here’s my wordpress year in review, although it’s not complete since i migrated my blog halfway through the year…


2013 year in review!

it’s that time of year when i look back at what has happened over the past 12 months, and i say yay! or yuck.

let’s recap my “resolutions”:

1. take more pics. i say this every year. every year i can take more pics. i don’t think anyone can take too many pics.

2. run a real 10k. as in a chipped race. i’ve run 10k (and it wasn’t fun). but let’s get up to legitimate 10k. then we’ll talk half marathons. first i have to get running again. it’s been a month! icky!

3. make a housing plan. i’m already tired of renting. so are the cats

4. pay off some debt so the housing plan can get together! one plus of renting: cheap.

5. write in my blog every other day at least! that’s asking a lot of myself, i know. i can do every day in november, but to commit year-round is heavy. but i can only try.

ETA: 6. REDDIT LESS. good god, reddit less. ack.

1. fail.
2. check!
3. check!
4. sorta check?
6. FAILWHALE. boooo…

so what happened in 2013?

1. i got a raise, which apparently is a big deal when you’re working for the state. woo!

2. i ran a couple 5ks this year, as well as a crappy 10k. it would have been an awesome 10k if not for the cruddy two ginormous hills at the end of the race. who does that? anyway, i ran a diva dash, color run, and the big gay race this past summer along with crappy 10k. i ran the farthest i’d run ever in july – 7 miles. i haven’t gotten that far again yet.

3. i wrote in my dang blog at least 15 days a month for the whole year, except for november, which was every day, and december, which i knew would be a slacker month (although it should be 13 days, which is pretty close).

4. after nate and i moved down to this corner of the state last year, my parents moved down here this year, as well as liz, doug, and hannah. jane moved to the cities, too. glad to have started the great migration. sad to say goodbye to central and west-central MN.

5. i have a niece! liz pushed out a kid, and nate is smitten.

6. nate and i bought a house. uhhhh, you have no idea how nice it is to be back in a house! after a whirlwind of looking, dealing with the government shutdown, and finally closing, we bought a house in st. charles.

7. after being mostly corn syrup free for three years, i decided to start writing a book about it. and stalled. hopefully the stall ends soon.

8. i reached sub-200 lbs, which i haven’t seen in, oh, 15 years? alas, november and december took their tolls on me and i am back up 5-6 lbs. once i get back into a decent eating routine, should be back under soon.

9. i wish i could say i went on some big adventure or trip, but the farthest i went was indiana to see liz & co. in the hospital. i wish i could say i looked at nate and said, “take off the next week – we’re going to the grand canyon/disneyland/duluth!” alas it did not happen. i wished this year and watched it fly past.


resolutions to come.

edit: HOW could i forget wil wheaton tweeting at me!!!!!

almost time…

it’s december 29, which means three more days until kablpoye beings. i think i need a better name for this.

that said, i haven’t got much compiled for posts. i have some pictures but that’s about it. does anyone want to see anything specific? let me know!

year in review to come in the next couple days, of course 🙂

goodwill toward all

in the great blog migration, i lost a post i wrote about celebrating christmas. i remember it being quite good, and i’m going to try to revisit it.

christmastime. the word conjures visions of early mornings and wrapping paper, christmas trees and manger scenes, stockings, flutters of hope, and long-standing traditions. the manger scene is what most will tell you is central – the meaning of the season. belief in the divine humanity of jesus.

what about those who don’t believe in the divineness of jesus? who think jesus was pretty cool, but don’t necessarily think he was son of god? the population of people raised on christianity but leaving it behind – atheism, agnosticism, secularism, non-religious – is increasing in the US. this means there is a group of people out there who have celebrated christmas their entire lives, and over time they decide christianity is not for them. do they stop celebrating christmas?

some do. i would wager that most don’t. on top of that, there are non-christian religious who do celebrate christmas (some jewish people do). personally, i think it’s easy to embrace the christmas spirit without believing in the divinity of jesus.

there are a lot of elements to christmas besides the nativity, many of which are religious in nature, many of which are not. symbols aside, one of the biggest parts of this season is family history and tradition behind it. christmas is something a person celebrates every year, and mostly the same way. sure, there are new family dynamics and refined gifting tastes, but ultimately, the bones of christmas remain. this is a difficult thing to suddenly renounce, especially with a long holiday season such as christmas, which we probably spend more time entrenched in that all other holidays combined. how do you say goodbye to something you have been celebrating all your life?

you don’t. in fact, a lot of christmas spirit can be spread without the divinity of jesus and just by being a simple person trying to be good and empathetic in the world. happiness, family, gift giving, caring for others, joy, goodwill to all, peace on earth, hope – none need the divine to be spread as far as christmas cheer can reach.

and that’s what it’s all about, right? even the nativity story is about family, giving, happiness, joy, peace, hope. so while some may scoff at christmas as a religious holiday, it is so much more, and there’s no reason that everyone can’t partake. in turn, it would be nice to accept non-christians and non-religious celebrating christmas without skeptical looks and questions as to why they would celebrate the season.

because what WOULD jesus do? divine or not, he would open his door, hand you a cup of hot chocolate, and invite you to sing christmas carols ’round the tree.

happy christmas.


i am really not doing well on my movie watching this year. i’ll have to kick it up a notch.

  1. charlie brown
  2. the santa clause
  3. maybe a christmas story?
  4. the lion, the witch and the wardrobe
  5. it’s a wonderful life
  6. babe
  7. love actually
  8. home alone
  9. muppet christmas carol

of my previous list, i’ve watched babe, lion witch wardrobe, santa clause, and home alone. well, actually i’m not doing too badly. i also watched die hard, which has lived up to the hype of a good christmas movie.

but there’s a week to christmas! so i’d better get cracking to get my list done.

night divine

windowstonight i drove to zumbro falls, a small bucolic town, population 307, that’s about 35 miles from st. charles, to visit a coworker of mine who was participating in a craft sale. i left at 6:30, after the sun had made its early wintertime descent into the western sky. i drove northwardly cross country, hitching rides on county-road blacktop.

one thing i noticed immediately when we moved from austin to new london was the farms were far and few between in west-central minnesota, while farmhouses popped up all over the south end of the state, like mushrooms after a rainy day. after moving back, i was comforted by the plethora of farms, and as it turns out, christmastime is when they shine.

many of the farmhouses were strung with copious lights, the yards populated with reindeer, santas, snowmen, and candy canes. tonight was a little hazy, and the moon shone muted, yellow in the sky, just enough to bring a white sheen to the ground where the few inches of snow we got lay.

as my tires hummed over the asphalt, bringing me to farm after farm, i was suddenly struck with a homesickness for the drive between new london and the st. cloud area. after spending christmas with my family – food prep, o holy night, buffet, stockings, presents, bad movies – i would drive home on highway 23, then veer off on county road 2 in cold spring, and slide through garrison keillor’s lake woe-be-gone backyard. a couple miles before trundling under interstate 94, there was a home that had done its lights right: the massive tree in the front yard was strung in vertical white lights from top to bottom. you could see it coming a mile down the road, and i looked forward to seeing it every year.

i won’t be seeing my lake woe-be-gone tree anymore, and there are some definite wild cards to this christmas (like…will the new church choir sing “o holy night”?). but the basics will still be the same – family and fun and snow and cheer. i know i’ve said in the past that home really is where your family is – it’s not about the place or the atmosphere. but it sure is hard to remember that sometimes.