a few more details of 2011

Last year, Lindsey at A Design So Vast posted this year-in-review meme that I enjoyed responding to because it encapsulates the year in a snapshot and allows me to reflect quickly but still become aware of the year behind before moving fully into the year ahead. Here's what happened in 2010, if you're interested and here goes the list for 2011. 

1. What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before?

Visited The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios, made cheesecake that wasn't a disaster, got engaged, got married, moved my blog space, visited South Carolina, tried a few new recipes that became heavy parts of the weekly rotation. 

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

I set my intentions for the year through the word "thrive." I've written about the things that came into play that made me realize what was preventing my growth. So, in that way, the word really helped me create new priorities. I do think I thrived personally, however, and enriched my thinking about myself and my relationships. For 2012, I've chosen the word, "tend" and am really excited to see how I invite and manifest this word into my life.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Our friend, Kate had baby Nora who is the cutest baby I've ever seen! And no, I'm not biased at all. My sister-in-law is pregnant but isn't due until early March. 

4. Did anyone close to you die?

Thankfully, no but my paternal grandmother was in and out of the hospital and I'm hoping 2012 brings her healing.

5. What countries did you visit?


6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?

A greater sense of accomplishment, opportunities to put my word "tend" into practice for myself and others, volunteer work

7. What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

October 15, 2011, our wedding date. 

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Embracing the beautiful struggle of life, recognizing and being grateful for my relationships

9. What was your biggest failure?

time management, not prioritizing well, although near the end of the year, I got it together some.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

Nothing significant, though I began 2012 with a cold I brought home from Alabama. 

11. What was the best thing you bought?

It's a tie between the camera & laptop we bought from wedding money and gift cards. 

12. Where did most of your money go?

The wedding

13. What did you get really excited about?

Spotify, the Keurig, everyone showing up as pirates for our wedding

14. What song will always remind you of 2011?

Adele's entire 21 album and Bon Iver's "Holocene" and also Lady GaGa's "You and I" which was one of Michelle's favorites

15. Compared to this time last year, are you:

– happier or sadder? Happier.
– thinner or fatter? probably a bit weight on my bones
– richer or poorer? I have more money in savings than I did last year so I guess I'm marginally richer but no where near where I want to be.

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


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


18. How did you spend Christmas?

With M's family, happy and loved. Then with my friends and my family; it was a wonderful Christmas.

19. What was your favorite TV program?

I got a lot out of Oprah's Life Class, continued to enjoy The Vampire Diaries, discovered Archer and I got into Grimm as well. 

20. What were your favorite books of the year?

Probably The Hunger Games series. I also really loved Delirium, The Help, rereading To Kill A Mockingbird  

21. What was your favorite music from this year?

I've written a lot about music this year and I was just talking about with M. Adele's 21, Bon Iver's new album, I'm in love with Lana Del Ray, Feist and Florence and the Machine's records as well. I could write about music all day, so I'll link to the posts where I've said the most about music this year. 

22. What were your favorite films of the year?

I didn't see many movies this year, at all. I think the last Harry Potter film was probably the most gratifying. I thought Crazy, Stupid Love was amazing and well acted; I saw it twice. I enjoyed Sherlock Holmes and The Muppets.

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

I turned 33 in 2011 and had a big party at Jupiter's II where so many people showed up and were lovely and kind and generous. In a few weeks I'll be 34 and I'm looking forward to it, though I expect will be more quiet this year than last.

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

Less conflict

25. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2010?

the way I would describe my personal fashion concept in practically any other year: comfortable: jeans, patterned t-shirts, flip-flops when possible

26. What kept you sane?

My friends, people who were supportive. Kindness from strangers. Michelle. Brianne.

27. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011.

I've written a lot about this poem and what is has meant to me. The lessons that I have learned from this and how it has become one of those words of my heart will be everpresent as I move through this year. 

The Laughing Heart

by Charles Bukowski

your life is your life
don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.
be on the watch.
there are ways out.
there is a light somewhere.
it may not be much light but
it beats the darkness.
be on the watch.
the gods will offer you chances.
know them.
take them.
you can’t beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.
your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvelous
the gods wait to delight
in you.