2012. What a year.
Logan and I started the year living in my hometown and working for the family business. We had just flown back from Scotland a couple of months before, and we were still trying to get our feet under us. Those few months of peace and quiet were much needed.
In February, we adopted our sweet Mona, and it was the best $100 ever spent.
In April, I got a job interview for my alma mater. Twenty minutes after the interview, the department’s vice president called me while we were eating lunch at Schlotzsky’s to offer me the job–and we couldn’t have been more excited. I started at the end of the month.
During May, June and July, Logan and I lived in separate cities 3 hours apart. And it was hard. After he helped me move into my temporary summer apartment and was about to head back to our previous home, saying goodbye almost broke my heart, even if it was just for five nights (I definitely counted). For the first few days alone before Logan brought my bed over, I slept on an air mattress on the refinished concrete floor. With no internet at first, I watched seasons of Gilmore Girls on my laptop and tried to avoid anxiety. Starting my new job and getting to know all of my kind and wonderful coworkers kept me sane, as did the money Logan and I spent on gas as we alternated visiting each other almost every weekend. Slowly but surely, we brought car loads over and moved our lives back to Abilene. This summer was pretty rough living apart from Logan, but our Aberdeen experience prepared us for it. We grew as a couple and remembered how to be independent apart from each other, so when I had to travel pretty often for work during the fall, it didn’t seem so bad.
In August, we moved into our current rental house and were finally reunited. Logan started his Masters degree. I met a work goal and won an iPad. Seeing all the students on campus at work made me want to be in class. My travel season began at work, and during the next few months I drove all over DFW and Austin.
The latter part of the year was spent settling down a bit. Logan spent a lot of nights in the library. I put a lot of effort into my job, organizing our new home, trying new recipes, and finding my way toward a general routine (this sounds like I’m one of those stereotypical Seminary Wives, doesn’t it? Well, Logan’s in grad school, not seminary, and I’m a feminist, so HA). We both tried to get involved in a new church and feel a part of it (which is harder than one might think). I went through an existential crisis or two trying to decide what I wanted to be when I grow up and when I wanted to pursue it. We settled into an easygoing Abilene lifestyle, which is totally fine by me.
All of a sudden, the holidays were here and we were doing our Christmas thing — buying presents, wrapping presents, looking at Christmas lights while drinking hot chocolate — all while it was 70 degrees outside. Magically and wonderfully, it snowed several inches on Christmas Eve night and we awoke to a white Christmas (totally worth the several weeks of springlike weather).
Now it’s December 31st and I have to go back to work on Thursday. I’ve learned a lot this year, like that I’m young and I don’t have to accomplish my life’s goals right this second. A good friend once told me to do one thing each day to work toward your goal(s), so that’s what I’m going to try and do, even if sometimes that just means trying to be a good wife and coworker and friend.
The new year ahead looks bright and beautiful and full of hope. I’ve made some goals, so here goes:
1. Read Books
I love to read. I love who I am when I read. I love what I learn and how I feel. If nothing else, reading will keep my brain in shape and keep me thinking critically so that I don’t bemoan not being in school and forget everything I’ve already learned. When Logan started this semester and began work in some incredible classes, I threw a private pity-party for myself for about two weeks because I realized that I missed it so much. Now (since I’m so much older and wiser, obviously), I know that I don’t need a syllabus to pressure me into reading regularly. I can do that myself (duh). Reading regularly–getting lost in a good story or premise–brings me closer to the woman I want to be.
2. Stay Healthy
I haven’t done a very good job of working out this year (yeah, yeah, big surprise). I do try to eat my veggies and drink more water and tea, but working out regularly is not something I particularly LIKE doing. I know this one is on everyone’s list (and for good reason–we’re fat, America!), but I really do want to tone up. Mainly, I want to feel strong. I don’t care about being stick-thin, but I do want some muscle back. You know what one of the primary reasons is? I don’t want to live in fear of being robbed/attacked. If I feel strong and that I can defend myself, then maybe I won’t be so scared to fill my car up with gas. Is it ridiculous that I have to fear doing this simple task just because I am a woman? Yes. But that’s another post!
3. Find a Church Home
We’ve been visiting churches lately. We’ve gone to Sunday School and the Bible studies. We are still not sure. It’s hard to find the right place as a young couple (ask all the ones out there who’ve dropped out of church completely).
4. Keep a Notebook
Here’s the thing with me: I forget things that happen in my life. Logan is the remember-er in this household: he remembers (without consulting a calendar) the random date that we spent the weekend with his parents six months ago, but he can’t remember where he put his keys. I am the opposite: I know song lyrics from 1997 and exactly where I put our cake carrier in storage, but I totally forget that we went to a certain restaurant once on a date. We work good together as a team! The problem is, I know that creativity does not simply flow when I sit at a computer to write. I think random thoughts throughout the day that I want to write about, and a lot of times they deal with what I’m doing, but later that night I have no idea what the stroke of brilliance was. I want to keep some kind of journal that records what I do and think each day, for blogging reasons as well as my own spiritual/emotional development and progression in life.
5. Blog More
Maybe now that life has settled down a little (at least for me…Logan is crazy busy!), I can focus more on writing. I plan to post some yummy recipes I’ve made, talk about some books I’ve read, and record some of what goes on in everyday life. If I’m going to read and write and work out more, then I think it goes unsaid that I would like to manage my time a little differently — for example, when I get home from work, I’ll need to (1) work out, (2) cook dinner, eat with Logan, and send him off to the library, then (3) devote time to reading/blogging/journaling/cleaning/errands until it’s time for bed. That is, unless it’s Tuesday, which means Ladiezz TV Night with Erin, Hope, Sam and Kriss. If it’s Monday and Logan doesn’t have a lot of homework, we might go to Cypress Street for Monday Mug Madness. If it’s Wednesday and I have a Bible study, I might be at that. Some Thursdays mean our group of friends is at Guitars. And certain Fridays, we’ll be on the road to spend the weekend somewhere. So, step 3 is flexible, but I don’t want to sit on my butt and watch TV every night. Maybe this goal should be called “Be Productive in the Evenings.”
I guess that’s it. I could add a million more things (cook at least 3 meals per week, stop drinking cokes completely, write a certain number of book reviews, etc. etc. etc.), but the reality is, I don’t want to overload myself and then achieve nothing. Maybe I’ll give up cokes and fast food for Lent.
Happy New Year! Hello, 2013!