Friday, December 31, 2010

2010 in 38 Questions

So, apparently I thought I'd have some more holidays lessons learned to share. And I do, but I came across this blog that had some great reflective questions for I've decided to do that instead. It sounded more fun. Sorry, thematic ADD I suppose.

1. What did you do in 2010 that you'd never done before?

Left my first professional job.

Moved to another state/district.

Attempted wakeboarding!

2. Did you keep your new year's resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I never make hard and fast resolutions. And honestly, I cant remember what my resolution was from last year! So, I guess I didn't have one to break. I will be making a resolution this year: live healthier. In all aspects - body, mind, spirit etc. I need to get to the gym more often; I need to get outside more often; and be kind to my body (sleep before midnight is supposed to be the best!). This applies to my mind too, so I need to write more, read more and overall have some more creative outlets. So 2011 = healthy bod/mind year.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Yes, a good friend had a baby and it was surreal! I believe I summarized meeting the baby in an earlier post (that's a whole other story), but babies are starting to grow on me..and his sure is a cutie!

4. Did anyone close to you die?

Unfortunately yes. It was someone I had been closer with many years ago, but I'll never forget him. He was so full of life and taken far, far too young. His passing brought back some crazy memories and encounters with people I never thought I'd see again. But in the end, strangely enough, that brought me a peace that I'd never had before. And I'm sure he was looking down and laughing the whole time.

5. What countries did you visit?

Sadly 2010 was not a big travel year for me...the good US of A got all of me this year, greedy ho.

6. What would you like to have in 2011 that you lacked in 2010?

Money and man love. Basically I guess I'm looking for a sugar daddy? Haha ;) And just more relaxation time. I think I spent 2010 always on the go. I need some down time in 2011.

7. What dates from 2010 will remain etched upon your memory and why?

June 24 - the last day of work at my first "real" job. I loved working there and the people I worked with. But it was time to go, so it was a very bittersweet day that I will always remember. Somehow I managed to keep it together and then once the happy hour started, it was all smiles.

September 11 - the day an underdog college football team kicked a rival schools ass. People refused to even bet me in this game - please.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Getting a new job in June and a potential offer for another.

9. What was your biggest failure?

I dont think I took care of myself like I should. Too much partying and lack of sleep is actually catching up to me. I need to find a better balance.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

Despite a minor incident of a faux-heart attack turned heart burn (yes, I called my doctor, family members and multiple friends), I was relatively illness free. Just the usual wear-and-tear from question 9 and seasonal allergies. And the last few weeks of pumping my immune system with airborne. Damn I sound very sickly, gotta change this for '11.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

My new MAC!

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

My old boss. She couldn't have been more gracious when I gave me two-weeks, and she continues to help mentor my career and personal path. She is definitely my role model.

My friends (especially those who went on a certain summer camping trip) and my parents.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

It always shocks me when you think you know someone and then they turn out to not be who you thought. And more so, they turn out to be selfish, cruel and heartless. There was one person in particular this year that "appalled and depressed" me. But now looking back on it, I just feel sorry for him, and those close to him.

There have been others, but I think overall, people just need to be kinder to one another, in every aspect.

14. Where did most of your money go?

Rent, parking tickets, replacement retainer (ugh).

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

My new job! My new apartment in a new city! Summer and spending it with friends and family at the river.

16. What song will always remind you of 2010?

Ah soo many. Right now that Enrique Iglesias song is coming to mind. Also, countless Lady Gaga songs too.

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

a) happier

b) hmm, I'd like to say about the same, but might have packed on a few pounds this holiday season.

c) again, probably about the same, sadly. at least its not poorer!

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?

Game nights, writing, traveling.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?

Drinking and staying out late.

Obsessing about things that really don't matter.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?

I spent Christmas with my family in Richmond. I recovered from a cold and laid-low most of the time. I did enjoy myself at my families Christmas Eve party and caught up with some good friends.

21. Did you fall in love in 2010?

No, but I think I fell out of love/lust/infatuation with a person that I needed to.

22. What was your favorite TV program?

How I Met Your Mother. Also recently got hooked on old seasons of Dexter and The Tudors, thanks to Netflix.

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?


24. What was the best book you read?

Little Bee by Chris Cleave.

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?

Eric Church

Ingrid Michaelson


26. What did you want and get?

A new job in an environmental field.

