Posted by: Hannah | 01/05/2015

my year in review, 2014

1. What did you do in 2014 that you’d never done before? Learned to love green smoothies (as long as they are made with spinach, not kale, because kale tastes like dirt, forever and ever, amen.) Started writing a book (I didn’t get very far, but I started, and that’s new!) Went to a tweet-up where I didn’t know one single solitary person outside of the internet. Learned how to make seafood risotto. Borrowed an ebook from the library (yes, I’m well behind the curve, learning new technology actually makes me really twitchy.) Was interviewed on our CBC drive-home show about a parenting issue (whether or not to let kids win on Family Game Night; I came down firmly on the “no” side, which I’m sure surprises none of you.) Went skinny-dipping in the Northumberland Strait.

2. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?  I don’t make them. Haven’t for years. I do remember that I was hoping to take better care of myself & my family during the winter months, but since winter lasted from November to April last year it didn’t work so well. I’m still going to try to do that this year.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth? No, for the first time in many years I didn’t have any preggos in my immediate circle.

4. Did anyone close to you die? No, not this year.

5. What countries did you visit? Sleep Country! (Just kidding, although I did get a pillow from them at Blissdom.)

6. What would you like to have in 2015 that you lacked in 2014? A regular weekly outing that I can’t get out of or reschedule; I’m thinking something like a fun weekly class that requires a monetary commitment so I won’t duck out of it. Freedom from anxiety. For Daisy to finally live by the phrase “indoor voice and walking feet” instead of staring at me blankly as she runs by, yelling.

7. What date will stick in your memory, and why? The day Harry’s baseball team won their division was a big day. I’m not at all athletic at all, and I’d been trying to manage his expectations all summer, so when they actually won I just kind of stood there, dumbfounded.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? I made a real effort to improve my personal relationships with both family and friends, and it paid off in a big way. I can say truthfully that 2014 was the least lonely year of my adult life. I forced myself out of my comfort zone many times, and reconnected with many people I had been missing terribly. I didn’t fully realize until I took steps to address it how many people I had alienated by giving in to my anxieties and insecurities.

9. What was your biggest failure? I was hoping to take at least one of the many acquaintances I have in the community – moms of my kids’ friends, you know – and convert them into actual friends. It didn’t happen. Still too insecure for THAT, apparently. I’m disappointed in myself, and also convinced that I’m inherently unlovable. So, yeah. Crappy.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury? Nothing serious. A bad stomach virus just last week, to finish off 2014 in style.

11. What was the best thing you bought? My orthotics. My plantar fasciitis is but a distant, terrible memory now. I can walk, climb, run, and play with my kids again. I can’t believe I hobbled around in such excruciating pain for a full year before I addressed it.

12. Whose behaviour merited celebration? In my own little circle, Louis gets a gold star from me this year. I often despaired of ever getting through to him, but he really worked hard and has become a cheerful, clever, engaged little boy.

13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed? Whole weeks went by where I couldn’t turn on the news. So many terrible stories this year. I don’t even want to think about them again.

14. Where did most of your money go? Kids’ activities, a new well pump, car repair. The usual.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about? Going to Blissdom and spending a whole wonderful weekend with Nicole and Allison. Finally getting a smartphone and realizing that hey, wait a minute, I have access to the entirety of human knowledge IN MY COAT POCKET AT ALL TIMES.

16. What song(s) will always remind you of 2014? Anything by Meghan Trainor. That girl is catchy like a cold.

17. Compared to this time last year, you are… A lady with long hair again! Yeah, I decided to grow my hair out, and forever whatever reason it seems to be working this time. I have a hairdresser I like who manages my thick ridiculous hair like a pro, which has made all the difference.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of? Reading NEW books instead of re-reading old familiar ones. I’m slowly getting back into that. I read constantly, but since I started having kids it takes a real effort of will to pick up something new. I just didn’t have the focus for anything I hadn’t read many times already. I’m working on this. Slowly.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of? Fretting. Trying to fix other people’s problems. Lamenting my lack of control over things that are beyond my ken.

20. How will you be spending Christmas? Spent it mostly at home in my pajamas, playing with the kids, reading, relaxing. My regular life is so regimented and planned that it’s always restorative to just let things go for a few days.

21. Did you fall in love in 2014? Already good in this department, thanks.

22. How many one-night stands? Ha! HA HA HA HA HA HA. None. See above. Although a surprising number of older gentlemen at the grocery store made genteel advances this year. Must be the hair.

