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hhireno

Your year in review

hhireno
2 months ago

Without mentioning COVID 🦠 or the election 🗳 (because haven’t they been discussed enough?), how was your year?

  • We moved my Mum into an independent living place and she loves it. 👍🏼
  • I was able to get back to riding my bike and rode daily from June until the end of November.🚴🏻‍♀️
  • I’ve been assured they finally got rid of the raccoons from my HHI place. 🦝🚫
  • A healthy baby joined the extended family.👶🏻
  • This was the longest uninterrupted period of time I’ve ever spent with my husband since we got married, and it turns out I still like him a lot. 😆

Comments (44)

  • Sueb20
    last month

    Moved my dad to assisted living 5 minutes away from us (previously he was 2.5 hrs away) and he loves it. After thinking we were losing him in Feb., he’s still very much alive.


    Paid at least $10K in vet bills but our two doggies are still here and currently healthy.


    Spent lots of time with my youngest DD and am enjoying watching her become a young woman before my eyes. She seems to actually enjoy spending time with me.


    I have walked every street in my town, I think (wait, does that sound weird?) and have discovered lots of new nature trails nearby. I have a whole new appreciation of nature. I’ve also taken tons of pictures of everything from reflective puddles to moss and fungi.


    I appreciate my family’s health and well being more than ever. All three kids are healthy, have jobs (or in college) and seem to be happy most of the time. Actually feeling like maybe I did a good job raising them! (Ok, DH helped too.)

    hhireno thanked Sueb20
  • aok27502
    last month

    At the tail end of 2019, my DH closed his business and retired. We sold our house a few days before Christmas and moved into the in-laws' house while they went to FL for the winter.

    In March of 2020 we bought a much smaller house in a small town. We moved in just as things were shutting down, and spent weeks getting settled and building a new kitchen.

    In early summer, DH started making extensive trips to work on our live-aboard sailboat, which was damaged in a hurricane last year. It was easy for him to self-isolate. He would go for a while, come back when he needed clean clothes or groceries, or to work in his wood shop. This went on until December 20. Once he finished the hurricane damage, he started some other large projects. We hope to start traveling this spring, just a year late.

    Meanwhile I did some volunteer work and lots of jigsaw puzzles. I rode 711 miles on my bike.

    So far everyone in our immediate families are healthy and employed if they desire. Aside from inconvenience, it was an ok year.


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  • Allison0704
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Enjoyed our new granddaughter, and existing grandchildren (can't leave them out!).

    Have never worn pajamas, all day, so many days in a row in my life.

    Still married to my husband of 39yrs, and we still like each other.

    The house has never been cleaner.

    SIL started a new job.

    DD2 was accepted to Grad school. She starts this month.

    DIL started a new job - hospice nurse.

    We've been looking at beach houses.

    We've been considering moving (yes, I know).

    Our larger dog had an eye removed, but she's hasn't missed a beat.


    @Sueb20, what happened to your dogs?

  • LynnNM
    last month
    last modified: last month

    My DH retired December 30th, 2019 and so we’ve spent all of 2020 in a whole new relationship, together most all the time . . . and we‘re loving it!

    Our 26 y/o DD, a clinical mental health counselor, accepted a new job, and so DH and I drove up and helped move her from Colorado Springs to Dallas. And then in June, her longtime, formerly platonic school chum (from middle school and HS) morphed into her very serious boyfriend and they moved in together in Dallas. We like him a lot!

    We've had many visits here this past year from our local wild horse herds, which has been so incredibly special. AND, in Mid-October we had a mountain lion wandering around on our roof one night around 9PM! Kind of scary but very memorable as well! I just prayed he wouldn’t accidentally fall through one of our many skylights!!!

    DH and I bought a 34’ fifth wheel RV in June and I had so much fun outfitting and decorating it!

    In mid-October we took off in our RV on a 5-week kind of cross-country trip with our two furkids. It was fun, and exhilarating, and exhausting!

    Our son and DIL were needed at their jobs, but DD& BF were able to spend ten days here with us over Thanksgiving and again over Christmas. While missing our usual BIG holiday get-togethers with our dear friends, having DD and BF here made for very happy times!

  • Sueb20
    last month

    Allison, dog #1 had a mast cell tumor in her ear. Got that removed, cancer gone. A few weeks later her eye started looking weird, long story short, she now only has one eye. Dog #2 apparently wasn’t getting enough attention so she had a vague illness that turned out to be essentially nothing but a mild UTI but was tested for everything under the sun and in the process it was discovered that she has an unusually low RBC count, a smaller than average liver, and some other wacky thing I can’t even remember now.



  • 2katz4me
    last month

    We’re alive and well and DH’s small business is still afloat - nothing short of a miracle. My 20 year old cat died but we still have two very cool cats. I’m a 38 year survivor of one cancer and an 8 year survivor of a second unrelated cancer. DH is 7 years out from a serious stroke with no deficits. We have a wonderful life and are blessed beyond words.