27. What did you want and not get?

A boy toy (to keep).

A trip to Ireland.

28. What was your favorite film of this year?

Oh my, this was tough. My mom always gets me a DVD for Christmas and I had a tough time coming up with one this year! I chose Eat, Pray, Love but now that I think about it, I think my favorite was this kinda unknown moving called Young Victoria. Love historical stuff like that.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

I turned 26 in June. It also happened to be my last day at work. So I spent it with coworkers who had become some of my closest friends. Then we ended the night with a going away/birthday happy hour. Another good food threw me a dinner and made the BEST CAKE EVER. (It had dolphins on it). And yet another friend threw me a party out on the town and friends from here and out of town came to celebrate. I definitely felt the love this year for multiple birthday celebrations :)

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

To have some of my friends and family a bit closer. They aren't that far, but sometimes a few trips a year just isn't enough.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2010?

I think 2010 was the year of: Dress for the Weather. Winter was unusually ridiculous with multiple blizzards, so I dressed warmed for that. Summer was effing hot as hell, so again, I found myself picking outfits that would keep the sweat at bay. Not really stylish, but what can you do?

32. What kept you sane?

Wine with friends. Laughing with friends. Going to the river to get away and chill out with friends and fam.

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

Derek Jeter still hasn't tied the knot yet...

34. What political issue stirred you the most?

Oh politics. Considering where I live, I guess I should care more...but I don't. I guess I had a professional stake in the passing of the Dream Act, but that didnt work out.

35. Who did you miss?

Friends and family.

36. Who was the best new person you met?

This is a hard one. I'd probably have to pick one of my new coworkers who started a week after I did at my new job. It's always scary starting somewhere where you dont know anyone, but we got to do it together, and she's just a hilarious nut.

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2010.

I know I keep bringing this up, but I think 2009 and 2010 both taught me how valuable health is. It's something I've personally always taken for granted, but to be healthy is a blessing. And happiness can stem from a healthy lifestyle.

I've also relearned that some people can suck, some make mistakes, but life goes on. People are also good and can surprise you. Be grateful. Things can start looking different.

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

When I get home tonight
I’ll open the window an’ let whatever roll in
An’ if there’s no breeze, that’s cool with me
I’ll just raise my sail, an’ wait on the wind, yeah

Yeah tomorrow I'm takin’ me fishin’
Hang a sign on the door of my life
Tell the world that I’ve gone missin’
An’ I won’t be back for a while
I’m so tired of only wishin’
I could leave my troubles behind
I wanna be front porch rockin’
With a big sun droppin’ in a blue sky
Kick back an’ get high
Kick back an' get high
On the livin’ part of life

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Holiday Lessons Learned: Part 1

I've only been home for the holidays for a little over 24 hours and I'm already picking up some valuable lessons for the holidays, and well, life in general. Since I have a good 5 more days at home (including the actual big day, including family christmas eve party with massive amounts of alcohol), I'm sure there will be far more lessons to be gleaned this festive time of year. But for now:

1. Do not go near a Bass Pro Shop within one week of Christmas. I never really understood my brother's obsession with this place, but not knowing what else to get a 25-year-old grad student for Christmas, I thought a gift card would hit the I'm-extremetly-into-fishing spot. The first obstacle was finding the damn store. Its highly visible off the highway, but is there an exit pointing to it? No. Did it show up in my GPS? No - but a Bass Pro Shop 145.7 miles away did; helpful. After driving around an industrial park for about 15 minutes, screaming profanities in my car and finally 411-ing the hell-hole of a store, I found it was right across the street. Maybe the MASSIVE fish monument (I think that's appropriate, given the size) chilling on the side of the rode should have been a slight indicator. Everyone and their brother, sister, uncle, cousin, grandma got run over by a reindeer were there. I'll admit, my hometown probably enjoys this place more than the typical average city-goer would, but wow. This place is an experience. They freakin' sell popcorn outside like you are going to the movies. I got my gift card, and got the hell out of there. Brother, you better appreciate this gift. OMG I shit you not, a f*ing Bass Pro Shop commercial just came on TV. It's taking over.