23. What was your favorite TV program? THE MINDY PROJECT FOREVER AND EVER. I haven’t been this obsessed with a thing since I was a pre-teen. If they still printed Tiger Beat and there was a special all-Mindy episode with a bonus pull-out poster I would buy it. I binge-watched the first two seasons, then watched them a second time, then cheered and blocked out time to catch up on the first half of season three when it turned up on YouTube. Aside from that, I liked House of Cards and the first two seasons of Breaking Bad (the rest was too anxiety-producing and I kept dipping in and out, yikes).

24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year? I don’t hate anyone. That’s a very strong word. But there *is* a person I have to deal with through school council that brings me very close to that.

25. What was the best book you read? Michael got me Pioneer Girl for Christmas and it’s the ultimate fangirl document for anyone who loves Laura Ingalls Wilder. It’s like her super-dark origin story, or something. Allison gave me We Never Talk About My Brother, which was not what I was expecting but was fantastic nonetheless.

26. What was your greatest musical discovery? Thanks to Mindy again, The National. Oh, they are just wonderful. This is my favourite of their songs and has a beautiful video to go with it.

27. What did you want and get? Lots of things. Too many to list. One big one is that my best IRL girlfriends created a private Facebook group (since we all live in different provinces) and it has made a big difference to me. Any time I want to share something, or ask advice, or just say “hey”, all I have to do is post over there and within minutes someone is replying. Some of the 3AM .gif threads are comedy gold, too. When I was a kid I imagined myself all grown up and with a circle of ‘woman friends’ like I saw on TV. I finally have that, and it’s awesome.

28. What was your favorite film of this year? Guardians of the Galaxy. Go ahead and judge, I don’t care. It was brilliant.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I was 36 and I spent most of it arguing with Michael about whether or not 36 is the last year of your mid-thirties or the first year of your late thirties.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? I went on a job interview back in August. I ended up not wanting the job at all but it would have been really nice to get offered it, so I could have the satisfaction of refusing it. I also submitted an application to Yummy Mummy Club and never even got a “thanks but no thanks” reply. These were both disheartening episodes that caused me to fear I’ll be wiping bums and noses until I die of old age.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2014? I actually spent some time thinking about clothes this year. I still live in jeans and Old Navy long-sleeved Ts most of the time – it’s my work clothes – but I did expand my non-work wardrobe a bit. I’m trying to go for more colours and fitted things rather than always “hiding” in shapeless black.

32. What kept you sane? My friends, near and far.  

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? It’s still Chris Hemsworth, it will always be Chris Hemsworth, the end.

34. What political issue stirred you the most? There was so much going on this year, it’s hard to even know where to begin. Women’s rights, GamerGate, Harper muzzling scientists and screwing veterans, Ferguson, pick your poison, it was an exhausting year.

35. Who did you miss? Nicole, Allison, and Olivia all need to move here immediately.

36. Who was the best new person you met? It’s not a contest! I met lots of wonderful people this year.

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2014: I’ve heard it for years, but this was the first time I really tried to live with it in mind – there is NO ONE responsible for your happiness but YOU. If you are discontented, it’s up to you to figure out why, and how to fix it.

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year: Just go look up “Shake it Off”, if you somehow aren’t already familiar with it. It’s been my go-to motivational song this year.

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Responses

  1. Re: #29: I think that late thirties begin at 37.5. And I say this from the advanced age of 41, so I must be right.

    • I like the way you think! That means I’m still in my mid-thirties until this fall!

  2. Ooh, I have 18, too. It just feels like a new book is a risk, you know? And work.

    Although I did read The Rosie Project, which was a satisfying read. And I read The Happiness Project on an ebook from the library, which (ebook from library) was also new to me.

    Making new friends is hard. Even converting acquaintances into friends is tricky and requires time and thought.

    I have many other thoughts. Maybe I should start my own blog…

  3. I love these questionnaires. I always feel like I get to know the person a little better with all the random bits of information. Of course, I knew some of this already thanks to Twitter!

    “Shake It Off” is a great theme song!

  4. You are totally inherently lovable. I’m no good at making friends either. Most of my friends are people who sought me out.

  5. I’d say the reason you haven’t made any of those acquaintances into real friends doesn’t lie with you, or indeed with them, it’s just the meshing of the two. Real, proper, close friends are rare beasts, and it seems to be a law of nature that they nearly always live far away. Mine certainly do!

  6. I miss you too!

  7. Oh yay, I’ve been thinking I have to do mine for this year. It’s funny that you think you should be reading more new things when I think I should be doing more rereading. And I had a wonderful fangirl moment with Eve’s teacher in the school library this morning about The Mindy Project – as if I didn’t already love this teacher enough! And you are totally lovable, the end.


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