This is one of my favorite surveys, though apparently I didn't do it last year (I did do it in 2009 but that was a pretty depressing year, I think last year I was too afraid to jinx anything.), here we go for 2011:
1. What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before? Had a healthy baby, did the stay at home mom thing, volunteered at a hospital, registered at community college. Participated in the SHARE walk.
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don't think I made any last year. This year I want to de-clutter bigtime (and make straight A's, though that's hardly anything new.)
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Uh, me, does that count? Also my good friend Jackie. And my cousin in law and second cousin (all welcoming boys! Luke is going to have a lot of kids his age) and I now have several pregnant friends.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
Thank goodness, not this year. It was the first year in awhile.
5. What countries did you visit?
We stayed in the good ole' USA. (Doctors tend to discourage you from leaving the country when you are pregnant after having a 23 weeker, and traveling out of the country with a baby is not my idea of a good time.)
6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
I feel very lucky that this is a tough question because 2011 was pretty good to us. I was pretty darn neurotic in 2011 though, between being high risk pregnant and then parenting a rainbow baby...so maybe I would like to have sanity and calm?
7. What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
January 23rd, Olivia's due date (a year later) and the week I was 23 weeks pregnant with Lucas. April 26th and 27th, the last day before Lucas was born and his birthday. September 28th, Olivia's second birthday.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Keeping Lucas alive and well.(Not an easy task with his newfound mobility and affection for cords, bags, and outlets.) Breastfeeding for 8 months and still going, reaching our 9th year of marriage, getting the guts to make a major career change and go back to school. Letting Luke sleep in his own bed was a pretty big deal for me, too. (Not that he stays in there the entire night, ever.)
9. What was your biggest failure?
Housekeeping and cleaning. Also, we did not go to the cemetery/honor Olivia as much as I would have liked, but I'm not sure that I'll ever feel like we do enough.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Thankfully no. This has been a pretty healthy year for me (aside from an almost broken toe.)
11. What was the best thing you bought?
My Dodge Journey, I've warmed up to it, although I still wish it was a minivan.
12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Joe not having a cow when I decided not to teach and go back to school to do sonography/ultrasound school. And my mom, when on vacation and asked if Lucas was her first grandchild, she answered no and told them about Olivia.Also, I think the Cardinals winning the World Series counts. (Remember when I predicted that?!? Damn me for not putting money on it.)
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Eh, I don't feel like talking about it.
14. Where did most of your money go?
Medical bills ($$$!), baby stuff, 2 new vehicles, (Joe says) eating out. Our vacation and trip to PA was pretty expensive since we stayed in hotels.
15. What did you get really excited about?
Babies, mine and all of my pregnant friends. My friend Maggie visiting from St.Thomas.
16. What song will always remind you of 2011?
I agree with Brooke, Adele's "Rolling in the Deep".
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
– happier or sadder? Happier. There's still bittersweetness always lingering, but Lucas makes my heart happier than I ever thought it could be again.
– thinner or fatter? Thinner. Not pregnant this year, and hooray for breastfeeding-weight loss with no exercise.
– richer or poorer? Financially poorer, thanks to things listed above and also I didn't work a single day of 2011. The important things though, much richer than we were at this time last year.
18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Just enjoying the moment.
19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Worrying, but I'm not sure that would have been possible given my personality and the circumstances.
20. How did you spend Christmas?
We went to the cemetery, and then with family. (More on Christmas later.)
21. Did you fall in love in 2011? Oh yes.
22. What was your favorite TV program?
I watch so much crap tv this is another tough question. I think The New Girl is my favorite *new* show this year, but I've watched a lot of Storage Wars lately too.
23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Um, not that I remember at the moment, but probably. I think I have less patience for people that get on my nerves, although I'd probably not say "hate".
24. What was the best book you read? Nothing that I'll admit to...
25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Um, Adele? (I am a music follower, not a leader or discoverer.)
26. What did you want and get? A healthy living child.
27. What did you want and not get?
28. What was your favorite film of this year? Oy, I have only seen Redbox movies this year and none that were especially great. (Not impressed with what I saw of The Black Swan.) I was really looking forward to Rabbithole but found it pretty disappointing.
29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I turned 28, we went to Friday's with my family.
30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? Olivia.
31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011? I-don't-care/always between sizes. Is this comfortable?
32. What kept you sane?
Joe. Lucas. My doctors. My friends.
33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? Hmmm...David Beckham and Gordon Ramsey...I love British accents.
34. What political issue stirred you the most?
Hmm, I've been pretty mellow this year. Not political but I still cannot believe Casey Anthony was found innocent...wtf.
35. Who did you miss?
36. Who was the best new person you met?
Literally "new" person: Lucas. Only new to me- Brooke and some other really great people from Heartprints.
37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011.
Life goes on, even after The Worst, good things can still happen. While there will always be a huge hole in our hearts and lives where Olivia should be and all the things she should be doing now, her little brother has given us so many reasons to smile and laugh every day. I didn't think life would ever be this good again, but it is. Not that we are "over it", we won't ever be, but cuddling up with a warm squirmy baby whose face lights up when I walk in the door (and cries if someone tries to take him from me), makes my heart smile.
38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
The Band Perry song, "If I Die Young"
Lord make me a rainbow I'll shine down on my mother,
she'll know I'm safe with you when she stands under my colors
Life ain't always what you think it ought to be
No, ain't even gray but she buries her baby
I hope 2012 is an even better year for everyone.