OPINION: or the next 100 days southlandtimes.co.nz will follow newly elected Invercargill City Councillor Rebecca Amundsen.
She's not an unfamiliar face to people who live in Glengarry, or those who voted for her.
She's a mother, a landlord, a project leader and now a city councillor.
But this isn't just our project, it's yours too.
Get involved by posting comments, asking questions and answering polls each week as we follow Rebecca's first days in office.
Each week Rebecca will also write about her council musings.
At the beginning of every year I write down a few goals.
They are not New Year's resolutions but just things I want to try and do throughout the year.
Often some of the goals are the same each year not because they don't get achieved but because they are ongoing things like we have a small piece of land in the Catlins that we are trying to regenerate the native bush on so it always features.
One day we hope to build an eco home there but for now we just camp there and try and stop the deer and rabbits from eating all the trees we plant.
Other goals have been on my list for many years but I don't seem to make any progress on them. I have a little writing project that I would like to finish but really need to work on starting it first for example.
In saying all of this, this year I have achieved two of my goals. One was to learn to be a better public speaker. I joined Foveaux Toastmasters at the beginning of 2012 and have found this a very useful way to practice public speaking and learn to get over that feeling of dread when it comes to talking in public.
This year I have really focused on developing this skill.
The other goal I have achieved was around fitness and exercise. I joined Crossfit Wild South this time last year after doing very little exercise for a long time.
It was a big shock to my system at first but has really paid off and the regular exercise has been one of my best achievements this year making me feel better and stronger both inside and out.
The end of this year also marks the beginning of a new chapter in our family's life.
Obviously the council experience is going to be a big part of this. The wee taste of it I have had since the election finished has been exactly what I thought it would be and although I am glad to be on holiday right now I am really looking forward to what the new year brings.
There will be other changes for us this year too. Our youngest son has finished primary school and heading to Verdon College in the new year to join our oldest son who will be in his final year of high school!! Both these prospects are slightly daunting.
My husband is also moving into a new phase in his business as an Architectural Designer.
After several years working on his own and with me doing his admin work he has employed two part time staff including an office administrator.
It became obvious pretty quickly once I got on council that I am not going to have the time to continue doing these tasks and Phil is keen to focus on Eco home design so this move will hopefully free up more time for him to focus on this.
My own goals for this coming year will no doubt focus on council and Glengarry as there are still plenty of projects to work on there.
What those goals are specifically I will work on while enjoying good food and good company over the Christmas period.
I would like to thank everyone for their support in 2013. Without it I would not have the opportunity I now have as a city councillor and for that I am grateful. I am looking forward to serving the Invercargill community in 2014 and beyond. Merry Christmas everyone and I hope you have a great start to the new year!
And I am still keen to hear from people about their first interaction with the council so feel free to add a comment or on Facebook.
- The Southland Times
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