For many years, our New Year's Day tradition was to hike Spirit Mountain, rain or shine or snow or hail. Many friends and family members hiked with us, most only once... it's a strenuous hike. My dad was the most faithful... hiking into his 80's. But even he had to quit eventually. Then a couple years ago Johnny's back gave out shortly before Christmas and he was barely able to crawl from bed to bathroom, much less hike a mountain. After he had mostly recovered, we didn't rekindle the tradition.
This year as we lay snuggled in our warm bed early New Year's morning, we talked about what sort of new tradition we should instigate. We don't like joining the throngs on the highways, which is how we came up with the Spirit Mountain hike idea many years ago. Johnny suggested hiking up the hill across Agency Creek from us. Somehow, hiking in the rain and mud is not appealing to me anymore. Then I had a brilliant idea. We could lay out our proposed new goat barn and pound in the corner stakes!
The new barn has been in my mental works for at least twenty years, while the old barn gradually disintegrates. After Johnny built a new machine shed last summer (see earlier blog entry) and had the old one torn down, I could finally visualize where the new goat barn should go. Now I'm eager to get the details worked out and start construction. Well, to have someone start construction.
Okay, so planning a new barn isn't an annual tradition (at least I hope we aren't in the planning stage forever) but we have enough dreamed-up but unstarted projects around here to last for many New Year's Days. Cleaning off the top of the dishwasher is a project I keep meaning to get to but don't. Then there's the mess in the former kids' playroom. And my dad's life story that I have all the material for but haven't put together. And after the goat barn is built, there's the possibility of building a new house... Or at least beginning to consider the possibility...
Hiking the mountain was a great way to start the new year. We told everyone who joined us if they could make it to the top on New Year's Day, they could handle whatever challenges the new year brought. But I think if we can actually start a project that we've resolved to do but haven't, that is an equally good way to start a new year. And I am eager to start the new goat barn!