2008 Year End Survey

Alright, here it is, my 2008 in review. It’s hard to think back on an entire year, so I’m sure I’ll have an addendum, but for now, I submit this. Tomorrow begins the first work week of 2009, and I’m feeling ready.
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1. What did you do in 2008 that you’d never done before?
Got married! Went on a honeymoon! Traveled to California, swam in the Pacific Ocean, did a reading at both a wedding and a funeral, visited St. Louis, sold a car, went to Disneyland, planned a wedding (get ready for a marriage/wedding-themed survey). I’m sure there’s more firsts.

2. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year? If anything, I usually try to set goals rather than make resolutions. I have a few for this year, posted previously. I’m really not sure what mine were last year, so…. moving on.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth? Michele (yay, Maddy!), Pat’s aunt (yay, Kylie!)– I think that’s it for ’08?

4. Did anyone close to you die? That’s the “ooph” question of the year. Yes. Ooma. Gram.

5. What countries did you visit? None, not even Canada this year (although we were very close to Mexico). Here’s hoping this answer will change once we have a year of two consistent full-time incomes. Who’s in for Sicily in 2010? Maybe a bike trip in 2009?

6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008? More job satisfaction. More creative fulfillment. More time for travel (day trips and road trips included).

7. What date from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
the now traditional, loosely chronological list of memories… (thinking back on an entire year is a lot, and I know I’m going to miss some, so I reserve the right to come back and add to this list!)
Here goes: visiting Katie, Ryan and Janet in MD/DC; birthday weekend in boston– girls weekend in a hotel room full of giggles, so much rain, random keg party and chance encounters with old friends, brooke’s train hitting a skidoo, dress shopping, cupcakes; bike rides; the april weekend rich and jen visited; the boston museum of science with troop 500; trivia nights at the WWII club; the night we had dinner at eastside and talked more future talk and then saw young@heart; picking out wedding rings; The Submarines show; a few awful days in June and a few more awful days in July, including a particularly terrible car ride; the night before our wedding shower– unbachelorette dinner, margaritas, Susie’s patio, old friends, best friends; our wedding shower– having our families (the women anyway) together for the first time, the very sweet party planned by very sweet hostesses, the assistance of our fantastic friends, how fun it was and not at all scary as expected; the drive-in during a thunderstorm, which made The Dark Knight even better; setting up our own photobooth and taking the pictures for our save the dates; Wilco at Tanglewood and sitting on top of some road gear with Julia soclose to the stage; the She & Him show at the Academy of Music; election night– nerves, elation, running through the streets, hugging and screaming and all the horns honking; BBs Soup and Blues in STL and the great bands I saw there, Rich and Jen’s wedding– how happy they were, how beautiful everything was, the afterparty; watching the sunset in Carlsbad; picnicking on Mt. Tom; and of course the most memorable ever: our wedding day. (Apologies for the totally inconsistent use of capital letters- I did this in a few sittings.)

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? Successful wedding planning, more local friends, increased domestic competence (although that’s still a work in progress), de-cluttering progress.

9. What was your biggest failure? Falling off the exercise wagon after the fall, spending too much time on the computer

10. Did you suffer illness or injury? Another healthy and injury-free year (knocking on wood)

11. What was the best thing you bought? Patrick’s wedding ring.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration? My family, Patrick’s family (which, of course, is my family now), Barack Obama

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? Sarah Palin, John McCain

14. Where did most of your money go? The wedding, student loans (that second one will be a part of my answer for the next 25 years)

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about? Marrying Patrick, Barack Obama, Rich and Jen getting married, our stand mixer, seeing the Pacific Ocean, that baby giraffe at the San Diego Zoo

16. What music will always remind you of 2008? Ingrid Michaelson, the Juno soundtrack, Vienna Teng, various songs played at our wedding, Nick Drake, the Once soundtrack, the wedding gift mixes Julie made for us, 500 Miles, The Weakerthans, Matthew Loiacono, She & Him, the Submarines, the Judy Garland version of “Have yourself a merry little Christmas”

17. Compared to this time last year, you are: More settled, more aware of where I’m going, less busy.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of? Organizing, being on top of finances, exercising (some answers never change)

19. What do you wish you’d done less of? Driving to Albany, fretting about silly things, farting around online

20. How did you spend Christmas? We spent Christmas eve at dinner with my family (at Elaine and Doug’s with Elaine, Doug, Brian, Jon, Annie, Bob whose singing tie went in the soup, another Brian, Mom, Dad, and Katie) and went to Christmas eve mass with Patrick’s parents and Voa. We spent the night at my parents’ house, did Christmas morning there, and then went to Patrick’s parents’ house for gifts and dinner. Dinner included Bob, Lura, Michael, Peter, Kirsten, Nathan (current cute things: “uh oh!”, “bike”, “guy”, and a great belly laugh), and Norma. After dinner we went back to my parents’ for chatting around the fire. We took lots of photos with the new lens for our camera. We anticipated a hard year– in the past six months we’ve lost three people who were always a part of our Christmas celebrations. It was hard, especially at church, but being together made for a mostly warm and happy Christmas.

22. Did you fall in love in 2008? I fell deeper.

23. What was your favorite TV program? Lost, 30 Rock, The Office, Mad Men

24. What was the best book you read? Umm, Love in the Time of Cholera, The Poisonwood Bible, Everything Weddings on a Budget

25. What was your greatest musical discovery? She & Him, Fleet Foxes, Vienna Teng (none of this cutting-edge new, I know)

26. What did you want and get? Married to Pat! (Obvious theme of 2008).

27. What did you want and not get? I really can’t think of a thing.

28. What was your favorite film of this year? I really didn’t go to the movies much. Juno was up there (came out in Dec 07 but I saw it in 08). And I don’t care what anyone else says, I really enjoyed Mama Mia, for its beauty and its musical numbers.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I turned 27. I had to work so boo there. But I got a Wii! We went to dinner at the Northampton Brewery and then rushed home to play with my new toy. For my special Birthday dinner the following weekend we got dressed up and went to the Blue Heron, which was one of the most amazing meals I’ve ever had. Fantastic steak and wine, the courses stretched out over a few hours, romantic candlelight, it was wonderful.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? More time at the lake/sailing, a better handle on personal finances.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008? A better sense of my professional style (hello, sweater dresses!), a new love for tights, a continued interest in accessories, and ohgosh Etsy.

32. What kept you sane? Patrick, exercise when I did it, good music, good friends, a wonderful family.

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most this year? Obama, of course.

34. What political issue stirred you the most? Answers that remain from past years: gay marriage (i hate that it’s even political at all), voting rights/access/election integrity. New answers this year: The election! All of it. The panhandling ordinance in Northampton, stupid vs. brilliant solutions to environmental problems, access to affordable health care.

35. Who did you miss? The faraway friends I don’t see often enough, the grandmothers we lost, the friends that drifted away.

36. Who was the best new person you met? It’s hard to remember who I met this year. I’m pretty sure I met Becca and Nestor this year, and they’re good people. Oh! And I just verified that I met Paul Carney January 2nd, 2008 so he counts. Becca, Nestor, and Paul. Final answer.

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008:
Oh gosh. Well, in the biggest life events, it’s the people surrounding you that matter most. Whether it’s a loss or a celebration, the people around you make all the difference. That goes for the every day, too.
I learned that preparing for marriage is as important as planning the wedding.
I learned a few times over that sometimes you just have to let things go.

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