Category: meme

a year in review – 2009

Again this year, I’m doing the Year End Review – 40 Questions meme.

1. What did you do in 2009 that you’d never done before?
watched entire seasons of TV shows on-line, got diagnosed with the flu, rented a non-ground floor apartment, rented and drove a large moving truck, hired movers, received unemployment compensation, told my boyfriend about my websites/blog, almost got hit by a snake that fell out of a tree

2. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
For 2009, I had a few goals: 1) learn the Stayin’ Alive dance, 2) read another of Jane Austen’s books, and 3) get involved in something worthwhile.

Results: I definitely got involved with some worthwhile efforts; I didn’t read the book but I saw the A&E version of “Pride and Prejudice” and *loved* it, and I made zero progress toward learning the Stayin’ Alive dance.

For 2010, since 2009 went nothing at all like I thought it would, I’m actually scared to set any big goals. I just want to know my job better.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
No – thankfully!

5. Where did you travel?
only to local cities that I’ve visited before

6. What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2009?
My biggest dream is still to own a home. If I can get closer to that in 2010, that would be awesome.

7. What date from 2009 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
January 15th, the day my former supervisor told me I was fired

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I’m pretty pleased with what I accomplished during my unemployment. Sure, I started off sitting around and whining, but I got past that and really put a dent in my To Do list.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Thanks to getting fired, I felt like a failure most of the year, having to reply for nine months, “No, I haven’t found a job yet. Still looking.”

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Both! Thankfully nothing serious, but I visited doctors three times in two months: once for a stopped-up ear, once for an ingrown toenail, and once for my first-ever diagnosed case of the flu.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
In this Year of Living Frugally due to unemployment, I’m more proud of the things I *didn’t* buy: I repaired my years-old coat, I pulled an old coffeetable out of the attic to use for a printer table, and instead of buying a new cell phone, I dug out my old pre-paid model, which the company upgraded – to one that works – for free.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
The people who hired me! and Angie, who insisted that I apply for unemployment

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
The people who fired me

14. Where did most of your money go?
A dishearteningly large portion went to paying for an apartment where the fees for terminating the lease would’ve been more expensive than finishing it out. As I’ve heard it said, that apartment was very expensive, very inconvenient storage space.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
The ample storage space in my new apartment

16. What song will always remind you of 2009?
Congratulations by the Traveling Wilburys, because every time I hear it I think of how I felt so blindsided by my former bosses

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
Happier or sadder? maybe a little sadder
Older or wiser? this year, I’ve just felt older
Thinner or fatter? about the same
Richer or poorer? definitely poorer, since I was unemployed for nine months

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
been a blessing to other people

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
dwelling on how my boyfriend hasn’t sent me a single email all(!) year(!) [FYI, I sent him two earlier in the year, and I’m beginning to suspect that he’s lost my address.]

20. How did you spend Christmas?
My mom, sister and I opened our gifts, then ate lunch, then went to my cousin’s house for a visit. Back home, we finished the day by watching “While You Were Sleeping.”

21. Did you fall in love in 2009?
No

22. How many one-night stands?
Zero

23. What was your favorite TV program?
I *really* enjoyed watched Simon & Simon on-line.

24. Who did you spend the most time on the phone with?
my mother

25. What was the best book you read?
IIRC the only book I read was “Rebuilding the Real You” by Jack Hayford – and it was VERY good.

26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Make it Better (Forget About Me) by Tom Petty and the Hearbreakers. (I was pleasantly surprised to find a song of theirs I hadn’t heard – and an upbeat one at that!) I also really liked Free To Be Me by Francesca Battistelli.

27. What did you want and get?
a good new job

28. What did you want and not get?
a sensitive spot on my foot is not going away, and will probably require medical treatment: that is definitely not getting what I want!

