2010 Year in Review

It’s time for the 2nd Annual StyckWycket look-back.  I’m recapping the year with a series of 27 questions, that really get to the meat of what happened.  I also completed this survey at the end of 2009.

I followed along with Linda’s example and used the updated questions format as my example.

1. What did you do in 2010 that you’d never done before?

I ran a 5K, which I never thought I’d do.
I visited the Coca-Cola Museum and the Georgia Aquarium.
Had Lasik surgery.

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

I got through a little more than 50% of my Day Zero Project.  The goals that I really felt committed to when I wrote them, I stuck with.  The ones that I used as filler fell by the wayside, much as I expected they would.

I really enjoyed having 101 things to do in 1001 days, so I’m definitely going to start a new Day Zero project in the beginning of 2011.

Some of the things I want to do next year include more day-tripping, getting better at and more committed to photographing and documenting my experiences, and doing more creating.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Not anyone close to me, no.

4. Did anyone close to you die?

Not close to me, personally, but someone who’d been in my life on a fairly regular basis when I was a kid died of a brain tumor this year.  She had been sick for a long time, and I only heard about her occasionally from my mother, but it was still very sad when she died.

Also, as of writing this, I found out that a beloved member of my office passed away after a short battle with cancer.  It was a pretty steep decline.  Everyone is pretty bummed.  He will be missed.

5. What countries did you visit?

I stayed stateside this year…again.  And honestly, for the foreseeable future, unless The Boy and I go to Niagara Falls next year.

6. What would you like to have in 2011 that you lacked in 2010?

A lot more drive to do the things I need to do to get where I want to be in life.  I feel like this is a recurring theme.

7. What dates from 2010 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

My trip to Atlanta in May, finishing my first 5K in June, celebrating my one-year, quit-smoking anniversary on November 8.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

It’s a tie between actually finishing my 5K, and making it an entire year without smoking.  Never in my life did I actually conceptualize that both things would be a reality for me.

9. What was your biggest failure?

Letting my fear and complacence control so much of what I do.  Had I been more brave, had I been more determined, a great many things would have been different this year.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

Mostly my recovery from Lasik surgery.  I also had strep for the first time in 10 years in December.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

Hands-down, Lasik surgery.  I would say that I wish I had done it sooner, but the payment was a perfect storm of a decent bonus, and a funding of my FSA at work.  I wouldn’t have had this opportunity sooner.

12. Where did most of your money go?

To debt payment.  35% of my paycheck went to paying off my consumer debt, and I’m making $500-a-month headway on my MK debt.

13. What did you get really excited about?

I got really excited about my trip to Atlanta in May.  I went with a good work friend, and found out we make good travel companions.  I’m hoping I get to do some other small things with her in the future.

14. What song will always remind you of 2010?

Any of the songs that The Boy shared with me from CD101 this year.  Stuff from Fanfarlo; Peter, Bjorn and John; Phoneix; Silversun Pickups; Hockey; Mumford & Sons; Broken Bells; Passion Pit.

15. Compared to this time last year, are you:
– happier or sadder? Pretty much on-par with last year.
– thinner or fatter? Thinner, but definitely not strong.
– richer or poorer? I’m pretty cash poor, but my net worth is going up, I got a raise this year, and in addition to paying off debt, I’m socking away tons of money into different investment accounts.

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

I wish that I had gone with my impulses more.  This means more traveling on a whim, done more to advance my career, been more creative.

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

Navel-gazing, as always.

18. How did you spend Christmas?

With The Boy’s family on Christmas Eve, and my family on Christmas day.

19. What was your favorite TV program?

Justified, hands down.  I’m really geeked for it to come back.

20. What were your favorite books of the year?

A Cook’s Tour, by Anthony Bourdain; Blink and Outliers, by Malcom Gladwell; and More than a Pink Cadillac by Jim Underwood.

21. What was your favorite music from this year?

Everything on CD101, that I can listen to now through my new phone using TuneIn Radio.

22. What were your favorite films of the year?

I loved Easy A so much I saw it twice, and I really liked The Town.

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

I love it: the year I turned the age I was dying to be, and I don’t remember what the hell I did for it…

Wait, no: The Boy took me to see Alice in Wonderland, and I think out to dinner.

I already have plans to take myself to Lola next year, and do something a little more special, just for me.

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

Both having more discretionary income, and living in the same goddamn zipcode as The Boy.  Both of those things would make my year immeasurably more satisfying next year, too.

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

Jeans and a sweatshirt at home.  I did break out a little more at work and started dressing more artsy.  I plan on continuing this trend into 2011.

26. What kept you sane?

Being able to take time to read, and having my decompression time at home.

27. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2010.

For Chrissakes: if it feels like you should be doing it, go do it, and don’t stop until you’ve done it!

Christmas Withdrawal

Much like the satisfying pop of bubble wrap, there is a drug in feeling the rip of fresh wrapping paper from a new gift.

