Saturday, January 15, 2011

And now the year changes

I've always had a slightly funny feeling about New Year's resolutions. It strikes me that if there are things that require attention in my life, it shouldn't have to wait until January to do something about. I'm more about starting resolutions when I become aware that something should change and that I have enough energy to give to it. But that aside, when January hits I do start dreaming about what the spring and summer will bring and getting excited.

This year, several things are exciting me about the coming spring and summer. For starts, I signed up to do a mini triathalon with Em and Mel. In preparation for this, all three of us are taking swimming lessons which started today. It felt so good to get back in a pool. It brought back a lot of nostalgia from my childhood.

Also, Emily and I are both moderately fanatical about gardens. This year's garden will be more involved than last year's. New tomato and basil varieties have been ordered, and Em gave me seeds for snap peas, beans, watermelon, lemon cucumbers, and a couple other things. I have visions of turning the backyard patio into a hospitable place for hosting friends- maybe garden lights, Chinese lanterns, seating, and a border of flowers? Too bad that's where the garbage can has to go as well . . .

Also, Michael the Chef and I are involved in a project that may end up consuming a lot of my time in the future, working with Grace on an NGO in Kenya (Grace is James' widow and I'll probably tell her story out in much greater detail in the future). This may involve a trip to Kenya sometime this year, when ticket prices are less than $2,000. At least it costs very little to actually be in Kenya, it's just getting there that's more expensive. But right now it's a lot of research and background work and Michael gets to make the website, since I don't know how to do that.

Also, sometimes it's hard to keep my money from all going into the U of U's continuing education program. Right now the big temptation is mostly gardening classes, although this one also is drawing me in substantially.

Also, what's left of my time is mostly going to the Temple Square Chorale and Choir School. This is the training program for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Chorale meets on Tuesday nights for the most part and Choir School meets on Thursdays. 100% attendance required. With some of the nicest people I've ever met, both in the choir and on the staff. It's very fun, but also tiring, not getting home until 10 PM. But very fun. I am amazed at how much behind-the-scenes work goes into this choir. I probably shouldn't be surprised, based on the size of the group and the amount of performing they do. We observed a "big choir" rehearsal on Thursday as part of our choir school class. The reason we are required to know a lot of music theory is that this choir has no time to waste on learning notes or rhythms. Rehearsals are for more in-depth concepts like dynamics, tempo, intonation, and emotion. And oh, it's fun.

So, yeah. Good things are ahead. It's a good year. I'm excited. And I hope you are, too.


Danielle said...

More basil varieties exist than the plethora you planted last year?!?! WOW! You have some amazing things planned for this year. You are amazing. And the Chorale sounds so neat. And I love all those continuing education classes that suck you in, especially "Follow the Wildflowers", although it seems to me you already probably do that...

Anonymous said...

Cute blog, Maria! Congrats on your Chorale membership. Be sure to enjoy every minute of your musical calling. You will find that flies by in duple time.
All the best for a fantastic and beautiful 2011!
Love, MoSop

cking said...

Wow, sounds like you are up to a lot of amazing things! Way to go Maria:)

Stephen and Emily Stacey said...

Wow Maria. You never cease to amaze me. I want to be your neighbor when we settle down somewhere. And I want to do a tri with you! I'm planning on doing a 1/2 marathon after I get back in shape - want to join me in Sept?