29. What was your favorite film of the year?
Fave Film Released This Year: (didn’t see any movies in the theatre this year)
Fave Film Seen This Year For The First Time: the A&E version of “Pride and Prejudice”

30. What did you do on your birthday?
I worked on some computer projects, emailed a resume to my soon-to-be employer, ate my favorite lunch with the fam (including my dessert of choice, cherry pie), went with my sister to the mall, watched some of my favorite videos on-line – and made screencaps! – then watched Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl.

31. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
if I could’ve gotten my well-worth-the-wait job earlier in the year

32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2009?
Continuing my efforts from last year, I’m still trying to assemble outfits that I like. Hair-wise, I’ve been trying a new tip – blowdrying hair from the top (no flipping hair over to dry) – and I think that’s been helping my hair not to be so dry and brittle.

33. What kept you sane?
faith

34. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
This guy and a TV character, AJ Simon

35. What political/current events issue stirred you the most?
unemployment

36. Who did you miss?
the people from my old job

37. Who was the best new person you met?
Caren, from work

38. What changed the most in your life this year?
It feels like everything changed: I got a new job and a new apartment in a new city.

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2009:
I’ve been surprised several times this year after being “so sure” I knew how things were going to work out. I guess that’s the lesson: don’t get too comfortable but don’t give up because you really don’t know what will happen next.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
“You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometime, you just might find you get what you need.” ~ The Rolling Stones

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a year in review – 2008

1. What did you do in 2008 that you’d never done before?
Went to Big Spring Jam in Huntsville, Alabama, saw Kansas perform, made egg salad, and started moisturizing my neck on an almost daily basis. I also started eating fish again for the first time in about ten years.

2. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I had two goals for 2008:  1) to “be happy and do good” which I’d say I succeeded at, at least more than I failed, and 2) I resolved to have a serious talk with my boyfriend about our relationship: I did try, more than once, but the attempts did not go well. It seems to me that he doesn’t want to talk about things; he’s perfectly content to wear his rose-colored glasses and think everything is okay. So, I stopped trying to talk to him, and we continue going through the motions.

For 2009, I have a few goals: learn the Stayin’ Alive dance, read another of Jane Austen’s books, and get involved in something worthwhile.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
We weren’t close, but my great-uncle Neil passed away. I remember him from family reunions.

5. What countries did you visit?
Just the US.

6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?
My own house. I’m working toward fulfilling this dream, but honestly, I don’t think it’ll happen in 2009.

7. What date from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
My birthday (October 1), simply because I made a photo essay to commemorate the day (lackluster though it was)

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
After putting it off for way too long, I finally started to learn CSS for a new website layout that I’m working on. Now that I’m using CSS, I see how efficient it is, and I’m embarrassed that I waited so long.

9. What was your biggest failure?
I bought a car, and I did everything wrong. I bought the only car that I test-drove, I didn’t negotiate at all on the price, I accepted too little for my trade-in… I’m saving the rest of the gory details for a blog entry titled “how NOT to buy a car”.
 
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
I had the sniffles once or twice. Nothing major.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
A Creative mp3 player that was marked down to $29

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Three of my former co-workers’. I’ve really appreciated their efforts to keep in touch with me.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
My new bosses’. From the start they’ve oozed with disrespect, and so far they’ve remained very critical while offering little guidance.

14. Where did most of your money go?
To paying for the car that I bought

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
The Beatles

16. What song will always remind you of 2008?
“Love Story” by Taylor Swift, because I heard it for the first time as I was driving home from an interview in a town near the state line. Oddly enough, the song made me feel better about realizing that the job wasn’t the one for me.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
Happier or sadder? Happier
Older or wiser? Hopefully wiser, since I’m still trying to learn things from my experiences 
Thinner or fatter? about the same
Richer or poorer? Poorer, since I bought a car

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Communicating with people instead of talking about them

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Insulting people when I truly didn’t mean to

20. How did you spend Christmas?
I stayed at my mom’s. We opened presents with my sister. I helped make lunch, which included a homemade (by Mom) pecan pie. Later we watched “Adventures in Babysitting”, which was one of my gifts.

