Got Married. It was one of the best days I've ever had... not because I got married (though obviously that was a big deal) but because so many of my family and friends were there to celebrate and Support Kate and my decision. It was amazing.
2. Did you keep your New Years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I didn't really have one. This year I do have one however. I would like to exercise more and try to stay on target for weight watchers. I'd like to feel more active and mobile.
3. Did someone close to you give birth?
Not this year... though Squiggles may be on the way which is beyond comprehension and very exciting.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
No. It was a good year
5. What countries did you visit?
Aruba. Great honeymoon location. We scuba dived the entire time. Kate would love to go again. (I loved the vacation but would consider some of the other islands too.)
6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
7. What date from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Kate's graduation, the blowup with Kate's dad (which turned out to be a good thing and cleared a lot of air), passing my comprehensive exams, getting married, Dadra getting engaged at the BBQ of Doom, every visit home and time with my mum and family.
8. What was your biggest achievement(s) of the year?
Passing my comps and becoming an official PhD Candidate/ABD. The biggest accomplishment of my academic career thus far.
9. What was your biggest failure(s)?
My health. It took a major blow in compensation for doing well in Comps. I gained back the 30lbs I lost on WW the year before and can really feel the impact of more weight. I also ended up in PT due to my back pain (as result of sitting so much to study).
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
My back. Ended up in PT for 2 months and going on muscle relaxers in order to study and take my exams
11. What was the best thing you bought?
I cant think of anything except for Aruba and Kate's new Xbox.
12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Kate and I both do. Kate graduated with her masters with a 4.0 and I passed my Comps. I still get warm fuzzies and feeling of accomplishments for both of these.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
[stolen from Nadyne, but I totally agree] Congressional Republicans should be taken out back and horsewhipped.
14. Where did most of your money go?
The wedding, travel and daily living.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Time with my family and friends. I think the one thing I really took away from this year is how much they mean to me and how much I value time with them.
16. What songs will always remind you of 2011?
Taio Cruz - Dynamite.... it's kinda cliche but it's just a fun happy song that is about celebrating the moment and celebrating life. Also Kris Allen, Live like we're dyin'. And Raise your Glass by Pink
17. Compared to this time last year, are you
i. happier or sadder? happier
ii. thinner or fatter? fatter, sadly
iii. richer or poorer? poorer, but that is expected for the next few years.
18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Read more books. Had more time with family and friends
19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Pain and Anxiety. I think these are the two things that really made the year difficult. I am actually considering going back on anxiety meds for awhile... which is odd because I'm doing really well... I think this is another aspect of what I'd like to change in the next year. I'd like to start taking Tracor (an herbal supplement) which helps reduce this. It's not out of control, but generally I've noticed that since comps, it has decreased but I think comps triggered my anxiety a bit more than I'd like to live with. Thus, a gentle and natural start is my plan. I don't think I need the full out traditional medicine, just something to help keep the edge off.
20. How did you spend Christmas?
Family. The best way I could ever imagine. The eve was with mom, kate, dadra, carlos, my dad, joe, janelle, max, kathy, espiranza, casey and jess, aunt deb, and jim. The day was spent with kate's parents, cullen and gran... playing lots of pinball in the basement.
21. Did you fall in love in 2011?
With Kate... every day... she was more supportive and attentive than I could ever ask for.
22. How many one-night stands?
If Kate count's, every night
24. What was your favorite TV program?
TV was my lifesaver and brain-turn-offer this year... House, Glee, Terranova, The big bang theory, The amazing race, anything with Gordon Ramsey... and of course, MSU football.
25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
Nope. Which is a good thing.
26. What was the best book you read?
I actually managed to read one (non-academic) book. The last Eragon book "Inhertitance" It was okay but I'm glad I read it. I also am working on Steve Jobs which is also quite good.
27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Music was sadly lacking this year... as it has been the past few years. Unfortunately due to the program I'm in, I don't have time to explore to music and only a little to even listen. But I appreciate what I am able to explore.
28. What did you want and get?
29. What did you want and not get?
30. Favorite film of this year?
Muppets, Hugo and Girl with the Dragon Tatoo... though I should also state that I only saw 5 movies this year total.
31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 34. Kate and I went out to eat... it was a quiet, low stress day. Perfect. A few weeks later we went to Seattle and ate at our favorite Sushi place in Seattle: Shiro's
32.What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Less stress and a publication
33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
Casual and comfortable. Though someone recently asked me how I would see myself in 10 years and my response was LL Bean. :)
34. What kept you sane?
35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Pink and Lady Gaga. The support they have offered to women and against bullying have been instrumental in my view.
36. What political issue stirred you the most?
Gay bullying and bullying in general. Michigan disgusted me by passing an "anti-bullying" bill that makes bullying okay if you have a religious or moral objection.
37. Who did you miss?
My family and friends. The biggest sacrifice I've made in this program is contact with my family and friends back home in michigan and in cali. I only really talk to friends in Michigan when I'm home. Nikki went through thyroid cancer and I didn't even know until it was almost over... Nadyne (and Michael) had health issues I barely was aware of... and I have friends who I barely talk to at all because I don't see then when I'm home in Michigan. Yes, friendship has been the biggest sacrifice...and I thank G-d every time I'm home that they welcome me back home every time... as Nikki said... there is a Tera-size hole that awaits me .... I always have a home.
38. Who was the best new person you met?
Kari Freeland who I met along with Jen in the bathroom of Smokey Mountain when out with Kate, Jonathan, and Topsanna.
Topsanna who I met through Jon.. our little gay house-renter when we were in Michigan in July
Nathan Neal... a first year in my program who I enjoy very much.
39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011:
40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
We only got 86,400 seconds in a day to
Turn it all around or to throw it all away
We gotta tell them that we love them
While we got the chance to say
Gotta live like we're dying