Friday, 27 October 2017

25 Before 26

Oh wow, not gonna lie, I am quite terrified by how quickly time passes. It's so unreal that I'm almost over the mid-twenties threshold already. I swear sometimes it still feels like I'm 17, barely legal to lease an apartment—or anything else, for that matter. Since last year's list went down so well, I was determined to make this list something I could execute no matter my life situation. The kids these days would call this the "adulting" list—the very same people who would refer to themselves as "millennials." It consists of financial challenges, lifestyle challenges and practically nothing adventurous, to be honest. But, as I learnt in last year's list, adventure requires money, no matter how small. And I just can't be sure if I'd have some to spare in the coming year. So here's to a little boring list, but a lot of learning and investing in the future.

1. Read all the Harry Potter series

Yep, that's right: I've never read the Harry Potter series—despite having all seven volumes from the start. It just never appealed to me somehow. When I was little, it also seemed to be a rule that I hate what my sister loves, so Harry Potter was my sister's thing. I tried reading the seventh book when it just came out, but could only go so far as the forest part—which, at the time, I found so boring, so I ditched the book. I'd like to try it out now, because I just discovered that the books are so much more interesting than the film.

2. Start meal planning every week

I've kind of started doing this sometime last month, because I wanted to start paying attention to what I put in my body. But, since I'm actually still living with my parents—which is actually not that unusual in this country—and the kitchen is like a sacred place for my Stepmom, I can't always make my own meals. Also, let's be honest, I just ain't got no time for that. So, instead, I thought I'd just plan all my breakfast every week—and quite possibly lunch as well for all my Meatless Mondays. Umm...yup, I'm still doing that!

3. Design merchandise and start selling them online

Haha yeah, it's a mandatory for my birthday lists now, I suppose. I'm still interested in selling my Inktober from 2016, if anyone's particularly interested. But aside from that I might make other things that are, err, interesting. I'll probably start with fanart first, because they are easier to relate to for the greater public. I don't know, what do you think is a good merchandise idea? Help me!

4. Come up with a consistent workout regime

Still singing the same old song, aren't I? I've been watching some vloggers who are always happily going to the gym or working out, so it's got me quite pumped. Also, I'm so inspired by Tieka of Selective Potential to have a workout routine and lose some weight, to fit into all my clothes again. My goal is also to get my biceps back, because they've gone slack lately and I'm very sad. Maybe I'll join a gym like some of my friends, get a trainer to get me on track and see what happens. Well, we'll see (my financial situation).

5. Set a monthly budget

Speaking of finances, this is such an exciting one for me! I should probably have done this a long time ago, but now I feel like I'm at a place where my financial condition is good enough for me to do it, without having to sell an organ or something to accomplish this. Lately, I've also been watching some videos by The Financial Diet, to help me start this whole shebang. I'm so excited to see how much of a difference it makes and how long I could stick by it. 

6. Set aside time to work on personal projects

Ever since I set up my art instagram account, I've been really pumped with creating more illustrations—maybe it's the Inktober atmosphere too—so I really want to create more personal works to post there. I've also gotten quite a lot of support from various people there, so I'm very motivated to create some more. In the past, my personal pieces have been the biggest source of my pride. I really want to go back to that exciting feeling of creating something I love.

7. Create a weekly schedule (and stick to it!)

Time management is an ongoing issue in my life. It is not unusual for me to rush through work, to reach the deadline. In the end, I always say things like "I don't have time to (work out/tidy my room/help out around the house)," which really sucks, because I know I need to do those things—and most people would have time to do them. Hopefully, with a weekly schedule, my life will be better organised.

8. Take time to take care of my tools and space

Now, with the schedule, hopefully I'll be able to do this as well. Lately, I've noticed that my camera has been going haywire—sometimes the lens won't connect even though it's attached or the card can't be read even though it's inside—and I'm starting to get worried it will break for good. Aside from that, my laptop gives me a scare too, from time to time—and it's not still going on credit too! So I'll definitely need to better care for them in the future.

9. Only buy books from my to-read list

My biggest weakness is a giant book sale. When I know a bookstore gives out major discounts, whether or not I wanted to read them in the past, I'll most likely buy loads of books. Sure, I find various interesting and underrated books this way, but it's not doing my wallet any favours. Plus, the to-read list on my Goodreads remain untouched. Wouldn't it be more satisfying if, during those sales, I buy just the books I've been eyeing for a while? Talking about killing two birds with one stone.

