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Looking Back on 2009*

Looking Back on 2009*

I know I’m technically a few days late with this post, but I knew it would take me a while to get through and I didn’t want to write it in pieces, so, here I am… three days late. I figure that as long it’s still the first week of January it’s still fair game! haha

Oh 2009… where to begin. In January I “finished” school. By the end of the month I had completed the in-class portion of teacher’s college and only three placements stood between me and graduation. Completing my last university exam was such a surreal feeling, but dang it felt good!

February and March were spent teaching grade 7 and 8 in Senior’s City. After the first two weeks of placement I was positive that I hated teaching at the intermediate level and that it was going to be a miserable two months. Ha. I’m not really sure when things changed, but somewhere between chaperoning a school dance and becoming a “booze buster” I knew that I could have a very fulfilling, happy career teaching grade 7 or 8 by the time that placement ended. Except for the math part. I could live without that.

In March we also found out that Peeah was having a baby girl and managed to get away for an eventful week in Florida with my family.

I left grade 7 and spent most of April teaching a Grade 12 University level English course. The students were wonderful, but I found that what I once thought was my dream course was actually kind of… boring. Aside from trying to make Hamlet interesting, it wasn’t terribly challenging. As I continued toward the end of my year, the Hubster finished his and completed his degree in Computer Science and Business. After weeks of applications and interviews he was offered two jobs and we faced one of the biggest decisions we’ve ever had in our marriage to date. After careful thought and consideration we decided to go for the “riskier” of the two jobs–it began only as a 4 month contract–that also held the most potential. It involved moving to a city we had never considered in our previous conversations but we decided to bite the bullet and go for it.

May was one of the best and hardest months of 2009 for me. The Hubster and I spent three weeks living apart as I finished my last placement in The City, and he began preparations for us to move at home in Senior’s City. My mother kindly gave up her car for the duration and my lovely cousin invited me into her home to live with her while I finished school. Getting to know her and her family better during that time was one of the highlights of my whole year.

May was also when I fell in love with Special Education. To be honest, I had never seriously considered it–Peeah is a Spec Ed teacher and had always encouraged me to go that route, but it never held any interest for me. I took the placement because I thought it would look good on my resume. As much as I hate to admit that, it got me in the door and it’s now what I want to do most.

While my weekdays were spent in the classroom, my weekends were spent apartment hunting in our new city. After viewing several apartments that were either too pricey or too dusgusting we found a cute little 2-bedroom apartment in a fabulous location for a great price. However, there were other people viewing it at the same time we were and we had only minutes to discuss it as a possibility or else we’d lose it. Without knowing what the other tenants were like, or getting to know the neighbourhood we decided to take a chance and took it. After six months I can honestly say I couldn’t be happier… we love our new place!

June… oh June. It was full of graduations, unpacking and the beginning of the job hunt. June was full of such promise. I was turning 24, held two degrees and a professional designation and I felt confident that I’d find a teaching job in no time.

By July I realized that things are never that simple. While I continued to apply for posting after posting I tried to remain hopeful.

And then it was August and I was still out of work. I stopped counting the number of postings I had applied for over the summer, and was more than a little discouraged that I hadn’t even been able to find a part-time job in retail. The two bright spots of that month were our 4th wedding anniversary and the arrival of my beautiful niece, Princess Pea. I was at the hospital only hours after she was born and holding her for the first time was an experience I’ll treasure for the rest of my life.

In September things began to look up a bit. I finally found a part-time job, and while it isn’t glamorous, the people I work with are wonderful and it’s an income… and I’m grateful for that. I also began my French course and began volunteering at a local high school. My days went from being empty to being so full I needed an agenda just to keep track of where I was supposed to be and when. We also bought our first car and I began eating chocolate again after a full year of living without.

October and November were much of the same… my hours at work increased and I continued with my volunteering hopeful that it will one day lead to something permanent (and paid!). If nothing else, it’s been wonderful to be back in a classroom and I’ve met some fabulous people.

