Tag Archives: personal

Goals, Resolutions and Pie Crusts

28 Dec

As the year wends its tired, bloated way to a close, it’s time to think about the dreaded ‘New Year’s Resolutions’. Of course, sometimes we need to have goals and aims rather than just ‘I resolve never to…’. For many years, I had only three: read more, write more and be less of a loser. All three probably still apply for 2016.

Last year I set some more specific aims in response to a post on one of my favourite blogs, Fluent in 3 Months. Benny had some good advice, which was to make sure your goals are concrete (a bit like the SMART targets we’re always setting with the kids at school).

As you can see in his comments, I set out the following aims for myself (with a languages slant, as per the blog):

Learn enough Japanese to get by in Japan: Achieved! I learned how to read hiragana and katakana plus a few basic kanji, which meant I was able to locate a Monjayaki restaurant in Tokyo with no romaji sign. It was really delicious so the pain of doing my Memrise/WaniKani reps was worth it! I was also able to ask a few basic questions of tour guides and bus drivers. Okay, I wasn’t conversing freely, but I learned enough to make the trip fun. I should probably revise this at some point because I haven’t done any Japanese since August.

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Catherine, Aged 17

6 Apr

One of the downsides of being both a YA writer and secondary teacher is a constant reminder of one’s own teen years. I have a recurring nightmare in which I am forced to return to my own school, where I am made to teach but also take A-Levels at the same time (“Your French exam is tomorrow! And your class has been waiting for you for fifteen minutes!”). Argh!

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(Me, somewhere around 17-18, sat on the sofa with my laptop…looking pretty much the same as I do now! Side note – crying because I have suddenly noticed the old green cushion next to me…*wipes away a tear*…don’t mind me…)

Anyway, next month it also happens to be my ten year anniversary of blogging – starting off on Livejournal, natch, the in thing to do in 2004, as documented in The Social Network. As such, I thought it might be fun to revisit 17-year-old me. What was I like ten years ago? Have I changed?

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