I can't believe that New Year's Eve is here and 2012 will soon come to a close. It's been a year of really massive changes in my life, luckily, most of those changes were overwhelmingly positive.
The number one, best thing that happened to me was meeting Dan in early January. It's been an exciting whirl-wind. I know people think that things have moved too fast, but when you know something is right, I think it's time to go for it. I've decided to go for what I want and live proactively. This is by far, the best relationship that I have ever been in and I felt it immediately. I still feel it nearly a year later, only more intensely.
Meeting Dan changed my life in several fundamental ways, one of the biggest, is I am no longer living alone. I hated living alone and it has not been good for me the last four years. I love cooking, having dinner together and having a normal family life. Don't tell the cats, but they weren't cutting it. Life is much happier now.
The house has never looked better. In additional to a million little repairs, we completely re-did every aspect of the upstairs bathroom (it was gutted), repainted the house and garage and decorated the previously barren patio. We have all new windows and patio doors.There are only a couple pieces of furniture from when I lived here alone and absolutely nothing looks the same. It's feels like home now.
The Home remodel was not without a considerable amount of stress. One of the big negatives this year, was a nearly half year battle with Home Depot over a permit issue. My advice, new use Home Depot. Ever. The upside, is the issue was resolved just a few days ago, so this stress will not be carried over into the New Year.
I reconnected with friends, including a girls trip to Vegas with high school friends. I had to let go of one very close friend, after finally realizing that men and women really can't maintain a friendship if there is an attraction and that attraction is one sided. I found this particularly heartbreaking, as this is a friend whom I care a lot about and hope that sometime in the future, after the dust has settled, that we actually can be friends. It just can't happen now.
I sold my Honda and gained a Smart Car. The Smart car (both of them, Dan's got one too) led to us joining the SoCal Smarties and going on some great meet-ups and meeting a fun bunch of people. Spontaneity called and we did a less than twenty-four hour trip to Hoover Dam to help try to break a Smart Car World Record.
My sense of adventure and spontaneity was called into action several times this year and the challenges were met.
We had several of Dan's family members visit from England and they all brought delicious foreign treats with them! I am looking forward to visiting them in 2013.
I spent several days exploring a new state, Utah, which included one really mega hike in Zion. I saw the West Coast of Canada. I went on an ATV tour on both vacations. In Utah we stayed at the worst hotel in the United States and lived to warn people about it.
I spent a total of 22 days in Las Vegas, which included one night of being more drunk than I have ever been in my life, leading to my first hang over. Lesson learned = Never again! Just to drive it home, falling asleep while going pee in the bathroom at the Paris hotel is not as glamorous as it might sound. Yup, funny, but not my shining moment of 2012.
Two trips to Palm Springs, two trips to Lake Arrowhead/Big Bear and three to Santa Barbara.
I discovered local gems that I previously did not know existed - Rubel's Castle, The Gentle Barn and The LA Live Steamers, including Walt's Barn. I discovered what was at the top of Mount Wilson and what happens when you drive off of ZZYZX Road. We went to Calico Ghost town (cool) and the Salton Sea (not cool).
33 books read, which is probably the least that I have read in my adult life.
3 concerts attended ( Sugarland, Rhett Miller and the Lady Serial Killers and Old 97's) - by far the least amount of concerts attended in recent years.
We went to a ton of movies, theme parks and amazing restaurants. We went hot air ballooning, boating and spent a snowy afternoon in an outdoor day spa. I got to hold a chicken named Mrs. Chicken.
4 1/2 months were spent in Retail Hell, which wasn't so bad, because I met a lot of nice people (including a great boss), have some stellar war stories ( Some people don't like to buy an item if it has gone on sale...really..and they will want to argue about it...really.) and know way more about fashion than I ever cared to know. Much of what I learned seems ridiculous now, but hopefully it will come in handy the next time I need to dress outside of my jeans/tee-shirt comfort zone.
Also, I still have all of my toe nails, several of which turned black on one of my first shifts. My shoes were too tight. This is not really fashion advice per-se, but proper footwear is of paramount importance.
I have a lot less money than I did this time last year, but I also weigh twelve pounds less. Granted, the weight loss came from being very sick in August, but I've kept it off. Somehow, somewhere, I feel like the Universe is making everything a wash.
I started this blog. I really had no idea who would read it, but after a few months, I started noticing clicks from all over the world and then lots of clicks a day. Most of the people checking in on my adventures are people that I have never met. It's such a completely cool thing and I am both excited and humbled by it. I would love it, if you would drop me an email or comment, as I think that it is so amazing that people all around the world are reading what I am writing. In fact, it's a bit unbelievable. Thank You for being there!
I can't wait to see where both myself and this blog head in 2013.
Happy New Year!