Saturday, December 31, 2011

The year in review

Much has happened, this year. We're all still alive, a year older, a year wiser, and a year more developed in the case of the kids.

Odysseus started blogging, early this year (welcome to the blog world, babe)--he does mostly commentary on politics, occupidiots, and posts a lot more videos than I do. I'll leave him to do his own "year in review" post, if he wants to.

I'm still blogging (trying to get back into at least one post every day), still teaching, and still writing fiction (in fact, I've managed to nearly finish an anthology of short fiction this Christmas break). I've managed to drop the pregnancy weight I gained with the pixie, and am now working on what I couldn't lose after I had the imp, thanks to a then-undiagnosed under-active thyroid. It's been treated, and breastfeeding a rapidly growing baby is melting the weight off of me. I've lost 35 pounds, and am still losing.

The imp has learned all of his letters, and can tell you what letter you show him (as long as it's capitalized). He can count to four, and still adores his baby sister (even though he's always pushing her away from his toys). He's started drinking chocolate milk, and can put away a full gallon inside of three days. He's finally topped the 30 pound mark--barely, and recently. Best of all, he's started really talking--independent two, three, or four word phrases; answering questions; asking for things he wants, and saying "please"; parroting new phrases, and working them into his rapidly ballooning databanks of words, word combinations, and ideas--though the frustration of being unable to communicate is still there, to a degree, it's being rapidly replaced by the frustration of being able to communicate his wants, and being told no.

The pixie was born a year ago, so she's changed the most. She was sitting up by herself by May (as in, sitting herself up, not staying sitting when somebody sat her up), crawling by July, cruising by August, and taking independent steps by October. She started running right around her first birthday. She consistently refused a bottle, refused to eat baby food, but now eats whatever we do, has been saying a few words (mama, daddy/papa, a version of her brother's name, baba [meaning breast, since she's breastfed], and kitty), and is beginning to add to her vocabulary. She recently repeated it when I said "shut the door" when it was naptime. She's gone from six pounds at birth to 21 pounds (briefly, just after Labor Day, before she started walking) and is quickly running her baby chub off (and stretching it out vertically).

I've managed bupkis on the whole self-improvement thing--I haven't managed to keep the house clean, I haven't managed to improve my teaching or my classes for my students, I haven't managed to not yell at the kids as much, haven't made it to church as often as Odysseus would like, haven't kept in contact with many of my friends or family (outside of the grandparents)...basically, I've totally failed at everything I promised myself I'd do.

But I'm trying. I keep trying. I don't throw my hands up, say "I can't do it, life just knocked me down, and I'm not going to keep getting back up" and give up. So, that means I'm managing one of my main life's ambitions: I'm not turning into my mother.

As for this coming year, I'm going to try to...

... get the back room (currently junk storage) cleaned up to the point it can be a play room for the imp while the pixie is sleeping (cement floors--he can jump to his heart's content without it reverberating through the whole house).

...teach the imp to read--he's on his way there, so I just need to help him a bit.

...be more patient with the kids.

...finish my short story anthology and get it sent to a publisher. Then forget about it until I hear back one way or the other.

...finish the novel I've got a third of the way done.

...keep writing one post per day, on average.

...attempt to get caught up on the housework. And then keep up a bit better.

I hope everyone who reads this did better on keeping their resolutions than I did last year, and has a great year in 2012.

(And please, Dear God, don't let Obama stay in the White House without a supermajority of real conservatives in congress roadblocking him and his progressive agenda at every turn. And please don't let the GOP replace Obama with Romney or the amphibian.)

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