Filed under: Personal
Last year’s year in review blog post was fun and useful. I kept referring to it throughout the year, adding some new goals halfway through. (The new goals were in my paper diary, hence not here.) Thus, here is 2011 and challenges to myself for 2012.
- My grandmother disappeared completely. Physically, she’s still around, but that’s it. Her voice has devolved to muttering, with only a few coherent words that make no sense in the context.
- My lovely little guinea pig Daciana, on the close of 2011, developed a growth on her back leg that will kill her this year. The vet cannot do anything. We do have a surgery date for amputation n January 11, but no one has confidence that she will survive until then. I, on the other hand, am hoping for a miracle.
- Last January, I found out I had to work full-time seven days a week in two museums. Though ultimately the result was excellent, the seven-month schedule was tough.
- Other miscellaneous, annoying things that are now past me. Hopefully from here on, my life calms down a bit.
- I got a new job! I was almost in my last job for six years and there are some great friends I made there. It’s time to move on to novel challenges. And boy do I get challenges with my new job. But my new coworkers are great and the challenges are exciting! In May, when things were very frustrating, I reviewed my life goals and added one: to become a curator in a municipal museum. At that time I hadn’t even started looking for a job. Who knew that in August I would get two offers on the same day within minutes of each other? Though I could only take on one job, I hope to eventually work with the other museum too as I much admire what they are doing as well. The lesson here: a ton of work and many achievements made mincemeat out of the naysayers who warned me against a career in the arts. It took me fourteen years to decide on a career and hone my skills but I am there!
- I also finished my diploma work. I am a little miffed for spending so much time and money on something that’s not another degree, though I should be thankful that the diploma did pave the way for my bout of upward mobility. I am now excited about the possibilities of taking a class in something fun. Will it be another dancing class? A sewing class? Or a German class? Probably all of them!
- I got to know my book club friends a little better this year and I have the semblance of a social life. We even went on a group trip to Seattle on Labour Day weekend for Bumbershoot. For many summer weekends as my work schedule relaxed, we also spent some relaxing weekends at A’s cabin on Howe Sound, looking at the fjord.
- Matt visited France properly in September. It’s been years since I took someone up the Metro stairs for their first view of the Arc de Triomphe and since I walked through the Louvre courtyard. Now I knew a thing or two about French history, so with each step I could almost see the blood on the sidewalks. As part of this trip, we also spent a snippet of time in Switzerland and Germany.
- Matt and I also went to Whistler for a weekend of tea, games and reading. Matt decided after work one day that we were going and minutes later we were in the car and off north.
- For our contests contest, R won, with about $1000 in prizes. I barely cracked $100 with my 3.5 prizes. One prize never even got sent to me. The .5 prize turned out to be a cosmetics scheme to squeeze me out of money for pricey facial stuff. (Don’t they know I have more face creams than I know what to do with?) Oh well. At least, I now own a toy bear that boasts of its insane loyalty to chocolate.
- I only read 38 books out of my goal of fifty. Who cares? I had fun and I am trying for fifty again this new year.
- My new niece Claire arrived in June and my new nephew Oscar arrived in August. I haven’t met them yet, but forces are working to arrange a meeting between us in 2012.
Now for my new goals for 2012:
- Edit those photos already!
- Paint that polar bear.
- Read those fifty books. One of those fifty has to be a Romanian book – probably the book written by the priest in my ancestral village. Another one of the books must be a French book: I am torn between reading that short Turgenev novella in French or The Little Prince. A third book must be one of my Chinese books. I have a number of kids’ stories from Taiwan, so that must be a start. This is the year when I get back into Mandarin. (I am even vowing to make it out to some Mandarin meetups.)
- Study German. I will take one class and read one textbook.
- Also on the language front, I want to read one Japanese textbook. I have dreams of continuing my studies in Finnish, Estonian and Dutch, but that’ll be a bonus, not a required challenge. However, I am very close to signing up for a Finnish class I found nearby.
- Go to Europe. It’ll probably be Germany this year. Though we haven’t decided if it’ll be a Hamburg or Berlin trip. Definitely not Bavaria. (I want to visit Japan again in 2012; however, trips to Texas for family reasons will supplant Asia for another year. If I can’t go this year, 2013 will be the year and Uzbekistan will be in 2014.)
- Loan more money through Kiva. I loaned $100 to a baker in Kinshasa as part of my vow to donate some money in thanks once I get a new job. Coming from a baker family, I was so happy to help out another baker, especially one in the Congo, a country I am getting more and more interested in.
- I barely worked on my own books this year. In fact, I am losing hope in myself for ever writing anything that matters. On the one hand, R’s advice to prospective writers was sad. On the other hand, an acquaintance called J disagreed with me when I said failed writers should just stop. I wonder if I’ve been just too tired to write with my hectic work and study schedules. I also wonder if I should not stop thinking about other goals and concentrate on my existing career. Then I remember that I have a five-year goal to move out of museum work. (Unless I miraculously get a job with weekends off. The problem with museum jobs is that I can’t be with family on the weekends. Though I love museums, Matt is irreplaceable.) I am not sure if I should include a writing goal anymore, so instead, here is this rambling hesitant paragraph of a semi-goal. Lyn, thank you for your support in this!
- Another goal is to make some new friends and acquaintances. Yes, I want to start going to the local Mandarin meetup and I still want to make a bit more of an effort to play boardgames more often. I want to write to more people I admire and let them know. I also want to do some more work-related networking, including some European networking, since I eventually want to move there.
- Figure out why this blog can’t do accent marks. I hate that all my Romanian words look garbled. Once I do this, I want to go through my previous posts and correct the garbled stuff.
- Write real letters to my penpal in Austria, my penpal in Norway and my friends in Taiwan. Maybe a good goal is twelve letters, one in each month?
- Miscellaneous cleaning and getting rid of old tasks. A lot of them are boring, so they are on Wunderlist. But I need to get them done.
How was 2011 for you, dear reader?
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