  • bpath
    last month
    last modified: last month

    I worked out with my dear friend 3-4 times a week for nearly 3 months. I think our laughter was as good for us as our workouts.

    I learned more about squirrels than I wanted to know, especially in regards to attics.

    I got myself to two doctors, and my energy levels are better, concentration is improving, and skin is clearing. Whew! Maybe I will actually accomplish some specific tasks this year!

    Our son is in the home stretch of college and has a student job for the college, his first paycheck! He might take an extra semester of classes before graduating, since he has scholarship money still available, and it could be worth his while.

    Our other son was just promoted to manager of his department, and has a lovely new girlfriend.

    DH’s clients are still with him and referring him, and he just signed a new one.

    Signed my mother up for hospice, and it is wonderful. It means she can stay in memory care and not go to skilled nursing, yet. I can visit her in her suite, any time. They’ve made her more comfortable, with a new wheelchair that is a better size for her, and other accommodations, and they are an additional source of care, attention, social and sensory stimulation, and communication for me. She is in good hands, and her health is good, so hopefully hospice will keep her comfortable for quite some time.

    I’ve discovered I can ask for things, for help, and I can expect to have my expectations met.

    I had a major project I could have had completed, or nearly so, by now, but my energy and attention held me back. That’s bad, but I am feeling better and more motivated now.

    From a poem I saw today:

    ”Ring in the valiant man and free, the larger heart, the kindlier hand”

  • lascatx
    last month

    Bpath, I am so glad hospice is working out well for your mom.


    We are all doing okay and are grateful we can still say that, but this had been a tough year here. I'm glad 2020 is over, but I wish the pandemic was too. We will get there. Meanwhile, we have some house projects to work on and a couple to try to plan for the pros to do when we can do that again. I'm just glad my dad used to tell me I could stand on my head for a semester -- I could do anything for a finite time if I needed to nad my mom told stories about extended family members saving ration coupons to get shows for her growing feet. Wearing a mask is easy. We can deal with everything else too.


  • arcy_gw
    last month

    Positives: Employment continues for both DH and I both being "essential" workers. LOL

    #2DD's lab is working on the treatment the Washington crowd takes when they
    get the virus. It's most effective. Because of her front line knowledge we have
    avoided the fear mongering of the media and stayed the course, stayed healthy,
    trusted the SCIENCE.

    Health has reigned.

    Time with my adult off spring was not deterred--maybe even enhanced by their
    inability to cavort with their large social circles!!.

    Time with friends/neighbors continued at typical levels but we had to get creative with
    our outside visits.

    LOVE the early, quiet shopping times so many offer!!!

    Remote work enabled all ours to blow in a day early and not get stuck or battle with a
    HUGE storm for Christmas!!

    Neighbors' recovery enabled our traditional NYE gathering to go off unabated!


    Negatives: Churches were shut down for a time--but we did enjoy worship via TV and the variety
    of new homilists!!

    No performances attended. #1DD is a fabulous singer and all her choirs/musicals
    were of course put on hold. We had to get our fix sitting next to her at holiday
    Masses!!

    Distance Learning is horribly frustrating/exhausting/unrewarding for both teachers
    and students. I FEAR with the rest of my colleagues the mess this is for student
    achievement and more alarming mental health.

  • mdln
    last month

    Learned that I don't cook as bad as I thought.😊

  • hhireno
    Original Author
    last month

    I see this finally posted, days after I wrote it. 🤷🏼‍♀️ The “say thank you” thing isn't working for me, maybe it will in a few days 😆, so Thank you to everyone who participated. 👍🏼

    Anyone else care to update us?

  • eld6161
    last month
    last modified: last month

    As a daily reader, I was surprised that I didn't see your post! Now it makes sense.

    My update: We were in our Florida home when things started to turn. We decided to stay and accomplished a complete renovation. Now when we go back, we will start decorating.

    Oldest DD is engaged. They have been living together for 8 years.

    They would like to have their wedding in India, where they both have strong attachments. Not sure when this will happen, but I am delighted that they have decided to commit after years of saying, "we are not getting married."

    Youngest DD is doing well with her Ed Tech job. She started working from home before she had to due to Covid. She never liked commuting.

    She is a volunteer for dog rescue and has fostered many dog so they become ready for their forever homes.

    I have worked part-time for a market research company in the sensory department for 20 years. We train as a team with a panel of 10-14 people. We always joked that we should do take home. Never thought that this would be possible as we often need fresh samples as we maneuver through a project.

    Well, we are working on Zoom. Products are delivered to our door by a currier. Certainly not the quality of how we worked, but I am impressed that the company is keeping things together.

    As soon as I realized that I would not be going to the gym, I bought a set of weights. Just in time!

