A Look Back At 2011

2011Now that the new year is here, it’s time to look forward to the year ahead.  Of course, I never really got a chance to look back over the previous year.  So I’m figured I’d do that now.

2011 began with me resolving to finish what I started.  (Sadly, I wasn’t completely successful with this.)  I also began my yearly pledge to lose 20 pounds in 20 weeks.  Spoiler alert: I hit my goal and passed it.  Follow-up: I spent the rest of the year packing those 20 pounds back on.  And they brought some friends with them.  Going to need another one of these series this year also.

January also saw too much snow and ice, an EdenFantasys giveaway which had a record (for me) 116 entries (pssst…. Another one might be coming up soon), NHL expressing fear of dying, and me beginning my search for ideas for a trip for our upcoming 10th anniversary.

In February, we went to see the Albany Devils and NHL caught a hockey puck.  I also mentioned how I felt like I was repeating myself too often.  JSL engaged in some scientific inquiry and my boys and I got drawn into a guest post over at NoodleKnobs.

By March, I was ready for winter to be over.  Not only that, but I came down with a case of bloggy writer’s block. Luckily, a trip to Disney World for the Disney Social Media Moms conference was just the thing to cure both ills.  We went hunting for character autographs, saw some Disney Class in the form of Belle, found a lot of hidden Mickeys, got up close and personal with some butterflies, and saw some sand art get made.

April found me wondering how people handle stress.  We also took a semi-gross journey through the body and I mentioned how parenthood has shifted my concept of "gross".  As spring arrived, so did the birds and the bees (the latter of which were quite "busy").  I got to review the Green Lantern Colossal Cannon (great outdoors, a bit too much for an inside toy) and we celebrated Passover.  I also looked back on our Disney trip during April, including The Great Epcot Twitter Experiment, meeting Jen and John from CakeWrecks, getting jabbed in the arm by B for taking a certain photo on Small World, and riding Kilimanjaro Safari.

In May, spring flourished and we headed outdoors to review Aerobie Sprint Flying Rings and to have a Green Lantern Party.  On Mother’s Day, we went to see the circus.  When B went on a Mom Field Trip to see Rene Syler, I took the boys to Free Comic Day.  Sadly, May was also when B & I went public with a bullying incident that happened to NHL.  We wound up having to switch schools thanks to this.  On a bright note, JSL received a camera for his 4th birthday party, something he had been asking for for at least a month.  I also tried out a new grill only to fail before succeeding.  Finally, TwitPic changed their terms of service which some people thought might give them the right to sell people’s photos.  This led some folks to switch services, but I decided to go another route.  I set up my blog to receive photos from my phone, allowing me to "TwitPic" right to my blog.

As June rolled around, I reviewed the George Foreman Next Grilleration™ Removable Plate Grill.  We’re still using it to this day.  The boys and I also went on a photo shoot where we walked 100 steps from our front door and took 10 photos each.  We also made some smoothies and I donated blood.  Our tenth anniversary rolled around so we had a date night.  Finally, our plants were sprouting nicely, including plenty of peppermint.  (I have lots in the freezer to use during the winter.)

As July rolled around, we went cherry picking (we walked away with 45.2 pounds) and visited Niagara Falls.  I didn’t shy away from controversy when I pitted Nutella against Dark Chocolate peanut butter.  I talked about the Netflix Apocalypse and gave Netflix some tips to improve their service.  We also ended our long search for a tenth anniversary trip by making plans to go to DIsney World without the kids.  Right after we made those plans, though, our bedroom television decided to break requiring us to buy a new one.  Finally, I ruminated on the newly launched Google+,  I mentioned why it’s requirement to use real names (as opposed to pseudonyms like "TechyDad") might keep me away as well as how Google could fix the issue.  Later on, though, Google released Google+ Pages and I was able to make a TechyDad Google+ page.

August began with my birthday.  (Peanut Avacado Sushi is delicious!) The month also saw my boys (and my) Phineas and Ferb obsession hit overdrive with the Phineas and Ferb movie,  (I think we annoyed B a bit with the excited yelling during the Robot Riot sequence.)  NHL delved into Harry Potter and the Smurfs.  They also designed their own superheroes using Hero Machine.  Stress relating to our upcoming vacation and piling expenses took their toll.  NHL celebrated his eighth birthday and I moved our sites to a new server and host.  As August came to a close, we experienced an earthquake (well, some of us did – my office appears to be earthquake-proof) and a hurricane.  The latter forced us to cancel our 10th anniversary trip to Disney World.

In September, we recovered from some self-inflicted Hurricane Irene wounds.  I also gave a travelogue of the trip that Irene cancelled.  On the lighter side, we discussed why mommy was ‘broken’, I celebrated 3 years of blogging, avoided itch cream after some ninja mosquitos attacked, and talked like a pirate Disney-style.  Netflix reloaded after shooting themselves in the foot and shot themselves in the other foot.  We ate some apples and honey to celebrate Rosh Hashana.  In a display of spontaneity, B made last minutes plans to attend SheStreams, leaving the boys and I to have some adventures on our own.

October began with me taking animation lessons from JC Little (aka TheAnimatedWoman) and then giving those lessons to NHL.  Around Yom Kippur, a foolish PR vice-president challenged TheBloggess who demonstrated her relevancy.  After picking 39 pounds of apples, NHL and I went on a photo walk.  Netflix backed out of their splitting plan, but not before we ditched the DVD plans.  I introduced the other woman in our bed, had some trouble with proprietary plugs and irritating interfaces, and made Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream.  I also launched my super secret Twitter application Rout,  Finally, in time for Halloween, we were all turned into Zombies.  (Don’t worry, the zombification only lasted one day.  A case of the 24 hour zombie flu, if you will.)

The highlight of November was my release of my real Twitter Application: FollowerHQ.  I also had some more time with my boys when B went to a bridal shower.  This one didn’t go as smoothly, though.  I thought about how one should always speak up when confronted by bullying and had my parents visit.  (No, those two items are not related.)  Finally, I dealt with a deluge of spam.

As December arrived, and the year wound to a close, I re-introduced Rout.  This time, upgraded as PlusRout.  We also saw The Muppets and went to the New York State Museum.  I reviewed a magic set that NHL got as an early Chanukah present and NHL painted an Angry Bird.  I also decided to take some inspiration from the story of the Maccabees to stand up to someone who was (and continues to) harass bloggers and companies.  On the cooking front, I made a very tasty Spaghetti Squash sautĂ©.  Finally, we did some bunk bed shopping.

This has been a very busy year and I can’t wait to see what 2012 has to bring.

How did last year go for you?