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Kansas City MO 64131





Cindy Maddera

I know I said I was going to sit down and create a Vlog about all the things I want for 2016, but the idea of my face and voice on camera right now seems really unappealing. Note: there's nothing wrong with my face or voice and truth be told it's more about being too lazy to put together what I want and edit it in video. So it looks like I'm kicking off 2016 with a bout of lazy. Also, I'm still recovering from our trip to OK and the tense drive home through ice and snow. I feel like I'm shaped like the inside of my car. It's making me grumbly and not very pleasant and this post is not about that (or how I watched an egg boil while crying because weather cancelled plans to see friends, the holidays can be hard). This post is about the good things I want to see happen in 2016. 

If I were to do a video post about good things for 2016, it would start with a shameful video of my basement. I would expose the awful truth that is my basement and I'd do it mostly to shame myself into finally taking care of the mess. I don't need video evidence to be ashamed of the state of basement. Michael built some really lovely shelves (from pallets!) in one back corner area. Tuesday, I packed up all our Christmas and then we put those boxes on one of the shelves and it felt so good and organized and I have a plan for the basement. I will take off work during Michael's Spring Break to clean out the basement. The plan is to create four piles: things we're keeping, things we're selling, things we're donating and things we want to throw away. I will then call the Girls and Boys club to come get the things we're donating and I will call the Junk Guys and pay them to take away the trash. Things we are keeping/selling will all go onto the shelves. This is happening. It is happening this year. Cleaning out the basement is imperative if we are going to stay in this house. I know I said that cleaning out the basement was something that would be done in 2015 and I totally failed except for five bags of garbage. Yes. There's more than five bags of garbage down there. I'm telling you. The basement is BAD. It's embarrassing.  It's worse than behind the fridge, behind the couch and under the kitchen sink. Cleaning out this space would be the best good thing we could do in 2016.

The next part of that video post would be about garden stuff. I've had The Backyard Homestead on my Amazon wish list for a really long time. I finally gave in and bought the book a few weeks ago. This purchase came shortly after the arrival of my Bakers Creek Seed Catalogue. You guys? We can grow peanuts! See? See what happens? Every year I get that catalogue and I go insane. I buy things that don't grow. I buy things that grow like gang busters that we don't end up eating. Every year, I tell myself "Cindy! You're only going to plant what you'll eat!" The problem is I end up planting a lot of things I think we'll eat instead of things we actually eat. For instance, this year I planted fifty (exaggeration) squash plants. After eating squash four days in a row, we realized that we don't really eat squash. Squash is good, like every other week good, but not every single day of summer. One squash plant. That's really all we needed. Maybe two in case there are squash bugs. But a whole box and side bed devoted to squash was completely unnecessary. I need structure and discipline and a plan that's going to keep me from growing rows of miscellaneous veggies. At first glance, The Backyard Homestead makes me believe that I can have it all from goats to bees in my backyard. Once I started reading though, the authors made it clear that I do not have the space for having it all. They reached out of the page and slapped me in the face. "Snap out of it! You can only do this much. So do it!" I will spend these winter months putting together a list and a plan for the garden so that one of those good things for 2016 will be fresh veggies we actually eat. 

The basement and the garden are my main focus of good things for 2016. That doesn't mean I won't let myself be distracted by other things. I want to be more creative in 2016, maybe even start up a selfie 365 day project. A year of 40. Michael totally spoiled me this year for Christmas and my birthday with a new camera along with a fancy scarf styled camera strap that I'd been coveting for ages. I have no excuses. The lens isn't wonky. I actually have two lenses to choose from. Hell, the flash doesn't even make me mad. I want to use this camera. I want to be so comfortable with this camera that it's like an attachment to my body. It's part of my be more creative in 2016 plan. Michael and I want kayaks and envision early Saturday mornings kayaking down a river before breakfast. I want more bike to work days than drive to work days. I want scooter road trip adventures. I want more time on my yoga mat. The thought of teaching again has been tickling the back of my brain. I want to like this body again. I want to be healthy. I want to drop guilt and doubt. I want to be the best person I can be even when I'm in a room of negative people. 

I want good things for you in 2016. Here's to a wonderful, safe and happy New Year!