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The Year in Review

By December 29, 2012year in review

Nine years ago, I found this questionnaire, and I’ve been filling it out every December since. See? 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004 and 2003. Looks like I’ve even begun inspiring some others to fill it out because my friend Nicole posted hers this morning, and my cousin Grace posted one, too. =)

What did you do in 2012 that you’d never done before? Flew first class.

Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year? As usual, I kept most, but not all. And of course I’m working on my 2013 list — it’ll be my 10th straight year posting resolutions on this blog.

Did anyone close to you give birth? Yes, Kristy gave birth to Taryn, April 21.

Did anyone close to you die? No.

What countries did you visit? Just a little bit of this one — NJ, Florida, Nevada, California.

What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012? Hardwood floors.

What date from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory? October 29. The day Hurricane Sandy destroyed the Jersey Shore.

What was your biggest achievement of the year? Starting a business on the very same day I no longer owned my condo. (Yes, I did that on purpose.)

What was your biggest failure? Eating so much Domino’s pizza with my roommate that they sent us a personalized coupon for a $6.99 large 2-topping pizza and two chocolate lava cakes.

Did you suffer illness or injury? For the last six months of this year, I was plagued by a series of non-threatening, long-lasting, annoying medical conditions. I had the shingles at least once. I think I may have started to get it twice more, but I caught it early, and it wasn’t too bad. I also had vertigo — probably from flying with fluid in my ear — for about a week and a half in November. Shingles and vertigo paired with some stress at work triggered a lot of health-related anxiety over the last few months, too.

What was the best thing you bought? It’s a toss-up between Beach Cruiser #2, my portrait lens, my fisheye lens, and my Saint James Garde Côte II striped shirt (which is basically the most amazing shirt of all time).

Whose behavior merited celebration? Nicole’s. For the second year in a row, she went on a mission trip to Haiti, where she got her hands dirty helping with reconstruction in areas that were affected by the 2010 earthquake. I’m not very religious, so I’m not active with a church, and I’ve never been presented with an opportunity to do something like this. I think I’m going to make it a goal of mine to do something like this next year, though.

Where did most of your money go? Medical bills, vacations, rent.

What did you get really, really, really excited about? I read this article over the summer, and I got really, really, really excited about developing some new early morning habits. I started getting up at sunrise every morning and riding my bike down to the beach. It was the best few weeks of my year. Unfortunately, it didn’t last as long as it should have. It’ll be one of my 2013 resolutions to get back in the habit. I also got really, really, really excited about Jimmy Buffett — even more than usual. That explains why I stayed at his hotel, played in his casino, and saw him in concert not once, but twice this year.

What song will always remind you of 2012? I’ve Got Sand In My Shoes – The Drifters

Compared to this time last year, are you:
Happier or sadder? Happier
Thinner or fatter? Fatter
Richer or poorer? Richer

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

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

How will you be spending Christmas? I kicked off my Christmas “break” at TreadQuarters. I thought there was something wrong my with my car, so I brought it in after work. The guys there joked that they’d give me a discount on the repair if I’d bring them back a bottle of Jack Daniels. J picked me up, and we had dinner at Cobalt. TreadQuarters let me know my car was just fine, and I was so happy, I ran into the ABC store to pick them up a bottle of Jack. I also splurged on a $60 bottle of Scotch for my liquor collection. After we picked up my car, J and I exchanged gifts — he gave me an iPad Mini! I gave him a Le Creuset iron skillet and tickets to see American Idiot at the Chrysler Hall. On Saturday morning, I finished packing and drove to NJ. I was out of the car for less than 20 minutes before my brother rushed in the door, blurting out that he left his phone on the train. We called it, and a guy in Elizabeth said he’d picked it up. Since I’d promised to pick up J’s new desk at Ikea while I was home, we piled back in the car and drove up the turnpike to pick up the phone and the desk. I spent Sunday relaxing with my family, watching Gossip Girl from the beginning on my iPad, and baking cookies with my mom. On Christmas Eve, we all dressed in coordinating outfits for a family photo before heading down to my grandparents’ house for our annual get-together. Most of my cousins were there, and we had a lovely time sipping eggnog, eating pasta, opening presents and celebrating Christmas, my grandmother’s 85th birthday, and my cousin’s college graduation all at once. It’s my mom’s tradition to give my brother an I one box to open on Christmas Eve, which is always pajamas. This year, I woke up Christmas morning in these Munki Munki Ivory Passports Flannel Pajamas (love!). I received so many lovely gifts — a monogrammed Thirty-One utility tote, a Swell Caroline bracelet, a pretty polka dot top, and an edgy set of six champagne glasses that each say “Cheers” in a different language. I also got a Lilly Pulitzer pineapple wristlet from my brother and an AMAZING Tory Burch bag from my mom and dad. I’m so lucky. =) We had my grandparents over for Christmas dinner, and then I spent the evening catching up with my old friend Regina (and her puppy!) that night. Wednesday morning, I enjoyed a leisurely breakfast at Toast with my BFF, and then spent the rest of the day shopping/exchanging some sizes with my mom and brother. Wednesday night, we had a little family get-together with my dad’s side of the family. It was great to catch up with some of my cousins on that side of the family because I don’t see them nearly as much as the rest of my family. (Although, I do a decent job keeping in touch with Christina and Grace online.) =) I packed up my stuff and headed back down to VB on Thursday morning. All in all, it was a very nice and pretty relaxing holiday. (Oh, except I thought I was getting shingles again, so that was amazing…)

