It's true that 2012 is ending on a somber note for most of this country. The tragedy in Newtown, CT and the senseless shooting of two firefighters in Webster, NY didn't put most of us in the holiday spirit.
Because of all the dreary news, it's easy for me to overlook all of the good things and fun times I've had this year. I've compiled some of my favorite trips/home project accomplishments/happy days from the past year (in no particular order):
- I celebrated two years of marriage to my darling husband.
- I got a new job about 20 miles from home, which saved me at least 370 hours (that's 15 DAYS of my LIFE) and 26,270 miles of commuting this year (based on working 37 weeks, since I started working in March).
- I started this blog. :)
- Built a chicken coop and raised 10 chickens from peep-hood for fresh eggs.
- Had a fantastic time on a cruise to the Bahamas - had the best snorkeling experience ever at Paradise Cove in Freeport.
- My sister-in-law Colleen visited for two weeks over the summer and we had fun drinking too much wine, making zombie detours, parties, chickens and all sorts of stuff.
- Had an awesome day in Caroline County with some fabulous ladies (including Colleen) - alpacas, outhouses and tattoos, oh my!
- Traveled to Rhode Island for a paranormal investigation of Rose Island Lighthouse... complete with a rather creepy and foggy ferry ride across Narragansett Bay to Rose Island. During this trip, I also experienced Connecticut style lobster rolls at Abbott's Lobster in Noank, CT, visited my cousin Heather (& family) in Boston and Jay's cousins in Naugatuck, CT.
- Built a raised garden bed and started a compost pile. Sadly, the chickens destroyed most of our plants, but we got a lot of jalapenos and green peppers.
- I purchased a canning kit, made and canned apple butter for the first time.
- We finished our upstairs bathroom - drywall, tile, trim, and paint.
- Close to finished on our fourth bedroom - drywall, laminate flooring, and paint. Trim has been cut, it just needs to be nailed to the wall.
- Finished the upstairs and downstairs foyer/hallways - drywall, laminate flooring (or refinishing hardwood) and paint.
- Finished the reading nook - drywall, laminate flooring, paint, installed banister & railing, AND scored 2 fantastic chairs at a great deal.
- Finished the kitchen - ripped out and replaced previous tiling job, installed cabinets, sink, dishwasher (although it's still not hooked to power), installed laminate counters.
- Installed exterior siding with R-5 insulation value.
- Got a subpanel installed for Jay's to-be-built shop/shed/man-cave.
- Had a great time at the Southern Summer Cocktail Party. :)
- Had many fun nights with my book club ladies.
- Making an effort to buy local, organic, and/or natural foods when possible- I'm now a regular at Nice Farms Creamery and Cedar Run Cattle.
- Hosted a crazy fun party and featured aforementioned local food.
- Participated in many happy hours at Harry's on the Green with some of my favorite ladies. Some of these happy hours turned into late night shenanigans. One such night ended with a potted petunia in the bottom of a friend's hot tub. Oops!
- I survived the release of my first holiday schedule and planned the holiday party at work. The schedule was awful, but the party turned out great. I'm still getting compliments on it... mad props to Lorraine at The Milestone and Jimmy at It's Your Day DJ. They did an awesome job.
- I began putting myself first again and started enforcing boundaries with people.
- Celebrated Christmas quietly with Jay - we opened presents, feasted like Kings and watched TV all day.
Soon I'll be posting 25 goals or plans for 2013. It's not going to be a resolution list (although I imagine a few things are resolution-esque), but more of what I'm looking forward to in the next year.
I've also seen an idea that I really like on Pinterest... it's cheesy in some ways, but I think it's a great idea. Each time something good or fun happens in 2013, write it down on a scrap of paper and put it in a mason jar. At the end of the year, for Christmas or at NYE, open the jar and read all of the scraps. I think it's a lovely idea... even when you're feeling a bit blue, you can open the jar and smile at the great memories you've made.
I plan on 2013 knocking the socks off of 2012!