A post of things: Things that I plan to do, things I’m obsessed with, and things that are on my mind lately

Happy Saturday, friends! And happy last day of 2016.

Although I’m sad my Christmas holidays are coming to an end, I’d like time to speed up again so I can be on a beach in Maui asap. Not just for the beaches, tropical forests, hiking trails, sea turtles, whales, mai tais, mahi mahi, sunsets and jeep adventures — but also because our unusually cold December weather is destroying my skin and I need to be exposed to heat, sun and humidity before I turn into a reptile.

Since I already shared my goals for 2017, here are a few random things to share going into the new year: things that I plan to do, things I’m obsessed with, and things that are on my mind lately.

  1. Things I’m obsessed with: Building a family tree with Ancestry.ca. I randomly bought a DNA kit from Ancestry.ca on Black Friday because it was half off the regular price of $150, and it was something I’ve always wanted to do. I received the kit in mid-December, spat in a tube, packaged it back up and sent it off to Ireland. It’ll still be a few months before I get my results back, so for now I’ve been researching my family tree. If you know a few names and birth dates, it’s easy to go back and link to other people’s trees to build out yours. On my mom’s side, I found out my 6th great grandfather John MacColl was a key witness in a famous murder trial in Scotland in 1745, and was featured in the novel “Kidnapped” by Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson (author of “Treasure Island”). He was described as “a ragged, wild, bearded man, about forty, grossly disfigured with the small pox, and looked both dull and savage.” Sounds like we’re related, alright! I also found out my 4th great uncle Hugh MacColl was a logician and wrote a few novels, which are on Amazon for sale. On my dad’s side (Wilson), so far I’ve only got as far as 1800 in Shilbottle, England, and found the passenger list for the ship they came over on from Liverpool to New Zealand in the early 1900s. I’m most curious to find out what my great grandmother on my dad’s side was (apparently she was darker skinned and had jet black hair).

    Uncles and aunts in NZ (my dad is the tall one in the back), with my great grandma, mama and grandpa in the front.

  2. Things I plan to do: Another Tone It Up challenge for the New Year. Although I fell off the wagon half way through the last one, I really enjoyed it and was excited to see harder workouts (with Jillian Michaels!) featured in their Look For Love challenge, which starts tomorrow and runs until Valentine’s Day. And since loving my body more is a goal for 2017, I thought it was fitting! I’ve been doing my own strength workouts with 2-3 days of HIIT and 3 days of running (usually 5 km twice a week and something longer on the weekend) and have been feeling good, but man — my nutrition has just sucked since the summer. A treat of a bit of chocolate once a day turned into close to a BAR a day again, and relaxing with some wine and crackers on Friday turned into relaxing with wine and crackers from Thursday to Sunday. It’s like I kept pushing the limits to see how much I could eat and still fit into my clothes until all of a sudden one day I didn’t. I need to think twice before scarfing things down and actually follow the advice I give my clients: Am I actually hungry? Do I really want this? If yes, have a bit. If no, then have some tea or something instead. I’m excited to start the challenge tomorrow and continue getting out on the trails to get ready for the Vancouver Island Trail Running Series, which starts in April!
  3. Things I plan to do: Remove ads from my blog. I removed all ads except for a few Google Ads (I’m so close to the $100 threshold to actually get paid, and once I reach it those will be gone, too) earlier this week because they’re distracting, they slow down my site and I really wasn’t making enough from them to make them worth while. I’ve decided to remove all pressure from posting on my blog and only to post when I want to and/or have something interesting/informative/helpful to share. I want to keep my blog as a passion project and not feel obligated to post to drive traffic, because that’s never been what it’s about for me.
  4. Things on my mind: Is this harmful or helpful? This will be the question I’m going to ask myself whenever I have to make a choice (Are you going to benefit from eating a bar of chocolate every day or will it do more harm than good? Will a positive outcome happen if you say something snarky right now or should you just keep it to yourself? Will staying up late to watch another episode of The Crown help you in any way or will it just make you tired from lack of sleep?). I find I just do things without thinking about the consequences enough, and this is something I’d like to work on for next year.

That’s all I’ve got for now, my friends. I hope you have a fun and safe New Year’s eve and I’ll catch up with you in the New Year 🙂