By Jamie Balke Explore Big Sky Columnist

With comments by John Balke

In honor of the New Year, I’ve been considering resolutions. Noticing that I was working on resolutions, my brother stole the computer and added a few thoughts of his own.

1: Teach my brother how to put a dirty dish in the dishwasher.

This fall, I moved from my apartment into a house with my boyfriend Aaron and my brother John. Overall this has been a positive change, resulting in a greater sense of home. That being said, I don’t believe it would kill my brother to collect his plethora of mugs half-filled with coffee and bring them to the dishwasher.

John’s resolution 1: Teach my sister how to mind her own business. Also, remind her not to Big Foot stomp down the stairs at 5:30 in the morning. And by the way, I’m saving the coffee for later.

Resolution 2: Learn how to make croissants.

Croissants! Nom nom nom. More importantly, I will endeavor to prepare the tastiest of all foods –pan au chocolat.

Note from John: I support this.

Resolution 3: Try not to forget French.

One of my majors in college was French, and due to my lack of effort to maintain fluency, it’s slipping away. Someone recently asked me how to say “pink” in French, and it took me an uncomfortably long time to answer.

John’s Resolution 2: Practice my Spanish. Preferably loudly, while Jamie works on French. If I time it right, I think I can really confuse her.

Resolution 4: Make it past level 25 on Call of Duty zombie mode.

These digital landscapes overrun with the undead are not going to secure themselves.

Note from John: We would make it further if someone… cough… Jamie… cough… didn’t use her teammates as shields…

Resolution 5: Run faster.

Last year I got back into running, starting with Bozeman’s Run to the Pub. I’m proud to report that I’ve been steadily increasing the distance of training runs. That being said, my brother is still much faster than me, and I feel confident it would complete me to beat him at the next Run to the Pub. Upon reflection, there may be a conflict here with Resolution 2… also Resolution 7.

John’s resolution 3: This can never be allowed. I must strongly encourage Jamie’s croissant and cheese endeavors.

Resolution 6: Garden harder.

Last year, I worked on cultivating my green thumb with some success. This year, I hope to venture into new territory, such as growing hops to support Aaron’s homebrewing endeavors. Also, I was recently given a beautiful potted rose that can be re-planted outside come spring. I would like very much not to mess that up.

Note from John: I personally feel Jamie should spend more time on her plants and less time training to outrun me. Think of the plants, Jamie.

Resolution 7: Eat more cheese.

I think it’s good to include an easily attainable resolution. Some low hanging cheese, if you will.

Note from John: Maybe Jamie needs a teammate on this one.

In conclusion, if you see me running down the street practicing French, pausing to ask about good places to buy cheese, don’t even worry about it. Happy New Year!

Jamie Balke should add another resolution to watch less Netflix, but can’t make herself write the words.