Friday, December 31, 2010

Looking Back

2010 was a good year! I did a lot of soul searching, lots of reading, I retired, and I'm still re-designing myself every day. Let's look at the nitty gritty:

January: we celebrated Father-in-Law's 90th birthday. His birthday is early Feb., but we held the party a few days early. He hosted and made his own birthday cake! Also in January the Haiti earthquake shook the world.. the good part was the response of compassion and care from the rest of the world. I participated in Craft Hope for Haiti which raised about $20,000 for Doctors Without Borders!

February: in the early months of the year I did a lot of sewing. But in February I also re-visited knitting. I learned knitting LONG ago, but didn't do much with it until this year. It has been fun to expand my knitting prowess bit by bit.

my most recent knitted project - I love how the top of this hat turned out

March: I began to realize that my retirement date of mid-June was not that far off. I started thinking about how I wanted to plan and handle my new life as a retiree. Our son's friend, J, started his walk from Minneapolis to Miami, to raise money for Haiti. We attended his send-off.

April, May: busy! Work and church kept me busy. Thinking and planning my future life kept my brain whirling. I was knitting a LOT of dish cloths to be ready for our mission trip in June.

June: I retired on June 10! My co-workers hosted such a nice party. Looking back at my career in the schools, I feel very blessed to have had such a great career. I attended my third mission trip to Tree of Life at Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota (with a group from my church). We took along over 100 knitted dish cloths as gifts to the people there. Loved the work and bonded with the people on our team. It's a very special place. Two dear quilter friends died in June. They are very much missed! In June I helped coordinate a quilt to give to K, a woman who lost everything in a massive tornado.

one of the dear (and silly) children we met at Rosebud

my pal came all the way from Georgia to help celebrate my retirement!

July: two fun reunions -- my 40th high school reunion, which confirms that I really am getting old, and a reunion of cousins on my dad's side. We had a blast. Really glad we started this reunion tradition four years ago. Family ties have been strengthened.

lots of Crazy Cousins

August: husband and I celebrated our 35th wedding anniversary! We're more in love with every passing year. What a gift! We took a fun and relaxing vacation in northern Minnesota.

Charles at Jay Cooke State Park

September: we bought new washer, dryer, and dishwasher. Feels so luxurious to have brand spanking new appliances! School started up again, and I did not return. This is when retirement felt real. I had a very happy fall, loving being retired.

October: started my new role as a sub in two different school districts. It's a fun, new life for me... working hours are similar to what I used to day dream about (i.e., sporadic and optional). In October Father-in-Law had a life-saving heart valve operation. His vim and vigor came back, and he's doing very well.

Rochester (Mayo) saved his life!

November: I realized that I have felt burned out with quilting and that I need a major overhaul in how I approach my quilting tasks. For now I'm concentrating more on knitting. I made four hats for homeless people, a few scarves, hats for family members, and zillions of dish cloths. I am now branching out into "real" garment items, with trepidation and excitement.

December: Christmas was so much fun this year! We had three family parties. All were happy, cheerful times. I got sick for the first time in many years, but managed to feel better just in time for the holidays. New Year's Eve -- watched "Monk" on TV with my husband, and now we're just hanging out. He may have already fallen asleep (90 minutes 'til the ball drops).

I attended a quilt retreat in Wisc.. one of the few times in the second half of 2010 that I felt motivated to sew

Son and DIL at Christmas party #1

Daughter and faux SIL at Christmas party #1

All year: continued my work at church. It keeps me busy, and I am driven by my belief that we need to help others and each other. We can always do so much more, and I am happy that my church provides an outlet for me to learn and participate. I'm president of UMW (man, do I have a lot to learn in that role!), participate in mission work as much as I can, love my friends at book group and love reading with them, try to keep my eyes open for more opportunities to serve.

I added up my reading list: I read 40 books in 2010. I do plan to continue my A-Z reading challenge in 2011, this time by author's last names, A-Z. Should be another fun year of reading some great books!

That's my wrap-up, dear readers! I am honored if you choose to stick around and continue to read my blog. Happy New Year!


Pattilou said...

40 Books! Wow! I maybe need to keep a list for 2011--but I've already sent Great Expectations back to the library. Was midway through and just didn't see the need to finish. Guess I'll start on Tale of Two Cities. I've read it once, and don't know if a second read will hold my interest--we'll see! It's fun to read about what book you are reading. You've given some great ideas that I've enjoyed!

Unknown said...

I'm impressed with the reading too! I read a lot at the cottage, but am reading Nelson DeMille's Gate House and I figure that it will be finished by the time we return to the cottage in April....I'm only reading before sleep now.
I did read the Girl with the Dragon Tatoo etc, each book took two days while recouping from hip thing.
Well, you've kept yourself busy. You will wonder as I do at times, when was there time to work?