The Year 2009 in Review

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Dear Family and Friends:

I’ve never been a fan of those hokey holiday letters— to be honest, they kinda make me gag. Maybe you feel the same. This isn’t one of those letters... not really. It’s just a summation of my year in review. Don't worry, I won't be offended if you stop reading now.

Countries/States visited: Colorado; Massachusetts; Washington; Illinois; Georgia; California; North Carolina; Utah(thrice); New York and Maryland; Dominican Republic.

Social Networks Joined: online dating site, twitter, flickr, and this blog.

Favorites: Trader Joe’s; Huntley Meadows; Glee; Crooked Fingers; the Moth; church on Tangier Island; caramel corn cupcakes; free gym membership (needed post cupcakes); The Art of Travel; pay-what-you-can theatre (best idea ever!); iPhone; pick-your-own farms; WeLoveDC blog; parking in a garage; and Dairy Godmother.

Not-So-Favorites: micro-managing boss; speeding tickets; commuting; cold sores; being towed; shoppers minus their carry-your-own bag(s); and Glenn Beck.

Dates: Some to be remembered, most to be forgotten...but in toto, more than 2008.

For the first time in several years this Christmas has been without incidence. No pregnant teen siblings. No dealing with a sibling's divorce heartache. No leaving the mission early. No quitting grad school. No cabin outing gone awry. In essence, NO drama. Call me crazy, but I like that. I adore my family and somehow I adore them more when I have a geographic buffer zone. I'm happy when they come to visit and I try my best not to take them for granted.

I'm grateful for this past year; for its adventures and for its vicissitudes. I appreciate the Savior in my life, He is my constant; and I enjoy my associations with dear friends, both old and new, both far and near. To be honest, I'm one lucky gal.

Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, and Happy Hanukkah!

Wishing you all a New Year of new possibilities.

What I Miss

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

It's only on these trips back, to a place once called home, that I pine a bit for:
  • Familiar faces of established friendships.
  • Free holiday parking downtown.
  • The Grid.
  • A bustling, bright Public Library.
  • Shoveling. (Snowpocalypse just doesn't cut it.)
  • Lunch for $3.99.
  • The Broadway theater.
That's all. Not a complaint, just a confession. On occasion, I miss pieces of this place.

Ps. Stay tuned for holiday pictures...

An Outing

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Remember when my blogger friend Laura shared a snippet of her travel diary? Well, the warriors have arrived! And I fully expect this will soak up the better part of a Saturday morning, sometime between now and March31. Care to join me?


Something about the start of a new decade that just makes you think. It's true. Somehow my 20s just slipped by me without a second thought. I look back and think, whoa, where did you go? And while the early parts were carefree and held the illusion of permanence, I found the middle parts more satisfying; after all, I was making grown-up decisions and moving my life to a City I loved. Inevitably my late 20s came, exposing raw, heartbreaking parts that I didn't know existed. I turned more introspective. In a way, I settled further into my mature spirit. But you know, I'm glad for those parts too. And now, well, now I've entered another turning point and while I'm uncertain exactly how to navigate these waters, I'm strengthened by what my mother said to me this past summer when I broached this bridge. She said, "30s are the best decade!" And you know what?, I believe her. Not because I know, but because I expect to know.

And for now, that's enough.

Liza with a Z

Friday, December 4, 2009

Remember clear back in June when I wrote this little piece? Well, since then I've been meaning to find new things to listen to. You know, like those informative TED talks. Or using LSAT logic on a daily basis. Or reliving moments you might just rather forget. You know important things. But sometimes I just need something frivolous. Enter: Steampunk Radio. More specifically, The Clockwork Cabaret. One of my twitter friends, I know, right, mentioned them awhile back and I filed it somewhere in the back of my you-should-really-look-into-that file. The episodes are two hours, and at first I was a tad skeptical. But I kept listening. And you know what?, I'm excited by vibes that don't seem like they should go together, but somehow do.

Maybe that's the brilliance of it.

(Okay, so I've only listened to one episode and maybe I should withhold judgment, but for now I'm delighted with this new find. I mean where else would I discover a missed Marx classic? Ahh, it takes me back to my college days and Irish Drinking parties. More on that later.)

10 Things I L O V E December

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

1. Snowshoeing.2. Our traditional Christmas Eve Story, A Candle in the Forest.

3. Handel's Messiah.

4. Blue Christmas Lights.

5. Holiday Tea with my dearest kindred friend.

6. My two favorite holiday films.

7. Christmas Cards.
(Making. Sending. Receiving.)

8. Mint M&Ms.

9. A new tradition: making wreaths here.

10. Amaryllis.
(As opposed to that other holiday plant.)

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