Now that 2008 is gone, it's time to plan ahead for 2009 while it's still fresh and new. My friend Velcrow has made a point of accepting who we are at this point in time rather than beating outselves up about all the things we haven't accomplished last year, replacing the New Year's "Resolution" with "Evolution" or "Revolution", and I'm quoting:
"my first New Years Evolution is to stop feeling bad about myself for any of my shortcomings - just let that go. But first I have to do a very un-male thing and accept that I actually have a shortcoming or two. Let me have a peek….yikes! I do. I gots some. Damn. So much for that mask of rigid perfection I thought I had to wear".
Indeed, the term "resolution" implies that we are at some kind of discord or dissonance with ourselves that requires being resolved. Instead, why not look at who we are and where we are at, and accept it for once! Acceptance is the only way to true happiness. In my not so long life I've had enough ups and downs, turmoils and moments of bliss to understand that having this or that is not what will make me happy. Being happy with what I have is the single most challenging thing really. I'm not saying my life is perfect or that what I create is perfect. But I feel I am now at the point where I always dreamed of being: I can support my family doing what I love with passion and integrity; and both me and my family are healthy and have all that we need to live. What more is there to ask for? World peace of course!
And now to more perfumey issues: this year holds many new adventures for me - including traveling and teaching more than I've ever done before. And while I am happy with where I'm at in both my personal and professional life, this does not mean it's time to rest on the laurels so to speak. I still have many dreams and goals and plans for the new year, which I hope will make a positive difference in the olfactory universe - even if very small.
1) Thorough study of notes
Always a work in progress and one that requires patience and perseverance as well as organization. There are alwasy new materials to explore and observing their behaviour on their own as well as with other notes is the only way to get "intimate" with them so to speak - to the point of being able to predict their behaviour almost scientifically and be able to use them creatively.
2) Expand my library of perfume-related books
These are not easy to find, and hardly ever a bargain. Something that can always be worked on.
3) Organize my perfume sample collection
In alphabetical order, of course. Just like how I did it for the raw materials. I've already got started on that and it's not as easy as the previous project because the samples come in various sizes, shapes and widths...
4) More blogging!
I didn't blog nearly as much as I would have liked to this year. I'm glad I managed to keep the blog alive, but I really would like to spend more time researching and writing for the blog. This commitment and virtual dialogue between myself and my readers has always been a source of inspiration and intellectual challenge. I especially enjoy the occasional common-theme blogging done alongside other bloggers (such as the 2008 in Retrospective that Perfume Shrine has initiated).
5) More photography!
While I was able to restore all of my lost data after my computer crashed, I was not able to restore my photographs. These digital images are lost forever - except for the ones that I have posted online (i.e.: on my blog or on Flickr). This was a huge let down for me and I nearly stopped taking pictures as a result. I want to change that and also come up with a better system for sorting out and storing my photos, as well as bring some to print.
6) Write the second edition of the Foundation of Natural Perfumery course handbook
Oftentimes, it's only after I see and use the finished product that I understand what was missing from it...
7) Learn more about the science of baking.
It's not exactly perfume related, but certainly one of my favourite past times and something I always enjoy writing about on SmellyBlog is aromatic cooking and baking.
Aside from all of that, I wish for myself to be able to continue making perfumes for a living and that I will still be able to spend time with my family far away and keep getting better all the time.
What are your wishes for the new year? And what are your hopes or expectations from SmellyBlog? I'm curious and interested to hear your views.