The New Year’s Eve retrospective post – 2011

Books, Music, Art, Movies, Life

This past year has kind of been uneventful, if I am comparing it to previous years. If there were a word to describe it I would have to choose “introspective.” I’ve done much thinking and observing and working on myself. I have faced things in myself that have needed to be faced for years. It has been a year of awakening. An awakening that I’m sure will continue on through this next year and further, if I am lucky.

Here are a couple of “notable” lists:

Notable Books of 2011:
I read a lot of really good books this year!

  1. Tinkers by Paul Harding. This book blew my mind.
  2. Where She Went by Gayle Forman. I ended up reading it in one sitting. I simply could not put it down.
  3. Strange Piece of Paradise. A true story about a woman who, when she was in her early twenties on a bike trip across American, was brutally attacked by a stranger in Oregon and lived to tell the tale.
  4. The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood. I love anything by this author but this one was especially good. It was a One Book One Twitter read.
  5. Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet. I was introduced to Jamie Ford when we connected on Google+. The first post that I saw was this one with the comment, “it looks like we just murdered a clown.” I became an instant fan. I’d heard of his book because everyone who walked into the library asked for it but, for some reason I hadn’t picked it up. I finally did this year and am so glad! It was excellent!
  6. A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan. This is one of the best books I’ve ever read. If you haven’t read it you must.
  7. Blankets by Craig Thompson. This graphic novel has been on my To-Read list for ages and I finally picked it up a few months ago. A most excellent coming of age story.
  8. Everything Beautiful Began After by Simon Van Booy. If you like beautiful love stories this is your book. The writing was wonderful.
  9. A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness. Fantastic book for kids who are dealing with grief. Superb illustrations, too.
  10. Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner. I find myself thinking about this book all the time.

I discovered some excellent music this year, too!!

Notable Albums of 2011: 
Lots of really great music this year! These are just the albums that I bought and really liked.

Settle Down by Kimbra. A very recent discovery and OMFG. Love her. I mean, seriously. Listen to this voice. She is the real deal.

Zonoscope by Cut Copy. My current running music. Great album.

Only in Dreams by Dum Dum Girls. Fun girl-band, poppy songs.

Mylo Xyloto by Coldplay. I’ve been listening to this album lots these past couple of months.

Codes and Keys by Death Cab For Cutie. Not my favorite album at first listen but it has grown on me.

Personal Life by The Thermals. One of my favorite albums of the year. LOVE IT.

Alright You Restless by Agesandages. I discovered this band when I saw them live at Live Wire. Loved them!

And, Finally, Here is my Year In Pictures for 2011. May 2012 be filled with peace and love! Happy New Year!!!

Goodbye, 2010

Life

Why hello there! It’s New Years Eve, and time for me to take a look back at the past year.

The past couple of years on this day I have tended toward the negative. And, rightly so. There were some crazy-bad things that happened. 2010, though was pretty darn good. I honestly can’t think of a single thing that was bad about it.

  • I originally declared 2010 the year of the Banjo, but I ended up learning the Ukulele instead. One of my Summer Reading Performers, Cinda Tilgner, brought hers to the program and I fell in love with it. One thing led to another and I ended up buying one and performing in Cinda’s Uke Orchestra. It’s been lots of fun!
  • I was invited to a meditation group in April  and I  haven’t been the same since. In a good way. I’ve written lots about this experience this year, so no need to go into detail. But I’m very glad my friend had the instinct to invite me. I’ve made some fantastic friends through this group and am so happy that they are a part of my life. And I’m so happy to have finally developed a Zazen practice.
  • Raf became a Tattoo artist! If someone would have told me ten years ago that my husband would become a tattoo artist I would have told them they were crazy. But it was something that he wanted to do and he did it and I’m proud of him. And now I have my own personal tattoo artist in the house. I’ve always loved tattoos and have wanted to get more of them but I, generally, don’t like being touched by strangers. I hate the dentist, I don’t like getting my hair done, I don’t like doctors, and I especially dislike massages. So now that Raf has his tattoo license I can get tattoos and not feel uncomfortable. So I got a few of ’em this year.
  • I had a blast exploring the area. We went on a number of really fun hikes.


My favorite reads this year? I’m so glad you asked!

In short: 2010 was pretty killer.

Be safe tonight and I’ll see you tomorrow.