Did you fall in love in 2012? Um, yes. With this bag. That is all.

How many one-night stands? None. Unless you count the one night stand I received for Christmas last year and assembled this year. It matches the other night stand I’ve had for years. =)

Who were your best friends? John, Tina, Vince, Kristy, and Tara. Dave and Michelle were my best friends at work. Nicole was my best blog friend. =)

What thing did you do that was meaningful to others? Well, judging by how many people have clicked on my blog by searching for something related to having shingles on their faces, I think writing that post must have helped someone. I was the day-of wedding planner for my friend Tina’s wedding, and I think she and her family were very appreciative of everything I did that day. I also did the best I could to tweet important info to those who needed it during Hurricane Sandy and the week after. Being with power and familiar with the Jersey Shore area, I kept searching hashtags to find people looking for open gas stations, restaurants, etc. and then using Facebook and various news sites to find the info they needed and tweet it to them. I also made a few cash donations and collected some household goods and cleaning supplies to help the victims of the hurricane.

What was your favorite TV program? Gossip Girl, Walking Dead, Boardwalk Empire, Downton Abbey

Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year? Hate is a strong word, but I’ve developed some ill feelings towards more than one person I work with.

What was the best book you read? Sparkle by Cara Alwill Leyba — I’m seriously contemplating inquiring about Cara’s lifestyle coaching in 2013. =)

What was your greatest musical discovery? To be honest, I didn’t have a great musical discovery in 2012. The rest of the world discovered fun., but I already knew about them. (I saw them open for Jack’s Mannequin a few years ago, and loved them. So ahead of my time.)

What did you want and get? An iPhone, a second bike, a few camera lenses, and my own business.

What did you want and not get? A raise, promotion or some kind of excessive recognition at work.

What was your favorite film of this year? It’s nearly impossible to choose a favorite movie, but the first one that came to mind was Moonrise Kingdom. I watched it on J’s iPad during my flight to San Francisco, and I really enjoyed the subtlety and quirkiness of the film.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I was 31, and my birthday kind of fell in between a few bachelorette parties and other goings-on. I didn’t do anything crazy — splurged on a new Lilly Pulitzer top and wore it out to dinner out with friends at Il Giardino. It was a low-key, but lovely birthday. =)

What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? Not getting the f-ing shingles. I don’t know if you can tell yet, but it kind of sent the second half of my year into a tailspin of anxiety about my health.

What kept you sane? Early morning bike rides (pre-shingles), anti-viral medications (post-shingles). =)

Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? Blair, Sarah, Taylor, Jennifer, Cara. (What can I say? I like bloggers better than movie stars.)

What political issue stirred you the most? The election, the economy, taxes, the fiscal cliff.

Who did you miss? Grandma Tillie, my family, Kristy and Tara (after she moved away).

Who was the best new person you met this year? My co-worker Dave. He’s hilarious, and definitely kept my sane during some crazy/hectic times this year.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012: Celebrate the little things in excess, but take the opposite approach when it comes to stress.

Quote that sums up your year: “I’ll have a glass of champagne with an orange slice.”

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