2. If you drink enough Airborne, you'll begin to enjoy the taste. I'm fighting a cold, and am hell-bent to get rid of it before Christmas if at all possible. So, I've been taking Airborne: Very Berry flavor, every 4 hours, on the hour, since I got home. At first I was all "gulp, gulp, gag, gaaaag, ack, blach, gulp". But I'm sitting here sipping on a nice cold class right now and almost forget I was taking a nasty medicine. According to their website this is their "newest taste sensation". Love it - gotta try Pink Grapefruit next. Only four mor hours until my next dose! :)

3. Remember the movie The Santa Clause? It's been on ABC Fam a lot this season and I sat down to relive the magic of this classic movie with the dude from Home Improvement. Um, this movie came out 16 years ago!? I was like, did I do my math right? I was 10 when this movie came out?? That just doesn't seem right does it?? Oh my.

So that's my little gift to you this season....the wisdom of knowing that Bass Pro is taking over the world and Airborne is taking over my immune system b/c I'm sick and old (considering the decade+ that has past since this old Christmas classic came out). Like how I tied all that together?

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Five Minutes

Imagine you will completely lose your memory of 2010 in five minutes. Set an alarm for five minutes and capture the things you most want to remember about 2010. (Author:Patti Digh)

Summing up 2010 in five minutes? Challenge accepted!

Ringing in the New Year with best friends - resulting in some amazing memories (see post entitled Scarf), new friends and minor injuries. Mother nature at it's best, resulting in the (2-3?) biggest snowfalls I've ever seen; a week off work and major alcohol consumption followed by many, many, game nights. A new job and a move to a new city/district. A memorable camping trip that was a true combination of the good, the bad and the ugly (if my friends are still friends with me now after that disaster, they are true, blue). Dates with some nice guys, dates with some crazy dates, dates with some unbeknownst married guys, and the wrath that followed when found out. Many wonderful weekends at the river with friends and family, soaking up the sun, chilling on the dock and generally enjoying life at it's best. Making it to not quite 10 Nats games and rooting on the Yankees to another almost world series appearance - next year boys! Losing a good friend, and facing the inevitable ex that I'd yet to confront. Strengthening friendships and being reminded that while there is a lot of I still want, I'm pretty damn lucky.

5 minutes is not enough, but that's a snapshot ;)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

One word: Movement

Well, I certainly was on my high horse that last few posts - going off about how I love to write and proclaiming to write something every day in November. Hmm, did real well with that one. 2010 is wrapping up and my blog posting the second half of the year has been just abysmal. But, I came across a site today that has inspired me: Reverb 10 is an online initiative that encourages participants to reflect on this year and manifest what's next. They post a new prompt each day; now I'm not promising to keep up each day, but for the prompts that inspire me, I hope to see a few more entries under December. So, to begin this project, they ask you to encapsulate the year 2010 in one word...then, to imagine it's one year from today and describe the word you hope captures 2011.

I think the word the best encapsulates 2010 for me is movement. This year has highlighted by two major changes: I moved from a comfortable job to a new job in a field I'm passionate about. I'm currently in the process of pursuing another opportunity that will continue propelling me forward. I also moved from the state I've lived in my entire life. Granted, it was just across "state" lines, but it's still a move.

I contemplated using change, but I think movement is a better term. Change seems very black and white; it feels like you have a start and end goal. But my life over the past year continues to propel me forward, to an ultimate goal of fully finding myself, and complete, overall happiness. To me, movement, "a series of organized activities working toward an objective" defines my past year. These outside changes (new job, new place) has only further fueled internal changes and opened more questions for myself. 2010 was a great stepping stone; I'm still not unsure of my final destination, but I feel like I'm on the right path.

For 2011 I want my word to be: love. There were a lot of words that popped in my mind: decisiveness, spice. And these are things I want, but ultimately I'd love (see that?) to describe the year as love. A friend asked me how I'd describe my life and I said I was content with my life. But, he made the absolutely correct point that i should LOVE my life. So i want that for 2011. I'm ready for a relationship with a nice lad (where are you boys?). I want to love my life everyday when I wake up, grateful for my friends and family and all the awesome people in my life. I think I get overwhelmed with all the amazing choices in my life and I get blinded to the point that I stop appreciating what I have. I need to love the decisions I make. I need to accept my life is continually moving, and changing, and love all the craziness that comes with that!

Movement and love. Sounds like a a bad romance novel/porn fail :)