This will be the third year that I’m tracking these goals. Last year’s updates are red. This year’s are green. Let’s see how I’m doing?


My birthday just passed and I forgot that I wrote this post last year. Let’s see how I’m doing…


My daughter in Japan called yesterday. She wished me a happy birthday and I was surprised when she asked what my goals are for the next year. Huh? She said that I always taught her that we should be improving in some area of our life and have goals to track our progress. It’s good advice and I was surprised again to think that any of the kids actually listened to me when they were young. Goals help us stay on track, keep us engaged in our own life, and they remind us of what we want and of who we want to be. They don’t have to be big. They don’t have to be grand. But they should be specific and measurable.

Here are a few of mine:

I want to ride in the Mt. Washington Hill Climb the summer of my sixtieth birthday. It’s considered the most difficult bicycle hill climb in the world and will remind me that sixty doesn’t have to mean decrepit. I’ll need a bike first. And bigger thighs. Not sure if I will make it. It’s still a goal…but not my wife’s goal. In her world “New Hampshire + cold +bike race + time-off from work” does not equal “vacation.” And the time off from work is a tough one. My wife keeps asking me what I want to do for my sixtieth birthday. I keep saying “Nothing.” “C’mon!” she says. It’s a big deal! You should do something you really want to do.” So I say that I’d like to do the Mt. Washington Hill Climb or maybe climb Mt. Rainier. “Can’t you do something less…killing? Like, go visit something?” I get a big idea: “Hey! I know what we can do. Let’s go on a dino dig for a week!” “Oh gawd,” she says. “Can’t you find something less killing but a little more exciting?” “Stamp show?” I ask. It’s still up in the air. 

I want to pass my Certified Health Physicist exam next summer and would like to join Sigma Xi and The Society for the Study of Evolution. Am taking the CHP test next summer. Joined the Society for the Study of Evolution. Yet to pay up with Sigma Xi. Am competing my application for the CHP test now. I have mixed feelings about it. It will take a lot of time and cost a few bucks and won’t really help me in my career unless I’m sacked or my plant shuts down. Commercial power plants don’t care much about academics or certifications. Getting ‘er done is what it’s all about. But the DOE salivates when you have letters after your name. The CHP would be a real help if I have to go back to that. Probably won’t joint Sigma Xi. Just no real benefit other than a nice journal that I can purchase elsewhere.

Mal and I had our first date-night in about two years last Friday night. We played a little tennis and had a nice time just being together. I think we should definitely ramp up the romance to at least one date per year. See? I like to set a low bar. Then I can pat myself on the back for achieving another goal. We’ve had a few more dates but not enough. Ha! I was joking. Dates? Time alone? We had lunch at the local Mexican joint once last month. Does that count?

I have two papers I’m working on for publication, two longer projects that I want to have roughed out by next summer, and one side writing project to complete. LOL. I have no clue what this is. I’m revamping some writing goals. I want to publish at least once this year. Pretty excited about some new ideas. Canceled for having nary a clue what this was.

There’s talk of going to Disney World this year. Have motel and tickets for November. Ugh. Went to Disney last month. We had an exhausting but generally splendid time but I don’t know if we will go again. We were at the park for three days and had scheduled meals the entire time. I expected a little more return on my investment. The meals were something akin to a Golden Corral buffet with Disney characters. The characters are pretty cool. It’s clear that lots of work goes into choosing the right people and that the actors put lots of time into their craft. With a little fog and a couple of gins. I could have been convinced that Tinker Bell really was Tinker Bell. We stayed at the resort and our second room was nice. The first room was situated in a renovation zone and, when we walked in, there were centipedes on the carpet. Let’s just say that this didn’t work out and the manager of the resort relented only when he saw that my smiling wife was not leaving until he found a new room for us. We spent our second day at the resort with one sick daughter. On our third and final night, the site EMTs came to our room to determine if our other daughter needed to go to the hospital for hydration.  Disney is funny. It’s truly a destination but you spend a whole lot of money for very few rides. Each ride has a very long line. The food is nothing special. You leave exhausted, crabby, and poor. Having checked this off our list, I don’t guess that we will go back for several years.

2018 Goals

The gorgeous Saab 900.

I might need a new car if my New York Rust Bucket finally snaps in half. Purchased a 1990 Saab 900 Turbo. I don’t know if it’s true love or if I’ve just fallen for a cult but I never want to drive another car.

I am planning on running a couple of 5ks this fall and would like to break 25 min for a 5k next spring. I would like to break the famous (at least for Mittons) seven-minute mile barrier this fall. Ran another 5K and will do another this Fall. 26:42 is still my best. Ran a sub 7:30 mile which is still thirty seconds off my gal. Ran a 5k recently in 26:50. Running has been a challenge this year. My job changed for a time and I had very little time for anything but work and sleep. That’s behind me now and I plan to ramp up the miles this year. I also want to do a sub sixty- minute 10k.

New Goals

500 organic followers of my You Woke Up Breathing Blog.
Completion of my Evolution Explained Blog. Goals to come at that point.

I turn sixty this year. Both my father and grandfather died at sixty-seven. This looms large for me. This is some 2,000 days. From where I sit this is a very small number. Seneca said that “A life well lived is long enough.” That was maybe the only stupid thing that he said. I want the well-lived and lived-long all rolled into one happy forty more years. Health, relationships, and engagement all come into play here for me.

There’s a start. Thanks for the reminder,  Rebe!


How about you? What are your goals for the new year?  Lofty? ‘To attend a yoga retreat in the Bahamas and shake hands with my inner child chasing hermit crabs on the beach?’ Or are they more noble than lofty? Or are they like most of my goals were in the past: ‘Pay the bills mostly on time. Get the kids shoes before school starts in September. Try very hard to get the kids to school on time. Most days. At least twice a week.’ As in all things, start where you are.

There are all kinds of sites to learn more about goal setting. I like Brian Tracy quite a bit. Don’t get too bogged down in the planning but focus on the doing. And have some fun.


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