At the end of last year, I resolved to do or try at least 12 new things over the course of the year. Well, the year has ended already. Did I make my goal? Damn right I did!
Here's the full list with the details:
1. Participated in a weight loss challenge at work
Lost not only weight but also the challenge! This wasn't a major deal but I don't participate with many extra things to do at/with work so this was out of my comfort zone.
2. Enjoyed an evening with psychic medium, Deanna Fitzpatrick
I've always enjoyed watching psychic mediums do their work and while I realize there are a number of fakes out there and a larger number of people that don't believe in this work, I am one who does believe in souls and an afterlife. I went to this event with my Mom and we both enjoyed it.
3. Attended a Murder Mystery Dinner Theater
3a. Performed an audience role in said murder mystery dinner theater
This was so much fun that my Mom and I ended up attending a second dinner later in the year! Performing a part was very stressful for me but since my goal was to try new things, I had to say yes and I think I did a mighty fine job. No one seemed to notice my nervous shaking.
4. Went to Herr's Factory Tour
We made this trip as a family with one of little one's friends along for the ride. This place smelled so good, especially the first stop at the pretzel building. We also enjoyed fresh, warm potato chips. Bonus: we bought tons of souvenirs (chips) and it didn't cost us an arm and a leg + the tour was free!
5. Went to the Rehoboth Beach Chocolate Festival
Okay, I have to admit that I was on a foodie frenzy when I signed up for this festival and ordered the 20 piece selection. 20 pieces was WAY too much food to even try to consume and we weren't supposed to bring anything home. However, my Mom, always being the prepared one, brought sandwich bags anyway. This seemed to be the norm as several "seasoned" attendees were walking around with Tupperware/Ziploc containers and the vendors were putting the items directly in them. This is not a festival I would attend again as there were a ton of people crowded into a small space (something that gives me anxiety), the items really weren't all that great and it was a hurried event.
6. Vacationed in Washington, D.C. on Memorial Day weekend
Whew! I've been to D.C. before on a field trip but never stayed the night, let alone a full weekend. This was a great trip with some great friends! I wouldn't go there again over a holiday weekend, such as this date or 4th of July due to the large quantities of people that were there. Because it is the nation's capital, there were a lot of people there from all over the world, which is great but for the fact that, like driving, a number of them walk in the opposite direction so not only was it congested but there were people walking in a nonsensical order, which drove me bonkers and limited my contact with the main area attractions on Sunday to the morning hours only. Check out fun moments in travel episodes 6 and 9 for more details about this adventurous weekend.
7. Vacationed in Deal Island, MD
We hit Deal Island for an extended weekend at the end of the school year with my parents. We had a whole house complete with a dock on the Chesapeake Bay. It was an absolutely beautiful weekend but mostly because of the good company. We didn't do much because, frankly, Deal Island is a place with nothing to do which was the point of going there. Several hours were spent on the dock fishing, watching the sun roll through the sky and playing cards in the house, with the bay view in sight. It is very likely that we will head over here again, possibly for an annual excursion. Of course, there is also the option of staying at other locations on the Bay to experience different adventures.
8. Saw a movie on opening day (Independence Day: Resurgence)
Ben and I saw this together and the movie followed the original film pretty closely. Not a big deal but it was something new. To be honest, we usually head out to the movies after they have been on the screen for a while because the theater tends to be way empty, just how we like it. This go round, the theater wasn't nearly as packed as I thought it would have been so it was even more enjoyable for me.
9. Took an archery class with little one
The kid is into archery and had wanted to take a class for a long time. I was finally able to connect with a teacher and signed us up for some private lessons. It turns out, I'm pretty good at archery for a beginner and the little one is, too. We had fun doing this.
10. Threw a machete
This may fall under the archery class but while we were practicing archery, a brief machete lesson came about, too. When the teacher offered for me to try throwing it, I would normally have said no so I took a hold of it, giggled like a school girl and threw it. It hit the ground. Then I threw it again and hit the target. It was really fun.
