A few of my friends do an end-of-the-year survey, and I thought I'd start the same tradition this year. Here goes...
1) What did you do in 2008 that you'd never done before?
Tried some new foods (crab legs!!), went to Atlanta to be production assistant for a conference (and saw a Braves game!), switched from ball-point to felt-tipped pens, got a massage at a spa, went to Dodger Stadium, joined facebook and twitter, started doing Crave announcements in the Refinery, visited Oxford and Stonehenge and Bath and Windsor, went to 3 midnight movies (ugh…why?!), joined a Masters swim team, and took a five- and four-year-old to Disneyland for a day (with help!).
2) Did you keep your New Year's resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I cannot help myself from making resolutions every year. I usually meet goals that I am serious about, but I make so many resolutions that I naturally don’t keep them all (or even remember them!). Generally speaking, next year, and in life, I want to reflect the character of Jesus to people, contribute to others’ lives in a positive and meaningful way, be a productive person and constant learner, always have a grateful heart, and cultivate my interests.
3) Did anyone close to you give birth?
Yes! Many did. I was so especially excited for Clayton and Allison and Derek and Lena!
4) Did anyone close to you die?
Yes. My grandma passed away last spring.
5) What countries did you visit?
England. And man, did I have a blast.
6) What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?
LOST season 4. Still haven’t seen any of it yet…
7) What date(s) from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
October 13—It was my first day working on the Crave team! But I didn’t really work…I went to NLCS Game 4 at Dodger Stadium with Julie!! What a great day! (Hey, it’s Pat!!)
8) What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Not sure. I finished three seminary classes and learned a lot. God truly blessed me with an incredible new position at Saddleback. I feel like I grew socially as well; I made a lot of new friends (not all of them have blogs, unfortunately) and am learning to be a better friend myself. I also experienced profound sorrow and anxiety, but also sublime joy and excitement. However, none of those things are ‘achievements.’
9) Did you suffer illness or injury?
The first four months or so of the year were a bit sketchy…I had chest pains caused by anxiety, a random tear duct infection, and severe tonsillitis, all within a short amount of time. But then I felt much better. I also threw my back out and had chronic back pain in late summer, but that’s normal…don’t worry about it, guys…haha.
10) What was the best thing you bought?
Tea at the Ritz Hotel in London with one of my best pals, Hayley. It was so, so great. We drank so much tea and were so excited that, even though we were so tired from walking around all day, we couldn’t fall asleep until three in the morning.
11) Whose behavior merited celebration?
Anyone who sacrificed something of themselves for the benefit of someone else merits celebration in my book.
12) Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Anyone who took a side in a debate/issue/argument, who didn’t have a true sense of conviction and only wanted to cause a ruckus, be part of the scene, or make a statement made me sad.
13) Where did most of your money go?
A lot of it went to gasoline for most of the year…ugh! Most of it went to London, including the entirety of my economic stimulus check!
14) What did you get really, really, really excited about?
I get really, really, really excited about a lot of stuff, whether it’s going on a trip or the smell of a cinnamon crunch bagel from Panera, so…I don’t know what to tell you.
15) What song will always remind you of 2008?
Viva la Vida by Coldplay. My brother and I saw them in concert in November and they’re so incredible…I almost can’t handle it.
16) Compared to this time last year, are you:
Wiser? I think so. Healthier? Difficult to say. Richer? In many ways.
17) What do you wish you'd done more of?
Read, studied, traveled, blogged, and swum. (‘Swum’ is correct, if you’re wondering. Look it up.)
18) What do you wish you'd done less of?
19) How did you spend Christmas?
My family went to church and dinner on Christmas Eve, came home and sat by the fire, and opened presents. I also read The Catcher in the Rye. On Christmas Day we had a great dinner and then I saw “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” with friends.
20) Did you fall in love in 2008?
If fictional characters count, then yes.
21) What was your favorite TV program?
LOST. Oh, LOST…I love it.
22) Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
I don’t think I hate anyone…so, no.
23) What was the best book you read?
Hands down it was The Road.
24) What was your greatest musical discovery?
Country music. It’s true. I would say that I learned to love it in 2008.
25) What did you want and get?
A book embosser!
26) What did you want and not get?
A few things…no matter, though.
27) What was your favorite film of this year?
28) What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
To celebrate turning 26, my small group took me to dinner on my birthday eve, and the waitress gave my birthday dessert, with the candle and everything, to the wrong person; it was hilarious. And I spent my actual birthday at Disneyland with Amberpants, eating ratatouille and pink ice cream, and I got so many texts and messages and it was great. I felt so loved and special and I laughed a lot. That, to me, is a great birthday.
29) Which celebrity/public figure did you like the most?
Joel McHale and Tony Bourdain.
30) How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?
I try to have fun and feel good about how I dress and look. That’s about all that’s behind my “concept.”
31) What kept you sane?
32) Who did you miss?
I miss my relatives in Germany, Mic, Elizabeth, Amber Rusher, the Coates family, Mindi, Jared, Jeananne, and Adam in Australia!
33) Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008.
Well, I learned that I shouldn’t be content with mediocrity; I want to strive for excellence.
34) What did you gain this year?
35) What did you lose this year?
Some close friends—not to death, but to distance and busyness.
36) Who was the best new person you met?
Moving offices allowed me to meet many new people this year…and I am so grateful for my new friends.
37) Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
I’m slipping into the lava…and I’m trying to keep from going under. Baby, who turned the temperature hotter, cuz I’m burnin’ up, burnin’ up for you baby! (This was THEE-MOST-PLAYED-BY-FAR song of the year for me.)
Happy New Year!!