I know that 2010 was a difficult year for many people.
For me it was kind of extraordinary.
It was my second year of sewing. I finished many fewer things, but was more proud of the ones I made. I sewed a great pair of pants, and a very useful pouch, and several maternity dresses, and a wedding dress for my sister. I learned a lot about manipulating patterns and a little about how different kinds of fabric work. I also stole my Mom’s Babylock. Thanks, Mom!
It was my third year of oil painting. I finished about eight paintings, and sold four. I settled into my palette, and learned how to use texture to create depth. I played around with new mediums, and with painting on paper. Of all my paintings, I think I was most proud of my cityscapes. I wish I had painted more. I’d like to paint more next year.
It was my thirteenth year as a scientist (ten since I started graduate school). I got to speak at our departmental seminar, and at a research institute outside DC, and at a 500-person conference in Salt Lake City. I tried to solve adaptation in the olfactory system in one crazy summer of experiments. And thanks to Rachel, and Allison, and Helen, I got two (!) manuscripts accepted for publication.
It was my eighth year together with David (three and a half since we were married). We traveled to San Francisco and Philadelphia, and to Vermont and New York, and to Florida and New Jersey and Wisconsin. We saw lots of friends and lots of family. We went for walks and looked at galleries and ate many many tasty foods. We talked about science and about painting and photography and about finances and family and what we wanted for the future. When our friends ask if we’ve learned anything as new parents, we say “Invest time in each other!” It has paid off during 3am feedings. And 4am. And 5am. And 6am.
It was my first year with Joey. A year ago I didn’t know he was on his way. I didn’t know that being a parent would be the hardest thing I’d ever done. I didn’t know how much joy he would bring our families. I didn’t know how deeply and instantly I would love him.
I cannot believe how lucky I have been: to have a great job, and time to pursue my hobbies, and a family that loves me, and a beautiful child, and a partner in all ways.
Happy New Year everyone!