1. What did you do in 2018 that you’d never done before?
Declared “This is the last time we move, ever!” We’re settled!
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I stopped making resolutions a few years ago because they had become a litany of self-improvement to-dos that only made me feel bad, but I still make “guidelines and goals” with the understanding that I am not a failure if I don’t achieve them! I didn’t do very well on them, my year went totally off-rails with the unexpected move.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Yes! welcome to the world little Samuel Fields Phillips! Mmmm, chubby baby snuggles!
4. Did anyone close to you die?
No, not for me personally.
5. Where did you travel?
We went to Belize in February with Erin, that was so much fun. We also went to Pensacola in the summer; not so much fun. I went to Washington D.C. in May, also wonderful. Lots of other boring work travel.
6. What would you like to have in 2019 that you lacked in 2018?
A peaceful year with no major upheavals and lots of free time.
7. What dates from 2018 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
May 25th: move-in day to our new house, the last move ever! (well, at least for a VERY LONG TIME)
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Selling our old (new) house quickly and getting the two major projects (new roof, garage conversion) done on our new (new) house before the end of the year.
9. What was your biggest failure?
I guess just that the year felt cram-packed again, even though we’d carefully planned a more relaxing year.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
11. What was the best thing you bought?
Our house! (I’m noticing a theme).
12. Where did most of your money go?
Our house! (definitely a theme)
13. What did you get really excited about?
Our house! (yup)
Also the ancient hot tub at our new house — it doesn’t matter that it is ancient, it works and it is wonderful. We sit outside at night sipping tea or whiskey, looking at the stars, listening to the owls.
15. Compared to this time last year, are you:
– happier or sadder? happier
– thinner or fatter? About the same.
– richer or poorer? Hmm. About the same (thanks, crazy Corvallis house market)
16. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Creative work. I stayed in ceramics but didn’t make much progress. I did almost no drawing. I did make a baby blanket and did lots of cooking and gardening, I think that counts, but I’d like to do more art this year.
17. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Reading the news.
18. How did you spend Christmas?
Christmas Eve with my mom and extended family, then Christmas Day at my brother’s house. Boxing day at Matt’s too, with Dad and Yvonne. It was great. We’re hoping to make next year’s holiday feel a bit more relaxed but it is so fun to see everyone!
19. What was your favorite TV program?
Hmm. We are loving The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, and we also loved The Good Place.
20. What were your favorite books of the year?
My Absolute Darling, The Mysterious Benedict Society, The Moor (Russell & Holmes), The Hare with Amber Eyes, The Plague of Doves
21. What was your favorite music this year?
We are in love with Aki Kumar!
22. What were your favorite films of the year?
I can’t remember if The Shape of Water was this year or last year, but I watched it again with Stan and Lib in New Hampshire and we all loved it. Keith and I enjoyed Fright Night around Halloween time. I can’t remember anything else. We’re going to watch the Mister Rogers movie on New Year’s Eve, I’m sure we’ll love that.
23. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 44 this year and spent the day with Lib and Stan at the farm, reading and making a huge hydrangea bouquet, eating wacky hors d’ourves at Cousin Grace’s house, watching massive fireworks with Stan in the evening. Pretty terrific.
24. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
The end of this fucking presidency. Also, about half of our plans being cancelled.
25. What was the political issue you that stirred you?
EVERYTHING. So many things, I can’t even remember. What a year.
26. What kept you sane?
Books. The hot tub. Wine on the back porch. Learning the yard.
27. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2018.
Sometimes it is better to NOT be well-informed.