17 for 2017 – The Final Update

And so we come to the end of 17 for 2017. December has seen a flurry of activity and so, although I didn’t do everything on the list, I did achieve a lot. Here’s my illustrated review of the year:

Seventeen… little random yarny/sewn gifts. The final ones were sent this month and so this goal was completed.

Sixteen… batches of homemade biscuits. This goal was complete by early June.

Fifteen… cheeses.  This goal was completed in October.

Fourteen… pairs of knickers. The end of the year has been totally pants! I’ve made eight pairs in December, thus completing this goal. At the risk of lowering the tone, I’m going to show some of them off:

Thirteen… mends. Target reached in May.

Twelve… letters to friends. Target reached in June.

Eleven… new items in my Etsy shop. Completed in September.

Ten... plants given to good homes. Target reached in May.

Nine… we’ll talk about nine in a moment

Eight… meals using only our own produce. Target reached in September. Sorry, there’s a poor show of photographs here as I kept remembering after we’d finished eating that I was supposed to be taking pictures!

Seven… visits to see “social media” friends. Target reached in September.

Six… Pairs of socks knitted, using at least three different patterns. The final pair was completed this month and over the year I did use three different patterns.

Five… book chapters written. None, and this is why I’ll be blogging less next year.

Four… blankets for charity; knitted or crocheted. Target reached in February – all crocheted.

Three… sessions in the loft, sorting out some of the accumulated ‘stuff’ up there. I completed this last month.

Two… patterns published and on sale. I failed to complete the second pattern, but I’ll probably manage it now I’m not feeling under pressure to do it!

 One… gardening apron. Completed in April and worn a lot since. 1 gardening apron

As you can see from my spreadsheet I had two total failures, and one half failure:2017-12-31 (1)

I gave up even thinking about the nine games of Scrabble a few months ago. The problem here was that it was a ‘target’, so every time I thought about playing a game, I was put off because it felt like I was doing it to add to the list. In the end this became so much of a barrier that we didn’t play at all in 2017. I think spontaneity rules for having fun, so don’t make it a goal!

The second of my two patterns didn’t get published because I just didn’t have time. It’s actually well on its way to being done and I hope it will be available soon. One of the reasons I didn’t prioritise it, was that the first pattern hasn’t sold particularly well. I plan to look carefully at my marketing and market places in the coming months.

My final failure was my book-writing. I have to confess that I slightly sabotaged this one myself. Right at the beginning of 2017 I privately set myself another goal for the year. I wanted to average at least 100 hits on my blog every day in 2017. In order to do this, I knew that I would have to write regularly, and I knew that I would have to boost the figures by writing new posts if visits started to decline. This meant that in 2017 my writing was all directed towards the blog (and some letters) and so I didn’t get going with the books. I have, however, spent a lot of time thinking about them and I’m hoping that the ideas that have been swirling about in my head will make their way onto the page soon. By-the-way, I achieved my aim with readership of the blog, so now I need to put aside my obsession with reader numbers and move on… hence deciding to drop Three Things Thursday, for example.

As you can imagine from the above, I’m not going to be doing 18 for 2018. I’ve enjoyed doing this in 2017, but I think these sorts of targets can be rather restrictive if you keep trying to adhere to them. I would recommend giving it a go for a year, but probably no more. The thing that I have really got out of this past year is that it helped me get into the habit of doing certain things: baking biscuits and listing things in my etsy shop being the two most useful habits to have acquired and the number of times I have done these things (and others) has far exceeded my original goals.

So, that’s it for 17 for 2017. Did you do it? Did you do everything? Did you do anything after January? Will you do 18 for 2018*? I’d love to know everyone’s thoughts.


* If you are planning to do the 2018 version, I have a blank Excel spreadsheet if you want a copy. I made it for a friend who wants to give it a go; just drop me a line if you want one.

This one is for Tammie

It’s very easy when posting on the internet to show only our successes – the beautiful children, pristine kitchens, the perfect meal, the Shetland lace shawl, the abundant garden… ah, yes, the abundant garden.

Well, it’s true that my garden and the limery do contain lots of lovely crops. Currently there’s lettuce, piles of raspberries and the promise of peppers, chillies, courgettes, lemons, limes, red currants, blueberries, apples, mange tout, kale, broccoli, ginger and potatoes…

BUT… there are also dead bean plants, dead rosemary, rocket and mizuna that flowered before we had a chance to eat any, the world’s saddest sage plant, brassicas munched by caterpillars and huge swathes of weeds.

So, Tammie – fear not, we all have gardening disasters… we just don’t often ‘fess up to them!

And, just to make you all smile, it takes lots of effort to get all those perfect shots of a life…

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