    I do a 45 minute routine three days a week. My arms have never looked better. I think it is because I do more in my routine than the instructors did.

    My tendon injury that I suffered last August is 80 percent better. I have my bad days, but am happy I can walk the dog.

  • maddielee
    last month

    Trying to stay positive.


    We are still healthy.

    I planned our 50th wedding anniversary celebration.

    I dusted off the sewing machine and made masks. Many many masks.

    I cancelled our 50th wedding anniversary celebration without crying.

    i cancelled a planned family Reunion, without too much cursing.

    I attended our grandson’s high school graduation a few months after his last day of high school. Outside, in a big field.

    I learned how strong our daughter is after she experienced emergency surgery and had to go through surgery, hospitalization and rehab alone.

    I learned how to zoom.

    I ‘attended’ funerals online.

    I wrote postcards to people I didn’t know.

    I learned how to grocery shop online.

    I learned to always have lots of cash handy for tipping delivery people.

    Our 15 year old lab died.

    I can wear my hair in a ponytail for the first time in 60 years.(its ugly)

    I paired my new phone with my car but am still learning how to add my contacts without throwing the phone out the window.

    We are still healthy.





  • maire_cate
    last month

    DH and I are doing fine although the 2 things we're not discussing here (as per the OP's comment) did get to him. We used to catch up on the news while prepping dinner but gave up and turned on Law and Order reruns or ME TV and watch Gunsmoke!


    DH has been fully retired for 5 years so we're happily used to this routine. He has his office/ TV room / computer / stereo system and I have the family room and a sewing room.


    I desperately miss my water classes at the hospital's wellness center and the sad news is that they will not re-open even when things return to normal due to the financial loss. It's a beautiful facility with 3 pools, several gyms and class rooms and is only 8 years old so we're all hoping someone buys it. My neighbors and I hired our former gym instructor and had water classes in a friend's pool during the summer. Now we're exercising in the parking lot of our community's clubhouse (also closed) with folding chairs, weights and elastic bands - dressed in layers with gloves and hats too. On alternate days we walk when we can but it can be dicey due to winter weather.


    We've had more concerns with the kids as they weathered this year. The eldest announced they they will have a second daughter in the spring and fortunately they're only 20 minutes away so we see them often. He's working from home and has had several promotions with pay increases and bonuses and they're doing very well mentally and financially. The middle child weathered a rough job transition and relationship issues but seems to be on the other side of both and is happier. DD is having the most stress, she is still furloughed and her entire department will probably be jettisoned and obviously the job situation is rather bleak for the foreseeable future.


    Although I canceled trips with a girlfriend this year DH and can still drive to our other place in the mountains and enjoy the peace and quiet of the woods and find that a welcome respite to the daily routines.


    We're all looking forward to a much improved 2021.


  • Tina Marie
    last month
    last modified: last month

    My first full year of retirement has certainly been a different one!

    Losing my dad was the hardest thing but knowing he is with my mom has made it easier.

    My husband's business is thriving and we have enjoyed having so much time together. We will celebrate number 39 next month.

    Thankfully we are outside people and for much of the year even though we didn't travel, we were able to enjoy the beautiful lakes, mountains, scenery here in our area. We enjoyed ending many days around the firepit. Never thought I'd do grocery order/pick-up, but I love it!

    Thankful for "our circle" and many phone calls, texts, distanced visits enabling us to stay close and connected.

    Thankful we (and extended family) are healthy. That means the world!

    Feeling hopeful for 2021

  • bbstx
    last month

    DH has gotten proficient at Zoom. His “boys“ group meets 2x a week. The socialization is good for all of them, but especially DH.


    I discovered I could cook 2 meals a day for 3 months without repeating and discovered that I cannot make no-knead bread but I no-need it anyway.


    I hired a decorator and we are moving along toward fluffing up the main part of the house. I think we may even make my mental deadline of March 1. I have resigned myself to DH’s study always looking a mess. He’s happy. I can shut the door.


    I hate cleaning my own house and I’m not very good at it. Well, I’m good at it, just not committed to doing it as often as I should.


    All in all, it was a good year. No one in my immediate family had any health problems or financial problems, although DBIL was furloughed for 8 weeks. His golf game greatly improved during those 8 weeks!





  • rubyclaire
    last month

    It's so nice to see how everyone really made the most of this very strange year. Highlights for my family and me:


    Enjoyed bonus time with my daughter and her boyfriend as they moved in and lived with us from March to July.


    Appreciated our beautiful spring weather and our outdoor living spaces. We were able to eat outside many, many nights and it was very special.


    Embraced the slower pace of life.


    Celebrated my daughter's "virtual" graduation from Columbia in a day filled with surprise zoom calls, drive-by and porch visits, flowers, cake, etc. It was a good day.


    Started a small business.


