Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 Recap

Yesterday, as I was writing a check, I dated it December 30th and was astounded to notice that 2011 is coming to a close. I opened up my December 31st post from 2010, and realized how much things have changed since then.

In December of 2010, I had a two-year-old in diapers and a baby on the way. This year, I have a two children in diapers, one walking and one crawling. I'm sure my answers will be quite different for 2011.  I'm going to use the same meme I posted last year, with the answers changed, and interspersed with more Christmas pictures of the kids, of course. Happy New Year!

1. What did you do in 2011 that you'd never done before?

I started teaching ESL certification courses for a graduate school. I interviewed for the job back in May, when I was very, very pregnant, and my first class as an adjunct instructor started in August. It's contract work, but I do like it, and I'm hoping they keep asking me to teach courses from time to time. 

2. Did you keep your New Year's Resolutions for 2011, and will you make more for 2012?

Yes, I definitely had 2011 Resolutions, and I kept some of them. I said I wanted to spend more time playing with Nick, and I think I haven't done too badly, considering. There are two boys and four jobs taking up my time, though, and I probably could have done better. Instead of meeting my goal of getting rid of stuff, I added tons of baby stuff to the mix, but that's what happens when you have a new baby. I also didn't have nearly enough dates with my husband. We'll have to work on that, but it's hard to get out when there are two boys sucking up all of your energy. I did a great job of keeping up with my houseplants, with only a few exceptions, but my outside gardening was largely abandoned when Henry was born. I have NOT stopped feeling guilty--in fact I think that my parental guilt has increased tenfold this year. 

3. Did anyone close to you give birth? 

Yup. Me. June 9th. To this guy. I've been told he looks like his Grandpa Mike.   :)

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Yes, Greg's Grandma Marie passed away in February. She lived to 96, and her death wasn't a surprise, but it was still sad. 

5. What places did you visit? 

We went up to Northern Wisconsin in February for the funeral, and again in September for a graveside memorial. Greg and I also had a trip to Milwaukee in August, where we had a belated anniversary celebration  as well as our only real vacation of the year. 

6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011? 
Clearly, more time to spend with the kids. I'm hoping that will happen. Greg has started with a private practice firm and is seeing clients at night as a therapist. He's hoping to leave his daytime job and stay home with the kids, though he'll still work part time. If this works, both of us should have more time with the kids. 

7. What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

June 9, 2011. Why? This guy. 

8. What was your biggest achievement this year?

See #7. Henry is a pretty big achievement, especially now when he weighs in at 17 pounds, 11 ounces.  ;) I suppose I could also say that losing all of the Henry baby weight is pretty remarkable for me, as well. I now weigh about eight pounds less than I did when I got pregnant with Henry. However, I still weigh about twenty pounds more than I did before Nick. Oh, well. I'd rather be happy than thin.

9. What was your biggest failure?

Potty training. Sigh. I had such high hopes, too.
Oh, and a lack of exercise and still not losing the baby weight from Nick. The last few months, I haven't been eating as healthy because of the whole working four jobs thing.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Since we now have two kids, the germs have increased almost exponentially. All of us have been sick at least four or five times since summer, even Greg, who used to never get sick. No serious illnesses, though. Just colds, sinus infections, flu viruses, and the like.

11. What was the best thing that you bought?
Probably the new dresser/entertainment center/tv/dvd player that I bought for Greg's Christmas present. It finished off our living room renovations. I would also say my Nook, but that was a birthday gift from Greg.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Just like last year, I would have to say my husband's. He equally parents, and has changed nearly as many dirty diapers as I have through the year. Greg also does nearly all of the cleaning, all of the dishes, and probably half of the cooking.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Comcast. I don't want to talk about it. The tale is too depressing. Let's just say we have a satellite right now, and would gladly change our internet provider if we could find someone else.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Bills. Boring answer, I know. If you mean discretionary spending, I spent more than I care to admit at Starbucks. Caffeine has become even more of an addiction this year.

15. What did you get really, really excited about?
Henry! We also got excited every time Nick went in the potty. We'll be even more excited when he goes on a regular basis.

16. What song will always remind you of 2011?
Adele's Someone Like You. Nick and I like to sing along to that one.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
happier or sadder? Happier, definitely.
thinner or fatter? thinner, but then again, I was pregnant last year.
richer or poorer? Poorer! Daycare costs are killing us.

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Playing with my kids. Not that I didn't play with them, but I wish I could have spent more time with them overall.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Working. Between my full-time teaching job, the adjunct position at the university, freelance writing of college textbook chapters, and tutoring, I worked too much. Hopefully next year that won't be as necessary.

20. How did you spend Christmas?
Click back a few posts and you'll see. We spent it in a sea of wrapping paper and little kid joy.  :)

21. Did you fall in love in 2011? Yup. With Henry, my littler man. Greg and Nick already had me.

22. What was your favorite tv program?
I actually didn't watch much tv this year. We watch The Daily Show, if that counts. I love Glee, Modern Family, and documentaries, but I haven't had time to get caught up on tv shows at all.

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
Not a person, no. But I do hate Comcast.

24. What was the best book you read?
The People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks.

25. What was your greatest musical discovery? Adele. I love her voice.

26. What did you really want and get? My Nook. I dropped HUGE hints on that one.

27. What did you really want and not get? A minivan or SUV. It's so hard to find space with two kids in the backseat.

28. What was your favorite film this year? The King's Speech. It was also one of the only films we saw. We had a baby, you know.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I turned 33, and went to my mom's house for cake. We also went to the store to buy my Nook.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? A real vacation. I'd love to fly somewhere on a plane and have a real vacation.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011? After I had Henry, I went out and bought ten pairs of dark wash jeans that are nice enough for work. I'm much more comfortable that way, and they look better on me than dress pants.

Happy New Year! 

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