Wishing You a Happy New Year

Hello there and happy 2010!

As so many of us are apt to say with the passing of each New Year: I can't believe how the past year has flown.

It has certainly been a year of fun and firsts in the home of Julie, Conservative Boy, and Butter.

Some of the highlights:

  • Trying more new recipes than I can count
  • Teaching composition to first-year students at L-Town College
  • Working toward (and almost completing!) my master's degree in environmental journalism and communication from UIS
  • Spotting Air Force One while waiting for a flight to Washington D.C.
  • Spending lots of time with precious Butter
  • Attending weddings—lots of weddings—in terrific places like Clearwater Beach, Chicago, and Des Moines
  • Encouraging everyone I know to use a neti pot
  • Becoming a crazy flower lady (and completing another successful year of gardening)
  • Using water from my rain barrel to water my plants all summer long
  • Eating tasty seasonal foods, including morel mushrooms and tomatoes (alas, the tomato harvest this year was lackluster at best)
  • Jumping full-time into the world of freelance writing and becoming my own boss
  • Celebrating the life of my most wonderful Grandpa Collins
  • Exploring some stellar houses
  • Embarking on a slew of Illinois Adventures
  • Milking a cow
  • Cultivating my Pyrex obsession
  • Becoming a graduate assistant at UIS
  • Working on some terrific freelance projects, including Quest magazine
  • Getting engaged to Conservative Boy on my birthday
  • Riding a bull (though not a real one) for my bachelorette party
  • Marrying Conservative Boy on Nov. 27—after a whirlwind month of planning
  • Tackling another year of holiday cookie baking
  • Watching C.B. and his buddies build a stellar bar in our basement
  • Celebrating another wonderful Christmas in Washington D.C., followed by another trip to Florida to ring in the New Year and celebrate C.B.'s birthday (I'll share more about both trips in the coming days)
I hope you were as blessed in the past year as we were—and I hope that you will find much happiness, love, and peace throughout 2010.

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