2016 In Review

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

I'm ALL ABOUT end-of-year surveys. I think they're a great way to reflect on the year that's just gone by, and I really wanted to have a record of some of the highlights of 2016, the smoldering bag of dog poop on the doorstep of so many people. For me, 2016 was a year of wild highs and gross lows, one that I didn't do a great job of documenting as it was happening. It was one of those years where I feel like not a lot happened, yet there was never a dull moment. It would be easy to forget, but there's plenty I'd like to remember.

1. What did you do in 2016 that you’d never done before? Had a c-section. Visited the Museum of Natural History in NYC.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year? I don't remember what my resolutions were, other than to floss every day, a resolution that I kept except for missing ONE NIGHT: the night Henry was born. I'm still so pissed about this. I was actually lying in recovery with him when I remembered I hadn't flossed.

I made five resolutions for 2017:

- run a full marathon (I just started training for one in May; if that doesn't work out, there are a couple of fall ones that are also possibilities)

- floss every day (so far, so good)

- read 12 books (currenty reading All The Missing Girls)

- get rid of two things for every new thing I purchase

- buy a bike

3. Did anyone close to you give birth? *points at self* My cousin and a few coworkers also had beautiful babes in 2017.

4. Did anyone close to you die? No - knock on wood. Eli did lose a few of his pet guppies, may they RIP.

5. What countries did you visit? 
USA! USA! Wasn't a big year for travel, but we did get to NYC for a few days in  April.

6. What would you like to have in 2017 that you lacked in 2016? A 26.2 bumper sticker on my car. A spa day. Abs. 

7. What dates from 2016 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
 February 14 - on Valentine's Day, we went out for sushi and to see a matinee of When Harry Met Sally and it was just the best day date ever. June 19 - Henry's birthday. November 10 - Eli turned 5. Our first Christmas as a family of four, hanging out in our jammies all day and Henry trying his first tastes of turkey dinner. Eli's first day of school in September.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? The summer was hard. So I think surviving a sweltering summer with two small kids and a wrecked body while not being able to drive, lift anything, or essentially do anything is an accomplishment, and an activity I can't say I recommend to anyone.

9. What was your biggest failure? I felt like the summer was also a big failure. It was Eli's last summer at home before starting school, and I worry that I was too snappy and short with him, that we didn't get out enough and have enough fun. I'd just like to erase July and August from my memory altogether. NEXT!

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
I was pretty healthy all year. I don't think I went to the doctor other than for baby-related things. In October, I had a bit of a cold brewing, but it was just a weekend of feeling crappy. Hot tip: Emergen-C works.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Two things: a Toyota Rav4 and a BOB jogging stroller. I'm very happy with my new car - AWD for winter driving, lots of space for all our stuff, and it's much easier to get the little 'uns in and out of this car than my Civic. The BOB was a splurge but 100 percent worth every penny. It allowed me to get some exercise when I wouldn't have been able to otherwise - I'd drop Eli off at school in the morning and run laps at the track on nice days while Henry napped.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Cheese alert! My husband has been wonderful. He took good care of me after Henry was born. When it comes to parenting the boys, he is truly the definition of a partner. Not all moms are this lucky.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? Obviously Donald's. And those who voted for him. I'm sorry. I don't understand you.

14. Where did most of your money go? See number 11. Also, regular adult necessities: groceries, bills, insurance, savings. I had a few treat yoself moments last year as well. So far in 2017, I've been sticking to the essentials.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about? The New York trip. It was amazing to see the city through Eli's eyes, and it was so nice to have a little vacation before becoming a family of four.

16. What songs will always remind you of 2016?
Drake's entire Views album. I listened to it so much - easily my most played of 2016.

17. Did you make any new friendships?
Some new people at work. Sadly, it hasn't been the most social year! I guess I'm friendly with a few of the parents at Eli's school.

18. Did you go on vacation? New York in the spring. One solitary but perfect beach day in August. A day in Lunenburg with the boys in September. We didn't do much traveling but I hope to make up for it this year and going forward.

19. What do you wish you had done (more and less) of?
More fun. Less worry. Less spending and less harping about little things. More yes.

20. How did you spend the holidays? We had a super laid-back holiday this year. I told everyone last Christmas that we wouldn't be traveling on Christmas Day anymore - we used to spend hours on the road each year on December 25 and it was just a stupid way to spend Christmas. All this buildup to the big day, and then we have to rush through gifts and breakfast to pile in the car and eat a chaotic dinner at someone else's home. 

This year, it was PJs all day, leisurely meals, playing with new toys, an afternoon run with the dog - it was cozy and sweet and just what Christmas should be.

21. What new food did you discover? My favourite new restaurant this year was Beaver Sailor Diner. It's a tiny little spot in downtown Halifax that's easy to miss, but they have the BEST noodles. Super fresh, delicious, spicy, and cheap!

22. What was your favorite TV program?
OITNB, Stranger Things, and we fiiiiinally started watching Parks and Recreation.

23. What was one of your favorite experiences of the year? Meeting Henry for the first time.

24. What was the best book you read? Brain on Fire.

25. What was your greatest musical or artist discovery? I'm not sure if I discovered any

26. What did you want and get? A healthy and beautiful baby.

27. What did you want and not get? Ridiculous, but I had grand plans of completing NaNoWriMo this year, and I failed spectacularly. I'm not sure what compelled me to think I could write a novel on mat leave. Even so, it got me thinking creatively for a few days, at least. Better than nothing?

28. What was your favorite film of this year? I don't think I saw any new movies this year! We watched The Place Beyond The Pines on Netflix recently and I liked that...

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I turned 35, and I was surprised by a bunch of my friends with dinner at Morris East, my favourite pizza place.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? An invention that makes children sleep until 7:00 on weekends. I don't even want to sleep in! Just seven fucking a.m.!

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2016? Comfortable and classic. I wore black leggings probably 75% of the time. There weren't a lot of occasions to get dressed up.

32. What kept you sane? Group texts, running laps, long walks with the dog.

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? Hillary

34. What political issue stirred you the most?
 The US election, obvi. I went to bed the night of the election thinking, for sure, Clinton has it in the bag. I woke up the next morning, checked my phone, and just mumbled "No. No. No. No." over and over, in disbelief. It still feels like it's not really happening, nine days from inauguration.

35. Who did you miss?
My friends, coworkers, family I don't get to see enough.

36. Who was the best new person you met?
Natasha, the best RMT on the planet!

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2016. You don't always need to have an opinion. You don't always need to be putting more content out there. Before you share something, stop and think: is this adding value or is this just noise? If it's the latter, don't bother. Your interactions will be more meaningful when you do.

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year. 

May you always be courageous
Stand upright and be strong
And may you stay
Forever young
May your hands always be busy
May your feet always be swift
May you have a strong foundation
When the winds of changes shift
May your heart always be joyful
May your song always be sung
And may you stay
Forever young 
-Bob Dylan

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  1. Love this list, Amy. :) And your life lesson - yes yes yes yes yes!! Glad things have been overall great with you. Take care! And yes. I agree about this politically shit-ass year. :(