Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014 flashes by

January through March: Last winter was awful. We were introduced to the term polar vortex. Very cold temps and unrelenting snow. For almost 3 months, one could not see our street for the permanent snow cover.   I would go twice a week to the Y. Parking was a problem with all the snow drifts. I learned to run on top of snow. We plotted our escape. In February, we visited my brother in the Bay Area. Relative warmth, spring flowers..I ran along the ocean every morning. Pictured above is Montarra Beach. During our time there, we went over the mountain to the sunny side: Palo Alto with Stanford U and its art museum. We also visited Marin County where we were able to get close to falcons having sex. In March, we went for a reunion for Steve's family in NY. They had a cold winter too though not as bad as Michigan did. In Central Park, volleyball players in bare chests were playing amid the snow drifts. Everyone seemed starved for sun. Above is the Lower Manhattan skyline as viewed from the Brooklyn Bridge Park. Steve and I crossed the bridge on foot as the sun went down.

April through June: Spring very slowly came. For my birthday in late April, we went up north. It was still covered in ice (see above). Huge snow drifts blocked our path into Sleeping Bear Dunes. Late April! I began training in earnest for my bike trip. I also began my gardens. Meantime, lots of grandbaby visits. Pictured above are scenes from Mother's and Father's Day when all the grandbabies were together. Happy times.

July through September: These months were especially busy. Lots of time was spent gardening and bicycling. In late June on one of my bike rides, I noticed a house for sale that I wouldn't mind living in (the living room is pictured above). It was on the outskirts of town surrounded by organic farms, a beautiful lot, a wonderful kitchen, living room and dining room. With the lower tax rate, it would be less expensive to live there than here plus it would be a great investment. Unfortunately inspection unearthed many problems plus the sellers and their agent and our agent (since fired) were dishonest and/or incompetent. . We broke the contract. I went ahead with the summer I had previously planned: my week long bike ride up north (Grand Traverse Bay lined with sweet peas early in the morning is pictured above) and then a trip to Washington DC to see Soulmate and then to Maryland to see my best friend from high school. Tessa, looking like an angel above, was baptized in August.
House hunting continued through the summer and fall with me exhibiting absolutely no enthusiasm for it. I'd see houses I liked, not the same ones Steve liked but there was always some impractical aspect to them. I would have preferred to not look until the next year especially as we had the trip to Italy planned (Steve refused to even participate in the planning until 2 days when we were going to leave, he thought it took away from house searching which again, I wanted to put on hold). Allie turned one.

 October: A very busy and fun month. My friend and I had our annual pilgrimage to Grand Rapids for ArtPrize. Josh and I spent a wonderful Sunday together biking the Trail Town Tour going on the many bike trails within 15 miles of his house, beautiful fall colors all around,. I took Tessa apple picking one day with her preschool class. Then our trip to Italy, which Steve while there enjoyed too. We stopped in NYC on our way back. Extra bonus: for 2-3 weeks after returning, I heard nothing about houses until some time in November I found an email suggesting we go to this open house (!@##@! was my thought..I loved my break).

November and December:

I dreaded these months afraid of slipping into the bleak, cold vortex again. Yes I agreed to go to that open house, the jetted tub of which is pictured above. Steve fell in love with the house. It did not wow me like the Moose and Squirrel house plus the taxes will be higher than the Ann Arbor City taxes. Also the house is pricy so I am trying to tell myself that we will be living in our bank account instead of seeing numbers on a page. And presumably the rate of return will be higher. The house is in a good location and seems to have nice gardens. It even has a waterfall. Also no work needs to be done to it. It is in pristine condition. So I agreed to make an offer as the house hunting business had been causing so much tension between us. Due to a rapid explosion of development near our current house, it will be less fun to live here. And many people target our neighborhood as desirable. Most houses disappear within a week (a notable exception sits right across from us but it overpriced and very ugly inside). Everyone shoehorned themselves into our tiny dining room for Thanksgiving. I did not put up the Xmas tree this year due to the move. Early in December, Steve's family came to stay with us. It was fun. Our family get togethers will be so much easier in our new big space. The sellers let us show the family our new digs. We had our annual Moms party earlier in the month. Xmas, last week was at Josh's. Again all the grandbabies were together.

All and all a good year. There was some sadness when my friend from breast cancer yoga died. I will miss my gardens and certain aspects of my neighborhood. We see the grandbabies frequently and I have good visits with my friends. No new grandbabies this year ( we had new ones in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012 and then 2013..almost one a year). Maybe next year. I see the Moms as a group at least monthly and the individual moms much more frequently. I have graduated from seeing the oncologist, a good thing. I am still debating whether I want to see the plastic surgeon to deal with my Picasso chest. My inner nag is happy that I was able to run and bike frequently all year and especially this month. In the last 2 months, bad weather has keep me inside for only 2 days. Next week, I can return to the Y. Inner nag does remind me frequently that something needs to be done about my hugeness. And I really, really want to look good for the wedding late May in California. Where will I go this year? Hard to plan when we don't know what is going to happen with our current house. The Michigander will start in Cheybogan going to Bellaire, Indian River, Traverse City, Harbor Springs and Grayling..not necessarily in that order. Its sort of a combination of the last three years but seems to bypass the very tip of Michigan.

Maya (pictured in a photo I took yesterday, my new favorite of her) should be in school full time next year so hopefully Naomi can make some strides into becoming independent. We are all healthy, ear infections, mysterious rashes not withstanding. To my blogging friends, Happy New Year!!!!!


1 comment:

Elephant's Child said...

Loving your year in review. And blown away by the snow/ice on the beach.
Thank you - and a very happy New Year to you and yours.


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