    Sold a car I didn't like and bought one that sparks joy!!


    Started playing golf.


    Got a puppy...


    A surprisingly eventful year and we are grateful for our good health and financial stability. We are fortunate and do our best to help those less fortunate. Thankful for everyone on the front lines of this unprecedented public health crisis.


    Looking forward to all the promise 2021 holds!


  • Yayagal
    last month

    My year had some bumps in it. Starting in January my sister died, it shattered me for a while but within two months I was relieved that she wasn't here to experience all the stress. Then I got corona virus late Feb. It lasted 30 days in bed. The summer was a breeze as we are so close to the ocean and we could walk the beaches in the evening, go on walks in the woods. We have two acres of land and a gazebo that's screened in so we could enjoy that and the best is having our great grand three days a week. My two sons and daughter and grown grands are all essential workers. We have never stepped foot in a store, restaurant etc. for more than a year now as I'm high risk and my husband has dementia. I was able to do a few new pieces of art. We had instacart for food delivery. I chat with my five sibs every day. We are a very loving family and have a ball chatting. Two months ago my husband collapsed and I called 911, he had pneumonia and was hospitalized. Then I got sick again. Right now we are both ok but a little weaker. This chat room is a big part of my life after eleven years. I would miss it immensely if it ever closed. We are content with a little edge of stress. Life is still good.

  • Tina Marie
    last month

    If anyone here is struggling, 2katz and yaya's answers would cheer me in an instant. How very fortunate we are - no blessed - if we have our health.


    @rubyclaire, what kind of business did you start? Forgive me if you posted this and I missed it.


    Yes, life is definitely good. I pray that all my friends here on this board stay safe and healthy. There is light at the end of the tunnel - we just need to get there!

  • Funkyart
    last month
    last modified: last month

    This year will forever be marked by the death of my father after a fall down the stairs. But deep as the loss is, we were blessed to have celebrated his birthday just 2 days before-- socially distanced on their very large wraparound porch and with facetime with those not near. He was SO happy and so touched after 2 months of isolation due to the pandemic. We were also blessed that the hospital had allowed us all to spend his last 24 hr with him and allowed him to have last rites-- which would have been important to him.

    This loss was followed by the death of two of his buddies, my aunt and a dear friend from college. None of them covid related.

    But it was not all darkness this year. I am blessed to work for a company and a government client both of which value and respect our staff. We were able to quickly move to a wfh model with only minor issues in the first few months.

    My team was able to overcome personal challenges working from home with infants, kids and mates at their elbows and complete a MAJOR software project which was released in November. I was able to secure raises for four of us as a result... and though it hasn't been announced as yet, i learned that I am to receive a prestigious award from my company.

    One of my nephews graduated HS and started his first year of college-- and one of my nieces graduated college and started her first job. All of my nieces and nephews are doing well and thriving despite the challenges in the world.

    My oldest nephew and his wife are expecting their first child (a boy!) in Feb. Sadly, they are pretty far away in NH but we've been able to share in the joy with a drive-by shower in November and by staying in touch via Facetime, FB and emails.

    Christmas was hard but we were able to gather -- with masks-- with those of us who were able to quarantine in advance. It was made especially joyous by my sweet 5yo great nephew who saw magic and love in every moment of the gathering.

    I have special plans for the new year-- I've revised my approach to work over the last month to allow me to very much limit my work hours closer to 40/week, i am rekindling my interests (and sometimes talent) in art, i am learning to play chess and planning a trip!

    Dark as this year has been, i have learned to appreciate the moment.. the day-to-day joys.. I've allowed a kind word or gesture to overtake a bad day. I've opened myself to love and kindness of others and i have forgiven and let go of things that lingered from the past. I can't say that I am completely optimistic that the new year will be better-- but I am ready for whatever it brings! I am moving into 2021 with a lighter mental and emotional load.. and a somewhat lighter physical load as I've lost 25 lb. I haven't added to the loss but I've maintained it through the grueling last few months of work and the holidays! :)

  • Tina Marie
    last month

    Dear Funky, we've traveled along a similar path this year. You and I were so blessed to be close to our dads, and to be able to spend those last hours with them. Big hugs to you! Thrilled to hear about your new plans and limiting your work hours!! We will be getting back to our healthy way of eating Monday - we have sure indulged over this holiday season!

  • rubyclaire
    last month

    Tina - the builder who built a home for us in 2013 has expanded and now has a design center for thier clients and needed someone to guide folks through the selection process (flooring, cabinets, countertops, etc.). I am a contract employee so formed an LLC and created a website. I've learned a lot and am enjoying this little retirement gig :). Thanks for asking.

  • pudgeder
    last month

    January 2019 my siblings (some step) & I finally convinced our parents they needed to move closer to immediate family, and they agreed to come to my area.

