Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 in Facebook Statuses

This fuzzy, muddled week between Christmas and New Years is REFLECTION TIME and I think it's pretty important to look back and figure out what you did with yourself during the last 365 days. You're awesome, I'm sure you worked hard. 

I use my personal Facebook A LOT and I decided to go back month by month and see what I had been up to. I also checked the archives here, and did a cursory scan of my Instagram and Twitter accounts. I don't hold back much, so this gave me a pretty good idea of what my year was like. 

We drove home from Florida (where we spent post-Christmas and New Years) and listened to Serial. I talked a lot about books and posted videos of the kids. I shoveled a lot of snow. Elliott turned 2. Penguin died in Ben's arms and it was strange saying goodbye to him. My favorite book I read in January was EVIL LIBRARIAN by Michelle Knudsen. My favorite quote was from our road trip.

January 2Fredericksburg, VA
The 10-yr-old in this Subway, wearing stretchy pants and thick glasses, laying sideways across two chairs, reading a paperback and chewing on a straw? She's my spirit animal. I love her.

I read two trilogies and there were a ton more snow days. Papa died and my flight got canceled to go be with the family, so I posted a lot of pictures of him, and everyone reached out with lots of love. Parks and Rec ended and I devoured YES PLEASE  by Amy Poehler. The kids and I danced A LOT to Shake It Off. My favorite quote was from Milo.

February 21
Milo: Maybe when I'm older I can love a guy or a girl or a zebra or a cat.
Anything, baby.

Lots more books. Ben's horror trailer was shown at the Boston Underground Film Festival and I was so damn proud. I took Elliott to meet his bae, The Very Hungry Caterpillar. We had Papa's memorial service in Vermont and there was lots of lovely singing and remembering. I was deep into watching Friends on Netflix and reposting from Humans of New York (kind of a theme for 2015 in general.) My favorite book I read was WHEN YOU REACH ME by Rebecca Stead. My favorite quote was from Laurel, actually spoken in 2013 but still my favorite quote of possibly all time.

March 16
Two years ago

Debating whether to send flowers as a bday gift. Laurel: "well, they're going to die. But so are we."

In April I did Camp NaNoWriMo, adding another 30K to my word count for my novel, and really started trying to figure out how to end this thing. It was getting warmer and the pictures of my kids showed snow melting and mud pies being made. I went to The Lady Project Summit in Providence, but it took me a few weeks to realize how honestly disappointed I was in the whole thing. During April vacation, my mother-in-law took both boys so I could spend an adult day by myself in Portsmouth, and that was incredibly special. I wasn't over the moon about anything I read that month, but if I had to guess I'd say my favorite was ATTACHMENTS by Rainbow Rowell. My favorite quote was about some of my favorite things: my kids and Target.

April 28
Afternoons with these kids are the best. Elliott is super chill and content to cruise and listen to music, whereas Milo needs to know the plan and always suspects I'm secretly taking them to Target.

Lots of writing and reading and hanging out at playgrounds with my sweet little ones. We celebrated Mother's Day at the Gardner Ale House. We ate a lot of popsicles. My kick ass nephew turned one. I loved reading STATION ELEVEN by Emily St. John Mandel and READY PLAYER ONE by Ernest Cline. My favorite quote is tied.

This realization about my writing:
May 6
Trying to write a badass girl character and constantly going back to her dialogue to remove "I think that maybe," "If you don't mind," and "I'm sorry, but." This shit is INGRAINED, yo.

And this accurate representation of many of my discussions with my husband:
May 23
Me: What things do you think are real and what things do you think are made up?
Ben: *looks at me tiredly*

SUMMER, SUCKAS! A teacher's life is truly the best. MILO GOT A LIBRARY CARD! Ben and I celebrated eight years of being married. I printed my novel on paper. I folded and bought a season pass to our local farm/adventure park, then spent the entire summer pretending Elliott was under two, even though he was edging closer and closer to three. We celebrated Ben being a rad dad. Elliott sang a lot of songs on video and became a mini-internet star. I read a lot from the FEARLESS series by Francine Pascal and reread GIRL OF NIGHTMARES by Kendare Blake, a favorite YA horror series. My favorite quote kind of sums up how I am treated like a princess.

June 7
I've been reading in the tub for an hour. Ben just delivered me a slice of cold pizza. ‪#‎beyourbestself‬ ‪#‎holdoutforafairytale‬

Our yearly 3rd of July trip to Gloucester for the parade and fireworks was a success. I went on a REALLY fun vacation to Florida with a lot of my female family members to celebrate my sister's wedding- we fit a bachelorette and a bridal shower into one weekend and I had a TOTAL blast. I read lots and lots and started submitting book and TV reviews to What the Fangirl. I had some really great dates with lovely friends. We had a cookout and I got the first part of the tattoo on my forearm. I drank a lot and wrote a lot and lived the damn life. My favorite book was THE AWESOME by Eva Darrows. My favorite quote was real.

July 28
Fantasy: "OH my god, the kids are gone for 24 hours, I'm going to go to the gym, hang pictures, shower and dress proper, date my husband, and generally SEIZE THE DAY!
Reality: "OH my god, the kids are gone for 24 hours, I don't have to wear pants and will not be interrupted during this marathon obscure fanfic search."