And then it was December… December was so full I don’t even know where to begin. I worked too much, stopped eating chocolate again, didn’t sleep enough and didn’t leave enough time to really enjoy the season I love most. That’s really another post all itself… the one thing I will say is that this past week and a half has been wonderful. I worked psycho hours until December 23rd–I often just felt like the Hubster and I were like ships passing in the night. He left for work before I was fully awake, and by the time I got home from my job it was almost time for bed. But by some miracle I’ve had 8 of the last 10 days off work and they were spent with family, friends and most importantly, spending time with my Hubster. We spent lazy days where we didn’t even leave the apartment to busy days full of shopping and outings and quietly rang in 2010 in our little home with movies and popcorn, just enjoying being together. While 2009 was certainly no walk in the park for him or I in many aspects of our lives, I am very excited for 2010. I’ll be turning 25. We’ll be celebrating our 5th wedding anniversary. I don’t know what it holds for me career-wise, but I know it holds something. I just have to be patient and work hard.

Whoa. The turned out to be so much longer than I ever expected! haha Oh 2009, you were busy! I also made a few goals for myself, let’s see how I did!

1. 2009: Get my but to the gym at least twice a week, three times if I can manage it. Reach weight goal–7 lbs to go. Also, have a flatter stomach by Florida (March break).
I actually did hold a gym membership for the majority of 2009, and aside from the summer when I didn’t have one, I made fairly good use of it. Unfortunately I also put all the weight I had lost for Peeah’s wedding back on with a few extra pounds for good measure. *sigh* I’ve realized that chocolate is my nemesis, and if I want to be fit, it’s gotta go. Since I stopped eating it again in late November I’ve lost 8 pounds and am just 10 pound shy of my goal.

2010: Get my but to the gym 3 -4 times a week, no exceptions. Reach weight goal–10 lbs to go. This year my focus is my big thunders–I want runner thighs!

2. 2009: Continue replacing “bad” foods with better choices. Stop eating fast food where I can, and cut back on eating chips (my guilty pleasure…).
I actually spent most of 2009 off chocolate and I felt great. I was doing really well with the healthy eating for a while but fell off the wagon. I’m back on track again now and feel better than ever.

2010: Continue eating healthily and be aware of calorie intake.

3. 2009: Write in my blog every day, and finish Our Story.
Haha… well, I wrote in my blog every day for the first two months of 2009, then life happened and I just couldn’t do it. I also haven’t finished Our Story yet, even though it’s been nearly two years since I began!

2010: Write as often as I can, but focus on writing great posts instead of quick thoughtless ones.

I also had these on my list:

–Run a 5km race (Not yet, maybe for 2010!)
–Be able to comfortably run 7 – 8km (I’m up to 4 – 5km again, I’ll get there this year!!)
–Graduate teacher’s college and find a job (I managed the graduating part, now I just need a job!)
–Read books that are not school books (I read a LOT this year, and I LOVED it. This year I want to keep a list of all the books I read!)
–Bake a pie from scratch (I tried this. Filling was fabulous! Pastry, not so much. 2010: get lessons from Mom. haha)
–Stop keeping things just to keep them. Clean up and clean out. (Done! The move forced us to downsize in many, many ways and it feels great!)

To that list I want to add:

Find a teaching position. (My goal is to do this before February 1st… wish me luck!)
–Finish writing my book.
–Try at least one new recipe every month.
–Take more photos.

Well my loves, that was my 2009. It was an interesting year, though I’m not terribly sad to see it go. There was one very bright spot throughout the year though: YOU. Over the past 12 months I’ve had the opportunity to get to know so many of you through your writing, through Twitter or 20SB and I have loved every moment of it! You’ve supported me through the hard times, cheered me through the good and stayed even when I didn’t write for weeks a time. Thank you. Thank you for being here–for always making me feel like what I write is important. I can’t begin to tell you how much it encouraged me when times were tough. I promise to be a better writer and reader in 2010–thank you for bearing with me.

Thanks for just being you. xo

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