21. Did you fall in love in 2008?
No.

22. How many one-night stands?
Zero.

23. What was your favorite TV program?
Current programs? None. But thanks to DVDs, I continue to get reacquainted with my old favorites: The A-Team, The Dukes of Hazzard, Laverne and Shirley, My So-Called Life…

24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
No… although the media REALLY ticked me off with their Chicken Little style coverage of the economic situation.

25. What was the best book you read?
I read three books: Tigerheart by Peter David, A McKaslin Homecoming by Jillian Hart, and Kennedy Square by F. Hopkinson Smith. I enjoyed the first two very much.

26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
The Traveling Wilburys. Their “Volume 1” CD is fantastic! I also started to appreciate The Beatles’ music.

27. What did you want and get?
A new camera from the day-after-Thanksgiving sales

28. What did you want and not get?
After the company I work for was sold, I desperately wanted a new job because my new bosses let me know how little they needed me. I went on several interviews before I finally calmed down and decided it was in my best interest to stay where I am for now.

29. What was your favorite film of the year?
Fave Film Released This Year: has to be Mamma Mia and Wall-E, because those are the only two I saw in the theatre.
Fave Film Of The Ones Seen This Year For The First Time: I watched The Beatles’ first two movies – A Hard Day’s Night and Help! – and I really enjoyed them both.

30. What did you do on your birthday?
For the first time in years, I had to work. I went to CiCi’s Pizza Buffet for lunch, and then did just a little shopping. I ended the day by watching “Help!” which I’d bought in June and saved until my birthday (i.e. “a special occasion”) to watch.

31. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
If my supervisors at work had been as interested in helping me learn as they are in telling me I’m wrong

32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?
Style-wise, pretty much the same: more classic than trendy. A new fashion development is that late this year I realized that for the longest time, I’ve been wearing several outfits that I don’t like just to avoid wearing the same thing too often. So, I tried to start wearing more outfits I really like. I’m still working on that, because I don’t have enough “outfits I really like” to cover the wide range of temperature differences I’m bound to experience during the day.

33. What kept you sane?
My faith and talking to my family

34. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Tom Petty and The Beatles, particularly George Harrison

35. What political issue stirred you the most?
Well, if you mean what political issue was I sick of since WELL before this year even began, then that would have to be the Presidential election with all of its drama, mudslinging, and media hypercoverage.

36. Who did you miss?
My former OfficeMate, and Tammy, from work

37. Who was the best new person you met?
Matt S, from work. He’s one of the new “higher-ups”, but not really one of the 50 or so people classified as my supervisor, which is too bad because he seems pretty cool.

38. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008:
The more I learn about other people, the more I see that they’re just like me.

39. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
“I have been blessed, and I feel like I’ve found my way. I thank God for all I’ve been given at the end of every day. I have been blessed – with so much more than I deserve. To be here with the ones who love me. To love them so much it hurts. I have been blessed.” (from “Blessed” by Martina McBride)

a year in review – 2007

1. What did you do in 2007 that you’d never done before?
Visited Houston Texas, took a direct flight to my destination city, made waffles in a waffle maker, and made green bean casserole

2. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
For 2007, I set some goals, and I did work toward them.

Again for 2008, I plan to continue – like the Bible says – to “be happy and do good.” (Ecc. 3:12) I also resolve to have a serious talk very soon with my boyfriend about our relationship.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
My Great Aunt Laverne passed away in January, 2007, although I hadn’t seen her for quite a few years.

