2012 Goals: A Review

With the new year just one month away, I'm contemplating some new goals for the upcoming year. I set 12 goals for 2012 and have successfully met 7 of them.

  1. Learn to grow wheatgrass. This was my first goal back in January. Lesson learned: Wheatgrass grows best in shallow glass containers. I have encountered no mold problems since watering under the soil, which is easy to do with glass.

  2. Learn the craft of soapmaking. I discovered that I love the art of making soap. We even have our own family company, Just So, with our very own website. Here's a photo of our new Cafe Castile Soap.

  3. Make natto. The biggest surprise is that I almost like natto! I can tell my body loves it. I'm going to try making it with lentils instead of soybeans next time.
  4. Make a liver recipe that my family will eat. I stick to my raw liver and sneak it into meatloaf, but that's the extent of my liver usage.
  5. Prepare a 15-meal menu planner. I did this. It's on my refrigerator, but I hardly use it.
  6. Make pickles that taste as good as Bubbie's. Mine aren't as crispy as Bubbies, even with the grape leaves, but the flavor is delicious. I use this recipe from The Herbangardener.
  7. Make a printable shopping list. The list includes items I order from the food co-op, online, Whole Foods, etc. I shared the list in this post from May.
Here are my remaining 5 goals:

  1. Learn to compost. I tried this and discovered that I'm not ready to devote the time needed to compost in a dry, arid climate like Arizona. I'm definitely not putting this on my list for next year. When I try composting again, I will use earthworms.
  2. Make cultured butter. I now have a source for farm-fresh cream and can't wait to try this. This is topping my list for 2013.
  3. Make fermented salsa. I have no excuse. This looks pretty easy. It's going onto next year's list. If you have a recipe to share, I'd love to see it!
  4. Expand my herb garden. I was hoping to include all of the herbs from Vinegar of the Four Thieves. I haven't achieved this but do have three thriving herbs: lavender, rosemary, and peppermint. I may add sage this year, but doubt I'll attempt wormwood or rue.
  5. Make mustard. I tried this three times! The batches were either too spicy, too sticky, or too powdery. But I have finally had success! The key was soaking the seeds overnight before blending in the food processor. It is currently fermenting.

I learned some important lessons throughout this last year.

  1. It helps to set goals. They were just the right push for me.
  2. I can do more than I think I can.
  3. It's okay to fall short of my goals.
The best lesson?

  1. Mistakes make wonderful teachers. As Albert Einstein said,
"Anyone who has never made a mistake
has never tried anything new."