I'm not sure if I've ever done one of these. If so, it's not been for a number of years. I thought I'd jump on this blogger bandwagon. I'm using a modified set of questions from Definitely RA.
What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 31 this past fall. My birthday happened to fall on our family weekend. While I thankfully didn't have conferences on my birthday, I was pretty tuckered out. Matt and I got fro-yo instead of doing a cake. Then, we went to see the Sandra Bullock movie Gravity. We probably got dinner at Applebee's because Matt's mom always sends me Applebee's giftcards for my birthday.
What are your strongest memories from this year, and why?
This year was rough for me. A lot of work stress and adjustment to being a teacher coupled with commuting, which I really dislike. The summer was the most memorable. We drove out west, like we did two years ago. There are lots of memorable moments from the trip, but I think the most exciting ones are all the osprey sitings. This truly was the summer of the osprey. Matt and I saw 6 or 7 osprey. One was carrying a fish as it flew over our car (!), and we even got to see an osprey catch a fish in the waters off of Alki in West Seattle.
What did you do this year that you’d never done before?
Lots of things -- went on a 6 night back packing trip, went to a Mariner's baseball game with Matt, and got pregnant. Yes, I totally buried the lede there. More details soon! (PS if you know me on facebook, this is something we're not bringing up there for the time being)
What did you want and get?
I wanted a new job, and I got it! I also got a new washer and dryer (our old one broke).
What did you want and not get?
A new camera? Lenses for my camera? Cleaning my camera? I can't think of anything major that we didn't get. We had moments of stress, but everything seemed to work out. My only bummer from this year is that I don't use my camera much because it should be really deep-cleaned, and I haven't had the time to either do it myself or send it out.
What would you like to have next year that you didn’t have this year?
Curriculum planned out for my classes. This is totally my weak spot. I'm good at making vague plans, and I think I can do better next year.
Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don't make New Year's resolutions, per se. I did not keep up my goal of running a 5k every month for a variety of reasons, including work stress and laziness (but mostly work stress at the start).
My "resolutions" for this next year just include streamlining my life, making room for a new family member, and planning curriculum for next year.
What was your biggest achievement of this year?
Getting my awesome new job! Oh, and I was proud of carrying my backpack the whole whoever-many-miles (30ish?) we backpacked. That sucker was heavy. I even did stream crossings on my own.
What was your biggest failure?
I had some notable classroom management issues in one of my classes, but I prefer to think of that as water under the bridge. The running this was also a big fail. I never really got back into the gym after March this past year.
What did you rely on when you were overwhelmed?
Matt and sugar. The latter was probably my downfall.
What are your strongest recommendations for entertainment from this year? (books, television, movies, music, etc)
We started watching Star Trek: The Next Generation this year on Netflix, and I really love that show. We're also enjoying the end of How I Met Your Mother.
My favorite book from the year was Code Name Verity, but I also think I need to read more.
I didn't watch enough movies to really recommend one. I think we saw two -- Star Trek: Into Darkness (my husband is a trekkie), and Gravity. Both were good. I'd like to go to more movies or at least watch more at home, since we have a decent collection of ones we haven't seen.
What song will remind you of this year?
I am almost embarrassed to say this on the internet, but country music will remind me of this year. My students at my last school really liked it, so I played a fair amount on Pandora during student work time. Matt and I also listened to a good chunk of country on the radio while we were in Wyoming. There's this interesting song about a guy with skoal rings in his best jeans that is pretty catchy.
Quote a song lyric that sums up your year (not necessarily from the song that reminds you of the year).
This is not my strong point. I'm going to have to skip until I think of something.
What was your most enjoyable purchase?
Even though we haven't gone yet, I am ridiculously excited about our spring break plans. We did not have a spring break together last year (my school just didn't have one). This year, we are going to Florida to see Twins Spring Training (Matt's pick) and manatees (my pick).
Oh, and I how can I forget the washer and dryer? That totally wins for most awesome purchase. I love my new machines.
Did you travel? If so, where?
The year started out slow but finished okay. We didn't do as much traveling as we'd like. We visited Iowa a lot to see Matt's family. We drove out to Oregon via Fargo and Montana to see friends & family. We drove back via Wyoming for backpacking and South Dakota. I got to see the Corn Palace!
Once we got back to Minnesota, we moved into our new place then flew immediately back to Portland for a conference for Matt. Other traveling was back to Iowa for Thanksgiving and back to Portland for Christmas. So, it was a family-centric year. I hope we can add some other destinations (hopefully foreign one of these days!) for the upcoming years.
What do you wish you’d done more of?
Running and/or working out would be great. I also wish I'd done more planning last summer.
What do you wish you’d done less of?
Compared to this time last year, how are you different?
Well, there's the obvious -- I'm pregnant. I am 15 weeks along right now and trying not to worry. I'm at the stage where I feel better but don't look/feel obviously pregnant. I never felt too poorly -- mostly just nausea and being really tired. Everything has looked good so far, so I'm hopeful. I am due in late late June, so I've still got plenty of time to get ready.
I also feel more centered this year. I am not perfect. I struggle with grading (my least favorite teaching task) and planning in advance. But I really love my job, and I like not having to commute at all. I'm confident in my marriage. And I'm really excited to start a family.
Compared to this time last year, how are you the same?
I was pretty confident in my marriage last year, so that is still good. Honestly, for all the little changes that happened this year (new apartment, new job, new life), I don't feel all that much different.
What’s a life lesson you learned this year?
I am now significantly better at peeing in the woods. Not perfect; just better.