5. What countries did you visit?
None, but I did travel more (three separate trips) than I did in any previous year.

6. What would you like to have in 2008 that you lacked in 2007?
A better understanding of my job

7. What date from 2007 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
July 4th, because of the incident mentioned below in question 9

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I accomplished quite a few of the website-related items on my To Do list.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Without going into detail, on one specific occasion I did nothing when I should have done something, and I will regret that for a very, very long time.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Nothing terrible. In fact, after changing my diet, some spots (warts?) that had been on my left hand for years cleared up.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Some furniture (stackable storage units) from Pier 1

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Stacey Grenrock Woods, who cited my MacGyver website (albeit misspelled) in her story for the book “What Would MacGyver Do?”

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
The Drama Queens and Petty Game Players at work

14. Where did most of your money go?
Again this year, to my apartment

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
My crushes on the guys at work

16. What song will always remind you of 2007?
“Big Girls Don’t Cry” by Fergie, because my feelings for my boyfriend cooled down

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
Happier or sadder? Happier
Older or wiser? Wiser, as I really do try to learn things from my experiences 
Thinner or fatter? Fatter, since my old jeans still don’t fit :depressed sigh:
Richer or poorer? Richer, since I continued work in my entry-level job in the engineering field

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Sharing my faith and encouraging people

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Complaining about my boyfriend

20. How did you spend Christmas?
I stayed at my mom’s. We opened presents with my sister. I helped make lunch (hey, someone’s gotta open the cans). My sister and I watched a Scooby Doo video and then Pretty in Pink.

21. Did you fall in love in 2007?
No, but I had a couple of *really* strong crushes 😉

22. How many one-night stands?
Zero.

23. What was your favorite TV program?
Current programs? None. But thanks to DVDs, I’m still falling in love with my old favorites: Remington Steele, Wings…

24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
No.

25. What was the best book you read?
I actually read two books this year, and I liked them both: “What Would MacGyver Do?” by Brendan Vaughn and “Helen of the Old House” by Harold Bell Wright.

26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
I rediscovered several of my favorite, not-heard-in-WAY-too-long songs via their videos on the Internet, of which my most favorite is arguably this one.

27. What did you want and get?
My six-year-old computer was on the verge of crashing. I wanted it to keep working, so (yesterday) I tried reinstalling the operating system. The computer is now working with no Blue Screen of Death. And woo hoo, I had my files backed up prior to all of this!

28. What did you want and not get?
Fresh tomatoes. This spring, I planted two plants, but thanks to a worm attack, they produced only one small tomato.

29. What was your favorite film of the year?
Fave Film Released This Year: Ocean’s 13
Fave Film Of The Ones Seen This Year For The First Time: Pretty in Pink
Least Favorite Film Not Just Of 2007 But In All The Years Since I Saw Anaconda: Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End

30. What did you do on your birthday?
My sister and I took the day off from work, and she drove me around as I shopped. Alas, I didn’t find anything to treat myself to. And I decided to get a haircut which turned out to be the worst one of the year. Grr.

31. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
If the company I worked for had been more profitable

32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2007?
I experimented with some looks I’ve seen at work: flowy, “girly” tops and an accessory or two.

33. What kept you sane?
My faith and talking to my family

34. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Kiefer Sutherland, I guess. As I recall, most of my “thoughts of fancy” in ’07 were directed toward people I know in real life.

35. What political issue stirred you the most?
I’m not really political…

36. Who did you miss?
Still the people from my old job: Mary, Cassandra, and Johnathan.

37. Who was the best new person you met?
Jessica, from work.

38. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2007:
Sometimes you get what you want only to discover that it isn’t what you were expecting.

39. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
“I survived all those long, lonely days when it seems I did not have a friend. ‘Cuz all I needed was a little faith so I could catch my breath and face the world again. Don’t forget your second wind.” from Billy Joel’s “Second Wind”

in other words

The pursuit of happiness is a most ridiculous phrase; if you pursue happiness you’ll never find it.
— C. P. Snow

The phrase “the pursuit of happiness” does seem to be a contradiction in terms. It makes happiness sound like something that’s somewhere you are not, and, coupled with the word pursuit, it brings to mind an image of chasing after an always-elusive prey. Similarly, in real life if you’re looking for some thing -some person, some purchase, some event – to make you happy, you’re wasting your time.