11. Attended a summer concert at Killens Pond State Park
The state parks in Delaware have been offering free summer concerts for a few years now. This past summer, I decided it was time to go. The weather was nice and I needed a few hours outdoors with some good music. I invited Ben to meet us at the park on his way home from work and packed him a sandwich (plus drinks and chairs for all of us). He ended up getting there before us and helped pick out a spot to enjoy the concert. As soon as the music started, Ben melted - he was relaxed and comfortable and I was enjoying it just as much as he was. Little one spent her time reading a book. This was not a life changing moment by any means but a good time was had and that's all we needed that night.
12. Took a stick work/self-defense class
This class was taught by the same person that worked with us for archery. I learned a lot in this class about self-defense that will stay with me forever. The stick work portion was way more fun than I expected it to be. As we developed moves, a rhythm came about that was soothing and encouraged me to continue.
13. Went on an outing for the sole purpose of taking pictures
One evening, I decided it was time to go out just for pictures. All three of us hopped in the car and headed over to Abbott's Mill Nature Center. I got some fantastic shots there and little one also took a ton of pictures. Fun!
14. Attended the International Food Festival in Milford and ordered everything on the menu from one of the vendors
This was the first International Food Festival and we got there right as it was getting started. There wasn't much going on at that point, food trucks/tents getting in order and music blaring at full force over the speakers. It wasn't the most pleasant experience I've ever had but the food we came home with for lunch was quite good, even though we had to wait 1/2 hour for it.
15. Went tent camping with the little one's troop
So, little known fact of life about me: I don't enjoy tent camping. There is something about having to pack everything you need to survive for however long you plan on staying in the wilderness then unpack it/carry it/set it up/clean it/repack it/carry it back then unpack it and clean it again when you get back home. In addition to the packing situation, there's the dirt, bugs, heat/cold, walking to the toilet and using public showers (that you hope have warm water), too. I decided to try tent camping with my little one this year. It turned out to be the first weekend that got down to about freezing temperatures at night. I had on multiple layers, a cot with a pad, a sleeping bag and a blanket and was still shivering and I don't mean that, "Oh, it's a bit cold out here as I shovel snow" shiver, I mean the, "Oh, dear Lord, I was not aware that my innards could shiver, too." It was all I could do not to get in my car and drive the hell home and send my husband back in my place. That said, I made it through the whole weekend (two nights, people) and I am proud of myself for sticking it out. The other mommas were a delight to hang out with and it was cool to see little one be independent. Will I do this again? I'm not one to say never but let's just say it's not likely.
16. Participated in the first Dashing Through the Show walk at Cape Henlopen State Park
I roped Ben into doing this with me and it was a pretty good night. We enjoyed walking through the light display. Afterwards, we shared a po' boy that was divine! I hope the display grows from year to year and I would absolutely consider doing this again (but I will bring my own hot chocolate and cookies since we didn't get to partake of this because of my refusal to stand in a line for 20 minutes).
17. Went to Belize
Seriously! My husband decided the perfect end to a year of new things would be to take a trip out of the country (for the first time ever)!
With all of these new things, what did I learn?
1. I learned that I am still not comfortable doing new things. I prefer to know what I am walking in to and how it's going to go down (call it a personality defect) but I also learned that I'll never know if I like something new if I don't even try it.
2. Delaware is a flat, flat state. Whenever we travel outside of the state, this is made ever so obvious to me in doing activities in which any incline is involved. Thanks, Delaware.
3. There are a ton of fun things to do nearby (within a two to three hour radius).
4. I have the best time when I am with my family.
5. I have a lot of fun with my friends but I don't hang out with them nearly enough.
6. Anxiety sucks. I know it is completely irrational and I hate it but I haven't found my personal cure for it.
7. I really, really like food.
8. I almost enjoy exercise (this is a major leap from years past).
9. I've always known this but this year really enforced it more - I have the most incredible, loving, generous husband.
So, what's up for next year? Be more. I'll leave that as vague as it is and we'll see where that leads. Be more.