In the Kitchen with TDIV
South Carolina, you are deceptively cold
Ice on a frond
Ice, so much ice
At least there was wine?
Lost TDIVians recovered!
Oh, we did.
One northerner’s introduction to the Bible belt
Gluttony isn’t a sin, right?
Isle of Palms
Isle of Palms
Some kind of sweet tea vodka deliciousness
Spice taste testing
Slow-cooked pork belly
The Cain Cluster Effect
Jim n’ Nick’s BBQ
More sweet tea vodka
Oh La La!
Salty Jack & and the Space Vixens
Charleston was an adventure! We visited during the ice storm, so the area where we stayed shut down for two days, and the majority of our division’s European contingent got stranded in Florida/North Carolina due to flight cancellations. We spent a lot of time inside. I suppose when I wished for a winter trip to a warmer climate, I should have been more specific. It was warmer than Maine…but not by much.
That said, our team pulled together and made lemonade out of lemons. Sure, the lemonade may have been spiked with sweet tea vodka, but it was pretty damn delicious.
2013 was rough–stressful in both good and bad ways, and looking back I’m floored at the amount of stuff our family has been through. There’s been travel, moving, new additions, injuries, and work–we’ve run the gamut, and I’m proud of all of us for making it through with relative good humor and patience. Hopefully 2014 will go a little easier on us.
A rough timeline of events:
- A work trip to Hawaii in January made for a picture perfect start to the year
- In April, we adopted Atticus. I had no idea one puppy could be so much work! But he is a sweetheart, and he’s calmed down quite a bit since we first brought him home. He likes to lay on my feet on the couch at night while I write or work.
- In May, I traveled to Italy for work. Our team stayed in a rustic countryside villa in the hills outside of Florence, which was as amazing as it sounds.
- We sold our condo in central Maine and moved north (the nearest Starbucks is in Canada, if that tells you how far north we are), back to my childhood home, to be closer to family. Easily one of the best decisions we could have made. The girls are thriving, and we’re loving all this space.
- Gwen turned two in September, and boy, did she ever turn two. She owns her two-ness. She climbs, she runs, she’s maniacally happy and sad in one breath, she’s persistent and driven, and she wants to do everything by herself. Yep, definitely two.
- Speaking of Gwen, we had that burn accident in September, which landed her in the hospital for three days and scared us all pretty badly. Thankfully everything turned out OK, we held it together, and she came out mostly unscathed. Though now she likes to tell everyone, “Mama spill hot coffee on my monkey shirt! Hurt. I cry.”
- Another trip, this time to San Francisco and Santa Cruz for the Automattic company meetup.
- We were without regular internet access until November, which made things difficult for working at home, but we managed. Got pretty familiar with the very few free wi-fi spots in town, and drank a lot of Tim Horton’s coffee.
- I wrote not one but two novel-length pieces of X-Files fanfic, completing my first NaNoWriMo! Woohoo! I’m in the process of publishing the first novel here.
- November also marked my second European trip of the year, this time to London, and I really want to go back; I feel like I could have spent weeks there.
- I worked a lot. I may have spent more time in pajamas than is considered socially acceptable. I continue to marvel at how lucky I am to work with the people I do, and to get paid to do the stuff I do. From home. In my pajamas with the Ninja Turtles on them. Yeah. I love my job.
- I struggled with depression, and it took a lot of time and convincing for me to acknowledge it, but with help from an SSRI and therapy, I’m ending the year from a happier, more balanced place.
- Ellie turned five in December, which feels like a personal milestone for me. When she was a newborn, I remember thinking of five as some magical, mystical age in the distant future, and now it’s here, and I am so proud of my smart, funny, beautiful little girl. She drives me crazy, but I love her to pieces and I can’t wait to see what the next five years bring.
Upcoming in 2014? More travel. Potty training (redux). More fanfic writing. Working. Family. And hopefully a happier, more positive outlook on the whole.