1 January 2012

It's 2012!

Happy New Year, everyone! I was wondering what to post today when I found this meme and thought it would be fun to do. (I tag all of you too.)

1. What did you do in 2011 that you'd never done before?
Arrived in New Zealand.
Spent 25 hours traveling.
Had to hold down the fort on my own, without Grant, for 4.5 months.

2. Did you keep your new year's resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don't know if I had any, besides get to NZ, in which case yes I did. And I have some for 2012 that I am committed to achieving.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Not that I can think of.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Thankfully, no.

5. What countries did you visit?
New Zealand, our new home.

6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
Stability, routine, security, peace, patience, and did I mention stability and routine???

7. What date from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
20 June, the day we arrived in New Zealand to begin our new life.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Moving halfway around the world.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Being a less than patient or kind parent when I was dealing with overwhelming emotions and stress.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
A 3-inch nail went through my foot.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Plane tickets to New Zealand.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Grant, who has worked harder than he ever has in his life to get through a grueling 19 weeks of training college. Daniel, who has been so even-keeled with all of the upheaval we've been through (other than one meltdown.) Generous friends who lent us things and helped us settle and were there for me when I struggled.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

The recruitment people we had to deal with in getting Grant's job. The shippers who took four weeks longer than anticipated getting our stuff to us.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Freighting our goods halfway around the world; plan tickets; buying a car; getting settled.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Finally getting visas, finally booking our plan tickets, finally arriving in NZ, enjoying the beaches, Grant getting back from college for good.

16. What song(s) will always remind you of 2011?
Rhianna's "We found love" that is popular right now. I always pump the volume when it comes on. I guess in future years when I hear it I'll always remember how I feel right now.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? Happier.
b) thinner or fatter? Fatter.
c) richer or poorer? Poorer financially, richer in other ways.

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Been patient with my children in tough times.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
Christmas 2011 was exactly right - relaxing and low-key.
Christmas 2012 I believe will be spent with wonderful friends who are planning a visit and I'm so excited.

21. Where did you begin the year; and where did you end it?
Began it in the snowy depths of winter in Lancashire, England.
Ended it on a rainy, warm summer night in Auckland, New Zealand.

22. Did you fall in love in 2011?
Yes, with my new country and the people here.

23. How many one-night stands?
Um, none!

24. What was your favorite TV program?
I don't watch TV much but the one show I did tune in for was (shamefully) America's Next Top Model (cycle 15).

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
Not that I can think of!

26. What was the best book you read?
James Dashner's Maze Runner trilogy.

27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Can't think of any.

28. What did you want and get?
A new life in New Zealand.

29. What did you want and not get?
Our new life in New Zealand to start a lot sooner than it did.

30. What was your favorite film of this year?
The last of Harry Potter, sob, sob.

31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 36 and spent it with my friend Taryn, who spoilt me rotten and also took us bowling. Lots of lovely friends popped by and brought me little treats and sent texts and I felt very loved and special. I even had a rainbow in the sky from God!

32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Getting to NZ at the beginning of the year instead of halfway through.

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
Gaining enough emigration weight that only one pair of threadbare jeans still fits does not lend itself to a "personal fashion concept". But I have embraced jandals (flip-flops) in a way that I haven't since I was a child.

34. What kept you sane?
God and dear, loving, supportive friends. My kinesiologist. Kind comments from blog readers who were so supportive and empathic. You'll never know what a difference you make.

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Can't think of any.

36. What political issue stirred you the most?
Ummm ... pass.

37. Who did you miss?
Too many to mention, but the list includes Dianne and Rachel and Rebecca and Laura and Sue and Liz and Jo and my kinesiologist Catherine.

38. Who was the best new person you met?
I couldn't possibly say for fear of hurting feelings. I have met so many wonderful people this year that actually I probably couldn't pick a favourite!

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011:
It's okay to be vulnerable in front of people.
Just because you struggle doesn't mean you're weak. It's sometimes very much part of the process of becoming stronger.
You can't push aside the feelings, they have to be got through.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
Taken from the two songs I used in our slideshow:

"I guess it's gonna have to hurt,
I guess I'm gonna have to cry,
And let go of some things I've loved,
To get to the other side,
I guess it's gonna break me down,
Like falling when you try to fly,
It's sad, but sometimes moving on with the rest of your life,
Starts with goodbye.
I know there's a blue horizon,
Somewhere up ahead, just waiting for me,
Getting there means leaving things behind,
Sometimes life's so bitter sweet."


"These are the moments
I know heaven must exist
These are the moments I know all I need is this
I have all I've waited for
And I could not ask for more ...
I could not ask for more than this time together
I could not ask for more than this time with you
Every prayer has been answered
Every dream I have's come true
And right here in this moment is right where I'm meant to be
Here with you, here with me
These are the moments I thank God that I'm alive
These are the moments I'll remember all my life
I've got all I've waited for
And I could not ask for more"

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