Between The Boy’s and my family, I get to celebrate two Christmases: his family’s on Christmas Eve, and mine on Christmas day.  I received many thoughtful gifts, feasted and celebrated.

But, at the same time, I’m just as glad that it is over.  The Christmas party and strep rpretty much robbed me of my holiday spirit.  I was still buying gifts the Saturday before Christmas, and wrapping still on Christmas morning.  I just felt very behind schedule, not only the week before Christmas, but the whole month of December.

I’m still working on creating my next Day Zero project list, and I’m a little more than halfway through.  The items are more thoughtful and measurable this time, and I’m sincerely hoping that I won’t be doing re-writes mid-project.


December 24, 2010 – Friday 5

  1. What’s something that demands ketchup?
    Anything potato.  Something about potato starch being topped with tomato smoothie is wonderful.
  2. What’s the best thing to do with the leftover packets of cheese and red-pepper flakes you get with pizza delivery?
    I rarely get pizza delivery, so I am at a loss to answer this.
  3. What’s something (besides salad) that’s good with salad dressing?
    Marinated meat.  Pork loin marinated in Italian dressing is divine.
  4. What’s a condiment you’re especially brand-loyal to?
    Bertman’s Original Ball Park Mustard.  Manufactured right here in Cleveland, there is no other mustard.
  5. What’s the weirdest use of condiments you’ve seen by other people?
    I’m the one with the weird condiment issue.  I like sour cream on my beef, and mayonnaise on my fries.

Source: Friday5.org

December 17, 2010 – Friday 5

I have no fancy or fun reason for why I’ve been missing (like usual), short of – dare I say it? I shall – it’s been a long December, and I’m just as happy to skip Christmas and start over again next year.

I spent the majority of the beginning of the month prepping for and presenting our final project in class. Since I found out that one of my group members plagiarized the entire section they were supposed to write, I had to do nearly a complete re-write of the paper.  So, that ate the first half of the month.

Cam’s Christmas party was nice: we were a little squished, though.  Despite the fact that he has two floors, his new living room is much smaller, so I was pretty much on top of everyone else.

Someone at the party had the strep bug, though, and I caught it.  I missed a day and a half of work, and I still feel off, so I’m going to miss Yule this year. Sigh.

But enough about me: how about a meme…about me?

  1. Of excursions you remember taking in elementary school, which was your favorite?
    The weird thing is that I don’t remember too many of them.  The one that I long for in my mind’s eye is to the health museum; but I think the one that I think about most often is the set of three that we took in 5th grade to the Holden Arboretum to study the changes in nature through the seasons.
  2. Of excursions you remember taking in elementary school, which was your least favorite?
    Probably field day.  I hated field day.
  3. What seems like a really good school excursion destination that nobody seems to take?
    Good lord, I have no idea.
  4. Which of your recent activities might pass for an educational excursion?
    Actually, last night I took a little excursion from one end of the CSU Interlink to the other (business building to recreation center), and one leg of the trip took me to the science building, where they had a few infographics on the wall about the different climate zones of the world.  That was pretty educational.
  5. When a sack lunch was needed for a field trip, what was most likely in your brown paper bag? How about now?
    My dad did the majority of lunch packing, and the staple went like this: salami sandwich with mayonnaise, chips (or Cheetos, or Doritos, something crunchy), half of a fruit, probably a pop (since it was a field trip and I couldn’t buy milk), and half of a fruit snack (Dad would actually cut a fruit roll-up in half to split between my brother and I).

Source: Friday5.org

December 5, 2010

For the majority of people in Cleveland, the first day of December, everyone woke up to a nice powdered-sugar dusting of snow on the ground.  (If you remember, those of us out in parts of Geauga and Lake counties got a whole messload of snow on November 5th (which was melted away the next day by 56-degree weather…wtf, I know, right?).

In a city where the weather rarely goes our way – how many green Christmases have we celebrated over the years, and how many Easters have been blanketed by blizzards – I thought it was wonderfully nice to wake up to some snow on the first day of December.  I just wish that that’s the level of snow we could have all the time: just enough to create a thin blanket on the foliage and grass, and nothing that sticks to the road.

My office has been decorated since the day after Thanksgiving, since I had to go into the office without anything to do.  The house, however, didn’t have much going on until this weekend.

Traditionally, we’ve been a one-tree-family, but last year I suggested that we pick up a second tree for the den: we’d have a formal, Victorian-style tree in the formal living room, and a more lodge-style tree for the den.  If you remember, last year The Boy and I went on my annual day-after-Christmas retail pillaging to ready ourselves for the next Christmas, and I picked up a 7-foot, pre-lit tree from the Martha Stewart collection to go in the den.

This year, I picked up some brown/bronze/gold ornaments, garland, and a tree-topper from the Birchwood Chalet collection from Target.  The tree in the den fits so well with the decor, I’m really happy with the results.

I love Christmas decorating and celebrating: it really is my favorite time of year.