Another year is winding down, and that can only mean it’s time for New Year’s “Revolutions.” First, though, some notes about December – always a hectic month! christmas2012

This marked the end of the Fall semester at Algonquin College (Perth Campus), so it was time to submit the final marks for my Advanced Housing II, Heritage Carpentry II, Masonry I, Police Foundations I and Dual Credit/SFDCI students. What a great bunch of students! I look forward to teaching the Masonry and Police Foundations students in the Winter semester.

Things were also busy with Lanark County as the 2013 Festivals and Events guide headed to press. Stay tuned – it should be available soon and features hundreds of events across the county. (While you’re perusing the Lanark County Tourism site, be sure to check out the Maple Routes Map, which I helped with earlier this Fall. Also, here is a media release about Lanark County Tourism earning recognition at the Ontario Tourism Summit Awards. Way to go!) December is also the season for the Inaugural meeting, when the 2013 Warden is elected (congratulations to Montague Reeve Bill Dobson!). The regular county council meeting also took place, and the December issue of County Connections, the employee newsletter, was published.

December also marks the culmination of activities related to the annual Perth & District Chamber of Commerce Visitor Guide. The 2013 edition will soon be heading to press, so stay tuned!

And, of course, the final edition of “Past Deadline” for 2012, published Dec. 27/12 in The Perth Courier, is below. Happy New Year, everyone! Thank you for your patronage!

The Revolutions of 2013

 As one year winds down and we head into a new one, it’s time to reflect on those New Year’s Revolutions and see if I did what I said I was going to do and hatch a sinister plan to do a whole bunch of stuff in the new year.

Some years I get quite aggressive with my “live well and save the world” promises. Other years I strive for achievable goals, such as “stop eating sugar straight from the bag.” (No problem!)

Let’s reflect on the results of 2012.

Last year I opted to return to an exercise resolution. This was particularly important given the fact I have a Stupid Foot™ that collapsed in 2011, compelling me to abandon some of my favourite types of exercise.

Well, that resolution was a spectacular fail! Even though the foot feels better, it is not better enough for running. Walking seems to have fallen off the roster, too. The stationary bike has been idle. The swimming pool has only seen me as a spectator.

Clearly, this needs to be addressed, and fast. Exercising – actually doing it – is the number one item for 2013, assuming the world hasn’t ended, of course.

On a better note, I am pleased to report that, for the most part, I maintained an aggressive Hair Management Program™, which is to say I tried to avoid looking like a skunk when all the white hair started to show up. Not much of a life-altering, world-saving resolution, however, it is important to celebrate small achievements in order to bolster morale.

Maintaining a skunk-free image is incentive enough that I don’t actually have to indoctrinate it – so I’m not going to bother including it for 2013.

The third one from last year, however, bears repeating. It was “Don’t freak out in the face of change.”

I have learned to accept that change is constant. Some change is good. Other change – not so much. How we deal with it is the important thing.

A big example – something that has affected so many people – is the economy. Jobs are lost, positions are changing and people have to do things differently. The only thing you can really do is find a way to make it work.

I’m going to keep that resolution because it is a work in progress, and I am going to add “conflict or difficulty” to the end of it.

Sometimes we find ourselves in roles that attract conflict and difficulty and, in my experience, flying off into orbit does not necessarily help the situation. (It is also not very practical – space missions can break the budget.)

Under the “difficulty” category, I have found this “not freaking out” thing to be important when it comes to deadlines, too.

For example, every December a whole bunch of work deadlines converge for me, like planets aligning, and there’s not a darned thing I can do about it. So, as December approaches, I complete as much as I can in advance, then take a deep breath and bury myself in an intense workload for two weeks or so, knowing as I go that there will be light at the end of the tunnel. Adrenalin, momentum and coffee keep me going. My family has learned to ignore the crazy lady at the desk.

The December deadline thing is probably as close as I will ever come to running a marathon. Unfortunately, that type of marathon does nothing for muscle tone and does not count toward the exercise resolution.

There you have it. No new revolutions, just recycled ones. That’s all the “change” I can handle!

Happy New Year, everyone! And please save the world – it needs our help.

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