28 December 2015
One of the cornerstones of my life philosophy that there’s no information that can’t be processed effectively and enthusiastically in a list. I love lists. If I one day write my memoir, it could very well be a collection of lists, carefully ordered and poetically detailed. I’m not sure what in me responds to lists, but I know it’s there, and, as a result, one of my end-of-year traditions is a list of all the stuff that was good and/or notable in life over the past year.
For the sake of completeness, here’s my list from 2012, 2013 and 2014.
And here’s the rundown of 2015:
- Travel! This year I traveled more just because I could and wanted to than I ever have in my entire life. I went to City Museum in St. Louis. I met Salt Lake City for the first time. I returned to New York City and stayed in the shadow of the Empire State Building. I climbed around on some mountains in Albuquerque for my birthday. I chilled in Orlando. I got a little bit acquainted with a sunny Seattle. I hung out in Philadelphia with some awesome women. I went to Canada for the first time, to lovely little Ottawa. And I went to Japan for the first time, and had fun in Tokyo.
- I spoke at five conferences, my lowest number since I first began speaking—but every conference I spoke at was guided by values I believe in and people I trust, which seems like a good way to go about it.
- I completed one year as the Open Source Curriculum Director at Pluralsight.
- I became the Leadership Community Manager of Girl Develop It.
- I led six Code and Cupcakes workshops. I also created a crowdfunding campaign that successfully raised enough money to buy twenty Chromebooks for workshop use.
- I read 41 books. (I set a goal of 50, which I didn’t reach, even if I manage another one or two before the official end of the year, but considering I didn’t get serious about it until June, I’d say I still did pretty well. Next year’s goal is 100.)
- I took my first filmmaking classes, and wrote a screenplay that became the class film project.
- I spent the night at the Field Museum.
- I was on public radio—WBEZ, no less—for the first time.
- I went to C2E2 as lady Joel Robinson.
- I ate at Alinea.
- I saw the restored The Third Man on film in my favorite vintage movie theater. Twice.
- I turned thirty-four years old.
- I completed a full year, and counting, of my weekly email newsletter, and wrote 31 newsletter essays.
- I filled 3.75 journals.
2015 was a year of processing, letting go and restarting all the things I thought I had already processed, let go of and restarted the year before. Turns out those things take time. But I came out on the other side eventually. I settled into my own skin. I got comfortable in my life. I started to set goals that weren’t just “get past something bad and/or difficult.” It was a nice change, and it has laid a promising foundation for the new year.
I hope your list is equally interesting and revealing, or at least instructional. And I hope a new adventure finds you, even if it’s not the adventure you expect.
Read all past essays