As promised last year, I’m going to try and post a review of the past year on the first day of the new year. This is how 2010 shapes up for me (see 2009 here).

Did you enjoy this year?
I did, quite a lot! Freddy stayed out of hospital almost the entire year, only visited a tiny bit for a double-check – and it turned out to be exactly what the GP had suggested.

What did you do in 2010 that you’d never done before?
Played RuneQuest, drove a car without an instructor in it (ooh!), drove on a motorway, made new year’s resolutions, went on a medieval re-enactment weekend.

Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I kept some. I proved (to myself, at least) that the secret is to have a plan of action, not just a goal. Goals don’t meet themselves. So my resolutions then (described in full here):

  1. Filing
    Done! This had a weekly target to meet, and I made myself ‘catch-up’ if I got behind any week. This is by far the most successful of my resolutions.
  2. Dark Elves
    I set vague targets that I never really tried to meet. Hence, I had to re-evaluate what I could realistically do, and toned down from ‘paint everything’ to ‘paint the Corsairs’, which itself isn’t complete (but is very very close!)
  3. Driving Licence
    In the eleventh hour, I completed this one! I passed at the beginning of December, after failing twice this year (and once last year). Finally, a driver.
  4. German
    I always planned to do this once I’d cleared a couple of other things off my list. I never cleared enough space in my week to do it.
  5. Star Trek Cards
    Done! Selling things just means you have to do something, and get organised to do it. I very much enjoy the television I bought with the proceeds, too!
  6. Family Tree
    There’s still a little more to find out (I need to confirm my records dive, after all) from grandparents, but I feel good about the progress on this one. Even though it can never really be called ‘finished’.
  7. Wargame Tools
    Scrapped. Abandoned. Lost my motivation, and quit.

So ones to take on to next year – Dark Elves, Learn German, Research Family Tree. I’ll try to make a more definite plan on those later, so I can make more meaningful progress this year.

Did anyone close to you give birth?
Not this year, although a lot of people got pregnant – four of my cousins, and we’re expecting again!

Did anyone close to you die?
I think I am a lucky charm – everyone’s still with me!

What countries did you visit?
None. The furthest afield I went this year was London, twice. Portsmouth a couple of times. Nowhere more exciting than that.

What would you like to have in 2011 that you lacked in 2010?
I’m not sure of anything I lacked in 2010 in particular… maybe the time to go out and see people a bit more? A foreign holiday – I’ve not been more than a hundred miles from home in over two years now!

What date from 2010 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
December 2nd, passed my driving test. December 1st, saw our new baby on the scan for the first time.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Passing the driving test. Learning to paint ‘wet blending’ style.

What was your biggest failure?
Failed to keep some of my resolutions. Failed two driving tests. Not sure which is bigger, I think I’ve had an OK year, failure-wise.

Did you suffer illness or injury?
Only a small bit of illness, and in general a very healthy year.

Did you have to go to the hospital?
Only once, to get Freddy checked. It turned out to be exactly what the GP thought it would be.

What was the best thing you bought?
The new television – 42 inch LCD Full HD oh yeah! Second place would be the car – quite lucky, that one.

Whose behaviour merited celebration?
Freddy, for being absolutely wonderful.

Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
The Pope.

Where did most of your money go?
Ignoring mortgage payments, it’d be on the car and the car insurance. Less said about that the better.

What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Everything Freddy does – running around pretending to be a dinosaur, learning his animals, he’s fantastic. Also, about getting ahead with my family tree stuff, that felt pretty rewarding.

What song will always remind you of 2010?
Probably something by Katy Perry. She has a really annoying -uwuh-uh-o sort of sound, it doesn’t sound very nice at all. But sticks in the head. Hopefully, it’ll end up being Candyman (thanks to Chris Evans for playing it every Friday morning on BBC Radio 2, it’s a nice song!)

Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. Happier or sadder?

