I forgot how to login to Typepad, people. That is clearly a sign that I have failed at blogging this year, if the fact that my last entry is August 25th isn't enough. However, my one and only goal for 2012 is to write on a consistent basis. I wish I could say daily, but that isn't going to happen. Let's try twice a week. I have a feeling that I am going to have a lot to say next year, as there are some major events expected to happen...you'll just have to keep reading to find out what! Let's end 2011 on a high note by actually posting something. Here are my responses to Linda from All and Sundry's annual year end quiz.
1. What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before?
This is not a good start. I can't think of ANYTHING! I really need to push myself more, obviously. Oh wait, I thought of something. I formed an LLC in order to do some consulting, and I got a contract this summer. That was pretty cool. I did it because my hours were cut at work and we needed more money. I don't see it as a long term solution or something that I want to expand to more than a few contracts per year, but it was a great fix to an immediate problem and something to put on my resume.
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Hmmm...I made one New Year's resolution for 2011 and it was blown on January 1, 2011. Not a good start. That's what you get for making resolutions that you have no control over, i.e. health. My resolution was for our family to be healthier in 2011 than we were in 2010. N. and I started the year with a terrible stomach flu. This year my resolution is to write here, and other places, consistently. Should be something I can control a little bit more!
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
4. Did anyone close to you die?
5. What countries did you visit?
None! I only left the state once and it was for a business trip so that doesn't really count. Lame.
6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
Financial stability. 2011 was a TERRIBLE year for us in terms of money. My hours were cut by 1/3 in February and we have been struggling ever since. We've spent our savings, I took on extra work, and now we are using up our credit. We can't sell our house and we've cut everything out of our budget that we can. N. switched his schedule to 4 10-hour days so we have one less day to pay for of child care. We can go about 2 more months like this before we have to borrow money from my parents, which is our very last resort. I have two new job prospects that will hopefully be solidified by the end of January. Fingers crossed!
7. What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
I'm only going to remember the good dates here. First of all, the summer of 2011 was awesome for us. The kids are at fun ages for outdoor activities and we played outside constantly. Also, at the end of the summer we moved the kids into one room and all of their sleeping problems stopped! They love sleeping in the same room and for the first time in over 2 years N. and I have regularly been sleeping through the night.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Holding it together. This year was SUPER challenging in every way and we got through it. Health issues, major financial issues, job stress, and parenting challenges all made for lots of stress.
9. What was your biggest failure?
Hard to pick, unfortunately. I would say I had a lot of problems figuring out how to happily parent my daughter. We are in a better place now, but 2011 was difficult.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Besides a particularly virulent stomach flu, we just had our usual lingering colds/asthma/pinkeye/pneumonia issues. Not nearly as bad as 2010.
11. What was the best thing you bought?
We bought so little this year you would think something would stand out. But no.
12. Where did most of your money go?
Debt. Horrible, horrible, mortgage, child care costs, two car payments, student loans, home equity loan, credit cards...nothing left after that.
13. What did you get really excited about?
Starting a new job! Hasn't happened yet, but it will soon.
14. What song will always remind you of 2011?
Anything by Adele.
15. Compared to this time last year, are you:
– happier or sadder? Maybe happier, but more worried.
– thinner or fatter? Much fatter.
– richer or poorer? MUCH poorer.
16. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Spent more fun time with my husband. Without my kids.
17. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Worry about things. Watch tv.
18. How did you spend Christmas?
With my family. It was wonderful!
19. What was your favorite TV program?
Parks and Rec and Project Runway.
20. What were your favorite books of the year?
So many! I read lots of Barbara Pym, Sarah Waters, Lev Grossman...I don't think I have a favorite, but it was a great year for books.
21. What was your favorite music from this year?
I'm way too out of the music scene to comment.
22. What were your favorite films of the year?
Oh my goodness, we watched so many movies that sucked this year. But I did like Bridesmaids and Crazy, Stupid Love. I am super psyched to see the new Sherlock Holmes.
23. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 37. We went to my parent's house for brunch and I got the new Design*Sponge book.
24. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Money. So sad to say, but when you don't have enough it is all you can think about.
25. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
Ha! Covering up the fat parts.
26. What kept you sane?
The internet. Watching the Real Housewives of anywhere to feel better about my life.
27. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011.
You can have a lot of family fun without money. Pretty much everything we did all year was free or extremely cheap and we had a blast.