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A houseful of visitors, a couple of months worth of parties, and a massive head cold left me with little time to update the past few days. I didn't get my usual year retrospective up before the year actually turned, but that seems to be par for the course for how 2009 went for me. Last night, around the table with our good friends, we each recounted the low point and the high point that the passing year had held for us. One friend recounted the fear and helplessness of watching her best friend's pregnancy head into complications. One talked about her total career change and how she had found a job that allowed her to help people find better jobs themselves and how empowering it was.

My mom mentioned my nephew's kidney surgery and Anders talked about the health problems his father, 83 this year, faced. I spoke about the tough year I had in regards to my friends: one dying from cancer, another's husband struggling with leukemia, and 2 others facing major health issues. Even the high points of my year, which included a visit with my oldest and best friend in Holland, and a wonderful summer vacation with my brother up north, paled in the face of the blessings which I consider the high point of my year: a good life, a healthy family, a rewarding job, a committed relationship.

High points and low points move up and down the scale of the days. They can't be tied into a neat package, at least not yet, as we stumble and glide into the next year. Our stories continue, and our eyes, while glancing backwards, must turn to face forward again: march on! I think of each of those floating lit lanterns high above my head last night, glowing like firefly stars: each a wish for myself and for you, a wish for a good thing in a new year, and the moon smiling down upon us all.

Family & personal highlights of 2009
  • A renewed (more than once) commitment to healthier eating and exercise
  • Anders more than reaching his goal for Vättern Runt with a personal time of 12 hours
  • A fantastic week on the west coast with John & Simone
  • The mini-reunion with my AFCent girlfriends in the Netherlands in July
  • Karin entering double digits
  • Two weeks with Mom in Massachusetts in September
  • Finding the strength to help a friend with a family in crisis
  • Wonderful holiday memories: family visiting, parties galore, perfect presents
  • A school switch for Martin which promises good things for 2010
In 2009, I read 109 books, far short of my record-smashing 139.5 last year, but I still feel pretty good about it, as it was an average of 9 books per month. Everyone needs to slow down with some things some time, right? If it happened to be reading this year and choir, so be it. Some things ramped up, and it all evens out in the end.

Best books of 2009 (in no particular order and including no re-reads)
  • The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson
  • The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society by M.A. Shaffer & A. Barrows
  • The Girl Who Stopped Swimming by Joshilyn Jackson
  • Fishing in Utopia by Andrew Brown
  • Dreamdark: Blackbringer by Laini Taylor
  • People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks
  • The Myth of You and Me by Leah Stewart
  • The Magicians by Lev Grossman
  • The Invention of Everything Else by Samantha Hunt
  • The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet by Reif Larsen
Best films I saw in 2009
  • Coraline
  • Inkheart
  • The Fall
  • Avatar
  • Twilight: New Moon
  • Star Trek
  • Julie & Julia
And I just bought tickets to see Sherlock Holmes tomorrow (Robert Downey Jr makes me swoon!) Whee!

Best musical discoveries in 2009
  • Yohanna
  • The Cat Empire
  • The Swell Season
  • Dashboard Confessional
  • Rigo
  • Esperanza
  • Malena Ernman
  • Sara Bareilles
  • Swingfly
  • Vaughan Penn
Some manageable goals for 2010
  • Get the family to the States for summer vacation
  • Get back on track with weight loss and walking
  • Keep the better balance found between work, family & activities
Silver Moon Bright Boon Birthday Wishes to ozswede!
mood: contemplative
music: Swingfly—Save the Trees


Have a wonderful 2010!! :)

I'm leaving a rather crappy 2009 behind me. Hopefully 2010 will be better.

I loved Julie & Julia - such a great movie!


It was a good year in some ways, and a rotten year in others. I hope 2010 holds much more of the good stuff!

We saw Sherlock tonight! I share your opinion of Robert Downey, Jr.!

He's awesome :)


It's good to remember the low points, too, while appreciating the high points. My hope is that the good stuff always outweighs the bad stuff. I wish all you lovely Eks a wonderful New Year, and feel lucky that I get read all about it!

I got The Magicians for Christmas, and I am looking forward to it. The bonus is that I think Beaux will like it to, he who has re-read the entire Harry Potter series several times.

You beat me on the book reading, but oh, I will catch up to you! It's on! :)


You're on, Samiam! :D I'm on book 2 for 2010 already. Woot! The Magicians is great, especially for anyone who enjoyed Narnia, Harry Potter and/or Diana Wynne Jones.

it sounds like a year of balance the pendulum didn't swing too awfully far in either direction. those, to me, are the best years of all...when we can look back and realize that yest, there loss and maybe some things fell by the wayside, but that overall life was good. wishing you blessings in 2010. may it be a good year for you and yours. xo

I agree...a year of balance is an awfully good year. I have nothing to complain about :) XO to you, and wishes for a very good year in 2010.

From Megsie

I love your lists, and your 2009 sounds like it was happy indeed. I can't believe that you have read two books already! How? It is only Jan. 2. One per day??? Impressive. I haven't pulled one out yet. I am going to keep track this year. I am NOT going to try and catch you though...goodness that would be a futile effort. Happy New Year Liz! I hope 2010 holds only the best for you and yours. Can I tell you that I am so grateful for you? You truly touch my heart with what you write here, and I am so, so thankful that I found you here. Cheers!

Re: From Megsie

One was a quickie and the one I'm reading now is pretty short, too, so I expect to be on book #3 by tonight ;)

And I feel the same about you: I'm SO glad you've become one of my tribe!

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I can complain because rose bushes have thorns or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.

Abraham Lincoln

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