Happy New Year! I hope 2019 is a good one for you.
I’m not going to focus on my perennial resolutions – the ones that have been with me since university – all having to do with healthy lifestyle choices. I’ve made inroads in them over the years, but I don’t see January 1st as the day to resolve anew. It’s more like a big helping of broccoli seems like an absolute lifeline, and shortbread becomes as sickly sweet and inappropriate as a Christmas carol in January.
My favourite and most successful resolutions have been creative and fun. There was the year that I decided to try foods from as many countries as possible – easily done in super multicultural Toronto. Ended up loving most of them (sorry Ethiopian). What’s more, I felt like I’d finally unshackled myself from being a less than confident eater thanks to my childhood meals of meat, potatoes and green beans. We take our earliest cues about food from our parents, and I still struggle with many fish dishes as a result.
One January I enrolled in a food writing class – who knew it would become the beginning of my certificate in editing and a huge shift in career opportunities? I originally decided to take the course just to make sure I was attributing other people’s recipes properly on my then-fledgling blog. I didn’t expect to ignite a fierce desire to write, no matter how much the feedback on my assignments stung.
So in that spirit, what should my resolutions for 2019 be?
For that I need to look at the dreams I had about life in Yorkshire before we even arrived. I saw myself carrying my camera around. I saw myself lacing up my hiking boots. I saw myself reading books in cosy pubs. I carried those images of myself throughout lengthy Toronto commutes and weekly errands along utilitarian Dufferin Street. It’s time I did those sort of things more often. They seem to have gotten lost in the shuffle of making a new life here.
And maybe it’s time to give fish another whirl.