This is the month for making resolutions, and you might as well go straight to the top. Yes, you probably need to exercise more. Yes, you probably could eat better.
But what do you really, really need to do?
We revisited the people who appeared in Ink in 2015 to find out what they’ll be doing in 2016. What they had to say surprised us.
Forget the same-old, same-old New Year’s resolutions.
Never miss a local story.
Try one of these: Wash your face every day. Call your mom every week. Stop shopping on Amazon.com while drinking.
Or face one of life’s bigger challenges: Get a date with Emma Watson. Commit to shopping local. Cut back on QuikTrip taquitos.
Here are some ways to live better that you haven’t already heard a hundred times.
The McCoy’s Public House brewer appeared in the March 18 edition as part of the “30 Under 30” series. Last fall Yeager handled the brewery’s imperial stout Ursa Minor ahead of its appearance at the Great American Beer Festival. It earned a gold medal.
“So, brew another gold medal-winning beer is one of (my resolutions),” Yeager says. Also, “ball harder than I’ve balled before.”
-Jesus Lopez-Gomez, Special to Ink
Founder and CEO of Pure Pursuit Automotive
The luxury sports car specialist talked about the challenges of starting a business in a Sept. 9 “On My Mind.” In 2016, he wants to be more grateful for the people in his life and learn how to turn setbacks into opportunities. “I also want to grow my whiskey collection and start selling Ferraris,” he adds.
-Jennifer Bhargava, Special to Ink
Nicole Marie Green
Green revealed a sense of humor in an Oct. 21 “On My Mind.” This year, she plans to follow the advice of another funny person, Amy Poehler, who posited in her book, “You do it because the doing of it is the thing … the talking and worrying and thinking is not the thing.”
Green says she wants use that sentiment to stop worrying, find balance and take risks. “Oh, and drink more water,” Green adds. “You can’t do it without water.”
Aaron ‘A.Ward’ Ward
A feature about the artist was the cover story of the Dec. 9 Ink. Ward says he looks forward to being more intentional and loving with those closest to him.
“My New Year’s resolution is to tell my family members I love them weekly,” he says. “I find myself getting caught in up in the ‘fast life.’ Life is short and precious and my family members … mean the world to me.”
Ward says 2016 will also see the activation of his website.
Co-owner of The Jeweled Gypsy fashion truck
The ambitious fashionista gushed May 27 about the perks of running a business with her soon-to-be mother-in-law in “On My Mind.” In 2016, the two plan to expand their company’s website, pick up more local designers, and have more presence on social media.
“Personally, I am working on creating my own, full line of jewelry and accessories,” Sargent says. “It should be debuting in the truck this spring.”
Comedian, host of the Tank Room’s weekly open mic night
It’s simple for Wright: “I want — scratch that — I need Hannibal Buress to follow me back on Twitter.”
He’s already gotten the followback from big-time comedians like Lil Rel and Mark Normand. But life’s just not right without a little love from Buress. “That’s not weird, right?”
-Aaron Randle, Special to Ink
The outgoing performer sat down for an Aug. 26 story to discuss her role as Maria in Spinning Tree Theatre’s “West Side Story.” This year her goal is to get fit.
“I want to put health at the forefront of my lifestyle and really stick to a workout schedule,” she said. “I have even signed up for a Tough Mudder to give me a boost of motivation.”
Former resident of the Bellerive in midtown
Turning the Big 3-0 and a job change are among the developments since we met Petzold a year ago in our Jan. 7 “At Home With.” He also traded in his swanky midtown apartment for an equally swanky home. He hopes more time at home will mean a more meaningful life, including a focus on positive changes.
“Now that I have my own home, I want to start teaching piano lessons again, something I had done for over 10 years in the past and truly loved,” Petzold says. “And now that my new job will allow me to be in Kansas City more, I want to channel that freedom back into the community, perhaps by joining a board or volunteering at a nonprofit.”
-Andrea Darr, Special to Ink
Marketing director and event coordinator, KC Wine Co.
This self-proclaimed farm girl talked about her family’s recent venture into the wine-making business in a July 15 “On My Mind.” She’s excited to kick off the new year.
“I resolve to be genuinely happy, to treat others with the utmost respect, and to wine more with friends new or old,” Berggren says.
Watts was profiled in the Jan. 14 issue after the relase of his album “Kansas City State of Mind.” These days he’s gearing up for the follow-up album, “CaviArt,” due later this month.
He hopes the coming year will be all about self-actualization. “A lot of times people have these bullshit resolutions that they can’t hold onto …” Watts says. “Last year I was wanting knowledge. Now I’m wanting knowledge of self, meaning I know who I am: Gee Watts. Mastering myself means I’m the sole controller of my destiny.”
Owner of Ladybird Diner in Lawrence
Heriford said in a “Kitchen Convo” on Nov. 11 that she’d cook for Kris Kristofferson over any celebrity, and she’s bringing that affinity for music into 2016 with her.
One of her resolutions is to maintain the Sunday morning playlist at her diner — think Nirvana, the Replacements, Doug Sahm and Dwight Yoakam — “without regard for proper segue and free of apology,” she says. “The heart wants what it wants.”
