At the end of 2017 I wrote a post detailing what my goals would be for the upcoming 2018 year, and said “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” So, did I meet my goals? I have listed what the goals were, with my results in bold afterwards:

1) Search out new career opportunities. I recently graduated with a Masters Degree in Library Science (MLIS) and I spent 2.5 years working towards furthering my education so that I could be an asset to any public library. I need to voice my ambition and work diligently towards obtaining a leadership position. I am still at my position as Teen Librarian at my small rural library. I like my job, the community that the library serves and my hours that are family friendly, but I want managerial opportunities, and quite frankly, more money. I really can’t say too much more about this as my library patrons, co-workers and future employers might look at this blog, but I am ready to grow.

2) Write more! Now that my endless homework is done, I will have more time to devote to it. In conjunction with that goal, I welcome writing guest posts. I already have a The Last Jedi piece in the works for Jeffrey at The Imperial Talker, an environmental piece for Michael’s American Resistance at My Comic Relief and YA book reviews for the 2018 Tournament of Books through the Young Adult Services Forum group I belong to planned. This I did! I wrote about  my disappointment with Luke Skywalker’s arc in The Last Jedi on The Imperial Talker, I debated between graphic novel Motor Crush and sci-fi book Landscape with Invisible Hand for the YASF (Young Adult Services Forum) Tournament of Books, I wrote the Ultimate List of Graphic Novels for Perspective of a Writer, and I wrote a review of graphic novel My Favorite Thing Is Monsters on Reads and Reels. Kathleen and I co-wrote a hilarious four part series, The Great Chris Debate, with Michael from My Comic Relief and Kalie from Just Dread-Full about who was the best cinematic Chris (Chris Pine of course!), with a final rebuttal from The Green Onion Blog and Rob from My Side of the Laundry Room. Finally, a YA book I reviewed  was published in the magazine School Library Journal, with a possibility of more. I enjoy writing and hope to do even more next year! 

3) Hike more! To be honest I’m not one to hit the gym. But I really like hiking and will happily spend hours walking in the woods. It’s great exercise and wonderful for my soul. Not so good- but not horrible. My husband and I hike more than the typical couple, but we fell short of hiking as much as we wanted to and should have. However, my husband and I had a weekend getaway to Starved Rock State Park in the spring to hike and during our family trip this summer to Washington DC, we included a side-trip to Cuyahoga Valley National Park in Ohio, in which our family hiked to some beautiful waterfalls (picture seven in grid below). I aim to improve on this again in 2019! 

4) Take more nature photographs for my Instagram account nancyandnature. I am planning to purchase myself a better camera soon, and hope that I can spend more time outdoors (see above goal) capturing good shots. I had nine pictures selected to be featured on photography sites Only in Illinois, Midwest Snaps and Illinois Shots in 2017 and I aim to have more selected this year.  Due to not hiking as much as I had hoped and a malaise that I developed on taking photos in the second half of the year, this goal was not reached. Although I did have a few pictures featured on Illinois Instagram sites (the first in this grid, plus the fifth) and a family travel blog highlighted a picture I had taken of an Indiana state park. I did end up buying myself a nice Canon camera, and hope to use it more often, although some of my best photos have come from my android phone! 

5) Organize my drawers, closets and basement in my home. I bet my co-workers would appreciate me working on my desk too. But I’m creative, and have lots of art projects and the corresponding supplies in mid-completion. Luckily I have a steady stream of teen volunteers at the library to assist me and the other librarians with various projects. Let’s not speak of my  drawers, closets and basement in my home…

All in all, I missed quite a few of my goals. But 2019 is around the corner and I will continue to grow, learn and strive. Here’s to hoping that everyone’s upcoming year is their best yet!


Not really…but I laughed so hard when I saw this on FB!