    I visited them in March right before everything was shutting down, to work out some of the details, and then everything shut down completely.

    Also, in March, we went on the Spring Break hiatus from the U and didn't return until August. That was a LONG break!! During this time we worked from home.


    I was able to purge many things, not nearly enough. I could work on it more..... but...

    Lost several friends, some to Covid, others to the other "C." Curses to both.

    So far, DH & I have been able to avoid C19, fortunately, my work has me in a pretty sheltered area. Hubs on the other hand, well he wears his mask and keeps his distance.

    We have saved quite a bit not eating out 3 or 4 times a week! I'm banking that to redo our bathroom. (Hubs doesn't know that yet)

    DD who is a CPA is able to work from home almost 5 days a week, got a promotion and a hefty raise! Her hubs is a farmer/rancher and they have doubled the amount of property to their farm. DS just completed year #2 at his job, and he's quite content. All the grands seem to be happy & healthy as well. The eldest 2 are in virtual learning, 1 likes it, the other hates it. The 3rd g/child will turn 2 in March.

    August found me returning to campus to work, and in a completely different department. I was less than happy about the situation, but at least I have a job. Things have fallen into place, and while it's still not the "ideal" place for me, it's comfortable.

    In October we had a freak ice storm that has seriously changed our landscape. We lost a lot of trees, that opened up the yard to areas of light where as before, they were completely shaded. I've been planning for Spring, on how to revamp these areas. Frankly, I'm rather excited, as most of the backyard was so shaded we couldn't even get shade grass to grow! I've been perusing the garden forums here an on pintrest.

    Late October, DD & her family contracted the virus. And then November, my Step dad got it. Fortunately, DD & her group have recovered, cannot say that about my Step Dad. He's still struggling. For a stubborn man who has rarely been ill in his life, it knocked him flat. In reality, he may never fully recover. The most blessed part of that is my Mother has displayed no symptoms. I'm very thankful for that.

    Our holidays were good. We were able to see the kids & g'kids.

    I'm looking forward to 2021, as moving forward is the direction we must go.



  • OutsidePlaying
    last month

    Being retired, the transition to Covid life seemed rather easy for a while. Of course, like most of us, we thought the period would be short-lived. We accomplished a lot of at-home activities in the spring much quicker than usual.

    My gardens, both flower and vegetable, never looked better. DH brought home 55 bales of pine straw and we spread it ourselves.

    We have done the usual closet and house purges. Not nearly as much as I would like.

    I love that we have a nice, peaceful area to walk each day. DH and I did drive to some local hiking spots, usually during the week when things were less crowded. I'll look forward to doing more of that.

    I cooked a lot more than I have in a really long, long time. I enjoyed some of it but I still felt like I was in a cooking rut sometimes and missed eating a meal out where someone else prepped and cleaned.

    Missed being able to jump in the car and go somewhere for a weekend or a week or two. We were grateful for having a place at the lake just 35 minutes away for a change of scenery.

    In mid-March I came down with some unusual (for me) symptoms and after a couple of weeks with no OTC relief, called my family physician. After several weeks of this test and that and going to a specialist, I finally ended up having a colonoscopy to get the final determination of colitis. This has changed my dietary life somewhat and I still don't fully have a handle on what I can eat. All recommended diets seem to be unhealthy but we're working on it. In the meantime, I managed to lose around 8 pounds, a few of which came back during the holiday cookie period.

    When things started opening up again DH and I both returned to the botanical garden and our volunteer jobs. I work mostly in the greenhouse and was asked in early spring to take over the organizing of the greenhouse volunteers. I pretty much just interface with the horticulture director and coordinate the work they need us to do and make sure we have volunteers available to do the work. DH is part of what we call the 'Galaxy Crew' that sets up the large Christmas light display in the garden each year. I was co-chair of the organized group of volunteer committees. The crew typically start in July with the opening in mid-November through tonight. Next week they will start taking all the displays down. Our 'Galaxy of Lights' was voted the #2 display in USA Today's poll this year, second only to Longwood. Pretty good for a smaller city, and almost all-volunteer gig.

    Our kids, thankfully, have all been unaffected by the pandemic job-wise and are doing well as are their spouses. I worry about our front-line family members, DD and both my daughters-in-law, and my SIL. Our SIL received the vaccine last week, but so far none of the nurses have received theirs. At least two of them should have but for unknown reasons have not. DD is rather upset as she saw over 30 patients yesterday in the ER, most of them with Covid symptoms.

    Our grandkids are doing well. The 3 in college have managed to do ok with online classes but none of them particularly like it.

    I have enjoyed reading all these responses. We are a resilient group!


  • l pinkmountain
    last month

    This was a rough year, no question about that, but all I could do was try and make the best of it, and focus on things we could do, not what we can't control. Still stressful and tough but we still have a roof over our heads and enough money for heat, water and food.

