Uh, right. Hi. So…. 2015 happened? Here ya go.
1. What did you do this year that you’d never done before?
Got my soul dry cleaned, and a variety of other Catholic pursuits. Got a tattoo. Bought a house in the Bay Area, which is a thing I *never* thought would happen, ever. Kept taking my narcolepsy meds during my pregnancy (oh hi, blog, I’m pregnant!), which holy moly can I go back in time and do that with the last two?
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Did I make any new year’s resolutions? I have no idea. Let’s see: I did in fact read “some” books (17, apparently, which is better than I’d have guessed!), I have felt on top of my game at work, in ways that have been hard won (though I have also felt…. not). I did not really figure out how to exercise, but my bum foot is MUCH better than it was a year ago. And I did go running (“running”) and biking one (1) time each before getting sidelined by some pregnancy nonsense.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
I can almost exactly copy last year’s answer but change the links! How convenient, good work friends: One of my very best friends had a sweet baby boy. A few of my internet ladies also had cute babies (limiting this list to the ones I’ve actually met/squished), and so did a frisbee friend (a new baby HAZEL woo!). Yay babies!
4. Did anyone close to you die?
5. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Kevin did a pretty amazing job of adjusting to my Religious Awakening, which was decidedly not in the fine print back when we got hitched. My lovely friends were also generally amazing, about that and myriad other things, great and small.
6. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
So my gut response was “cops and terrorists” but I realize that sounds as if I’m relating the two in some way and I am NOT. So, SOME cops that have done some terrible things, and all the terrorists, and let’s throw in the NRA and OMG I FORGOT TRUMP. Trump. Trump is appalling.
7. Who did you miss?
You know, I miss my brother. I got to see him and his family super briefly last month, and at the beach earlier this year too, but man it would be cool to see them more often.
8. Who was the best new person you met?
No one is jumping out at me — I feel like I’ve lived here forever, known all these folks forever… which is not true, but chronology has never been my strong suit. I did get to know some work folks better, and that has been lovely (in many cases. Ahem.). Oh, you know, I have an official mentor at work as of a couple months ago, and he is pretty fantastic. Challenging and insightful and knowledgeable.
9. Where did you travel?
Here is where I try to remember an entire year with no blog record/try to make up for not recording shit, and likely bore everyone to death. Ok, I went to New Mexico in February (what up PJs!), which was super duper fun. Me and some friends roadtripped down from Denver because it was WAY cheaper, and yay road trips – except there was a freak snow storm in NM? Like, totally not a thing that happens there. And our Denver cohort were playing it cool because they are from Denver, but apparently it was actually kind of intense driving. I was clueless and happy the whole time, because that’s my tagline. NM was fun but SNOWY, which, no, but I had a grand time seeing my internet ladies and learning about make up, as you do. On the way back, I had the BEST 8 hour conversation about Catholicism with two of my very best friends and I think that will go down as one of my all time favorite memories forever.
In May, I went to Denver for a work conference, the first one I’ve been to since I started my new job. It was fun, and quite different than conferences I’ve been to in the past, both because of the content (eyeballs!) and my job change (corporate vs academic). Trip also great because I got to go out to dinner with Jess and eat lots of delicious meats, yay food soulmates.
In June, we went to Tybee. We stayed at a beach house with my parents and my brother’s family for a week, and then spent a few days afterwards at my in laws’ house. The ladies were scared of the ocean almost the entire time, but had a TON of fun running around on the beach and playing with their cousins. It was chaotic and wonderful. I also visited Boston in June to see my favorite ladies, a trip that involved a gaggle of middle aged women visiting a tattoo parlor, another of my favorite memories forever amen.
In November, I took another ladies’ weekend, somewhat more impromptu, in Chicago. We had Friendsgiving, and generally ate a lot of delicious food and played with babies and oh, it was everything. My little family also traveled to LA for Thanksgiving with some of our college friends, Dan and Mallory, a new tradition since we’ve moved to CA. This is also when I got to a) squeeze Lynnette’s baby and b) drink a mimosa in Lynnette’s amazing new kitchen omg it’s seriously the best.