About the same. I was pretty happy last year, and I’m doing well keeping it that way!
ii. richer or poorer?
Almost definitely richer. More monthly expenses (I got grown up, and did life insurance, pensions, and of course the car now) but at least I’ve saved up a bit since buying the house!

What do you wish you’d done more of?
Gaming. Not enough games this year by far.

What do you wish you’d done less of?
I don’t really know. I’ve done a lot more grown-up things than I have in the past, but I don’t know about doing less of them… for the most part, it’s all done and won’t need doing again for a long time!

How did you spend Christmas?
At home, doing almost nothing. We had a few visitors, Freddy opened everyone’s presents, and had a really great time. As I write this, I’m awaiting a second Christmas with my family visiting me (2nd January), because the snow prevented them coming up the weekend we’d originally planned.

Where did you ring in 2010?
We had an uneventful night, went to bed then realised “Hey, it’s midnight!”. Then I heard people outside so I ran out and joined about half-a-dozen neighbours banging saucepans.

What was your favourite TV programme?
We’ve been indoctrinated into The Big Bang Theory and Firefly, both due to major nagging. Both were really good shows! We also finally got onto Deep Space Nine on DVD, I can’t wait to get a bit further with that one.

Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
I’ve got a nasty feeling that as I’ve learned more about the Pope, I hate him more. Which is a bit disconcerting.

What was the best book you read?
I re-read a lot of old favourites. I finally got a box of books back from my parent’s loft, I’m looking forward to getting through some of those. I didn’t read many new books, and the only one I remember liking was Brave New World. But that was a good one!

What was your greatest musical discovery?
This year, I discovered… nothing. Not a specific band, anyway. My musical discovery will probably be the chance tuning in to Jack FM, a local station that ‘plays what we want’. It also has some hilarious one-liners between songs – “If we agreed with you, we’d both be wrong. That’s why we play what we want.” and “On Jack FM, we mostly play what we want. Sometimes, we play what we feel like instead.” A lot of the old stuff, like Blondie, Supertramp, Pulp, Oasis, Blur, The Lightning Seeds, and a whole load I don’t even know the names of. A whole mix, right back to the 70s.

What did you want and get?
A driving licence, and we’re expecting a new baby!

What did you want and not get?
More of my new year’s resolutions complete.

How did you earn your keep?
Still programming. Still loving it. I funded a new television by selling off my old Star Trek cards. End of an era.

What was your favourite film of this year?
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. That’s definitely my cup of tea! I missed a lot of films that I wanted to see, but maybe I’ll catch them on DVD next year. Iron Man 2 was also pretty good, but Scott Pilgrim just got me right there, you know?

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I was twenty-six, and I can’t remember a thing about it. Honestly. I think I bought the telly? I seem to have had a two-month blogging blackout over the summer. I have a feeling I failed a driving test around then.

What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Doing something memorable with the birthday! I think my year has been pretty good. Maybe passing the driving test earlier would have been good? We’d probably have missed the awesome deal we got with the car though.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2010?
“They still fit, I’ll still wear them.” I might need to get something new soon though.

What kept you sane?
Freddy – he’s adorable.

What political issue stirred you the most?
The Pope’s state visit to this island. Enough to get me involved in my very first protest. That was a bit surreal.

Who was the best new person you met?
Mostly, I’ve only met people through work or through Freddy’s nursery. I think I might need to get out more.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2010:
Toddlers will repeat anything you say to them.

Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
I can’t remember the words, but I remember a Weetabix commercial which featured a driving examiner’s lament, to the tune of I Will Survive. That’s probably apt, in the circumstances!

*** BONUS QUESTIONS (thanks Lone Cow!) ***

What is the best thing that you were given?
I was given a revised salary in a ‘department restructure’ at the beginning of the year. After last year’s pay review, half the team left and the other half were looking for work – made for a powerful bargaining position. Yeah, I’m a greedy bastard at heart.

What is the best thing you have given someone?
I gave Freddy this toy kitchen, which he absolutely adores. I gave Jen a car. I shared my baby with the world!

Thanks everyone! That’s it till next year!

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