Going back over these months makes me ache for summer, traditionally my least favorite season of the year. We went to Sesame Place as a family and spent a really fun day with my aunt and uncle at their house in Delaware- Milo still talks about jumping off the diving board with Captain Jack. We went to Cherry Hill for ice cream often. On the internet I was obsessed with the Buzzfeed videos "If Guy _________ Were like Girl _________" and The Toast's series "If ___________ was your girl/boyfriend."  School started. My favorite books were both graphic novels: DRAMA by Rania Telegimi and NIMONA by Noelle Stevenston. My favorite quote makes my heart squeeze up a little.  

August 28
I need to be corny for a minute. At the end of a busy first week back, I'm feeling so heart-swellingly grateful, and I can't stay quiet. I love being where I am right now: living in my sweet friendly neighborhood, working with people I love and admire, watching my kids rough and tumble little members of their gang. I like running into neighbors at the grocery store and seeing students at the street festival. I've moved around a bit and it's taken a few decades to find my groove, but I am really lucky to feel so at home in a place I wasn't born. A lot of you are a part of that, so thanks.

In September I got to know and love my current class, my little sister got married (which meant family vacation to Florida and Milo's first big trip without us to stay with his Mimi), and Ben and I went to a dear friend's wedding in Vermont where I rode a ski lift with increasing excitement throughout the evening. I had a whirlwind birthday weekend with Ben when we stayed in a nice hotel and went to see Book of Mormon in Boston. I read my first issue of Ms. Marvel and got really into Doctor Who. My favorite quote demonstrates the fine white girl tradition of getting amped for FALL.

September 9
Hi. I'm Ashlie. I'm a 30-year-old white female, and I will buy literally anything if you decorate the package with rustic flowers and put the word 'fall' on it.‪#‎fall‬ ‪#‎pumpkinspice‬ ‪#‎yogapants‬ ‪#‎brunch‬ ‪#‎applepicking‬ ‪#‎scarfweather‬‪#‎notevenkidding‬ ‪#‎icanteven‬ ‪#‎icantstop‬ ‪#‎help‬

This month was huge huge huge. Milo turned 4 and we picked a lot of apples. I turned 30 and my mother, husband, and sister threw me a HUGE surprise party. Laurel orchestrated a whole weekend where I felt so special and spoiled, and the twins flew in from Florida to surprise me. After a whole day of being pampered in the city with my sisters, I got home to find all my nearest and dearest under a glowing tent in the backyard, and MY MOM AND RAY HAD FLOWN IN, TOO. One of my best friends had driven from New York with her sweet baby. I saw so many faces of people that I loved and drank a ton of great beer. I am still reeling from the amazement. I also visited the Boston Book Festival for the first time and heard amazing speakers and left so excited to be a reader in this awesome world. I heard Hamilton for the first time. Halloween was lovely and Ben took a picture of all of us as Star Wars characters. The month was exciting and exhausting. My favorite book was CARRY ON by Rainbow Rowell. My favorite quote speaks to a yearly issue.

October 3
Pumped full of steroids to fight poison ivy. Let my first dose really set in and now I'm headed to Market Basket to hulk out on the first asshole to cut me off in the deli.

In November I wrote a ton and had an awesome Thanksgiving.  I squeaked through NaNoWriMo by the skin of my teeth and still didn't realize my goal of completely finishing my novel. Thanksgiving was lovely and meeting up with my sister for Black Friday was awesome. I listened to Hamilton. My favorite book was THE DIVINERS by Libba Bray. My favorite quote was about how crazy the world is getting at the end of 2015.

November 18
Facebook: daily revealing prejudices about people you were happy just smiling at in real life.

This month was kind of a fever pitch of holiday activities and wrapping up the year. Ben turned 36 and we finally saw The Force Awakens.  We met Santa and bought presents and spent time with friends. We ate cookies and listened to Hamilton. A lot. We spent Christmas with family in Delaware and spent a busy/amazing day in Philadelphia. Humans of New York featured a bunch of Syrian refugees getting ready to come to America and it broke my heart every day.  My favorite book was LAIR OF DREAMS by Libba Bray. My favorite quote was from a day of shopping with Milo.

December 19 at 5:02pm
Shout outs to: the lady picking up her check at Dunks sipping on a Gourmet Donuts coffee, the people at Old Navy who found my lost iPhone, and the shoppers who patiently stepped over my four year old when he finally gave up and laid flat on the floor of the mall on the Saturday before Christmas. You all made my day.

Guys, this year was just one long party. I bought what I wanted and I read what I wanted and a traveled a ton. I met friends for dinners and book dates and I got my kids hooked on the music I loved which made all car rides pretty awesome. Even though no major milestones were worked for me personally, the year felt super full and I love that I spent so much time really settling into my tastes and preferences. That's not something I granted to myself any earlier in life.

2016 will be a little different. I have some work to do, some plans to make, and some shit to finish. I'm going to hang onto this year as a memory of fun and living true to my desires, and appreciate the awesome kick off to the next decade.

My favorite posts of the year: On diets and health food and feminism and power, Take the Compliment. Seriously., Shower Drinking, Diary of Going 96 Hours Without My Cellphone, In My Next 30 Years

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At January 2, 2016 at 11:54 AM , Blogger Molly said...

Love this! Happy 2016!


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