In December, we headed to the east coast for a chaotic tour of families in GA, and a wedding in Charleston. GA was like this: fly, stay at brother’s house one night, stay at my parents’ house two nights, drive to Tybee, stay one night, ditch children with in-laws, drive to Charleston, stay two nights, drive back to Tybee, stay one “night” and leave at 4 am to fly home omg. It was intense, but also lovely to see everyone. The kids did pretty well with all the travel and chaos and it made me HYPERAWARE of how we totally were like “life is starting to get really easy let’s go ahead and reset the clock!” haaaa hah ha. ha.
Bonus 9b. Who visited?
Oh boy, we had a good visitor year. Katie was here too briefly in January for a business trip of some kind, but we crammed her full of donuts and sent her on her way. Arwen came out in March before I took the plunge with God, and her main take home was that the Pacific looks just like a lake. Both sets of parents visited in April. Dan came up from LA in June to help us move to our new house, and managed to move all our belongings despite having what turned out to be a significant stomach bug. Loopy visited in July, showering the children with Nat Geo themed stuffed animals and adventure storybooks featuring badass little girls. Jess came for a wedding in August and stayed at our house a few nights; she remains unmoved by our attempts to get her to move here. Liz was also here at some point in the summer/fall (I feel she will particularly appreciate that I have no idea when this happened), and hung out with us and I feel like she could succumb to CA; the question is whether Jess would eventually follow. HMM. My in-laws visited for a solid 5+ weeks in September/October – they were staying in Half Moon Bay about half an hour away, but we saw them every day and the kids were over the moon, and also my FIL fixed a million tiny things in our new house and my MIL made dinner every night. Spoiled.
10. What would you like to have in the new year that you lacked in 2015?
Built-in benches and a better kitchen table. Air conditioning. A minivan (yessss). Head space/time/desire to exercise (unlikely, but a girl can dream). Some churchy stuff – it’s been hard to get involved, and I’d like to find ways to do that (or find the wherewithal to start some). My answers last year centered on patience, sleep, and motivation – while 2015 brought enough of those, finally, I assume 2016 will have….. less. So, I’ll go ahead and put in a prayer for those as well.
11. What dates from the year will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Obviously no actual dates, but approximations. Easter was kind of a big deal for me this year. The day(s) we moved into our new house. A watershed period in my closest group of friends. The Catholic Car Ride.
12. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Figuring some shit out at work, but scientifically and politically. Oh, also Catholicism.
13. What was your biggest failure?
I had a lot of trouble navigating a few interpersonal relationships this year, and one in particular, I just don’t know how to fix it at all. So I just kind of let it be, which feels like a kind of failure – continuing on as if it’s all fine, when it just isn’t. It could be so much more, and I know if I don’t find a way to fix it, or at least ways to try, I will regret it enormously down the road. Sigh.
14. Did you suffer illness or injury?
I had colds back to back, with literally no break between, for close to two months this fall and it was truly terrible. But that’s my biggest complaint, I think, so. I know there were a few stomach bugs, but the only one I remember actually resulted in Hazel kicking her bottle habit so it was totally worth it. My foot has been a TON better this year, so that is awesome. OH I had a pregnancy thing, a hematoma, that started terrifyingly at like… 10-11 weeks, on a damn camping trip, but that got pretty quickly downgraded from scary to REALLY ANNOYING for a couple of months. Anyway that’s all fine now but the mandated lack of exercise from ~10-20+ weeks did a bit of a number.
15. What was the best thing you bought?
Plane tickets, my quirky house, and this magnetic phone holder thingy for our cars.
16. Where did most of your discretionary income go?
Travel, clothes (new maternity wardrobe! kids that keep growing!), Starbucks and McD’s. (This pregnancy brought to you by Starbucks and McDonalds.)
17. What did you get really excited about?
Having our living situation sorted for the foreseeable future. A third baby!
18. Compared to this time last year, are you:
– happier or sadder? Probably comparable. It’s been a bit of a golden era, the past few years.