10. Try growing edible plants

Something I've been meaning to do since I was still in Kassel. I thought it would be great to grow my own lemons—or at least some kind of seasonings. So far, the only edible plants we have is aloe vera—and we rarely ever harvest it—and we also used to have pandan trees, but we harvest from it so much, we need to buy a new one. Someone gave me some tips on gardening a few months back, so I might check that out again soon.

11. Do more volunteer work!

A repeat from 23 Before 24 list.

12. Make my own snacks

To go along with the meal-planning and zero-waste situation, I thought I should also try to make my own snacks. Maybe something like cookies, to start off. It would save a lot of money, cut back waste in terms of packaging and control my nutritional intake better. No more pre-packaged preservative-drenched junk food from the supermarket! At least, that's the idea.

13. DIY Household stuff as much as possible

I don't know how much I can do, but I hope I'll be able to do loads with used jars and/or boxes.

14. Practice going out of my illustration's comfort zone

Recently, I've been told that, although my style is eye-catching and certainly shows talent, it looks quite boring, because I use the "obvious" colour palette all the time. I rarely ever experiment, especially in terms of colour, and people can clearly see that. I've been too comfortable with the colours that I know, colours that are "safe." I need to get out of that comfort zone and experiment more with various colours that I wouldn't have thought would look good together. That is the start, anyway.

15. Invest on blogging materials

Although I've been blogging for almost 6 years now, I've almost never bought things for the blog. I think a DSLR camera and a cutting board are the only things I've ever purchased, with this blog in mind. I use backdrops that are available to me—which doesn't always look good—and do nothing to enhance my flatlays and photographs. I want to start paying attention to items that I might need to improve the look of my shots. Or, you know, a simple tripod.

16. Learn how to design a blog from scratch

In case you didn't know, whenever I say I "designed" my blog, the most I did was create a background image/header and rearrange the sidebars and widgets. Nothing groundbreaking, if even interesting. This year I am determined to find out how to really revolutionise my blog from scratch. I'm thinking of hitting up Skillshare and see what they've got to offer.

17. Participate in Fanart Friday at least once a month

A couple years ago, when I found out about Fanart Friday, I was so thrilled and determined to join as much as I can. But, after uploading three pieces, I stopped doing it. Now I'm pumped to try drawing some of my favourite characters again as an homage to the creators. I can already think of several artists I'd like to make a tribute to, but if you have any recommendations/requests, let me know!

18. Take one photo a day (and organise in a folder!)

Never tried this one before. I need to see the good in the small things, because I can slowly feel myself being a grumpy bitch again. Also, I'd like to remember what my life used to look like when I was 25, you know.

19. Discover new places/events to visit

Actually wrote this down because I was running out of ideas. It's a no-brainer for me; I would do it anyway, goals list or no goals list.

20. Watch all Wes Anderson/Satoshi Kon films

Two of my favourite directors of all time, but I haven't seen all of their creations, so I'd like to see more. But, watching all the movies from both of them might be a little too overwhelming, so I decided to do either. It's almost funny that they have very different styles in directing and the subject matter they tend to tackle are polar opposites. This should be fun!

21. Create an illustration for every "holiday" of my choosing

Paying a tribute to my favourite "holidays" have always been something I'd like to do. I say "holiday," because I'd like to do one for, like, "Ocean Day" or "Book Day" or something similar. They're not really holidays, but I don't know what to call them exactly (lol). They're quite underrated, so it'd be nice to give them some love. I'd probably start doing this in 2018, though.

22. Have the courage to criticise people's misconduct in public 

Often in public I see people littering or cutting queue lines, and I hate that! But I usually just let them slide, because I can't find the guts to scold them to their face. Usually, if someone cuts the line behind me, I would tell them not to, because person X was already behind me before he/she was. Or I would record what they did and post it on social media—not showing any face or calling names, though—just to vent. I think it's time I really try to tell them straight off, because they really shouldn't think it's okay to condone such behaviours.

23. Organise my working space

My working space is a hot mess. Nuff said.

24. Print my own pattern on fabric (and have them tailored!)

Recently, I found Zalmon Fabric, a local fabric-printing company that prints strictly on natural and organic cottons. When I looked up the prices, they weren't that expensive too, and the results look really amazing and envying. I'd love to have one—or a few—of my own and have my own version of ethical clothing. Wouldn't that be amazing?

25. Develop (and publish) at least one of my stories

Over the years—since before I even hit puberty—I've been making various stories, some of which have been turned into amateur comic books and some others can only be found in my head. I thought I should seriously develop one of these stories and share them with the greater public. Maybe in the form of a webcomic? Or a simple series on my instagram? Ah, who knows.

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