Torta di Noci, originally uploaded by arahbahn.

On the morning of January 1, I participated in a most excellent 75-minute group cycle class at the South Family YMCA. During the song breaks, Kathy the instructor got each of us to share an intention for the new year. How do you keep it brief enough that a) you can say it between breaths while climbing a fictional hill and b) you don’t have keep talking to explain it?

The problem was solved when someone else wheezed out, “stick to the plan.” I seconded that: My mantra for 2011: stick to the plan. Just do it. Stop procrastinating. In some areas of my life, achieve moderation. Nice and vague, but headed in an optimal, balanced direction.

Specifically: finish the basement. Make a habit, at least weekly, of tending to finances. Get the house painted. Finish the 5-year knitting project. Be moderate with my cardio training. Introduce more people to yoga.

Happy New Year! May your year be filled with balance, happiness and at least a little pie. This walnut one, which I made for our New Year’s Day party, was fantastic. It tasted like baklava; we cut up about half of it into bite-size squares, which all got gobbled up, as did the remainder in the pie plate.

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