– thinner or fatter? HAH I AM SEVEN MONTHS PREGNANT
– richer or poorer? I have no idea.
19. What do you wish you’d done more of?
A few more local adventures – we got more bogged down in logistics and life this year, and haven’t been taking advantage of our locale as much.
20. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Worrying about work politics.
21. What did you want and get?
More patience (or more sleep? Or slightly older kids? I’m not sure, but parenting got a lot easier as the year wore on). A modicum of stability/clarity at work after some reorganizations.
22. What did you want and not get?
A personal assistant/details manager for our lives. Seriously, I feel like there should be an obvious way to outsource more of this life maintenance crap. Basically I want a person who will deal with finding a person who can deal with everything for us, with no effort on my part.
23. How did you spend Christmas?
This was the first year Eliza was really INTO it, and it was really fun. She got Hazel pretty excited too, much more so than E was at ~2.5-3. K and I were mostly off work a few days before, and took the girls to see Santa at the mall. Eliza was So! Excited!, and Hazel was like, ok cool, can you bring me a banana? (Dream big, kiddo!) I took Eliza to Mass on Christmas Eve, which was actually kind of awful – it was so, so packed that we couldn’t find a seat even 20 minutes early, and no one would make room – tons of people saving seats, gah. Live and learn. Then we saw our old neighbors for Christmas Eve dinner, came home and put cookies and milk and carrots out, and put our excited little girls to bed. And then woke up (they waited for the clock to turn green! Good job, children!), did stockings and presents and played and ate cinnamon buns and biscuits with sausage gravy and played some more and then went to the Tuttles for the afternoon. We went to GA a couple of days after Christmas and celebrated with both sets of grandparents, so it was quite an extended affair.
24. What was your favorite TV program?
Probably still Doctor Who, though I’ve had more trouble with it this season. I feel like I have forgotten too many details and I’m missing plot points because of it. We’ve also really been enjoying Stephen Colbert on the Late Show this year (heh). I’m sure we watched other stuff, but that’s what comes to mind.
25. What were your favorite books of the year?
I’ll Give You the Sun (Jandy Nelson) was wonderful. I also really enjoyed the most recent Cormoran Strike novel. Recently I’ve been making my way through Sarah Allen Addison’s books, which are decent but not great – it turns out, I can’t actually handle great books lately. They make me too emotional, and they keep me up too late, and I just can’t. The first two I mentioned were great books, and left me kind of exhausted. SAA’s are good enough, which just fits better right now.
26. What was your favorite music from this year?
My lady friends and I all exchanged mixed CDs this year, and that brought me so much joy. I’ve been listening to Katie’s on repeat for eons, now – I think my favorite song on it is Sydney (I’ll Come Running) by Brett Dennan, but it’s really hard to choose. This Time Next Year off of Arwen’s CD is another strong contender, but I cry far too easily right now so I can’t listen to it anymore.
27. What song will always remind you of this year?
MLP music (gah, except for Hearts as Strong as Horses, which is legit good), and Sydney.
28. What were your favorite films of the year?
Uhhh um. I can’t think of any at all. How about the kids? Eliza loved The Lion King, and referred to herself as Baby Simba RAWR for a number of months (Hazel was Baby Nala). She eventually moved on to MLP, and while she isn’t OBSESSED anymore, she hasn’t declared a new favorite. Hazel loves Totoro, possibly as much as she loves Frosty and Frozen and Punzel.
29. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Obama in the last stretch the presidency has been pretty solid.
30. What political issue stirred you the most?
Domestically, police brutality and #blacklivesmatter. Internationally, not that I grasp it remotely well, ISIS.
31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 31, and we celebrated by having dinner/cake with friends, and also signing some horrifying loan paperwork with a very nice notary at our kitchen table.
32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
If adderall were a normal medication with automatic refills. Fewer sociopaths. A better functioning memory.
33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept this year?
Slip sliding into spandex land.
34. What kept you sane?
Along with last year’s “iMessage and my husband” answer, I will add “adequate sleep.”
35. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned this year.
Pay attention, because it’ll all happen so damn fast.