Coast to coast

Well, after a wonderful 2+ week vacation with family and friends on the West Coast, we headed back to Toronto on the red eye Sunday night and arrived Monday morning around 6:30am. Somehow, we picked up our luggage and rental car, and drove home, where I showered and then made it to work by 8:45am!

From the sounds of things our timing couldn’t have been much better. Had our flight been even an hour or two later we could have run into some pretty terrible delays waiting to get off the plane and pick up bags. The airport sounds like it has been a complete mess for the last few days.

That’s not to say the whole travel experience was a breeze though. On the way there, we were supposed to fly from Toronto to Calgary and then from Calgary to Vancouver. Well, we ended up missing the connection in Calgary because there was a delay before we were able to get off the plane. We had to stay overnight in a hotel (but only for about four hours) before heading back to the airport to take a flight from Calgary to Vancouver and then from Vancouver to Victoria. Wouldn’t you know it we missed that connection too due to crew delays.┬á We weren’t able to be rebooked on the flight until the end of the day, so we ended up taking a ferry – the whole trip ended up taking over three times as long as it was scheduled too but I was still very grateful to have made it home and missed Toronto’s ice storm!

The last couple of days have been the coldest I have ever experienced. Depending on the source I heard that it was anywhere between -35 and -42 with the windchill yesterday. I am used to wet weather but definitely not cold! I am lucky that I found a great deal on a Columbia jacket back in the fall and it is keeping me quite warm but I am still jealous of all of the Canada Goose jackets I have seen out and about recently.

After a slow start to my activity goals due to still being on vacation I have gotten in two dance classes in the last two days – hip hop last night at the gym and ballet tonight at my studio. I’m back to ballet again tomorrow so I have a feeling I might be a little sore Friday – good opportunity for some yoga!

I had expected the gym to be packed yesterday but it wasn’t any busier than normal – some people speculated it was due to the weather but I”m also wondering if maybe the New Year crowd hasn’t gotten started yet. I’m curious – if you belong to a gym or do other fitness activities, did you notice a spike in attendance over the last week?


A toast to 2014

Hello and welcome to my new blog! Check out my about page for a little bit about me. For my first post, I wanted to share my 26 goals for the year I turn 26 – my champagne birthday.

Health and fitness

  1. Be active at least 200 days this year – I made it to 177 in 2013. I was not as active as I would have liked in the fall after moving across the country and getting settled in but I see no reason I shouldn’t be able to get to 200 this year.
  2. Take a dance class in a style other than ballet – I am loving the ballet classes I have been taking in Toronto but I am really missing contemporary and jazz.
  3. Be able to do both left and right splits – I have been able to do the splits on my right leg on and off for about 15 years and have always been close on my left leg but I have had some hip flexor issues for the past couple of years. I will aim for at least 10 minutes of stretching per day to help me achieve this goal.
  4. Repeat a sub 60 minute 10k – I was so proud of myself in 2013 for running 10k in under an hour. I have not been running much since I moved and so I am very eager to get back to it and repeat this performance during the year.
  5. Learn how to do a cartwheel – I have never been able to do one and I figure it’s about time!
  6. Reach a BMI of 21 – My weight has been a little up and down as a young adult. I was heavier as a young teen and dropped about 40 pounds during high school. I maintained this until starting university, where I gained back about 25 pounds. After university, I slowly lost 20 pounds and have more or less maintained this loss for about a year and a half. I am looking to get rid of a final five pounds but my focus is definitely more on fitness and on how I look.

Financial

  1. Reach $45 000 net worth – I have been doing a good job of saving and I hope to keep that up by saving at least $600 per paycheque this year.
  2. Buy a luxury item – On the flip side, I would also like to treat myself to something extravagant this year – I am thinking some designer shoes or a bag.

Professional

  1. Write the GMAT – I have been half-heartedly studying for the last couple of months but it is time to kick it up a notch (or several). I am estimating that I will need to study for at least 150 more hours to feel confident.
  2. Apply to an MBA program – I am not even 100% sure about completing an MBA at this point, but I just want to at least throw my hat in the ring and see what happens.
  3. Only use the internet for work-related purposes while at work – I am guilty of using the internet for personal reasons at work and I would like to stop this. Even if there are slow periods at work, I can always use the time to be learning or preparing something work-related.

Social, learning, and experiences

  1. Go on a trip with my dad – On Christmas, I told my dad that we were going on a trip this year to a location of his choosing. He still hasn’t totally accepted this idea as he is the kind of person who does things for other people and isn’t really comfortable with people doing things for him. I’m sure he’ll warm up to the idea soon though!
  2. Make a new friend – The first few months in Toronto were spent getting settled and meeting my boyfriends new friends from school. I also was lucky to catch up with some acquaintances who also happen to live in Toronto. This meant I didn’t really put enough effort into meeting new people on my own, which I think is important, especially since I can sometimes be quite shy.
  3. Take an acting class – I loved the acting classes I took in high school and I think that this might be a great way to meet new people.
  4. Take a French class or hire a tutor – I fought really hard to learn French and haven’t really used it for about eight months. I really don’t want my ability to slip to much so I need to find an opportunity to use it.
  5. Spend 20 hours on photography – My boyfriend an I bought a new camera about a year and a half ago but we really haven’t gotten to use it as much as I would like.
  6. Spend 20 hours on Serbian – My boyfriend’s family is Serbian and I’d love to be able to hold at least a basic conversation with them.
  7. Cook 10 new meals – Even though cooking isn’t my favourite thing, it’s definitely an important skill and I do enjoy trying new recipes.
  8. Learn to do a fishtail braid – In 2012 I finally learned how to do a French braid. I figure it’s now time to expand my horizons even more.
  9. Knit mittens – I’m currently about halfway finished a scarf as a belated Christmas gift for my boyfriend. Mittens are next up on my list as they are just a little bit more difficult.
  10. Do a boudoir photo shoot – I’ve always wanted to do this and I figure this year is a great time as I work towards all of the fitness goals above.
  11. Read 10 books in English – After not reading much for fun over the last several years, I am getting back into reading thanks to my Kobo.
  12. Read five books in French – Same as above with the added challenge of reading in my second language!
  13. Buy a piece of art for our bedroom – I love our bedroom: it is the first time I have got to pick a paint colour, linens, and furniture for a bedroom. However, there is still nothing on the walls and I’d like to fix that.
  14. Wish everyone happy birthday on Facebook – I know I love receiving birthday greetings on Facebook and keeping in touch with people. I feel like this is especially important now that I’ve moved so far away from a large portion of my friends and acquaintances.
  15. Start a blog and make 100 posts – Well here it is. Now to write at least two posts a week in 2014. Some readers would be nice too!

Thanks for reading. I’d love to hear about your goals or plans for this year!