Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Year in Review

Following the lead of my blogging friends, I thought I would reflect on 2011.

1. What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before?
Stood up in my friend Rem’s wedding, visited Washington, D.C., scheduled a surgery at Children’s Hospital for poor little Ben to have his front tooth extracted (he ran into a wall at daycare).

2. Did you keep your New Year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I make the same one every year — move more, eat less.

3. Did anyone close to you have a child?
Lots of 2011 babies: my college friend Sara had Ian, cousin Sara had Lily, and friends Emily had Clare, Julie had Jack, Morgan had Easton, and Tonya had Evan. I love watching my friends become parents, but wish those in Illinois, Wisconsin, California, Oregon, and Idaho lived closer!

4. Did anyone close to you die?
No, but one friend lost her mom and another lost her dad and it was heartbreaking. It’s hard to watch your friends suffer when you know you can’t really do anything to take the pain away.

5. Where did you travel?
Green Bay in June for the annual Bellin Run 10K/after-party/college reunion; Washington, D.C. in July with Tonya and Sam (Travis, Tonya's brother and our friend, has lived out there for 10 years and was the best tour guide EVER); Bluefin Bay on Lake Superior with the immediate family in September (such a blast!); and Minocqua, Wis. for a craaaazy weekend away with college girls.

6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
A body like Brooke Burke.

7. What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory?
Jan. 4 – my mom turned 60. April 16 — our sixth anniversary. May 7 — Rem and Jim’s wedding. June 6 — Ben’s first birthday. August 11 – Adam’s fourth birthday. June 16 — Aaron’s 38th (?!) birthday. October 15 — Evan is born.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Not blowing a fuse at work, even when I was pushed to the breaking point. Trust me, that’s an achievement.

9. What was your biggest failure?
I can think of a few, but I don't think it's healthy to dwell on the negative.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Yes! I hurt my left ankle playing softball and it hasn’t been the same since. The doc said I broke off a piece of cartilage. I hope it isn’t floating around in there indefinitely.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
It’s a tie between our 2011 MacBook Pro and a much-needed kid-free vacation in DC.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Aaron. My rock.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Those fighting so hard to pass the amendment to ban gay marriage. I don’t understand why this issue is a priority when the economy is a mess and people still don’t have adequate health care.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Daycare, mortgage, car payment, grocery bills, usual mundane grown-up “stuff.”

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Rem’s bachelorette party and wedding, trip to DC, introducing Adam and Ben to any new experience. I love seeing them grow and change. Every milestone is worthy of a celebration.

16. What song will always remind you of 2011?
“Faster” by Matt Nathanson. I smile whenever Adam sings along. “You taste like sunlight and strawberry bubblegum …”

17. Compared to this time last year, are you: a) happier or sadder? b) thinner or fatter? c) richer or poorer?

a) Happier (I'm getting more sleep!)
b) Fatter. I was breastfeeding last year — after I stopped, I packed on 10 lbs. I know I need to start working out again, just have to force myself to DO IT.
c) Maybe a little richer (thanks to Aaron’s job, not mine!)

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Exercised. Learned something new (the piano? sign language?) Volunteered somewhere.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Wasted time on Facebook. Such a horrible time suck (but so addictive!)

20. How did you spend Christmas?
Lots of parties. Lots of laughter. Lots of delicious food and drinks. Surrounded by love.

21. What was your favorite TV program?
Modern Family, AI, DWTS, How I Met Your Mother, The Big Bang Theory

22. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
No — I don’t hate anyone. I do, however, STRONGLY dislike the way certain people act.

23. What was the best book you read?
Room: A Novel, by Emma Donoghue. LOVED, LOVED, LOVED that book!!!

24. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Dessa. Such talent. (And such a great role model for young girls.)

25. What did you want and get?
Another year of good health for my family and friends!

26. What did you want and not get?
A raise?

27. What was your favorite film of this year?

28. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I was 36. The weekend before my birthday, a group of dear friends and family went snowtubing at Green Acres, followed by bowling at Pinz. I had a nice bday dinner with my family on my actual birthday. I don’t care what anyone says — you’re never “too old” to celebrate another birthday. Every year we're above the earth is reason enough to have a party. (Plus it's a great excuse to get friends together - something that happens less and less often as you get older.)

29. What one [or three] thing[s] would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
I know this sounds stupid, but I really can’t think of anything. I’m in a pretty good place in life right now.

30. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
Practical? Comfortable? Definitely not sexy or sassy — gotta work on that for 2012!

31. What kept you sane?
Aaron. My boys. My "sisters" (in-laws). My girlfriends. Regular visits to my parents’ house in Forest Lake.

32. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
I have totally lost touch with celebrity gossip … I can’t think of anyone!

33. What political issue stirred you the most?
The amendment to ban gay marriage.

34. Who did you miss?
My friends who live in different time zones. My grandma.

35. Who was the best new person you met?
All those babies — with more babies to come in 2012 (I can't wait for Rem to have those twin girls and I would bet money that there will be more pregnancy/adoption announcements coming SOON!)

36. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011.
There are no pediatric dentists on-call at the Regions Hospital Emergency Room. HA! In all seriousness, though, I really love this quote from a 114-year-old man when asked for the secret to living a good, long life:
"Wake up every morning and tell yourself 'This is going to be a good day,' and then make it that way."