Top 10 Year End Review Questions

  1. What did you do this year that you have never done before?  Sent all of my kids off to school (even if it was just for five hours a week), started submitting my writing for publication
  2. What was the smartest decision you made this year? To get serious about writing and thinking about myself as a writer
  3. What one word best sums up and describe your last year experience? Growth – this was a year with a lot of changes, everything from starting to think about Jessica and her middle school experience, Sam really coming into his own at school and starting Julianna in preschool – and most importantly, starting to think about myself as a working parent and not just a SAHM
  4. What are you most happy about completing? Book proposal, absolutely
  5. What was the biggest risk you took?  I hate to keep repeating myself, but actually sending my writing out, risking getting it turned down (which it has been), dealing with rejection and also – getting used to it being published as well
  6. What are you most grateful for this past year? Always – Marc and the kids – everyone is healthy and whole and I never take that for granted
  7. What was your biggest achievement of the year? I moved the blog to self-hosted this year, which was HUGE, in terms of changing the way I looked at my writing.  Getting published in kveller.com and getting the book proposal finished and ready for submission
  8. What do you wish you had done more of?  I wish I had done more actual STUFF with the kids – trips to the beach or mountains, museums, day trips – focused time with Marc, I never seem to get enough of that
  9. What do you wish you had done less of?  I wish I had wasted less time worrying – it never makes anything better but I still can’t help myself sometimes
  10. Knowing what you know now, if you could write a letter to yourself that would travel back in time so that you would receive it at the start of the year, what advice would you give your younger self? I’d tell myself to relax – in the end, most things worked out pretty much the way they should

 

10 Questions to Ask About Your Relationships

  1. Who were the three people that had the greatest impact on your life last year?  Outside of the obvious answer of Marc and the cherubs – I’d have to say my editor at MassMoms because she was my first really professional contact, Sue Gravel at Flagg Street School, because I simply cannot overstate how incredibly grateful I am for all that she did for my boy, and my friends – the grown up girl friends that still love me even though I never remember to return calls, and I’m always late
  2. Did anyone close to you give birth?  Both sides of the family added a new baby (Amanda on Marc’s side, and Clark on mine) but in my immediate circle, David and Aviva had Zoe – and she’s beautiful and lovely and I feel myself get just a little wistful whenever I see her
  3. Did anyone close to you die? Thank goodness, no
  4. What important relationship improved the most?  I know this sounds selfish, but I’d have to say my own relationship with myself – this was the first year that I haven’t had a little one, my baby is potty trained and talking and attending preschool.  I’ve been so wrapped up in hands on mothering for so long, I had put a lot of my own goals and dreams on the backburner – this year, I started to dust some of them off

 

10 Questions to Ask About Your Spiritual and Existentialism

  1. Because of this past year, what do you believe is your purpose?  I think my purpose, first, is to raise these three children, with their dad, to adulthood, to assist, as much as I can, with the raising of my stepdaughters, and to work at being a wife and partner and mother.  More and more, I also feel like I have the opportunity to help other interfaith/Jew by choice parents on their journey, to validate everyone’s experiences, even if it bothers other people.
  2. What is one word that describes your relationship with God this year? Serenity
  3. Where did you find the most peace and calm this year? When I’m alone – in the car, or wandering around the library – more and more, I find that I need that alone time to recharge
  4. Where did you feel most connected to God this year? When I was with my kids – absolutely
  5. What is one miracle you witnessed this year? My cousin Nicky, his strength and determination astound me.
  6. What was the most loving service you performed last year?  Being a good friend, a good daughter, sister, mother, wife
  7. What is your biggest piece of unfinished business? The list is long… I’ve got a lot left to do
  8. What is the greatest lesson you have learned this year? To be true to myself, and to stop reading the comments – and since I’m not going to stop, to try my best to not let it bother me too much
  9. What was the best part of this year? What was the lesson learned? I think the best part of this year was that all three kids got bigger – suddenly, I have no baby – just three kids.  Everything suddenly got easier, no diaper bag, no naptime, and they all are at school at least part time.  Lesson learned was that when it’s so overwhelming and stress-filled, I should just breathe, it does get easier.
  10. What was the worst part of this year? What was the lesson learned? The worst part of this year was the financial instability.  Marc got laid off very suddenly, and unemployment had what they termed a “computer error” that resulted in several weeks of delay in receiving benefits.  It coincided with some major car troubles – it was horrible.  It all worked out in the end, the unemployment office fixed itself and it was retroactively caught up to date, but it was terrifying for a while there.  Lesson learned was that there are people who can and will help, we just have to be able to ask for it.  Be smart enough to reach out to congressman and state senators to intercede on our behalf, we’re very fortunate to have family members who were there for us when it got desperate.  And again, don’t panic, in the end, we were fine, and there was no lasting damage done.  All the worry was for nothing.

 

10 Questions to Ask About Your Time

  1. What date from this year will remain etched upon your memory and why? September 1, because it was Julie’s first day of school. 
  2. What was your single biggest time waster in your life this past year? Worrying over things I can’t impact.
  3. What slowed you down this past year?  My kids and Marc – because they’re poky.  I’d be on time all the time if I wasn’t waiting for them 🙂
  4. What was the best way you used your time this past year?  I still bring a book everywhere, and it makes my life a lot less stressful.
  5. What were you doing on most Saturday mornings this past year? Agonizing over religious school.  Jessie always goes happily enough, and for a while there, we had Tot Shabbat every Saturday (and I LOVED that).  But Sam hates Saturdays, and fighting that battle took up most of my Saturday mornings, sadly.
  6. During this past year, what were you doing at 3pm during the weekdays? By three o’clock, the kids are out of school – I was either driving to some after school activity or home throwing snacks to the cherubs at three.
  7. How did you spend your Sunday evenings this past year? Trying to find lunch boxes, make sure that any homework was done and giving kids baths, picking out clothes, etc
  8. What person(s) occupied most of your time? My time is mostly spend mothering – logistical stuff like laundry and housecleaning fall under that umbrella, baking and cooking, homework, and then the fun stuff, like rocking my kids when they’ll let me, and snuggling up with a good book to read to them, watching them play outside (and making them go outside and have fun when they don’t want to).
  9. What was your bedtime and wake up time? I’m usually asleep somewhere between ten and eleven and up by seven most mornings.
  10. If you had more time to invest in this past year what would you do with it? I would have done MORE.  I have a tendency to get caught up in day to day stuff, and it’s busy and encompassing and I’m never bored, but I don’t take enough time to go do something new or different.  Like a whale watch, or to climb a mountain or go visit far flung family members, head to the beach, trek around Boston, etc.

 

1. What are the 2-3 themes that personally defined 2009 for me?

I  would say growth and change, all three kids hit some major milestones and grew up a lot this year.  I did too.  There was a lot of change.  It was a tough year, in a lot of ways, Marc spent most of the first half being MIA, working a thousand hours a week at a job he hated and I was alone with the kids a lot of the time.  And even though we got to have him around a lot more towards the second half, it was clouded by financial concerns and stress.  I’m happy to say goodbye to 2013.

 

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