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Reeling in the year

January 1, 2011

When it comes to celebrating the New Year, fireworks from the front porch is as glittery as we get. I can think of at least a hundred thousand reasons not to put on a dress in January, and being expected to stay up past midnight practically guarantees that I won’t feel like it. When one year I attended what might have been my only-ever New Year’s Eve party, thrown by some dear friends in their signature lavish style (that night, the kitchen was hidden by a curtain and they’d hired people to move drinks around the room), we still left early.  On my most rockin’ New Years Eve to date, I rang in 2009 with a small group of relatives and friends, Casablanca and plenty of libations – enough that my aunt ended the night with an impassioned and hilarious tirade against 1940s France that I only wish had become an annual performance.

This year, I even forgot to pick up the champagne – last night found me sipping Riesling from a Bota Box and watching Curb Your Enthusiasm (I made my husband stop looking for Dick Clark when Larry David flashed across the screen.). And only until 11 p.m., when I did my own countdown and then retired. This morning, when I tried for some reflection, 2010 was a messy blur – cheerful enough, but nebulous. I asked my husband for his proudest moment of the last year, and he couldn’t think past yesterday, when he managed to clean the waffle iron.

It’s far from lost on me, though, that today began a new year. That it really was all of 12 months ago that I was celebrating the end of a big decade and looking forward to 2010. That really, whether you’re having fun or not so much, time flies and all that.

In 2010, we built great new friendships and at least some of our house, which is only recently livable again. (This year, we hope to make it hospitable, too!) I moved through three different jobs, settling on my best yet. Don stayed committed to all of his – the one that pays, and the ones (plumber, electrician, carpenter, painter, father) that pay off. Together, we laid well over a thousand square feet of new old floors. Even though we aren’t supposed to have any, we rediscovered free time, going plum-picking and zoo-hopping.

I love the newness of the new year, the promise of the happy unknowns. Having a child has made that annual horizon all the more exciting. Jack turned two in 2010, but it was a year full of firsts –

first sentence, dance move, tricycle and solo slide;
first swim, hamburger, haircut, boat ride and milkshake;
first favorite color (purple), first guitar, first favorite music (“real rock-n-roll”);
first time to get a toy out of an in-store tantrum, first trick-or-treat and lollipop;
first football game and trip to the zoo, first “I love you,” and “Are we there yet?”
first 3,000 trips to Home Depot, first hard hat and safety goggles, first time staying up past 11 to hammer and saw.

As much as I love the idea of making resolutions for keeping, I’ve tried and failed enough times to know that I already have plenty of commitments – and momentum. My first act of 2011 wasn’t a motivational to-do list – just a deep breath for the first day of another year, and a little bit of hoping that humor, love and curiosity will continue to be motivation enough.

Happy New Year! How did you kick it off? Was it a party hat and a kiss at the stroke of midnight, or sweats and an early bedtime? Are resolutions alive and well for you?


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12 Comments leave one →
  1. January 2, 2011 5:00 pm

    Leslie, Happy New Year to you and yours! We like to celebrate quietly with a close set of friends. We did stay up until midnight, but as soon as the clock hit twelve, we went to sleep. Sometimes the New Year’s Eve proves to be anti-climatic.

    3000 trips to Home Depot – Wow. I don’t think I’ve gone even 30 times.

  2. January 2, 2011 6:14 pm

    Humor, love and curiosity, a fitting way to start a new year. Like you I’m not one for big New Year celebrations. I prefer to stay close to home. Though this year we went to dinner and a movie with another couple we are close too and it was a pretty great adult evening.

    Here’s to 2010, happy moments at work and at home for both of us.
    xo

  3. January 2, 2011 6:21 pm

    We had two friends over, played Trivial Pursuit, barely remembered to turn on the TV for the ball dropping, and completely forgot the champagne in the fridge. I did, however, drink too much wine (which is any wine at all since I drink so irregularly these days) and woke up to a tiny hangover and tiny people yelling for waffles. Good thing they didn’t get a drum set for Christmas! =>

    Happy New Year, Leslie!

  4. January 2, 2011 11:50 pm

    Happy New Year! I love your reflection of it all…
    (we celebrated with tv and the changing of sheets right after midnight on a toddler’s bed ;))

  5. January 3, 2011 12:54 am

    Happy New Year to you and your family Leslie! You definitely had a busy year. We had the family over this year which was nice and low key. I don’t make resolutions anymore, I make intentions.
    Here’s hoping I don’t intend to do to much that I can’t finish.

  6. January 3, 2011 2:21 am

    Love and curiosity! Hooray!

  7. Sister permalink
    January 3, 2011 3:39 am

    While you were drinking Bota Box Riesling, I was toasting the New Year with sparkling Shiraz, which I accidentally bought TWO bottles of to take to party. Oops.

    • January 3, 2011 9:07 pm

      Rach. How do you accidentally buy two bottles?
      And how were they?

      • sister permalink
        January 12, 2011 4:45 pm

        It was the product, not the number, that was the accident. At midnight, no one wanted to toast with red wine, even if it was a bit bubbly.

  8. January 3, 2011 3:47 am

    You’ve had a very full year.

    Ours was a small celebration, by small I mean non-existent because Ben ended up working that evening. So, I reeled in the New Year alone yet surrounded by my babies. Not a bad way to start.

  9. January 4, 2011 3:26 am

    So much life in a year!

    3,000 trips to Home Depot. (I had to chuckle.) Having lived (with little ones) through 3 renovations, I get that one.

    🙂

    Have a glorious 2011, and may all the sawdust soon be a thing of the very distant past.

  10. January 6, 2011 1:54 am

    Your New Year’s sounds pretty good, actually. I guess because I thought it would be fun to sit with you and sip Riesling and watch a funny show.

    If your house is so hospitable, maybe you should invite this Yank for a retreat. Huh?

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