Saturday, February 6, 2010

2009: At a Glance (Oh the Places I've Been)

2009 has come and gone! I hope you holidays were cheerful and provided a welcome rest from the busy pace of our everyday lives.


Not only were we lucky enough to have snow over Christmas, the DC Metro area has been hit with two major storms since the new year. But enough about 2010. This entry is about 2009.


Jon and I maintained a comfortable routine in our careers over the past year. We are both with the same companies, although I've moved to a telecommute office arrangement with mine, giving me a more flexible schedule and the ability to work from anywhere. This is my project team's last contract year with our government client so it is possible I will find myself job hunting in the summer.


Things on the homefront have been steady as well. Jon and I celebrated our 13th wedding anniversary in May and are still going strong. I am counting down to our big 70th wedding anniversary in just another 56 years. Jenna is now 13 and holding on, although she's expectedly slower in her movements these days. Our resident troublemaker Julia is 5 and her big accomplishment is that she is finally housetrained (for the most part). It's been a long 4 years of constant work and we are so proud of her.


We've celebrated with our circle of friends birthdays, new babies (waves to Anna), engagements, and weddings (my flower girl got married this summer). We've both strengthened our existing friendships and made new connections with great people (waves to Susi, Tanja).


The year was a PHENOMENAL one for traveling. Membership in the travel group I run (NoVA Travelers) increased from 150 to just over 400. Oh the places we've been!


January took us to Paris, France for New Year's Eve on the Champs Elysees and then onto Quebec, Canada for a snowy winter carnival experience at the end of the month.


In February the group trekked to NYC to brave the cold and enjoy a broadway show (Mamma Mia).


Our Dash to Dublin trip in March provided a whirlwind tour of Dublin, Ireland and its beautiful seaside suburbs. The library at Trinity college was easily one of the most spectacular I've ever seen and the local smoked fish and chips hot and fresh wrapped in the paper cones were to-die-for.


In April we said "Aloha" to the great Island of Oahu, Hawaii as we beachopped in our rented convertible, imbibing ourselves on tropical drinks and fresh coconut all the while.


May meant a weekend trip to Rome steeped in history and delectable Italian cuisine. My first taste of authentic Italian lasagna made with Bechamel sauce instead of the Americanized ricotta filling. (We had so much fun we are going back again in January 2010). We also held our annual sailing event where almost 20 of us braved the wind and rains to sail out of Annapolis on the Schooner Woodwind and learned to steer the ship and raise and lower the sails ourselves.


We descended on the beaches of South Carolina in June on our Myrtle Beach trip where a blind man ran into our car at a stoplight AND our gps led us astray at every turn. (What an adventure that was). Jon and I also ventured to NM, Utah and Nevada with our friends Dani and Clayton on our great southwest summer tour.


Another annual event- our tubing trip along Antietam Creek in Maryland was held in July and we had a very good turn out for this fried chicken and river adventure.


August was one of our busiest months of the year, with an event nearly every weekend. We flew to NYC for our second broadway weekend of the year (this time to see 9 to 5, which was fantastic!), enjoyed a long weekend meandering through Maine on our lighthouse tour, stuffed ourselves to the brim with fresh lobster during our weekend in Beantown (Boston), and hiked among some of the most beautiful scenery in the country while on our weekend excursion to Denver.


We kept up the pace in September with several members jetting off to Switzerland over Labor Day weekend (on a $300 mistake fare!) and then a back-to-nature weekend in Costa Rica immediately following the next week. Sleeping in a tree house in the rainforest, watching a volcano erupt and tasting termites on purpose (tastes like fresh ground pepper) were all part of the adventure.


In October we dropped into Vegas for a relaxing spa weekend (after jetsetting to faraway places the last few months we needed some advanced R&R to refuel our energies) where we enjoyed an upgrade to a ginormous suite with our own baby grand piano (too bad nobody on the trip knew how to play).


November was our major trip of the year- 12 of us "popped" over to Venice (as our british cruise director would say) to enjoy the city sight sandwiched around our 7 day cruise around Greece and the coast of Croatia. Unforgettable trip, and one i will write a trip review with pics for soon (I actually need to do so for all trips after August where I left off in my review writing).


Last but not least, the group visited San Francisco in early December where new memories and friendships were cemented and Aspen mid-month for a full weekend of cold weather play.


All that adventure and travel (approximately 125,000 miles) crammed into 12 short months! I think 2010 is going to be an even better year yet, with new adventures and friendships on the horizon.

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