    1. We got a new granddaughter in Feb. Our pandemic baby. She joins a family with four kids, two of hers, one of his, and she's the one of theirs. Hubs first granddaugher if you don't count the steps, which we do count, but he is pretty happy about grandkid four because he missed out on the first two years of grandson #1 due to a messy custody situation. We visited her when she was first born, before the pandemic, and hubs has made two trips out to visit after. We quarantine and test after he gets back. Due to many factors, I can't go but live vicariously through videos and photos. She's a "go with the flow" kid and our inspiration. She's not suffering on quarantine, she things its great that there are so many people around paying attention to her.

    2. I seem to have developed a serious sinus problem, but am learning about it and figuring out more ways to get it under control. It seems to be related to a mold allergy, not pollen. It is actually worse in winter when I am inside the most . . .

    3. Despite not planning it out very well, we accomplished some herculean tasks in the yard. We were able to get some tree work done, (perfect activity if you're social distancing) and we had one tree removed in a spot where we built a raised bed garden. We also rigged our walk-in shower as a temp. greenhouse for starting the toms. Lots of tasks including planting, fencing, staking, fertilizing, harvesting and LOTS of preserving, and late clearing out the garden and winterizing. We'll have a jump start for next year with all our tested procedures in place.

    4. Other major landscaping projects we managed to finish were creating a leaf composting system, lately composting food scraps in the garage, which is a modified "indoor" system, and installing another rain barrel. We also planted a memorial peach tree. Those were the big ticket accomplishments, lots of smaller ones . . .

    5. I learned how to create and post online videos. But then I got too busy to do them. I did some for a camp where I work and hope to do more next year.

    6. I tried sourdough from home made starter and found it was a big PITA. I don't eat enough bread to make it worth the trouble.

  • hhireno
    Original Author
    last month

    Wow! So many uplifting reviews for a very odd year. Thank you all for sharing.

    We need to do this again January 2022, hopefully there will be travel updates and stories about family gatherings.

  • Allison0704
    last month

    @Sueb20, the tumor sounds vaguely familiar. Glad he is cancer free.


    My condolences to everyone that lost a family member, loved one or friend during 2020.

  • blfenton
    last month

    It's so nice to read how so many of us have stayed healthy and those that did get covid have recovered. I'm sorry to hear of friends and family members having passed away. That's a tough situation in any time but covid just makes it that much harder to grieve with family and friends.

    We stayed healthy and my sons and their partners all stayed employed although one son and his wife are both working from home and will be for quite some time. But their house is big enough and they have a dog which forces them to get out of pyjamas and go walking and hiking. My other DIL works with covid patients who are having difficulties with breathing and swallowing and it's been really hard on her.

    One son got married on July 1st (Canada Day) with 12 people in the bride's parents backyard. It was the coldest July 1st in 60 years with horrible rains. But with umbrellas and shawls they said "I do" and then we had a brought in catered dinner. They're thrilled with their covid wedding and are hoping to do a big party this summer.

    My DH finally after years of fighting, got his mom into assisted living (actually no choice, her doctor refused to discharge her from the hospital unless she went into care) in January. Six weeks later she was in lock down shut in her room for months and never got to meet anyone. It was really tough for her.

    After years of talking about it we finally, our sons wedding was the impetus, built a huge deck in our backyard and completely relandscaped it. We knew early on in the planning that the wedding was going to be small so no showers or rehersal dinner, but decided to go ahead. Finished in mid-June and at the end of August it and our house burned down and we lost our cats in the fire.

    So those few bright spots, health and steady employment for our kids, we are holding on to really tightly.

  • maire_cate
    last month

    blfenton - Oh that is just awful. I'm really sorry about the fire and I admire your strength of spirit. I think that's one of the things that this year has reinforced - look for the bright spots and focus on them.

  • OutsidePlaying
    last month

    Blfenton, I am still amazed you are always so upbeat after your losses due to the fire. I sincerely hope there is some light at the end of this tunnel for you.

    It is heartbreaking to read the stories of those with family and friends who have passed away due to C19, and those who must deal with loved ones in isolation.

  • Tina Marie
    last month

    I”m so sorry @blfenton. I had missed what happened, although later learned your house had burned. I cannot even imagine. I hope 2021 brings much happiness!

  • Allison0704
    last month

    I'm sorry too, @blfenton. I cannot imagine.

  • IdaClaire
    last month

    I agree, blfenton. In spite of your heartache, your positive energy shines.

  • mtnrdredux_gw
    last month

    I'm really so sorry BLFenton. What a tragedy. Thank goodness you and DH are okay. Are your rebuilding at the same location?

  • runninginplace
    last month

    BLFenton, that's awful about your home, I'm so sorry. Your grace in reporting on your year is remarkable and very inspiring!