I’m reminded of another quote: “Success is having what you want, but happiness is wanting what you have.”

(Quote from … in other words…)

a year in review

1. What did you do in 2006 that you’d never done before?
Visited the midwest, specifically Nebraska

2. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I think I resolved to gripe less at work. I’m happy to report that, before I left my old job, I did a fairly good job of complaining less by looking forward to when I’d get a new job. (At my new job, it’s been pretty easy to gripe less; I’m still just happy to be there, so if some problem arises, I just try to deal with it.)

For 2007, I have a few goals: finish some website projects, learn more at work, and – like the Bible says – “be happy and do good.” (Ecc. 3:12)

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
No. Thankfully!

5. What countries did you visit?
None.

6. What would you like to have in 2007 that you lacked in 2006?
More clothes for work

7. What date from 2006 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
August 7, because that was when I started my new job :dance of joy:

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Getting a new job :throws confetti:

9. What was your biggest failure?
I was a big-time jerk to someone at my old job.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Illness, yes, but nothing terrible

11. What was the best thing you bought?
I helped Mom pay for redoing our bathroom.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
My mother. She was very helpful and encouraging – as always – but especially as I moved an hour away to start a new job.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Wanda, at my old job. She was a very opinionated person, and being around her got on my nerves like no one else in recent memory.

14. Where did most of your money go?
To getting things for my new apartment

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
At the risk of repeating myself: getting a new job! (I’d been looking for over two years, since I graduated from college.)

16. What song will always remind you of 2006?
“Love You” by Jack Ingram, because I first heard that song (and first heard of Jack Ingram!) when I saw the video during my October trip to Nebraska.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
Happier or sadder? Happier
Older or wiser? Um, both?
Thinner or fatter? Maybe a little fatter
Richer or poorer? Richer, since I finally got an entry-level job in the engineering field

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Reviewing things I learned in school to help refresh my knowledge of engineering principles

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Being peeved over others’ perceived attitudes

20. How did you spend Christmas?
Opened presents, took some pictures, and – taking a break from the usual – drove with my mother and sister so they could see my new apartment. I also worked on this meme.

21. Did you fall in love in 2006?
I stayed in love. 😉

22. How many one-night stands?
Zero.

23. What was your favorite TV program?
Current programs? None. But thanks to DVDs, I’m falling in love again with my old favorites: MacGyver, Quantum Leap, Moonlighting, The Young Riders…

24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
No.

25. What was the best book you read?
I spent most of my book time working sudoku puzzles.

26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Weird Al’s “White and Nerdy” video – too funny!

27. What did you want and get?
A new job!

28. What did you want and not get?
A new job close to home, but you know, that might have been a blessing in disguise 🙂

29. What was your favorite film of the year?
X-men III

30. What did you do on your birthday?
I went shopping, and for a change my sister was able to go with me. In the evening, I watched my favorite episode of Moonlighting: Atomic Shakespeare.

31. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
If my boyfriend had a slightly less superior attitude. It’s not terrible, but from little things he says, it seems that he truly believes his way of doing things is best. Since I tend to try to see the other side of an issue, I can’t relate, and I often find him a bit critical.

32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2006?
Same as always: more classic than trendy

33. What kept you sane?
My faith and talking to my family

34. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
A movie character: Wolverine from the X-men movie series

35. What political issue stirred you the most?
I’m not really political…

36. Who did you miss?
Cassandra and Mary from my old job

37. Who was the best new person you met?
Kelly, from my new job

38. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2006:
Instead of griping about a problem, realize that “it is what it is”, and try to deal with it the best you can.

39. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
“Tough times don’t last. Lovers do. Baby, don’t give up on me and you. ‘Cause trouble’s just a storm that’s gonna pass.” (from Tough Times Don’t Last, by Bad English)