"We'll take a cup of kindness yet, for auld lang syne."

Ah, 2010. I look to you with the most hopeful of eyes. Really, they're pleading. Bring with you a good year. Good luck, good friends, good times. Just good. We could all use that after the decade we've had. I'm wishing 2009 farewell, and heading into the new year with fresh eyes and a fresh mind and fresh plans. Good riddance, 2009, we are done with you. Or maybe I am. That's what I'm calling them this year, by the way. "Plans," not resolutions. Resolution sounds so stuffy. Final. Hard. I want to make plans, instead. Plans evolve, change, adapt. Plans don't slap you in the face on New Year's Eve, stamping your forehead with FAIL. Instead, plans roll steadily with you into the next year.

Plans. Say it. See? So much nicer.

And with just one more day ahead of us in this very long decade, I shall lay out my plans for the new year.

I'm going to start with the obvious: running. It was a big goal in 2009, and it's going to be just as big next year. I want to maintain what I've built. I need to keep enjoying it, continue to be inspired by those I meet and continue to motivate others in any way I can. I've set a lofty mileage plan for 2010. I'm hesitant to say it out loud just yet, for fear of setting it in stone, but here goes: 1,500 miles. If I continue the path I'm on, I can do it, and I can enjoy it. I've got DailyMile, I've got my Garmin synced with my computer, I've got my many, new running friends. That breaks down to about 125 miles a month, 4 miles a day. It'll take consistency and commitment. Two things I tend to lack. If nothing else, setting this plan for myself is going to keep me consistent and keep me committed. Now to the dirty details. I'm still chasing the sub-4 hour marathon. I've got two chances in 2010, and I'm not giving up on it. The half marathon isn't safe this year, either, because I'm going after a 1:45. Best so far? 1:49. Average? Low 1:50s. And the 5K. How I loathe the 5K. My plan for 2010 is to knock one out in 23:30 or less. I've broken 24 minutes, but it's tough.

I fall off the reading wagon every year. Never fails. And if I could stop reading the Twilight saga long enough, maybe I'd get somewhere. My plan for 2010 is to shoot for two books a month. Two new books. I've got so many on my shelf, and so many recommendations. Reading is by far one of my favorite things to do, but I tend to forget that. A great book club is not out of the question.

A lot more writing is going to happen in 2010. I'm going to start using my blog as the outlet it is. If I'm able to find and join one writing group or writing class, I'd consider the year a success. Writing is like riding a bike. You never forget how to do it, but it's useless when it's just sitting in the garage. I'm toying with the idea of randomly posting fiction snippets on my blog. Short, rough drafts of stories that sit in my head. If I don't post them somewhere, they'll sit in my mind useless. Ideally, I'd like to write a blog post daily. Just having the ability to do so again in the last few days has significantly improved my mood. I've missed it. I miss the outlet. I'm also not giving up on finding a writing career again. I want to write in any capacity. Newsletters. Press releases. Articles. I just want to use words for what they're meant for.

This coming year I also want to break out of my shell. I've been locked up in my own little world since moving to Madison, unsure of myself. Unsure of how to meet new people, make new friends. I want to be myself. Find others like me. Be open and honest and caring. I'm going to take advantage of opportunities as they arise. Take an active role in reaching out to others. Along the same lines, I'm going to maintain a good connection with the friends I do have. I want to reconnect, be a part of their lives, even if they are several cities and counties away. You all know who you are.

And finally, what will come will come. I'm going to take it in stride. Remember what I've already accomplished and overcome. A year is just a year. They come and go. I'll turn 28 this year, early on , in February. Another fresh year, another fresh start. I'm feeling good about it, and the things to come. I'm working on a side blog project that's still getting its wings, and I'm extremely pumped to let it out into the world.

Good things to come, friends. Hopefully for all of us. Happy New Year.