Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky
The flying cloud, the frosty light;
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.
Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the old, ring in the true.
How do you celebrate New Year's Eve?
I've never been one for a big bash. Isn't everybody tired after all the holiday traveling and visiting and eating and drinking? Maybe one day I'll put on a sparkly dress, go somewhere swanky, and guzzle a bottle of champagne for Auld Lang Syne. But tonight, it'll just be us -- me, Kyle, our soon-to-be-baby, and our furry ones. I'll treat myself to a glass of prosecco (Kyle will just have to polish off the rest of the bottle himself). We'll marvel at how much has changed over the past year, and how vastly different things will look next December 31 too.
I had a few resolutions for this past year -- 12, to be exact. Just for a laugh, let's revisit...
1. Eat more healthy, fresh food
Check. I actually did this over the past year. And I liked it, a lot. That's not to say I don't indulge (let's not speak of the vanilla ice cream)... but I eat a lot more leafy greens and citrusy fruits now.
2. Lose 20 lbs
Hahaha. Well, I was on my way toward this goal, and then I went and got myself with child. I lost 10 lbs over the summer on my modified version of the Caveman diet, then I got a positive pregnancy test, then I got morning sickness and lost another 7 lbs from food aversions alone. Of course now it's all back, and then some. You know what is both encouraging and horrifying, though? At 30 weeks pregnant, I am between 1-3 lbs heavier than I was at this time last year. So yay for me in 2012, and shame on 2011 Carrie.
3. Read more books
Nope. This was a big fat fail. I still love to get lost in a good book, but I think my days of marathon reading sessions are behind me for the next few decades.
4. Take Bailey on more walks
I'm going to count this as a very modest success. We brought home a new addition to our family in 2012, and boy does Teddy have a lot more energy than our lazy girl. So yeah, we took a lot of walks in the spring and early summer. And then (blame the baby again) I got nauseous, and it got really hot, and Ted got really big and, forgetting all he learned in puppy preschool, started pulling on his leash, and now we go out for maybe one walk a week, which is terrible for two young golden retrievers. But I like to think they tire each other out with their nightly wrestling sessions...
Another big fat fail.
6. Attend Mass at least once a month
7. Do something with my hair
Check!!! I got sort-of bangs, and I sort of style them now.
8. Go to four really, really nice dinners
Check. Two bottles of wine in one sitting at the Grand Concourse to celebrate Kyle's new job last January (oops), Old Ebbitt Grill in DC for his birthday where we got some photos on the rooftop, Alla Famiglia for our anniversary (which was the dinner to end all dinners, at least as far as I'm concerned), and room service from The Barn at Walden Inn for my birthday. We had a lot of other great dinners sprinkled in throughout the year as well. We really, really like to eat. A lot.
9. Build our savings
Check. Boy, did this goal get more important halfway through the year, when thoughts of college tuition suddenly started dancing in our heads. We still have a ways to go, but we are getting there and it feels really good. (We also recently started tracking our spending, and in stark contrast to our previously mentioned love of restaurants, we managed to only spend $64 eating out in December -- work lunches, ordering pizza, all that jazz. That is a serious accomplishment for the Stevenson household!) I'm suddenly discovering my Scottish side and getting all sorts of thrifty.
10. Donate clothes to Goodwill
Check. Too bad this doesn't count as volunteering.
11. Try to stay more in the moment
Eh, I think I get an F here. I tend to worry about every possible scenario and try to plan for, um, everything. I'm going to try harder to just go with the flow in 2013.
12. Take one or two truly awesome trips
DC in March. Hilton Head in August. Florida in October. 2012 was a good year for travel.
Seven out of 12. That isn't too shabby -- although maybe the more self-indulgent goals shouldn't have been such major successes, while some of the nobler/loftier ones (volunteering, church-going, dog-walking) were, ahem, not. This was probably our last "all about us" year, though, so non, je ne regrette rien.
I have a list of 13 new resolutions for the dawning year, but in the words of Joe Fox, it needs "tweaking." I'll share soon.
Last year I wrote that I wasn't sure 2012 could top 2011. Getting showered, bacheloretted, married, and honeymooned -- 2011 was a beautiful time. But 2012 delivered in her own way too, you know. It's truly been one for the books. And this New Year's Eve, I'm pretty certain I can say that next year will be the best one yet.
Outside was a fine blue night. A sparkling ribbon of moonlight garlanded the gulf. Inside the bar the harbor shone like a pavement of pearl. They stood before the door and waited--Captain Jim with his ripe, full experience, Marshall Elliott in his vigorous but empty middle life, Gilbert and Anne with their precious memories and exquisite hopes, Leslie with her record of starved years and her hopeless future. The clock on the little shelf above the fireplace struck twelve.
"Welcome, New Year," said Captain Jim, bowing low as the last stroke died away. "I wish you all the best year of your lives."
[Anne's House of Dreams]