1. What did you do in 2015 that you’d never done before?
I became a mother of two. I lived in a house I own with my husband instead of an apartment we rented. I accepted a little job designing our church newsletter. I potty trained a child successfully. I traveled to Pennsylvania with my family to meet my grandfather-in-law. I hired a babysitter in Michigan for a date night (repeatedly!). I baked hundreds of Christmas cookies for friends and family and neighbors.
2. Did you keep your New Year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
My goal for 2015 was to keep two little people alive without losing my mind. I was very pleasantly surprised that the transition from one kid to two kids was easier for me than the transition from zero kids to one kid had been. Orders of magnitude easier. My kids are fantastic little humans and I’m lucky to spend my days with them. Matt and I have made some family resolutions for 2016 in the areas of fitness, finances, house care and social life and I love that we’re on the same page with our goals.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Besides me? My friend Jenna had her Theo soon after Daniel was born and they are now baby besties. My cousin Christina gave birth to her son, Elijah.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
No, but we continued to mourn the loss of Matt’s grandfather at every holiday and family gathering.
5. What countries did you visit?
I glimpsed Canada across the river…
6. What would you like to have in 2016 that you didn’t have in 2015?
7. What dates from 2015 will be etched upon your memory, and why?
January 12, Daniel’s birth. July 4, Mary’s godmother’s wedding.
8. What was your biggest achievement of this year?
Making it into the car to go to the hospital to give birth to Daniel. At the time, it felt absolutely impossible to me.
I also made progress in turning to God for help instead of trying to do it all on my own.
9. What was your biggest failure?
I complained more than I gave thanks.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Nothing major, but goodness, I wish moms got sick days.
11. What was the best thing you bought?
Mumford and sons tickets.
12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Mary’s, when she learned to sleep in a big girl bed and use the potty. Matt’s, when he saved the day at work and at home over and over again. Daniel’s, when he learned to sleep through the night.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Donald Trump. All the people who say they will vote for Donald Trump.
14. Where did most of your money go?
The kids and the house. The little money grabbers.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
I was really, really, really excited when I realized I was enjoying Daniel’s newborn months. PPD never came knocking this time and I was so grateful.
16. What song will always remind you of 2015?
Maybe “Believe” by Mumford and Sons or “At 63” by Vered.
17. Compared to this time last year, are you: a) happier or sadder? b) thinner or fatter? c) richer or poorer?
A) Happier. Certainly less anxious. It’s nice being safely on the other side of major life changes. B) Thinner. This time last year I was nine months pregnant. C) Richer. Thanks for making those dolla bills, honey!
18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Praying. Spending time outside with the kids. Exercising. Reading books instead of watching TV and playing Two Dots. Reading books of substance and beauty instead of fluff.
19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Wasting time on social media.
20. How did you spend Christmas?
In Georgia with our families. Christmas Eve at Matt’s grandma’s, Christmas morning with Matt’s immediate family, Christmas afternoon and dinner with mine. Crazy, but we are so blessed with families that love us.
21. Did you fall in love?
Yes, with my son :-)
22. What was your favorite TV program?
Gotham, Blacklist and Elementary are our go-tos.
23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Nope. I try very hard not to hate anyone.
24. What was the best book you read?
According to my goodreads ratings, Go Set A Watchman. I also really loved All the Light We Cannot See. I’m super original.
25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
The Okee Dokee Brothers.
26. What did you want and get?
So many things. Untold heaps of blessings.
27. What did you want and not get?
Sometimes a break from the neediness of my children. But I’m trying to learn to lean in to the crazy moments instead of wishing for escape. I’m more patient when I focus on their emotions instead of mine.
28. What was your favorite film of 2015?
I watched so few movies in 2015. I saw Star Wars this week and it was fine for what it was. It can’t hold a candle to the originals, but I didn’t expect it to. I’m not sure I saw any other movies in theaters, to be honest.
29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
The usual mom thing. My sweetheart made me my favorite chocolate cake. I was 27.
30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Mary realizing it’s pointless to argue with me or talk back to me. Sigh. Threenagers, man.
31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept of 2015?
I’m slowly embracing the drapey tunic top. I’m even considering buying skinny jeans. I’m a slow mover when it comes to fashion.
32. What kept you sane?
My husband. Totally and absolutely my husband. The guy deserves knighthood.
33. What political issue stirred you the most?
Local refusal to admit refugees. Gun control. There is absolutely zero reason why a civilian should have access to an assault rifle.
34. Who did you miss?
All of my people scattered over the world. Especially my parents and brother at Thanksgiving and our visiting friends after they had to go back home.
35. Who was the best new person you met?
Daniel, of course.
36. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2015.
Praise goes further than scolding. Showing affection, even when I’m frustrated, can be very powerful.
37. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
Oh, how grand it will be
Kidding. Kind of. ;-)