What a Difference a Year Makes.

Today is my one year anniversary of blogging on wordpress. Its been great to connect with people, make new friends, and have a platform for thoughts, meanderings, and all out rants. Its good to be the Queen – at least on my own website. (wink, wink). I think I’ve become a much better writer (grammar notwithstanding – I can’t tell when I should use a semi colon vs a comma) But hey, at least I can spell, right? And, I’ve started using a DSLR camera and taking photos. Challenging myself.

Best part of all this has to be the new friends I’ve made though. So a quick shout out to all of them. You can find them in my sidebar (most, anyway) so check ’em and leave some love. Proof positive that while great minds think alike, great minds don’t always have to.

So, whats been going on recently, you ask? Well – I got the flu this year, first time in many years. The shot I got back in November did not completely protect me and it hit like a freight train last Thursday night. By Monday I also had a secondary chest infection. Long story short, I am now officially allergic to the following antibiotics: Amoxicillin, Bactrim/Sulfa, Avelox, and Azithromycin. Also included: aspirin, ibuprofen and all NSAIDS. My list of allies grows thin – as Elrond might say.

Hugo Weaving as Elrond in The Lord of the Ring...

Hugo Weaving as Elrond in The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So I’m taking yet another course of prednisone and poppin Benadryl like its Pez candy. 50mg q4h. Very itchy and uncomfortable, to say the least. Last night my hives were blossoming and retreating all over like a kaleidoscope. Not fun. On the brighter side, I lost the 4 pounds I gained over the holidays, and 3 more to boot – so there’s that to be thankful for, at least.

Today’s my day to catch up on all the laundry I didn’t do while I was sick, and clean the house. Taking a break now because I was getting tired. Well, that and the Viking yelled at me to not overdo it. Sometimes he actually does know what he’s talking about 🙂 Also, the plumber is coming to fix the leaky shower and replace the faucet and handles etc. The leak is starting to cause thermal expansion issues with the hot water heater sooooo yeah, time to get that fixed and the retro pay I just got for our 2.38% pay increase just paid for that. Hurray!

Here’s the last year in review – stuff that happened in my world whilst I was blogging. My sister was diagnosed with breast cancer, had surgery, had reconstruction and is currently cancer free. No radiation, chemo needed. Prayer really works miracles, as does early detection so check your rack ladies – it can really save your life. My youngest sister in law was diagnosed with stage 3 cervical cancer (inoperable) last year. Stopped chemo in November and it has metastasized. We’re 3000 miles from that side of the family so sending prayers is about all we can do. She’s only 41. My stepdad had to be hospitalized and took a fall while there. Then spent a few weeks in rehab. To say that the spring and summer of 2012 was stressful would be a very great understatement.

Friends and family had babies this year – all girls to this point. One niece got engaged, one got married and another got divorced. We lost a family matriarch on the Vikings side back in May. We will miss you intensely Auntie CJ. And of course the financial ups and downs that everybody struggles with in this horrid economy. I’ve chronicled some of it here and tried to make it amusing, but the reality is disheartening. That 2.38% increase I mentioned earlier – all it did was partially offset the payroll tax increase that went into effect the first of the year. In fact I am making about a dollar less a week that I did last year. OK that’s 52 dollars a year – but its still 52 dollars I could have paid a bill with, or gotten a haircut, or gone to a movie with instead of giving it to the government. But, I am ever hopeful that this new year will bring better times and good news all around.

I also started work on my photobook project and really like how it came out. I have some tweaking to do, but should have something ready for sale soon. Information and links to it will be posted here on the blog. This project has been very exciting for me, and I’m looking forward to getting feedback.

Things I learned this year: How to say “No” to people and not feel badly about it. This one was really important for me and I’m so glad I figured out how to do it. Basically I just ignored the guilty feeling until it gave up and went away. Life is really short and we are only guaranteed today, if that. In a professional capacity, I learned more about the contracting process with the state; and can now pretty much figure out a contract budget on my own, and how to fill in the paperwork correctly when doing amendments.

