help and getting through it. It's a frustratingly slow process, but at least I got to the point where I can write again about... something... anything.)

To the publishers/publicists in particular who had provided review copies for those posts, my deepest apologies. I will do better. I hopefully can't do much worse than I have recently. Posts are still coming for items that I meant to review.

I have a few goals for the coming year. I had fallen out of the habit of making resolutions as cynicism and depression have gotten more and more of a hold of me for the past decade. But I want to feel hopeful again (especially since we are moving into what I'm sure will be a tumultuous election year in the US).

- Post at least once a week, even if it's just to say hi.
- Talk more about our local libraries and indie bookstores as well as update event calendars like we used to.
- Share more stories and photos on Instagram, which apparently I am terrible at this year.
- More giveaways, because I miss the joy of giving stuff away, and I have been accumulating lots of books over the past year.

- Work on my nonfiction writing project with Alyson
- Write and release 10 sewing patterns (that's 1 per month between Feb-Nov). I'll have some free ones and some for purchase.
- Write 1 short story. I used to really enjoy writing them. I don't remember why I stopped.

- Finish 12 knitting projects... I have a lot on the needles already, I just need to finish them.
- Sew 6 garments for myself: at least 2 dresses, 1 top, 2 skirt or pants, and 1 coat. I really need a new coat but I don't like the ones I see in the shops at the moment.
- Sew/knit all my Christmas gifts for next year but finish no later than Dec 23, so I can enjoy the Fiddler on the Roof Sing-Along at Laemmle.

- Work out at least twice a week. The goal is to manage my hormones and hopefully lose some weight at the same time.
- Reduce the amount of waste (including food waste and recyclables) I generate. I did really well in 2019, but I can still do better.
- Go on a vacation... a real vacation, with a 50/50 split of touristy things + doing nothing, but somewhere that isn't my apartment. I have not done this in several years, and I feel past due.

- My laptop is still in good condition, but I know it will still need replacing in a year or two. So I want to save up so that it won't be necessary to put the purchase on a credit card.
- Meet my monthly savings goals with the 2021 goal of paying off our school loans early! I will do this by reducing our dining out budget and by not purchasing ready to wear clothing in 2020.
- Figure out a side hustle that works to fuel both my creativity and my financial goals.


I know a lot of people are posting wrap-ups of their decade, but when I look back at the past 10 years, that anxious feeling wells up again, and I just can't. So instead here are just 3 things from the past decade I am grateful for:

3. My friends, especially my book people, you know who you are. I would not have been able to pull off so many fun book festivals and author signings without you.

2. My family (particularly in the Philippines) who I actually got to see several times this decade now that I don't work in retail any more.

1. My caring and generous husband, Jason, who does all the chores I don't want to do, who balances me out emotionally while supporting all my endeavors, and who makes hot cocoa to my exact specifications. You are a treasure. Even if you don't read my blog.


Deep breaths. *breathe in...* *breathe out...* OK. Let's do this, 2020. I'm as ready as I'll ever be.


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