Happy New Year 2009!

St. Augustine, FL

I always find the New Year inspiring. The end of the year is such a whirlwind of crafting, doing shows, shopping, wrapping and shipping. I totally fall apart in terms of organization, eating well, having any sort of normality or cohesion to my life, and I worry that I’m doing so much that I’m not doing anything well. This all happens every year. Every year.

Then comes January, and – poof! – all’s well and new again. A clean slate. A chance to start fresh.

St. Augustine, FL

Of course it inspires me to set goals, try harder, achieve more in the new year. I have this complex where I think I wasted a lot of time in my early twenties and I need to catch up somehow. So each year, I write down my goals – notice I don’t call them resolutions. Calling them resolutions is just asking for failure. I write down my goals and review my progress and downfalls from the previous year. I’ve done this in 2006, 2007 and 2008.

This year I’m going to start with a quick review of how I did with my goals last year. I did not get back into thrifting (maybe I will this year?) and I did not write a budget (but I was economical and paid attention to my money). I did get way greener and certainly continued to progress craftily. More to come on the crafty endeavors, but as far as green goes, maybe I should be careful what I wish for. When I wrote that as a goal, I envisioned continuing to develop habits at home: recycling, taking public transportation, not eating meat, buying or making green cleaning supplies, conserving water.

makin' green cleaning supplies!

All of this happened. What I did not expect was that I would become so involved in the greening of my day job. I was recruited to be on the Green Team, and I guess because I care about these things I became numero uno green advocate at work. It’s slow going, and at times I feel extremely overwhelmed by the enormity of this task because we’re talking about 3.9 million square feet, but we ended the year with some momentum and I’m looking forward to new developments in the coming year. We did a lot of legwork in 2008 that will come to fruition this year.

In addition to reviewing how I did with my specific goals for the year, I think it is important to take a few minutes to come up with a list of successes. So three cheers to me for the following (and I hope you’ll make your own list!):

– amped up my blogging

abardis.com header

dealt with (and survived!) a major public relations crisis at work

– sold a piece of artwork in a gallery – my coffin for the Day of the Dead show at Young Blood Gallery

Day of the Dead Show at Young Blood

– went from having a bardis earrings in zero stores to being in four

orange earrings

– successfully completed two more Indie Craft Experiences

ice summer 08_1Indie Craft Experience Holiday 2008

– paid off our car and paid down a lot of other debt

– started organizing Kraftwork monthly with Shannon and Young Blood


– was featured in Handmade Nation, the book

Handmade Nation, the book

– jurored an art show called Making It – The Art of Contemporary Craft at Gallery RFD in Swainsboro, GA.


wrote a how-to for Creative Loafing’s holiday gift guide

Creative Loafing's Holiday Guide

– took a metalsmithing class and generally turned a corner in all of my jewelry design

1977 Cuff

– contributed most of the ephemera and wrote the wall text defining indie craft for the Hand.Craft.It exhibit at the Madison-Morgan Cultural Center

Hand.Craft.ItHand.Craft.It Exhibit

– spoke on two panel discussions for the Atlanta Craft Mafia

– was published for the first time in a book – my hair comb how-to in Bead Simple

Holy cow - I'm in a book! fancy hair comb

did a ton of shows both local and out of town

Hand.Craft.It Festival

– wrote my first piece for VenusZine.com – a 2009 calendar round up

Jessica Gonacha's 2009 calendar

– … and as a treat at the very end of the year … was quoted in the New York Times!

new york times quote

Whew! It was a busy year.

So now for 2009 goals … I think it’s going to be a good year.

– I keep having this thought: Loose Weight + Save Money = Go out to eat way less! I need to loose some pounds and save some money and I think these two items are related. Oh Manuel’s Tavern, I will miss your not-so-healthy food, but I’ll be sure to stop in for (a moderate number of) beers.


_ Debt – In the fall of 2005, I quit using credit cards, and in August of 2006, I sat down and figured out exactly how much debt I had. It was a daunting, scary and numbing thing to do, but proved to be the best step in the right direction I’ve ever taken. It was extremely eye-opening and gave me a tremendous amount of motivation (ie, the situation was not good!). I managed to go two full years without using a credit card a single time. Over the course of the past year or so I have made a few charges but generally speaking I’ve broken the habit. And I’m proud to say that I am only a few months shy of the half way mark to freedom from debt.

– Bike & Walk – these will help with the loosing weight part, but they are also just fun, a great way to see the city from a different perspective and good for clearing the head

– Drink Water – getting off to a good start! I’ve had 96 ounces each of the last 3 days.

– Pack Lunches – this is a goal every year. So far, so good. Three days in a row for me and the mister!

– Be more organized – a lifelong pursuit. It doesn’t come easy to me, but I always feel better when things are organized.

– Write More! I bought Sweetie Pie Press‘s button that says this to inspire me. I’ve been wanting to write a book my whole life and have had an actual serious idea for two years, but I can’t seem to get started. I always say, getting started is half the battle. I’ve got to get started this year!!!! Got to.

– Get professional photos taken of my earrings. My photos are just ok, not great. I want some great ones!

– Add more stores to my list. Now that I’m in four stores, I want to be in more!

– Do three out of town shows. I’ve been doing two the past few years (always Renegade Chicago and usually Crafty Bastards, but this year Bazaar Bizarre Boston). This year I want to add a third to the rotation. Maybe Renegade San Fransisco?

Looks like 2009 is going to be as busy as ever for me. I’m excited, it’s gonna be fun!

2009-is-here! (almost)