Monday, December 30, 2013

2013 In Review

2013 wasn't my best year.  I'm not quite sure why.  If I had to choose one word to sum it up:  Difficult.  Nothing was easy in 2013.

And in spite of all that, there were a lot of terrific moments and good things that happened.

In January, L announced that she was engaged to CB.  We like him a lot, and especially love how he takes good care of our girl. Besides that, all I remember is teaching research papers, which is always stressful. And so was the January day when the coffee pot broke--one of the two times that would happen in 2013. ("If you want something done, always ask a highly caffeinated woman!")

I spent most of February directing and rehearsing "Our Town." It is one of my favorite plays--and quite challenging, though I was grateful for the volunteer help of Little Big Brother.  We had a lot of snow in February.  Oh, and I made the decision to go Vegan for Lent.  (That was a tough one!)  The best of February?  I discovered the television show "Downton Abbey."

March brought State Testing, the "Our Town" production, and Spring Break.  Since the show and state testing were in the same week, I was quite grateful for a lazy Spring Break.  The 13th was to be my last time of coloring my hair.  I decided it was time to go gray. My only trip over break was to a Discovery Center with the Lady Bug and her momma. We ended the month hiding Easter Eggs for a Buggy who was crazy about egg hunts.

In April, I felt like I was on auto-pilot.  I got the license to direct "Wizard of Oz" in the fall, put some highlights in my hair to cover the half inch of gray roots I was sporting, and graded District Writing Assessments. We spent a great weekend cleaning up at the farm, and on the home front dealt with our hot water heater unloading gallons of water in our basement.
The highlights to camouflage the gray roots

May brought the end of the school year, yard work, and a clothesline for Mother's Day.  We used Little Big Brother's chainsaw and did a lot of cleanup work in the backyard.  I took a bike ride in U town, rigged some makeshift bird feeders, and put a lot of laundry on the line.  We even had a May snow. And I could finally announce that L and CB were going to be having a baby in November.
End of May gray and highlights

I highlighted my hair for the last time in early June.  (Embracing the grayness! No more color.) The big news for June was going to Las Vegas to see L and CB marry in the Little White Wedding Chapel.  Vegas was fun, and I especially loved the pool at the Flamingo and the margaritas in Margaritaville.  This was one more thing to cross off my Bucket List.  I did a lot of cleaning in June. A garage sale emptied out a good part of my basement.  The real work on the fall musical began.  I was also lucky enough to be at the sonogram when L and CB found out they were having a healthy baby boy.

July brought quite a bit of Buggy time.  I went to Kindermusic and an incredibly fun water park with the Bug and her mama.  I babysat--and was completely worn out.  She is an energetic, funny little thing.  The coffee pot died. AGAIN.  (Maybe 13, as in 2013, really is a bit unlucky.) I squeezed in time for some other favorite people:  CraZy Cousin and her sweet mama came to Tiny Town, and old colleagues and friends met for a long breakfast. The Mr. and I continued enjoying the season tickets to summer Music Theater.

Ree, Dear Auntie C, and my hair before layers were cut to ease/hide the grayness

In August, we fought mosquitoes and drought, the Mr. changed positions at his work, and I sewed desk pockets for L's kindergarten room.  I went back to school with a new iPad, a change to Apple TV's in our rooms, a new prep--Stagecraft class, and a lot of work to do on Core Standards. We celebrated our 37th anniversary, the sweet Bug's 2nd birthday, and the return of U town football.  Between new technology and "The Wizard of Oz" (which I worked on most of the summer), I began thinking that retiring looked pretty inviting.

With September, auditions and rehearsals for "The Wizard of Oz" took up most of my time, though we did take the Bug to her first U town football game and tailgate.  I added Socratic seminars to the sophomore English curriculum and attended a conference about them. Tiny Town High was informed that we won a National Blue Ribbon award for Excellence.  Quite exciting.

October brought a visit from Little Sister and hubby from California.  It was so good to see them. October was when it really hit me that "The Wizard of Oz" is a show that is much heavier in work load for the director than the actors. I tracked down special effects, taped choreography, rounded up costumes and props, and pushed stagecraft kids to complete a crazy number of set pieces.  It was exhausting for me, but L was staving off exhaustion AND complications by spending the month on bed rest.  October ended with the Bug as a little cowgirl for Trick or Treating, and Little Big Brother and sweet Sister-in-law moving into my basement awaiting their remodeling job to be finished.
Little Sis with me
October hair--layers to cover the lack of color or highlights (parts of my hair are darker than thought)
A shy Trick or Treater

November was crazy!  There are no other words for it.  Baby E was born on the 3rd.  (He is absolutely adorable.)  "The Wizard of Oz" was a great success on the 8th and 9th, and then the Mr. and I went to Washington D.C. on the 17th to receive the Tiny Town High Blue Ribbon Award and watch my principal win a National Leadership award.  We had time to meet up with CraZy Cousin Ree and hubby and take in quite a few historic sites. There was a big celebration for the award when we returned to Tiny Town. And in the middle of all the hubbub, LBB and sweet SIL were having to dog sit and endure the craziness.

When December rolled around, we decorated and shopped, and I panicked over finals.  On the 23rd, after 53 days, LBB and sweet SIL could finally escape my basement and move into their house.  Their house is the perfect size and just beautiful.  There are still a few things to do, but nothing major.  We celebrated Christmas several times and are ending the year in a quieter fashion than we enjoyed at any time in 2013.

And to complete the gray diaries for 2013-

2013 brought:
* grayer hair  (both literally and figuratively)
* a conversational (and funny!) Lady Bug
* a new son-in-law and a brand new, sweet Baby E
* serious thoughts about early retirement
* the knowledge that I could either teach or direct--but not both (and I'm not sure which one I like more)
* a couple of great trips (Vegas and DC)
* and a reaffirmation that there really is "No Place Like Home"  (That theme came up several times this year!)

Wishing for a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year for all!

2014:  here we come!


141FE said...

It TWAS a great year.......I got to see one of my favorite CrAzY cousins AND my man 3 times in 5 months! That has to be a record.......lets try for MORE in 2014! Happy New Year...may it be healthy, happy AND slower paced for all of us! Love you......Ree

Kim said...

Ready or not, here 2014 comes! Here's hoping you can choose a word other than "difficult" for 2014. My best to you and yours as we say goodbye to 2013 and hello to 2014!