Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 in review.

so, i had totally intended on jumping right back into my "normal" posting schedule as soon as christmas was over, completely ignoring the fact that just because december 26th rolls by, no matter how badly i want the holidays to be over (remember, in our house "the holidays basically start in september when we hit a rapid succession of anniversarybirthdaybirthdayhalloweenthanksgivingchristmasnewyear), it does not mean the holidays are over. 

this fact really slapped me in the face this weekend, because, despite spending thursday and friday thoroughly de-christmassing and making all sorts of plans to get back into real life (get back on the chore rotation! stop buying soda! register a domain name! make a list of 400 blog post ideas!), our weekend was essentially booked solid with more christmassing. 

im not complaining though, we did have a really nice lunch with my dad and stepmom on saturday (and alice got a new djembe thats really fun), and sunday involved BOTH a sister shopping date AND a family barbecue (my uncle and cousins were visiting from out of town). it was exhausting, but, you know, a fun kind of exhausting. 

also this happened:

which was basically cute enough to justify all the non-productivity of the weekend. 

so, long story short, the end-of-the-year posts i had planned on doing over the weekend didnt get done the way id hoped to get them done. and because i suffer from what my mom calls "defeated perfectionist syndrome" (basically meaning that if i dont think i can do something absolutely perfectly i wont even try so as to avoid failing), i was considering not even doing them at all. actually that was a lie, i was considering quitting this blog forever, just because ive had a couple bad weeks (which happened to be christmas, when everyones blogs kind of suck). and maybe that was just a tad bit overdramatic. 

now i wanted to do two separate year-end posts, one focusing on our challenges and accomplishments over the past year and one focusing on our goals for the upcoming year. aaaannnnddd here we are on december 31st and ive done next to no prep work on this, so i can safely say that thats not going to happen. BUT, like i mentioned earlier, ive realized today that quitting this whole blog thing because one project wasnt panning out was a teeny little bit drastic. i could find a happy middle ground. 

like, how about a shorter, less photo-heavy post reviewing our life in 2013? and how about since i just made a big list of personal goals for my birthday that im still working on, lets not put so much weight on new years resolutions? that sounds nice, and totally doable for today. so lets go:

2013 in review:

2013 was a record year in james and i being normal, responsible adults, for the first time ever we have lived in one place for a whole year AND have (both!) kept the same, totally legitimate job (hooray for being able to do our taxes by myself! and health insurance!), AND paid all our bills on time AND bought a new (well, 1997) ford hatchback that suits our needs much better than my old (totally falling apart) chevy sedan. also, we (and by we i mostly mean i) implemented a fairly successful budget plan and have gone the whole year without overdrawing any accounts OR completely eating our savings (also, we have a savings account). i know this is total basic adult stuff but if you knew us for the first two years of our marriage youd be as stoked as i am about this. 

that being said, 2013 was also BY FAR the most difficult year weve had financially, because even though weve both maintained stable legitimate employment all year, both of our positions have been... how do i put this delicately? lets say turbulent. yes, i like that word. our jobs have been turbulent. to the point where im kind of dreading getting our w2s next week and seeing just how far below the poverty line we actually are. but im not really complaining here because with all the budgeting and not moving (seriously, moving every six months is literally THE most expensive lifestyle i can imagine), it hasnt actually been that bad. 

what i will complain about though is that this spring i was diagnosed with celiac disease and ive been on the stupidest diet ever and i hate it. that was definitely not awesome. 

but you know what was awesome? alice. alice was super totally awesome this year. she turned twowe had an awesome adventure time birthday party for her, shes totally potty trained, speaks in completely understandable sentences, AND finally has enough hair that strangers have stopped calling her a boy. oh, and the other night she did this: 

so, 2013 was definitely a really great year to be alice. 

also, it was a really great year for having fun. this year we really made a conscious effort to stop being bummed out about not being able to afford to go on vacation and start taking advantage of the fact that we freaking live on vacation. so that meant lots and lots of time at disneyland:

and the beach:

and the park, pier, library, museums, pool, friends houses, etc. SO much fun was had this year. definitely our very best year as far as fun having is concerned. 

oh, and something else happened this year that was kind of a big deal. i started this blog. and while ill do a more in-depth post about my learning experience with blogging when we get a bit closer to the one year of blogging mark (in march!) i think we can all say that this little blogs come a heck of a long way from where it first started. and actually, thats not all, i also started chasing my dream of self employment again by reopening my (very much improved, i think) etsy shop

so was 2013 a good year? as i look back over the post i just wrote, yeah i guess it was. it was just, really difficult in a lot a ways and definitely wasnt one id care to repeat if given the option (my, wasnt that diplomatic of me). 

also, weve got some big ideas for 2014. bring it on. 

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