|The mouth of the River Dart, Devon.|
We're not great fans of New Year's resolutions in this house - so many of them centre on giving things up, and that always feels a bit negative, somehow. Making grand statements about "Resolutions" also feels a bit like setting yourself up to fail - how many people start the month of January talking about them, and by February you've not heard another word about it? Instead, we've come up with a list of plans, goals, targets, challenges even, that we quite fancy tackling in the course of the next year...
- We plan to shop one week in every month without using supermarkets at all. Yes, I know others have gone for a whole year shunning them, but where we live that's not quite so simple, but starting with that week per month will let us investigate more where our local independent shops are, which farmers markets are worth visiting, and above all where we can buy Mr EH 4 pint containers of milk - he refuses on principle to buy milk in litres.
- Places to visit - including some places ticked off our "List of places to visit" - Orkney again, Farne Islands again (I plan to take my exciting new lens to see the Puffins!), Watford Metropolitan Line station - before they close it. York - perhaps for a weekend.
- Home: we will take advantage of the current absence of a four-legged furry lodger to re-do the gloss paint on the inside windowsills. We also want to re-paint our bedroom.
- Resume keeping one night a week "TV Free" - I think Mr EH will find this more of a challenge than I will!
- Cook a new recipe once a month - we got several fab new recipe books for Christmas including Rick Stein's "India" book which we're rather excited about. This should act as a great jumping off point for this one!
- We're planning an extra trip to the Hebrides for New Year next year - this will be the first time we've visited in the middle of winter, and we'll be working to make it as "money neutral" as we can - money for the fares is already saved, the next target will be to sort out accommodation I think.
Above all, we want to make 2014 our "Year of walking" - we have several different walks on our list of things we want to do, and the one that's made it to this year's aims is to walk the London section of the Thames Path. I've walked bits of this many times but never done the whole length of it - this year we aim to set that right. Walking in stages, covering as far as we feel comfortable with each time, it'll be interesting to see how long the 40 mile route takes us. We're planning on starting at Hampton Court out in the west, and you can be assured that the walks will be featuring in this blog, so watch this space! We also decided to end 2013 as we intended to continue 2014 - so while we were down in Devon we walked the relatively short (3.75 mile) Diamond Jubilee Way - short it may be but it makes up for that with almost the entire route being up or down steep hills! Of course I took lots of photos so I'll be blogging that one in the next week or so. In the meantime the pic at the top of this post gives you some idea of the views we enjoyed!
What are you planning for the New year then? Are you resolutions people, or not?