Week #52: L’année de fin*

“In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” — Abraham Lincoln

This week has been full. (It seems somewhat appropriate since it gets two extra days (I’m lumping in the Sunday & Monday for a nice round 52 (instead of Week# 52.285714 (can you tell how much I love using parentheses?)))). Full of mini AN52 things (julienned carrots, explosive drinks & hurriedly—but unsuccessfully—trying to finish this post at the library before they closed), happy little surprises & the appropriate year-end retrospection.

Looking back over all of the things this year surprised me. There were some really cool things I did that I’d forgotten. I’d have to say that some of my favorites were going curling, car buying & selling, crazy foods, colored hair, Pride & Prejudice marathons, cute, beardy men at the tree climbing competition & dressing up for midnight premieres.

While completing this blog post in itself would give me my new thing (I’ve never done something for a whole year with only myself as motivation), I actually did do a new thing. In the past, my favorite Christmas movie has been Elf, which is a bit silly since it doesn’t have anything to do with the real meaning of Christmas. But it’s funny & loud (like me) & very quotable (also like me). Plus, all of the claymation Christmas ‘classics’ freak me out (those little things are so creepy!); I think A Christmas Story is awful & I’m not a huge Chevy Chase fan. But on Saturday, I watched A Charlie Brown Christmas. I wasn’t a huge Peanuts fan growing up & my interaction with it was limited to the Saturday funnies. But I really enjoyed it, especially the sweet emphasis on Jesus’ coming & birth.

So that’s it—a new 52! Thank you so much to all of you who have journeyed with me & encouraged me in this. I don’t know that I’m a totally new person, but that’s good ’cause I’m already super awesome & now I can add a ton of new experiences to make my life a little more epic. May your 2013 be full of awesome epicness!!!

Thumbs up for rock & roll—& 2013!!

*French for “the year’s end”. Je suis américain, but I like different languages 🙂

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Week #23: New heights

“If growing up means it would be beneath my dignity to climb a tree, I’ll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up! Not me!” – J.M. Barrie

It was going to be pickles, my new thing for this week. But, pickling actually takes a lot more equipment than I had previously thought. So, I tried to find some inspiration in the great wide world, get out & about, you know, that sort of thing. It didn’t really work, so I went to one of my happy places—the public library. & there in the halls of learning, was a poster for, of all things, the Midwest tree climbing competition.

Bango, bingo, cha-chingo—there’s my new thing! The competition was at a local park & after lunch I headed over. I honestly didn’t know what to expect(you can judge for yourself if the website‘s very clear), but it was nuts. Which makes sense, because nuts grow in trees.

Tree climbing is a huge, international sport (as you can see from this video from Wales) & hecka fun to watch ’cause the trees are alive with helmeted, bearded good ol’ boys secured with climbing harnesses & carabiners. As far as I can figure it, it goes hand in hand with people in the tree service (ironically, my uncle was also a treeman). The events (work climb, aerial rescue, belayed speed climb, throwline & secured footlock) highlighted the skills that are key in that line of work, focusing especially on safety, time & technique. Throwing a log into a box & handling equipment without dropping it may not sound like much until you’re doing it from 30-60 feet up. One of the guys even said he had once rescued a cat from a tree.

All in all, it was a very professional, ‘safety-first’ sort of atmosphere. That’s probably comforting to all the mothers out there who yell out to so many children, “You keep climbing those trees, you’re going to get stuck up there!!” So, the next time I’m stuck for ideas, at least I’ll know it couldn’t be any worse being stuck up in a tree.

Week #11: Book ’em

“An original idea. That can’t be too hard. The library must be full of them.” – Stephen Fry
Beautiful weather is a curse. Don’t get me wrong, it’s one I’ll gladly bear. But, it’s lovely outside &, therefore, I want to be outside. Blog posts don’t really happen when I’m outside—due to lack of internet & lack of focus on coming up with new thing ideas. I do have a list, but I’ve still been rather out of sorts about finding an original, clever idea to go with this week (I may have to start planning ahead *gasp!*).
Maybe I’m being too picky. I keep thinking of cooking things, but I’d rather not repeat similar things right away. Many things get crossed off because they’re not really original or incredibly compelling—tattoos & kissing in the rain may be new, but I’m not going to do them only for that reason. Also, I feel a lot of my posts lately have been heavily introspective or incredibly different, which are kind of main points for the blog.
I promise to start doing more interesting/fun things, but as it’s rather close to the eleventh hour for this week, that will start next week. So, this week, my AN52 attempt will be somewhat lame but somewhat James Dean-esque rebellion. I’m planning to sticky-note bomb a library by slipping notes of encouragement into random books for people to find later. & there’s nothing you can do to stop me—muahahahahahaaa!

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