  • blfenton
    last month

    Oh Thanks everyone. Like my dad used to say - It's no use crying over spilt milk. I can't do anything about the house itself except to make sure that it gets rebuilt as it was and if I have to have a fight with the planning authorities then I will. The insurance company has been great.

    And I also know that there are many who have suffered greater tragedies than me during the past year. We have great friends and family so we are lucky.

    And then there is always you guys. :)

  • runninginplace
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Our year in review:

    January 6, I had Mohs surgery on what we thought would be a minor skin cancer on my nose. It turned out to be very extensive and I lost most of one nostril. I had two reconstructive surgeries and I"m framing this as very positive because 1) I had the second/final procedure literally a week before everything closed down and 2) I am feeling incredibly blessed that my wonderful plastic surgeon did an amazing job. I'm not disfigured, and in fact everybody including my honest-to-a-fault husband says the graft/tissue replacement is invisible.

    This was our first year fully retired and I was very relieved to find that my projections and plans for our financial life worked out just as I had hoped they would ie we were incredibly blessed to live a comfortable life with no money worries, even in the midst of a very difficult year for so many in terms of their finances.

    Speaking of funds, we had set aside money for a very extensive home remodel in 2020 that was to begin in March. We postponed that which allowed me to save more money, always a Good Thing when embarking on a big home project!

    We also had time to think more about what we wanted and didn't want to do. And best of all at the end of the year we discovered some leaks that definitely have to be included in the remodel logistics. Very happy not to have spent a lot of money and effort and THEN needed to tear floors up again.

    More financial upbeat news: my husband, daughter, her fiance and I struggled for months on whether to move forward with their planned wedding here in the Keys in March 2021. We finally pulled the plug in November due to That Which Must Not Be Named which clearly was not getting better and unlikely to do so in time for a 100+ person destination wedding next spring. This of course was a huge money saver, so the remodel budget got a boost from that too LOL.

    Daughter/fiance are having a backyard wedding with an officiant later this month and her philosophy is "As long as I'm married at the end of the day, my wedding will be a complete success". That makes me very happy despite the fact I won't be there and it won't be the wedding we planned. She's got the right attitude!

    Neither my very elderly MIL (97) nor my elderly dad (87) got sick, although MIL was exposed a few times in her ALF. The rest of my family has had a great run of health good luck till just a couple of weeks ago when my soon-to-be-SIL went to the doctor because his toes were hurting and the tips turned red....to find out to his amazement that this is a more unusual symptom of you know what. And sure enough he tested positive which is very odd given he has worked from home since March, doesn't go out etc. However he had no other symptoms and my daughter tested negative so altogether the family has, so far, weathered the health front well.

    Husband and I both hunkered down for most of the year but feel incredibly lucky that we don't have work responsibilities and/or children at home or in college. We feel so lucky that we have each other for company and that we live in a beautiful place.

    Even with a hiatus of more than half the year I have been able to start and maintain a regular schedule of exercise including Pilates and strength training...Zoom Pilates is a thing! And it works!

    I quit drinking alcohol since it wasn't much fun having a couple of glasses of wine all alone; husband is a teetotaler and we weren't hosting anyone to share the bottle with me. That helped the quality of my sleep and generally I have felt much better without any alcohol.

    I also upped the quality of my diet, giving up rice, potatoes and bread for the most part and increasing my vegetable intake. That means at the end of the year I've lost a bit of weight but more important I am noticeably in better shape and quite a bit stronger.

    I do have to share my DIL experienced her second miscarriage just before Christmas, so life as always has sunshine and shadows. I'm hoping 2021 brings them happy news and hopefully progress toward their goal of welcoming a child into our lives.

    So that's our mostly positive 2020 report.

  • IdaClaire
    last month

    We've all had an interesting year, that's for sure. Even in the seemingly mundane, hasn't there been an element of uncertainty in so much of it?


    I know we aren't supposed to mention the virus, but I am almost certain I had it early in the year, February timeframe. I've never experienced distressing breathing issues as I had, and still feel remnants of it from time to time.


    I became even more of a homebody this year than I was before. I count that as a good thing, as I fell in love all over again with our own little routine.


    We did a lot of backbreaking work in our tiny backyard, and enjoyed reaping the benefits. We planted a small vegetable garden, and only managed to grow chard and a few herbs, so late in the season we converted it all to native plants. I look forward already to spring, and to getting out there to dig in the dirt some more.


    I worked from home for a number of weeks, and had a hard time tearing myself away from the luxury of sitting in front of my laptop in pajamas to return to the office, but I also forged new friendships among colleagues and overall my career has rather flourished.


    On January 6, 2000, I embarked on a fitness adventure and over the course of the year lost 45 pounds and 5 dress sizes. I went back to running, which I loved years ago, and to my delight discovered that not only do I still enjoy it, but I can still do it! The work put in over the past year has left me feeling better than I have in quite some time.


