Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Let Me Sum Up

Hello, friends. It's been a while. Let me explain.... No, there is too much. Let me sum up.

Buttercup is marry Humperdinck in a little less than half an hour. So all we have to do is get in, break up the wedding, steal the princess, make our escape... after I kill Count Rugen.
I've missed recording my life here, and so much has happened in the months since I last sat down to write here that it seems daunting to return. So, sum up I will.

A couple of disclaimers before I begin... First, apologies for the widely varying image quality. I didn't take out my camera as much as I would have liked this year, so many of these are from my phone. Secondly, this summary is heavily shaped by the things that I happened to take pictures of, so lots of wonderful things were left out. Lastly, this is long, and mostly just a photo dump, an effort to not lose these moments and memories, so...yeah, not interesting to most.

Ok, so, let's begin. What happened in 2013?

There was a whole bunch of running - I've been training for a marathon, but you can read about that here.

There was a lot of music. Like a lot.
{Huey Lewis and the News}

{John Fogarty}

{Zac Brown Band}
{Tony Bennett}
{Dave Matthews Band}

{This photo will represent all of the bands we saw that no one has ever heard of because it is a cool picture.}
{Michael Buble

{Tedeschi Trucks Band}
One of the most memorable shows was less a concert than a circus, so I couldn't pick just one picture. Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes know how to throw a party...
{the view from the Ferris wheel}

After the rides, the contortionists, and the acrobats, Edward Sharpe and his Magnetic Zeroes took the to the stage ring.   
In a night full of highlights, one of the best was when the father/daughter duo who recorded a You Tube video of Edward Sharpe's song, Home, took the stage to sing it with the band. After the concert, officially ended, the band invited everyone out for a sing-a-long outside the big top. Pretty great.

And, of course, there were a number of epic Walcotts performances. I could not be prouder of my crazy-talented husband and how much he accomplished with music this year. With several placements on TV and one in an upcoming movie, Tom made some real money from music this year, and of course, it's his passion and he'd do it (and has done it) for free, but I'm so happy to see him receive some external validation for his creative efforts.
{opening for America at Humphrey's}

There was a fishing trip during which I caught three times as many fish as Tom. That would be...three fish.

There were trips to places near and far.

Julian - for Mother's Day and Buckley's insane 50-mile race.

San Francisco -  first, in June, for a baby shower...

And then again in October to meet my new favorite little guy (and hang out with his parents, who are alright too).
{I mean - I got to visit a pumpkin patch, watch the Red Sox in the playoffs, go on a brewery tour, AND cuddle a baby.}
Santa Barbara - for a concert (which went unphotographed) by Jason Isbell, one of my favorite musical discoveries of the year.
[Tangent part one: listen to Elphant if you feel like a good cry. It is crushing.
Tangent part two: my other favorite musical discovery of the year was Jamestown Revival. Buy the record, it is so, so good.]

New York - for a long overdue visit to Lauren. I'm so impressed by my little friend in the big city - she's a first class badass for reals.

Vermont - for Tom's grandfather's 90th birthday and some QT with my brother and Erin and the Cusimano clan.
{I also had the opportunity to try the illusive Heady Topper that is taking New England by storm.}
{Pop - 90 years old and going strong}
And then there was the big one - Peru for Meghan's graduation trip. It was an epic adventure that deserves a whole series of blog posts, but...that ship has sailed. I did, however, finally get it documented in a photo book. So there's that.

                                                                       {View full size}

There was an anniversary - five years! I had known that Tom had something planned for our July 26th anniversary, but he didn't clue me into until we were on the flight home from Peru on July 3rd... As we began our decent into Los Angeles, he told me that he'd perused my life list for inspiration, and with with a great deal of forethought and planning, made reservations for us. At French Laundry. On our actual anniversary. And because French Laundry is in Napa, that also meant a trip to wine country, which...I mean, it's a destination designed around drinking wine and eating locally grown, artistically prepared feasts. Best. Husband. Ever.

Thanks to my sisters, we were greeted by champagne on ice.

We got all dressed up and Tom ordered a car to take us to dinner. Hilariously, the car that showed up was a giant party bus. We rolled with it...

Dinner itself was an incredible, three-hour experience that I will never forget. Afterwards, we were escorted to the kitchen where the chef was planning the next day's menu over a couple of IPAs. He was kind enough to take a break to sign our menu.

On the way home, we found the party bus even more hilarious because a.) dinner was accompanied by a champagne toast and a bottle and half of wine, and b.) in the interim, the bus had played host to some sort of party that involved a giant S balloon, which was fortuitously left behind. Tom road it like a horse.
I made Tom a fancy card and gave him a GPS watch, so....yeah, he won the gift-giving. As usual.
I was, however, kinda pleased with how my card turned out. Each envelope had photos and a list of memories from each of our five years of marriage.
The day after our anniversary, we visited Frog's Leap, one of our favorites, and enjoyed a private tour and barrel tasting at Miner, a new-to-us vineyard. All-in-all, it was a perfect weekend.

Ok, I'm going to have to start to wrap this up soon because it is almost eight o'clock on New Year's Eve, and there is champagne to be consumed. A few more highlights...

There was a cooking class in which I learned to flambé.

There was another life list item checked off when I attended my first Dodger game and ate my first Dodger dog.

There were trips to all manner of beaches.

There was a birthday dinner at Koi.

There was Shackford family time, Cusimano family time, general Christmas cheer, and a wine-tasting party to close out the year.

And, of course, there was always Lucy.

And, with that, the "summary" is complete, but I am long-winded, and I have a couple of closing thoughts...

2013 was not my finest year. I am going to borrow a phrase from Oprah and make many of you gag, but well, Ms. O has a way with catch phrases... Basically, I didn't "live my best life" in 2013. This year, I often felt stuck and a little bit sad. I existed in a state of "meh" much of the time for no good reason. That's probably a large part of the reason that I didn't write here very much or take very many photos. I've spent the several hours compiling this post and looking through the photos that I did take, and I'm realizing, that 2013 was a lot better than I gave it credit for. In fact, 2013 was full of some pretty amazing moments, and I have a feeling that 2014 is going to be pretty great.

1 comment:

  1. 2014! The year of Penny, I mean Kate! Knock 'em dead, like the six fingered man!


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