2012 has come and gone. Thank the Gods.
It’s not that it was necessarily a bad year for my husband and me, there were the usual ups and downs of life and finances, sure, but nothing devastating. But it was a bad year on a global scale and for a number of people we care about which greatly reduced our enjoyment of things.
Some of the highlights of the year:
My family was blessed with three more babies. I now have a new niece, a new nephew, and a new second cousin bringing the total number of children in my family who are under the age of 18 to 19. As I was making out the To Buy For list for the holidays, I realized that (except for one year) for the last decade there’s been at least one new baby born every year. That’s a lot of kids. So many in fact that we ended up buying presents just for the kids and our parents. Everyone else got homemade cookies.
My husband bought a new truck. This was both a good and a bad thing. A good thing because his Mustang which he’d had for close to eleven years was on its last legs and it would cost more to repair it than it was worth. A bad thing because we were supposed to buy me a new vehicle this year. My last car died right before we bought the house in 2010 and, since we were going to be buying a house, we didn’t buy me a new one then because it would have messed with our debt to income ratio. This year we could finally afford to buy me a car and the Mustang decided to crap out on us. Boo… Hopefully this year we can get me a nice used car since I’m getting really sick and tired of having to rely on others to take me where I want to go.
We got a whole heck of a lot further on my office renovation. It’s still not done, but it’s at about 75% done. Most of the delay right now is because one of corners is a curve instead of a 90 degree angle and it’s taking a lot longer than expected to get it to curve like it should. I’d rather take the time to get the curve right than simply square it off because the curved walls are one of the things I love about this house. BUT! We’re going to be sanding the floor this week and we’ve already got the paint colors chosen, so we’re basically just waiting on that curve to be done and then I’m going to commission one of my husband’s employees to make me some curtains for the windows. And then it’s down to simply getting furniture in there and decorating.
As I talked about before, my best friend and I had started sword training with her mentor. Unfortunately, once summer arrived, her life sort of went downhill and she wasn’t able to make it to practice for several months. As mentioned above, I don’t have a vehicle of my own, so that meant that I couldn’t make it to practice either. By the time her life calmed down and she had the time and mental/emotional/physical spoons to start going again, our teacher had already filled in that time with other activities. So, alas, there is no more sword training for me. I’m pretty sure our teacher was a bit put out by it. I really do feel bad because we were all enjoying it very much and I wish like hell I could have continued it.
I also attempted to go shampoo free last year by using apple cider vinegar and baking soda to wash my hair. That worked quite well for a few months, but then I started to notice that my hair was becoming very straw-like and brittle. So, I am back to using shampoo, but only sparingly and I’m searching for a good organic shampoo that isn’t going to cost me an arm and a leg. In other hair news, I still have a bit of a purple tint to my hair from when I dyed it purple to go to Vegas back in August of 2011. I keep threatening to go have it professionally colored at a salon, but I never seem to find the time. Just a word of warning — Splat Lusty Lavender Hair Dye is not as temporary as they say it is. I’m not sure if it’s staying in my hair because I didn’t bleach the color out of it first or what.
And an interesting factoid relating to the above — the majority of search terms that led to this blog last year relate to people searching for information on Splat Lusty Lavender or No Poo.
The search for a publisher for Lost Souls isn’t going as well as I’d hoped. A person can only hear/read “This is really good, you’ll definitely find a home for it somewhere, but unfortunately not with us” so many times before it gets absolutely depressing. And it doesn’t help when every one of them cites a different reason for passing. It means that there’s nothing to fix and it’s all just personal preference and the slowing Urban Fantasy market driving the rejections. So, I’m working on a story in a completely different genre and hope that when it’s finished the market for that type of book hasn’t passed me by like it did with Urban Fantasy. It really pains me to set Alex, Ryuu, and Vic aside, but I’m hoping that the UF market will see a resurgence in a few years so that I can whip them back out and try again.
Last year I only read 50 books which makes me quite ashamed of myself. I usually read between 75 and 100 books a year. There were a few times where I went for weeks without reading anything. I’m hoping to do better this year and I’m hoping to expand my repertoire a bit more. Most of the books I read last year were fantasy or urban fantasy. This year I want to read more non-fiction relating to history and science. So, if anyone has any favorite non-fiction books, feel free to rec them to me!
And finally, the blogging group I’d been blogging with for the last year and a half has decided to close down. Black Ink, White Paper‘s final blog post was last Monday. It’s both sad and a bit of a relief for me. I barely find time to post here, so trying to come up with good blog posts for over there was starting to get a bit stressful, but I’m so glad to have been a part of the group because it allowed me to meet a number of very wonderful and talented writers.
And that’s about it for last year. There were other things that happened, but I’ve either already talked about them or I don’t feel comfortable talking about them here.
So, it’s out with the old year, in with the new, and here’s hoping it plays out better than before.
ETA: Oh, and I forgot to mention that political differences cost me one of my dearest friends from high school. She’s a dyed in the wool conservative Catholic and I’m a liberal-leaning independent Pagan. Apparently, the religious differences were fine, but discussing politics from the opposite end of the political spectrum equals deterioration. *shrugs* I’m still a bit upset over it even though it happened in March. What made it even worse was that we saw her in public just a few months ago and she tried to make like nothing had even happened. I’m not against reconciling with her and re-starting the friendship since she was the one who ended it, but I do get cranky when somebody tries to make nice in a public setting with other people around even though they haven’t once tried contacting me privately.