    My mother and I had been planning to return to England in early spring, and of course had to cancel that trip. We were disappointed, but by the time we made the decision that we couldn't go, at least we were resigned satisfactorily to it. DH and I were able to take a wonderful road trip to Big Bend National Park in the fall and do a lot of hiking, and I had a nice, extended staycation prior to that.


    We said goodbye to a sweet old cat and welcomed a baby one into our home shortly afterward. We hadn't planned on the baby, but it seems rather fortuitous. We've been having great fun settling into home life with a playful kitten in our midst.


    I guess that's about all. In spite of the upsets that 2020 brought, I'm not complaining. I do look forward to the bright spots already on our horizon for 2021, if you know what I mean, and am eager to see where the road ahead takes us.

  • runninginplace
    last month
    last modified: last month

    So many interesting thoughts! Just wanted to give a shout out to Ocotillo, how wonderful to hear your fitness journey this year has gone so well, that's truly remarkable. I am nowhere near your league but at this age and stage of my life the quiet satisfaction is really about doing something to make my body stronger, make me physically feel better and hopefully keep me going at full pace for longer. It's not really a matter of looks, more the sensation of feeling that my body is 'competent' in every physical way. That's a great feeling and I am treasuring it.

    And Mtn you nailed one not especially positive but very accurate theme. I too feel gypped; this was my first full year of retirement and I had lots of plans about traveling, remodeling, creating a lovely wedding for and with my only daughter, the mother-daughter wedding I never got to experience as a daughter. Christmas pain walloped me unexpectedly hard when I woke up that morning and realized for the first time in my whole life I wouldn't be with my family, and for the first time in decades our house wouldn't be the happy busy crazy center of the holiday gathering.

    It's not being negative to recognize and mourn whatever losses we have had; often I think we tend to discount that feeling, because if we and our loved ones are healthy and solvent it seems churlish to complain. So many have had to survive so much worse than our 'petty' complaints.

    But this year took a lot from people and that's just a fact. Whatever you lost, or mourned, or got cheated out of experiencing, my New Year's wish is that in 2021 you find the joy that wasn't there in 2020 :).

  • gsciencechick
    last month

    2020 started out pretty normal in that we attended concerts and I even traveled for two conferences in Florida. Wow, times have changed.


    It was announced early March we would go to remote instruction, initially for two weeks, which encompassed spring break. I immediately ordered some fitness gear (dumbbells, yoga supplies) and got my bicycle tuned up. Hindsight this was a wise decision as these would all be in short supply soon. Started doing Zoom workout classes which continue. Remote instruction continued for the rest of the spring semester. DH's work is considered essential and he has been in the office every day except holidays.


    Conferences changed to virtual and all summer and fall concerts either canceled or postponed. No summer travel. Was really looking forward to the conference in San Francisco.


    We lost our black floofy kitty in May but also adopted a young flame point Siamese in July. Adding Blue to our home was definitely one the best things of 2020.


    Taught summer classes online/remotely.


    Tried some outdoor Y yoga classes but it got too hot and then I was also concerned with others' ability to safely distance, same thing with the greenway. So, I've kept up with the virtual workouts on my deck.


    On a positive professional note, I was promoted to full Professor and was recognized as Distinguished Alumni from my doctoral program.


    Continued on 100% remote instruction for fall, although our campus offered both in-person and hybrid courses. Had to figure out how to do a lab course 100% remote. Got a second monitor and upgraded our Wi-Fi with a mesh router system. The stress of it all probably led to me having a mini-stroke early September. I have recovered and still need to work on my healthy lifestyle changes. I've lost a few lbs, but I really need to lose more.


    On a positive professional note, I was promoted to full Professor and was recognized as Distinguished Alumni from my doctoral program.


    DH's work is incredibly busy because white collar people working from home want bigger homes! The Register of Deeds requires a wet signature so all these people are coming to the office.


    Watched a few virtual concerts.


    My brothers continue to have health challenges, which has been very difficult for them to navigate.


    Was able to have MIL come over for outdoor Thanksgiving and Christmas. Thanksgiving was a gorgeous day, Christmas was sunny but cold and windy. Did a Zoom with 3 out of 4 siblings, 3 nieces, and some of my great-nieces and nephews.


    We survived--literally, so that is the best thing we can say. Looking forward to a better 2021. Still teaching remotely!


  • Tina Marie
    last month

    @gsciencechick I don't remember reading about your stroke! I am so sorry to hear you went through that, but happy to hear you are doing well. Congratulations on your promotion!

  • gsciencechick
    last month

    Hi, Tina Marie, I had a thread about what happened back in September.


    Original Thread


    Also, I received a surprise, beautiful bouquet of flowers from HD!


    Flowers

  • Tina Marie
    last month

    I even commented!!! So sorry, I had totally forgotten.