Monday, December 29, 2008

End-of-Year Reflections

Linda over at SundryMourning posted a New Year's quiz and has encouraged others to answer it on their own blogs. I've always been big on self-reflection at the end of the year (and on my birthday), so I couldn't resist:

1. What did you do in 2008 that you’d never done before?

I saw an opera indoors. (Sure, not as exciting as surfing, skydiving, or getting married, but a girl's got to have a low-key year once in a while!) I saw the L.A. Opera perform Tosca in June. Before that, I’d only ever seen an opera outdoors (“Carmen on the Common” in Boston).

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

Did I keep them? Yes and no, but I like to look at it through optimist’s eyes – it’s more than I would have accomplished if I’d never set any New Year’s resolutions in the first place. Making progress/moving in the right direction is gratifying even if I don’t get to cross major accomplishments off my list with a big check mark at the end of the year. So, yes, I plan on setting new resolutions.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

This was a big year for babies - two cousins and several of my friends gave birth. Lots of cutie-patootie babies to coo over, and more to come next year.

4. Did anyone close to you die?

Thankfully, no.

5. What countries did you visit?

None. Boo. Still setting my sights on Italy though. Hopefully sometime in the next 5 years.

6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?

I'd like to hear more live poetry, spend more time at the beach, and go on a vacation that doesn’t consist of traveling to Ohio or Massachusetts for family events. (Disclaimer: I LOVE my family!! It’s just been a realllly long time since I’ve had a real vacation.)

7. What dates from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

The following dates hold great memories for me:

  • Our wedding receptions (Ohio, 5/17/08; California, 6/1/08; Massachusetts, 8/17/08)
  • Jen & Craig’s wedding (7/12/08)
  • Dinner at Simon Pearce in Vermont (8/20/08)
  • Jake & Danielle’s wedding (9/6/08)
  • A great Devotchka show (9/16/08)
  • Barack Obama is elected president (11/4/08)
  • Emily’s graduation (12/13/08)
  • Sheila’s baby shower (12/14/08)
  • Pohlman Christmas celebration (12/15/08)
  • Dellelo Christmas celebration (12/20/08)

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Planning and pulling off 3 wedding receptions that took place over the span of 4 months in 3 different states (!!).

9. What was your biggest failure?

Gaining back all the weight I had lost.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

Thankfully, nothing more serious than temporary back pain and migraines.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

A calendar for my mother that I put together myself using

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

My sister-in-law Emily got her master’s degree after several years of very hard work. (Yay, Emily!)

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

Blagojevich’s illegal activity, the holiday-shopping stampede-killing of a man at Wal-mart, and people voting ‘yes’ on Prop 8.

14. Where did most of your money go?

Towards paying for wedding celebrations.

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

The presidential election.

16. What song will always remind you of 2008?

“Yes We Can” by Will.I.Am.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder?

b) thinner or fatter?

c) richer or poorer?


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

Exercising, taking photos, and keeping in touch with friends.

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

Complaining, eating, and procrastinating.

20. How did you spend Christmas?

Quietly at home after spending the weeks prior with friends and family in Ohio and Massachusetts.

21. Did you fall in love in 2008?

I didn’t ‘fall,’ but my love grew deeper.

22. What was your favorite TV program?

The Big Bang Theory - My husband and I get a kick out of watching this show because I met him when he was a post-doc at Caltech when we both lived in Pasadena (where the show is set). While the characters on the show are caricatures of what the real people are like, . . . there are some things that are just a little too spot-on, which of course just makes it all the more hilarious.

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


24. What was the best book you read?

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?

Flight of the Conchords – hilarious.

26. What did you want and get?

I wanted stress-free working conditions and more personal time and I got them both.

27. What did you want and not get?

Nothing for which I can’t wait a little longer (house, etc.).

28. What was your favorite film of this year?

Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead – it’s an old movie, but this was the first time I’d seen it. Brilliant.

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

My husband took me out to dinner. I opted for a quiet night, just the two of us, because we’d just seen all our friends for a belated wedding celebration the day before. And I turned (*gulp*) thirty-four.

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

Hearing my old boss acknowledge that the work I did is helping to carry the department I left.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?

Practical – I work from home, so most of the time anything comfortable and clean (usually t-shirts and jeans) works for me.

32. What kept you sane?

The love and support of my husband and my new working conditions.

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


34. What political issue stirred you the most?

Like most folks, I was pretty caught up in the presidential election, but, locally, I was concerned about Prop 8 and did a bit of H8 protesting.

35. Who did you miss?

My friends and family back east.

36. Who was the best new person you met?

Maria G. from Kazakhstan, a new and inspiring friend (who shares my birthday to boot!).

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008.

I am more than what I do for a living. Sounds like a no-brainer, but my self-identity and self-worth had been almost exclusively defined by what I did for a living for a long time. Very unhealthy.

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

Don’t you know that it’s worth
Every treasure on earth
To be young at heart?
For, as rich as you are,
It’s much better by far
To be young at heart.

(from the song "Young at Heart." I adore the classic version by Jimmy Durante.)

How would you respond to these questions? In the comments section here, share your own answers or direct me to your own blog where you've posted them.

1 comment:

Jen said...

Yay, our wedding got a mention. :)