Happy New Year!
Another year I get to keep breathing (as my dear old great aunt would say – glass of scotch in hand). I had a very low-key New Years; I’ve never been much of a night owl, so staying up to see midnight has always been a challenge. This year, I invited my best friend over and we watched movies. My cousin and his wife stopped in too, bearing gifts of freshly smoked salmon. I love having a fisherman cousin who hates the taste of fish – it means that I get all the spoils of his hobby. We all made it to the midnight mark, and then the movie was over and everyone went home and to bed. Not terribly exciting, but not a bad way to spend an evening either.
Were you ready to say goodbye to 2011? I was, but not for any particular reason other than it was time to. I had a great 2011, with lots of personal highlights and amazing memories. I am happy with what I accomplished in 2011 and I don’t have any regrets looking back. What all happened in 2011, well, let’s take a look back.
- My highlights of 2011:
- Launched Cents of a Country Girl on February 24. Through the blogging community, I’ve met some great people and I’m looking forward to meeting more in 2012.
- Watching the Tim Horton’s Briar final in London with my curling buddies in March. I had so much fun that weekend. Not only did we get to watch some world class curling but we got to meet some of the pros too. We stayed up late, talking, laughing and catching up. The next day was rough, but it was absolutely worth it.
- Started taking yoga classes with my best friend. Even though my friend consistently gets a laugh at me twitching my way through the meditation at the beginning of each class, I do feel more calm and centered afterwards.
- Was debt-free at the end of May. It was a great feeling being absolutely debt-free. I was so glad to see my car loan finally paid off. It really reinforced that with careful spending, you can be debt free sooner than you think.
- Went to a day spa for my best friend’s birthday. I hadn’t done anything like that before, so it was kind of neat to get a massage and be totally pampered for an entire day (you’d almost think it was MY birthday.)
- Buying my first house in July. It was quite an adventure, buying my first house. I’m not thrilled about being in debt again (darn you, mortgage!) but I look at my house as well worth it. It’s a great place, in a great location, with lots of potential for the future. I can’t wait for summer so I can really put my deck to use!
- Being asked to emcee my cousin’s wedding. I was flattered to be asked to be the MC for my cousin’s wedding. It was a little nerve-wracking, but thankfully I knew most of the people at the wedding beforehand so that helped calm the nerves a bit. The DJ they hired was great too, so I think between the two of us, we were able to keep the crowd entertained. I even had people ask me if I MC’ed professionally!
- Taking my cousin’s fiancé’s family from the UK on a very Canadian canoe trip. When they kindly put me up (I was a total stranger) during my tour of the UK, they mentioned that they wanted to do a canoe trip when they came over the wedding. I called in a few favours and put together a canoe trip a couple days before the wedding. We all had a blast. They got what they felt was a very Canadian experience, between canoeing, riding in a big ‘ole pickup truck, and seeing deer, bald eagles, mosquitoes and black flies.
- Renovating my first house. When I bought my house, I knew I had a lot of cosmetic renovations to do, like painting, changing switches, stuff like that. I also had one major renovation to take care of: the bathroom. We gutted it, and put in a whole new bathroom, tub, floors, everything. My Dad and I, with help from my cousins, were able to do most of the work ourselves (we got a pro to install the tub and surround). I think in 2012, we might tackle moving the stairs that come up from the basement.
- Winning a couple blue ribbons at the Fall Fair for my baking. My friend and I had a baking day, and entered a pile of baking goods in the local fall fair. We did pretty well, with our cakes taking the top prizes. I made a first prize winning carrot cake and hummingbird cake. Maybe I do have a talent after all.
It was quite a year. What was the highlight of your 2011? Are you looking forward to 2012?