2008

Well –  may be late, but it’s not the end of January yet!

1. What did you do in 2008 that you’d never done before?
Watched my child “graduate” from preschool and then start Kindergarten
Changed jobs to a completely new industry
Set the foundation for 2009

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Organization! Organization! Organization!
We worked on clearing out the garage, purged baby/toddler clothes, trips to charity drop-offs and the dump. Feel pretty good about it.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
My brother and SIL – my first niece.
Friend adopted her 2nd. Friend of mine at work had his 2nd. Another friend had twins via a surrogate.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Two years running, no.

5. What countries did you visit?
Vancouver, BC.

6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?
Time, creativity, less work-focus

7. What dates from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
August 18, 2008 – my niece was born
September 29, 2008 – started my new job

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Practice “doing nothing”. I’m still learning.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Don’t know that I had a failure in 2008.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Persistent, irritating, recurring, sinus infection.
Was in the ER way late one night because of sharp chest pain, turned out to be nothing. Still not convinced it’s completely gone, likely a pinched nerve.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
1. New ink (probably 90% done by end of 2008)
2. David Yurman ring, first fine jewelry purchase with my own money.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
My family. My husband continues to be great support when I can be a royal bitch. My kid has a heart of gold, she’s always there for me when I need her.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Again, I’m pretty fortunate in the friend & family department. How about the Bush Administration?

14. Where did most of your money go?
The usual – mortgage, car payments, childcare, good food, good wine.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Pretty mellow year, I don’t remember any excitable exciting moments.

16. What song will always remind you of 2008?
More Bacon Than the Pan Can Handle – Mike Doughty
Anything off of R.E.M. – Accelerate

17. Compared to this time last year, are you: a) happier or sadder? b) thinner or fatter? c) richer or poorer?
Happier. Same. Same.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Put down the laptop and walk away…

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Give myself over to my job (see a pattern?)

20. How did you spend Christmas?
Snow-bound in my warm home with Norman, the kidlet and cat.

21. Did you fall in love in 2008?
No

22. What was your favorite TV program?
Chelsea Lately

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Again – no real hate. Such bad juju.

24. What was the best book you read?
Persepolis, graphic novel of a woman growing up in Iran.

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
honeyhoney
Venus Hum

26. What did you want and get?
See #11

27. What did you want and not get?
Time

28. What was your favorite film of this year?
Wall-E.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I took the day off of work, worked out with my trainer, spent most of the day at the spa with massage, facial, lunch & lounging. Dinner out with my girl at my favorite local restaurant. Sadly, Norman was in Japan.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Time on my deck in warm weather.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?
Chic comfort, with killer heels.

32. What kept you sane?
Music. It’s always the music.

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
No one really comes to mind.

34. What political issue stirred you the most?
That a certain VP candidate was not a good choice because she has young children. i.e. the working mother conundrum. And no, I did *not* support this candidate or party! Not even for a micro-second! She wasn’t a good choice for so many other, justifiable, reasons.

35. Who did you miss?
Family not living close

36. Who was the best new person you met?
New book club gals

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008.
As much as I try to control it all, the universe never fails to throw a curveball that forces me to rethink the entire approach.

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

R.E.M.

“I’m not one to sit and spin
‘cuz living well is the best revenge
Baby, I am calling you on that”

“I’m not that easy
I am not your horse to water
I hold my breath
I come around, around, around”

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lists

I need a new system.  Remember when we were young and remembered everything?  When I knew how much cash I had on hand, to the penny?  Now, I’m lucky if I have $6 to pay for parking.  That doesn’t involve any coins.

Seriously though, my memory keeps getting worse.  Probably because it’s getting crowded out with things like my daughter’s favorite character traits (did you know Hello Kit-tee has a sister?), my daily schedule, how long until my next meal?  Today, I started to make a personal list.  Sadly, I couldn’t even remember everything I really needed to put on it.  Hubby has suggested some online tools, kinds I can send text message to, voicemails, etc.  I need a mind reader.  Something to run through my brain and pick up all the To Do’s.

It would also capture all those great ideas I have for posts that escape me as soon as I open up the blog editor.

