AH! Can you believe I just wrote all of these, had only 3 to go, and they DISAPPEARED? I have no idea what just happened. So because of that, and how my heart is beating right now because I want to strangle someone, I am going to start from 18 and end with 8. It’s like Sesame Street but not. :) Enjoy!
What lesson or advice were you able to pass on to others this year? Why was it important to share this information? (Or… what lesson would you like to pass on to others that read this?)
I think it would have to be communication. It can make or break a friendship, a relationship, a partnership or anything. Even if it’s ugly, even if it’s hurtful, it’s important to be honest and open with people in your life. In the end, everyone will feel better.
What did you discover (big or small) in 2011?
If anything, I discovered after all is said and done, I just want to be a writer. Like I have since I was a young kid. That doesn’t sound like a huge deal. It actually might sound silly to some people. But this year, my passion has been reignited even more and I’m ready to do something about it. And I guess I have been in small ways but now I’m admitting it to myself. That’s huge for me.
Describe something that disappointed you in 2011 and how you persevered.
There are some adults in our lives that have been generally disappointing. I think my husband and I have done as good of a job as we could staying strong and true to our convictions and just moving forward, with or without their support. We’ve been honest and said how we felt when they haven’t been the easiest things to say. We’ve made an effort to fix things and move forward and be happy. In general, since we first moved in together, Mr. FF and I have gotten better at making decisions and not letting the thoughts and ideas of others sway what we do or how we feel about them. It’s unfortunate not to have the support of people who love us but we know that we can move on and continue doing what we know is right for us.
What event of 2011 affected you in an unexpected way?
There are two very different projects I’ve been honored to be a part of this year and I have been so surprised by the amazing things I’ve gained since starting. I’ve made new (really good) friends, gained some awesome opportunities, and just been able to be a part of some fabulous, awesome communities.
How did you make space + peace for yourself in 2011?
I’m probably the worst at relaxing because I always have so much to do. (This happens when you have a long commute 5 days a week.) But I think taking time for myself even if it just meant planting myself in the guest room and watching a lot of my DVRed shows, or going to visit some gal pals. Taking a break for the night and just watching a movie with the hubster or an impromptu dinner out. Not to mention, the gym. THE GYM. For real. I feel my best after a work out.
What article or book changed your outlook on an issue or life?
I have no idea how I heard about this book but I took it out and was VERY surprised by my strong reaction to it. Donald Millers’ A Million Miles in a Thousand Years. It’s about this writer who is trying to figure out his life by talking about the decisions of others and certain moves he makes. It was really effective and hopeful. Here’s one of my favorite quotes. It’s a little depressing but it really hit home with me:
“I think this is when most people give up on their stories. They come out of college wanting to change the world, wanting to get married, wanting to have kids and change the way people buy office supplies. But they get into the middle and discover it was harder than they thought. They can’t see the distant shore anymore, and they wonder if their paddling is moving them forward. None of the trees behind them are getting smaller and none of the trees ahead are getting bigger. They take it out on their spouses, and they go looking for an easier story.”
What was your healthiest habit of 2011? What would you like to change or do differently in 2012?
We certainly read a lot of Nutrition labels this year, and stopped having soda in our house. (We only have ginger ale and soda for parties now.) I’ve totally cut High Fructose Corn Syrup from my diet, which has been great. I just wish we had more time to go to the gym.
For my mind, I’ve been indulging in a lot of hobbies during my free time and after feeling brainless at work each day, it’s really improved my peace of mind and made me feel good.
In 2012, I hope I can find a balance between all the things I want to do and also be able to make a more consistant gym schedule. I want to take spinning classes or maybe take up running when I don’t want to go to the gym. I would love for us to continue to have better eating habits at home. (I also would like to lose 10 more pounds by my birthday, and then another 5 by June. That would be my happy weight.) Here’s to all of that happening!
What 12 new things do you want to do/accomplish in 2012?
- Balance my time better.
- Cut myself off from all electronics one in awhile.
- Make more time for worthwhile friends, and reaching out to new ones.
- Taking some time to volunteer.
- Paying off credit cards. Not all of them, just a majority. Save some money and stop thinking I don’t have enough clothes in my closet.
- Stress less, laugh more.
- Starting something new in my workout routine.
- Finally finish reading “Little Women” and indulging in a few more classics.
- FOCUS. Stop feeling impatient, anxious, or feeling like I have to do 928349 things at once.
- Be the most supportive wife I can be.
- Start writing a novel.