She also plans to keep her focus narrow and her identity crisp.
-Megan Lewis, Special to Ink
Floral designer and educator
The modern floral arrangements we saw in the May 13 issue are not the only venture the young entrepreneur is after.
“In 2016, I’m going to be rebranding my business. As a creative person, I wear lots of hats. If it calls for any type of creativity, I’m usually game. I’m a floral designer, a stylist, I create wedding accessories, kids apparel, and I blog,” Walters says. “People often ask me, ‘So what do you do?’ I’m going to create a space online where all of these things are combined in one place.”
Co-founder and organizer of the Paris of the Plains cocktail festival
Frost was featured in a Sept. 9 preview of the festival. He takes an intellectual approach to goal-setting.
“I’ve long been aware that my generation seems ruled by its fear, as though the easy lives we have lived, free of predation and catastrophe, is setting us up for something really awful,” Frost says. “That sort of mindset seems all too easy, and I want to stop being one of its participants. I want to remember that hate is the opposite of life, and love is the only language common to us all. Oh, and eat less kale … and watch all the ‘Portlandia’ episodes I’ve missed …”
-Anne Kniggendorf, firstname.lastname@example.org
Brandie Elam Tryban
Volunteer at Changing Leads Equine Rescue
This horse rescuer appeared Sept. 30 in Ink’s “On My Mind.” “Two of my not-so-serious resolutions include finally getting all the hay out of my hooded sweatshirts, and trying to cut back on QuikTrip taquitos,” Tryban says. “They are my guilty pleasure after chores at the barn.”
Author of “Racism in Kansas City: A Short History”
Griffin was the subject of “30 Under 30” on Oct. 7. He says, “I am resolved to find a publisher for my second book, “Socialism: The Hope of Gandhi, Einstein, Dr. King, Helen Keller, and So Many Others.”
Katie Mabry van Dieren
Owner of the Strawberry Swing Indie Craft Fair
The quirky artist appeared in an April 29 “On My Mind” about her love for all things local. She plans to continue that passion in 2016. “I want to try and dine and shop strictly at stores and restaurants which are owned locally, which in turn helps support our community because local businesses recycle a much larger share of their revenue back into the local economy,” she says.
Baker and artist
Starowitz appeared on the Feb. 25 cover. Starowitz is currently working in Whitesburg, Ky., with Americorp Vista and the Rural Policy Research Institute. He says that rather than make resolutions, he writes out 10 points of interest for himself. “I would say number one for me is to be a better listener,” he says. “Number two is be honest and upfront about issues and things that bother me.”
Pastry chef at Lidia’s Kansas City
Pollard was featured in a “Kitchen Convo” in our Oct. 21 issue. Of her 2016 goals, she says, “My resolution for the coming year is to take better care of myself, so I can give more back to all the special people in my life.”
Co-founder of Electronic Beacons Systems
A local app developer, Ruiz appeared in a Dec. 23 “On My Mind” about his company.
“Well, my resolutions have been the same since I was 17: Get rich and find a way to get Emma Watson to notice me,” Ruiz jokes.
“On a serious note, in 2016 I want to help put KC on the map by scaling EB Systems to a company with national presence,” Ruiz says. Locally, he wants the company to be in a position to attract and employ new talent.
“Maybe through that process my teenage resolutions could come true. … Who knows.”
Nicole and Brian Weber
Eco-friendly passive solar homeowners
The conscientious consumers who made the front cover of one of our August issues want to look inward in 2016. They hope to do less housework and spend more time playing with son Radford.
As for home projects? The master bedroom closet is next in line for an upgrade.
When we talked to her for a Dec. 2 “On My Mind,” Fritz wasn’t allowed to talk about the specific outcomes of her appearance on the game show. Turns out, she won $18,401 across two rounds of “Jeopardy!” She is currently looking for a charitable destination for her earnings.
In 2016, Fritz says she hopes to volunteer more and have her next game show appearance lined up by year’s end.
Featured at her self-styled modern ranch in October, Kersten generally shucks the resolution tradition. Rather she says she tries to resolve throughout the year to be the most organized homemaker, mother and professional she can be.
“I’m trying to get my house more organized in places like closets and storage — adding more shelves and uniform boxes and tubs to find things easier,” she says. “Visual organization helps disguise my natural lack of organization and makes me feel like my life is less chaotic.”
Manny Abarca IV
Staff member for U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver
Abarca was in an Aug. 5 “On My Mind.” A community liaison with Cleaver’s office, Abarca said he hopes to broaden and deepen his impact. “My resolution is to do more, give more and bring friends along the way,” he says. “Obviously, the work I do is not finished.”
Enterprise Center of Johnson County marketing director
The business center spokesperson and educator appeared Oct. 28 as part of the “ 30 Under 30” series. Roberts’ resolution is to become a better baker.
“I’ve had three notable baking failures causing me no lack of embarrassment,” she says.