Any ideas?  How can a girl get by?

Order & Disorder

I just spent 15 minutes straightening up the bedrooms.  In A’s room I changed her sheets, stuffies aligned, clothes in proper places, etc.  When I walked out and looked in her bathroom, the sigh.  Bath towel on the floor, stuff strewn across the counter, total mess.

OK – I admit it.  I’m a control freak, OCD, things belong in their place kinda person.  I’m not ashamed of it.  If anything, I’m working to turn the dial down so my family doesn’t think I’ll completely loose my head if things aren’t Just So.  A few months ago I decided if A wants her room to be in consistent disarray, I’m OK with that.  It’s her space, her place to show her uniqueness and control in her own way.  Yes, every few weeks I do a sweep and bring out a garbage bag full of teeny tiny pieces of paper, markers that have dried out, old water bottles (no milk thankfully).  She doesn’t mind that.  She often thanks me for straightening up because I made her room look so beautiful.  Side note – it’s also an effective way to remove old toys and clothes for the charity pile.

I digress.  What I’m wondering – will she always be like this?  Will wet towels pile up on her apartment floor until laundry day?  Will there be weekly (daily?) dashes through piles of crap to find a key or a bill or a wallet?  How do I get her to understand why it is important to put toys away?  That I’m not torturing her?  I’ve seen her do it, without complaint, at school when asked by a teacher.  Or at a neighbor’s house during a play date.  So why do I get the full-on dramatic hissy fit about how it’s so terrible and worst day of her life?  Oh get over yourself child!

Trying to think of what my room looked like as a kid, I don’t remember anything before our first house in Jersey.  I kinda remember our place in Ohio, but only the bed.  In Jersey I had lots of space and books and toys and whatever.  I don’t remember it being as messy or disorderly as my daughter.  But maybe it was.  I’ll have to ask my mom about that one.

So – for now – I just hope that I can instill in her the importance and sanity of order, without creating some psychosis we’ll be paying for later.

when patience isn’t a virtue

Today I spent 45 minutes waiting for a doctor.  First, there was the 20 minutes in the waiting room (15 of which included my scheduled appointment time).  Then another 25 in the exam room.  I told the nurse I was on a time-line and needed to leave by 11:35am.  She said OK, she apologized for the delay and admitted the doctor was running late due to double booking.  “But we are catching up”.  Um, no, you aren’t.  If I wait 45 minutes and don’t get to see a doctor because of her delays, you are not catching up.

What bothers me the most is the lack of respect and accountability from the doctor.  As a patient, I need to give 48 hours notice for cancellation.  I’m also expected to alert the office if I’m running late – traffic and what-not.  And if I’m too late, or don’t even show, they are going to bill for the appointment which you know the insurer isn’t paying for.  I get that.  I get I have a responsibility to keep my commitments and be on time.  So what about the doctor?!  Is it too unreasonable to think the front desk can let me know if the doctor is running late and how long?  Is it too much to ask I be offered to reschedule my appointment for a better time?  Is it too unrealistic to think waiting more than 60 minutes to complete an appointment is obscene? 

So how are we going to change this?  It’s not going to help when most people sit in the exam room, steaming, and go through with it anyway.  Or storm out.  Me?  I wrote a letter to office outlining why I was frustrated, that I understood my patient accountability – and I requested that the doctor’s office be accountable too.  People need to stop being afraid of doctor’s and their assumed authority and assumed power in our lives.  Even the cable people are getting better at this.  Sure, a 4-hour window isn’t great.  But it’s a window.  You know what to expect up front.  Doctors?  Wake up and hear the call.  The doctor/patient is supposed to be a mutual and respectful relationship.  I promise to tell you the truth about what’s going on with me, you trust my words.  You offer me the best treatment possible, I trust your judgement and treatment.  So let’s get it together and revise the appointment policies.  OK?!

That’s going to be my new policy, if I can’t be walking out a doctor’s office 60 minutes from my schedule appointment time – I’m leaving.  Maybe I’ll even be bold enough to send a bill for MY time wasted.  Imagine the nice sum of money you would have if you got paid for wasted time at the doctor’s office.  So – go write your own letters!