This worked well last year (you can read last year's here). So I thought I'd do it again for 2010.
1. What was the single best thing that happened this past year?
Without a doubt, moving to New York. It changed the whole trajectory of my life and I've never been happier.
2. What was the single most challenging thing that happened?
It's hard to say. Part of me thinks it was leaving my friends and life in the South. But life with 4-year-old and 2-year-old Viking-berserker-wannabes is far harder. Motherhood doesn't get any easier over time.
3. What was an unexpected joy this past year?
Meeting Kira when I did. Our friendship has been my saving grace here, and is certainly the reason why the move was such a positive experience for me.
4. What was an unexpected obstacle?
Honestly? A whole lot of internal self-loathing. I spend an inordinate amount of time feeling pissy with myself for not doing more--sticking to a diet, going to the gym regularly, writing more often, having more patience as a mother, being a better homemaker, having more energy in general. It eats up my free time, and emotionally exhausts me. As much as I love living in New York, I hate what I've become--a fat, boring, housewife, who frequently resents her children, and hasn't accomplished anything of any note with her life. It seems like an insurmountable obstacle to get from her to the woman I want to be--which isn't anything too wild and crazy. I'd just like to be in better shape, more physically active, writing steadily, and less grumpy about how I spend my time.
5. Pick three words to describe 2010.
BUSY. EVENTFUL. CELBRATORY.
6. Pick three words your spouse would use to describe your 2010 (don’t ask them; guess based on how you think your spouse sees you).
UNMOTIVATED. DISTRACTED. UNDISCIPLINED.
7. Pick three words your spouse would use to describe their 2010 (again, without asking).
EXHILERATING. ADVENTUROUS. FUN.
8. What were the best books you read this year?
The Omnivore's Dilemma. I know I need to make changes to my diet, and would like to start eating clean. The Omnivore's Dilemma made me feel physically ill after I read it, but also made me realize that it's going to be a lot harder than I thought because Americans' food is (for the most part) no longer natural or clean. It definetely motivated me to plant my own garden this spring.
9. With whom were your most valuable relationships?
Kira and her family, and our neighbors across the street have all been valuable to me here in New York. It feels a bit like an extended family for me and we all take care of each other. It's made things here a lot easier. It's also been great having Tom home more reliably and having his family so close by. Spending time with family has always been really important to me, and now it's much easier to do that.
10. What was your biggest personal change from January to December of this past year?
Mine and Tom's relationship has really improved since moving up here. The every-other-Friday-off schedule allows us to spend a lot more quallity time together.
11. In what way(s) did you grow emotionally?
I think I'm more motivated to change my lifestyle (eating, exercising) now that we're moved in and settled.
12. In what way(s) did you grow spiritually?
This was one of those years where the universe really came together with one little miracle after another, from Tom getting the job, to selling our house, to finding our current house, to meeting Kira, and then our neighbors, and fitting in so well and so easily, etc. If that's not proof of the divine hand at work, I don't know what is.
13. In what way(s) did you grow physically?
I.Got.Fatter. But I'm also becoming more and more motivated to do something signficant to turn that around. I want to get stronger and push myself harder than I have in the past. One of my goals for the spring is to run a 5K. So the next few months I'll be working toward that goal.
14. In what way(s) did you grow in your relationships with others?
Moving to a new place leaves you at the mercy of others. You have to take a leap of faith and let things unfold as they will. I've never been a particularily patient person, but this year I've learned to put myself out there, but also to be patient and let new relationships grow at their own pace.
15. What was the most enjoyable area of managing your home?
Decorating and finding a place for everything in the space.
16. What was your most challenging area of home management?
Finding the energy to clean, and also managing the household budget, which never seems to get any easier. I was doing well buying groceries with coupons until I realized that the food we were eating wasn't very good for us. Now I'm at a crossroads, wondering how to eat clean and still save money.
17. What was your single biggest time waster in your life this past year?
Surfing the internet in a futile attempt to motivate myself.
18. What was the best way you used your time this past year?
This past year we spent a lot of our free time doing things as a family and had a lot of fun.
19. What was the biggest thing you learned this past year?
That things can change for the better, but you can't just will change into happening. You have to intentionally seek it out.
20. Create a phrase or statement that describes 2010 for you.
In pursuit of change.