- Work on the small details of our home. (Light switch covers, more pictures, switching around 2 of the rooms… lots to do!)
Share a creative project you undertook this year (art, writing, DIY, cooking, home decoration, crafts, photography … whatever comes to mind). How do you use your creativity to express yourself?
Ah this question is so hard when it comes to RV & I staying anonymous. I would have to say one of my favorite projects this year was painting a wall in my living room. I realize I sound very Pacey & Joey when I saw that. (Do you remember when Pacey bought her a wall for no reason at all? Swoon!)
Here’s a picture to refresh your memory. Anyway, Mr. FF hated the idea of me painting the wall but you know what? In 2 years we still have not hung up any pictures in here, I’m not sure if more furniture would make it look better or just crowded so I thought the wall painting would make the room look “full”. I came up with the idea, and my sister and her best friend executed it when they came to visit. (Don’t worry, we bought them dinner!) It looks fabulous and even Mr. FF can’t argue with me. He likes it! He really likes it, and we’ve gotten a lot of compliments. Now I want to hang up a collage of frames over it but one thing at a time, I guess. :)
There are many ways to express creativity and without it I would be the most miserable person in the world. I’m happy to say I am able to destress by making cards, painting walls, brainstorming new projects, and writing.
In which moment did you find yourself flooded with gratitude? How will you rally around gratitude in 2012?
I can’t stop talking about our wedding. But I can’t help it. It was the biggest thing to happen this year and sort of showcased my favorite moments I’ve had in a long time.
While I always feel grateful for my friends who were also in my bridal party, it was the morning of when we were sipping mimosas, listening to crazy Funfetti favorites on iTunes, waiting for our makeup and hair to be done — it was one of the best parts of wedding planning and the wedding day itself. We were laughing, have a great time, and it felt so thankful at that very moment to have these girls share my day with me like this.
I hate to be realistic but someday we may lose touch. Even if we can never imagine it now. We don’t know what will happen. But when I look back at those pictures and remember that morning, I know I made the very best decision when it came to my bridal party. Throughout the whole process, they were amazing even when I was changing my mind constantly, sending out a million emails, starting craft projects I didn’t understand fully… They were great sports and I’ll be forever thankful to them for being so supportive and calming during the whole crazy thing.
In fact, I wish I could go back and do that morning one more time. Mimosas, anyone?
What was the biggest choice you made in 2011? What caused you to choose what you chose?
Getting married. I know a lot of people wouldn’t say this. I mean, I have never had any doubts about getting married to Mr. FF at all. If anything it was just logistics. Is this the right time? Are we rushing things? (We dated for a long time, and we had a long engagement so I’m not sure why this one kept popping up in my mind.)
Deciding this is the person you want to spend your life with is sort of a decision you make over a span of time. Do we have fun together? Do I like who I am with him? Do we have the same dreams for the future? And if we don’t, are we both willing to bend and compromise to make them happen for one another? Are you truly happy? Do you feel supported? Is our marriage sustainable for the rest of our lives? Without knowing what challenges we will face, who we will meet, where we will go, what jobs we may have… it’s really a lot to think about. I think too many people our age go into it blindly. Without thinking. They think EVERYONE else is getting married around them and it’s just the thing to do after you’ve been together for a long time. It’s the next step. I guess when I was young I never thought about people getting married who weren’t the “right” couple and yet I’ve met quite a few and it frightens me to no end. I know you can never know what goes on in a relationship and it’s between two people but still… there is that dreaded feeling you get sometimes.
Now I’m going off on a tangent. But I think everyone knows at least one couple like this, and we only hope they can grow together and make things work. Marriage is not a temporary thing, and when I have a bad day or even a good one and Mr. FF says something sweet, does something wonderful for me at home, I know I am the luckiest. He supports me, he encourages me, he cares about what is important to me even if he doesn’t get it, he never makes me feel like I can’t do anything or see anyone, he loves when I act silly, and he is probably one of the only people I can be my true self around. He’s not afraid to hold my hand in public or hug me really tight, or sing outloud when the mood strikes him, or dance a silly little dance to make me smile. He cares about my friends, cares about knowing my friends, cares about my sister like she is his own, and gets along so well with my family. He works hard at his job, only wants to do better, and cares about the people he works with and works for. I am so proud to be his wife, and I know, even though some days it will mean hard work, I’ve made the right decision for me.
(In lighter decisions, WHY DID I CUT MY BANGS THIS TIME? I’m just not feeling it and can’t wait until they grow out.)