Etsy shop owner and vintage enthusiast
In the Feb. 18 issue, Wunderlich shared her collection-filled 725-square-foot River Market apartment with us. In the coming year, she wants to do a bit of everything. She wants to learn a new craft (“weaving or hand-lettering?”), improve her health (“aka exercise”) and connect with family and friends in person. “Not on Facebook,” she notes.
Harrison Street DIY co-founder
The Columbus Park area skate park Hlavacek founded and built with partners Keelin Austin and Garrett Rathbone appeared on the May 6 cover of Ink. Since then, it was awarded a $5,000 grant from the Tony Hawk Foundation and generated $10,000 through a crowdfunding campaign. Hlavacek says that’s enough money to double the area and offerings of the skate park.
Hlavacek has since moved to Portland, Ore., to advance his career as a professional skater.
Hlavacek’s resolutions are to bike 2,000 miles, skateboard at least once weekly, ditch music streaming services in place of purchasing music and donate 200 hours of labor to the skatepark.
Norton knows a thing or two about goal-setting. She and her husband saved a ton of cash on their wedding venue by booking a year in advance, as she shared in a Nov. 25 “Down the Aisle.”
She hopes to see budgeting payoff again in the new year. “I plan to pack my lunch every day and put what I would have spent eating out in a savings account,” she says. She also wants to replace an hour of TV a day with an hour of reading a day, shop local and become a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters.
-Caitlin Cress, Special to Ink
Owner of the Burger Stand in Lawrence
In a Nov. 25 “Kitchen Convo,” the chef teased that there might be a new Lawrence restaurant coming in 2016. He has a few little less food-oriented goals, too.
“One is to read a book a month, which is quite ambitious considering I didn’t read much last year,” Bates says. “I also want to run a half marathon, which will hopefully help me stick with my resolution of staying in better shape.”
Jenny Anderson and Michelle Howe
Co-managers of Power Life Yoga
These two friends discussed the benefits of yoga in a Nov. 18 “On My Mind.”
This year, Anderson aims to keep in better touch with her family, which is scattered across the Midwest. “My New Year’s resolution is to call or text my immediate family once a week,” she says. “I want to make more of an effort staying connected to them in 2016.”
Meanwhile, Howe’s goal is to wash her face every day. “It seems like a routine I should have mastered 15 years ago,” she says. “It’s time.”
Luxury spirits specialist with Major Brands
The whiskey connoisseur, who was featured in our Oct. 28 issue says his New Year’s resolution “is to make sure there is always a good bottle of whiskey at arm’s reach at all times.”
“I will always share,” he clarifies.
Two-time breast cancer survivor
In our Dec. 23 cover story, Kansas City wedding pros chipped in to give Sieggen and her husband a dream wedding celebration for their vow renewal. In 2016, Sieggen wants to give back.
“I am hoping to work more with breast cancer patients and help them have hope in a time of confusion and, sometimes, darkness,” she says.
Chef de cuisine at Cafe Province
Remsing appeared in a “Kitchen Convo” in our Aug. 28 issue.
In 2016, he plans to stay away from impulse shopping. “My resolution is no more DWA — drinking while on Amazon,” he says. “I really didn’t need to purchase that $400 Go Pro.”
Charlotte Street Foundation executive/artistic director
The artist appeared in a July 29 feature about her position at Charlotte Street, a foundation that supports and promotes artists in Kansas City.
Her professional goals for 2016 include expanding the audience for experimental, visual and performing arts in our area.
We profiled Kathryn and her husband Justin’s money-saving wedding tips in our January bridal cover story. She says her resolution is to actually not have a resolution.
“Who has time for that anyway?” Snellen says.
Snellen’s also making it a point to get to two of the city’s new eateries: The Doughnut Lounge in Westport and the Columbus Park Ramen Shop in the Northeast neighborhood.
SnoFlower Shaved Ice owner
The Rockhurst student that started his shaved ice business to put his entrepreneurial skills to the test appeared in a “Kitchen Convo” in our Oct. 9 issue. He says in 2016 he hopes to expand the business, bringing SnoFlower to more cities.
Founder of MADI Apparel
With a passion to fill a need, an Internet fundraising campaign and a few thousand in savings, Besheer launched Make a Difference Intimate Apparel, producing women’s underwear made with organic and sustainable materials. As reported May 27, for each pair sold she donates a pair to someone in need.
This year she wants to grow the business while taking some time for herself. “I’d like to continue pushing myself to pursue things that terrify me,” she says.
Founder of Framework Design
Wendlandt, who rocked the freshly revamped interiors of Ink’s Live Lounge and appeared in the June 10 issue, also became a newlywed and remodeled a home this year.
“This year was full of a lot of adventures and crazy projects,” she says. “In 2016 I hope to have time to actually enjoy those with my husband, dogs and our family and friends.”
Carrington “Cdot” Harrison
We profiled the KCSP 610 sports hosts Cdot and Danny Parkins in a cover story back in April. “Finishing college is becoming increasingly important to me,” Harrison says. “I hate leaving things incomplete. Plus, that’s the best gift I could give my mom.”
In addition to finishing school, a new set of wheels is a 2016-must for Cdot as well. “Nothing will make me happier than listening to Future in a ’85 Caprice.”