Goals for this year: Professional: Become even more proficient with the contracting process, procedures, and paperwork with the state. Adjust to a new boss (my boss gave his notice last week 😦 ) Personal: Get and stay as healthy as possible. Remain supportive to family. Learn better relaxation methods. Schedule time just for me and me only. Keep up with the housework – this ones difficult with everyone’s work and social schedules here.

I’ve also started doings some genealogy research on my maternal grandmothers side of the family and have traced it as far back as Crewherne, England 1541. My first ancestor in America was Jeremiah Meacham born in Bristol, England in 1614. He was a weaver and came over to Salem in 1634 and passed away in 1698 at the ripe old age of approx 84. I find that amazing for the 17th century where an average male in New England would live into only into his mid-sixties. I can’t find any mention of him in the Salem Witch Trial information I’ve looked at so far. As an elderly man at the time, it was likely he would have been a target of the witch-hunt. But I have not found any information to date. I’ll have to keep looking.

English: Two alleged witches being tried in Sa...

English: Two alleged witches being tried in Salem, Massachusetts as part of the infamous witchhunts. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I did find a lone reference to him in relation to Giles Corey (the man who was pressed to death for refusing to answer charges of witchcraft) so he and my ancestor may have been friends as well as neighbors. I would love to be able to find Jeremiah’s gravesite. And lastly, to continue blogging and taking photos as the muse strikes me. I really want to continue improving my writing and picture taking skills.

Well its getting really cold out here on my “porch” again so I will sign off for now, get another cup of coffee and head back downstairs for laundry duty, and I’m calling the plumbing service to see when he’s gonna be getting here. Tally Ho!

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26 thoughts on “What a Difference a Year Makes.

  1. Congratulations on the 1 year. Way to Go! I always forget to note milestones; 100 blogs, 1 year, 100 readers, etc etc.

    Its been a treat to get to know you and your family, especially the Viking, and reminiscing with someone from the old stomping grounds is an added bonus. I must ask, is quabbinite really from that area??

    Have a great day!

    • As soon as our taxes come in be on the lookout for something in the mail. ;). It’s so cold here right now. Jillian and I are cuddled up on the couch together under a blanket. It’s been wonderful to get to know you as well. Here’s to friends! Cheers!

      • Its supposed to be cold here, after all, its January, but the day temps for 10 days now have been in the 50’s! It’d be nice to get more snow and rain, but nothing much in the forecast for the next week or so.

        Taking advantage of the weather. Contractors have been slow because of it being winter, so getting some much needed work done on the exterior for reduced labor rates, so everybody wins! Put in new French drains to help keep the under house dry, new floor insulation, furnace pipe installation, and a new front walkway made out of a “Trex” like product.

        Stay warm!!!

  2. Congratulations on blogging for one year. You seem to have some impressive results! Sorry to hear about you getting the flu, but it happens sometimes I guess. Hope you are recovering ok. Talk to you soon.

  3. Happy Blogging Anniversary. I am sorry you have had so many travails. I will deifinitely think good thoughts for your youngest sister and your family. I have enjoyed getting to know you in WordPressland. Best wishes and hope you feel better. BTG

    • Thanks! The best thing about blogging is new friends. I have made some awesome ones, including you. Thanks also for the prayers and good thoughts. Much appreciated. As for me, I’m getting itchy every four hours as soon as the Benadryl wears off. Hopefully the prednisone will kick in gear today. Oh, and the plumber cancelled-another client had an emergency. They rescheduled for Monday pm….. It figures, lol.

        • I think all these tradesmen(?) do that. Specialized services the average joe doesn’t know how to do. We’re at their mercy in these cases. And they can charge whatever they want.

          Brent tried replacing the faucet etc in our kitchen sink a few years back. He rendered it unusable for several days when he snapped off the pipe under the sink (tightened it too much). It’s not fun having to get your cooking water from the bathtub as you’re trying to fix a nice dinner for guests.

          He can handle drywall, sheetrock, tiling, floor installation (all types), replacing decking, installing cabinets, windows and doors, basic electrical wiring (replacing a ceiling fan etc) , and even roofing. I can and have assisted in these endeavors. But, he’s not allowed to do any plumbing. He refuses to after that disaster anyway.

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