Every year I write a wrap-up post, not because I think anybody cares, but instead because I have come to cherish the exercise of looking back at what happens in a year. I’ve learned that I either have a terrible memory, or am just very future-focused. I hardly ever look backwards to appreciate all this fun stuff, unless I take some dedicated time to do it.
That said, here’s some stuff that happened in 2019.
Whew, we are getting awfully used to a lifestyle full of travel. It doesn’t even feel like we traveled a lot this year, but we were out the door almost every month in 2019.
- FEB: Matt to SF and Oakland in february
- MAR: Matt to France in March for work, Germany after that for pleasure. recap here!
- APR: San Diego in April
- JUNE: STL in June, and Mellie was there for some of it!
- JUL: Tulsa in july (it was hot)
- JUL: Erika 20-yr High School Reunion in July
- AUG: kids weekend in STL with my parents in Aug
- SEP: Erika took a long road trip to Seattle and BC
- OCT: San Francisco in Oct for Will wedding / biz meetings / family hangout
- NOV: Thanksgiving in Chicago (we even stopped for lunch in Iowa to see my friend Qing)
- DEC: STL for Christmas
And lots of people came to visit last year!
- Lewises visit for NYE (2018)
- Phil & Rel in december!
- Heidi and girls visited in the spring
- Pat visited
- our college friend crew visited in July for a week
- Lillers again in November
- Elkes in Dec/Jan
The chores of homeownership are generally tedious and frustrating, but this sadly takes up a big amount of brainspace and effort - so I definitely include it in my recap of the year. Plus, it’s nice to look back at the things we learned how to do (or not do).
- The big one last year: Erika finished the house next door for her mom, and Carola moved in! Erika did an incredible job. I barely helped at all, which was great. I built some steps and a porch.
- We had some further roof fixes done
- We got backup sump pumps down in the basement after a minor power outage proved just how short a time it takes to get water in the basement
- We replaced the water heater, ie, a plumber did it for us
- Erika and I actually poured a new crown for our chimney!
- Erika and I reframed out our four skylights, which we discovered were NOT EVEN ATTACHED TO THE HOUSE, just sitting in place on the box.
- Took an amazing puppet class, made amazing puppets
- Made a big Tolstoy head and other halloween costumes
- Redesigned and relaunched TilmanRiemenschneider.com, my ongoing catalog of the german sculptor.
- Baijiu Review ticked along, got to try some delicious stuff, got some neat bottles contributed, and hosted a couple of tasting nights.
- Erika did a great project halfway thru the year where she visited the same site in a big park every week. But then the flooding cut off that site, so she couldn’t go there any more.
- Printed the last 4 Charles Williams novels! Finishing that project was almost on autopilot, but it was a big achievement and it’s great to have that wrapped up. Now I just need to sell some more books. (available here for sale!)
- Dumb Cuneiform is still going, and I’m still making custom clay cuneiform tablets based on your dumb tweets.
- Made those concrete molded finials
- Made a fun card game w the kids
- Designed a set of tarot cards for sean’s video
Interesting weather this year, which made it really nice to be in Kansas. We got a bunch of snow in the winter, a TON of rain in the spring, summer was hot but in a nice way, and autumn was GORGEOUS.
- I continued as a trustee at church, switching to the ‘lead’ trustee for 2020.
- Erika started the year in her board position at SSL. Then over the summer, they convinced her to take a new position as Donations Manager, which she’s doing amazing at. She still put on the big annual dress giveaway in her volunteer capacity, anyway.
- My friend Qing left lawrence :(
- Felix and I worked on a construction project at church, rebuilding the wheelchair ramp
- Matt joined a crossfit gym, which takes up SO MUCH TIME.
Felix and Trudy are just as delightful as ever. Felix started a new classroom at school, with the 4-6 graders. Trudy is now at the boss-level of her 1-3 class. A big change for last year was our new neighbor: Erika’s mom! It’s really nice to have her next door, and I enjoy having her in family activities like our birthday breakfasts, etc.
- Trudy colonized a jewelry class at the art center, and continues to just CHURN out the artwork at an inspiring pace.
- Felix upgraded soccer levels again, and his Premier league has two practices per week plus weekend games in KC. It’s an increase in our time commitment, but the games are FUN.
- They both went to real summer camp this year, and loved it.
Work at Brand New Box was really fulfilling this year. Challenging, rewarding, and with an eye for building big things in the future. I’m excited. I’ll write a year-end wrap-up over at brandnewbox.com as well, but some highlights:
- josh had a baby!
- mark left!
- major EOS revamp!
- team went to Colorado!
- will got married!
- rosetta was a hit!
- joe joined!
- several new clients signed on!
I have high hopes for 2020. But this recap exercise really convinces me of one thing: I am one lucky bastard.