I almost titled this post 2-8… until I realized that I’m only 27. This probably does not bode well for my memory.

From what my ol’ brain can remember, however, year 26 was a great one. I could do a recap of my favorite moments and memories, but since I already blogged about most of them, I’ll instead indulge in a bit of thoughtful consideration of what I’ve learned over the course of the last year. Please keep in mind, of course, that now that I’m 27 I seem to be falling apart at the seams with a bum knee, emerging carpal tunnel featuring a new sexy wrist brace, bad memory, and a vicious, looming cold that has been trying to surface for the last four days, leaving me in highly medicated misery (and with expired medication, no less). So, in no particular order:

  1. I’ve learned that I really miss cooking and baking. In those happy golden years in Denver, I learned to cook and bake for my crazy housemates, but I apparently left my zest for all things culinary in the high altitude, and I’m slowly beginning to emerge from this lull. Just yesterday I whipped up my own batch of baked brown rice, á la Alton Brown, since my gringa rice cooking skills usually leave me with nothing but burned rice or rice soup. Somehow in Panama I managed to make rice on the regular for 100 people, but trying to do so in Minnesota results in disaster. Success! Thanks, Alton!
  2. I’ve fully embraced my nerdery and introversion. Ok, well, this has been ongoing for years, but now it’s just a given. People understand that I would much rather read than go out, and that a day without a reference to Harry Potter is a day wasted.
  3. I’ve learned that I continue to love planning travel. I got to go on a trip of a lifetime with my dad, which I don’t think I ever actually blogged about even though I said I would. Oops. Here’s the short version: we went to Scotland, Wales and England (also known as Great Britain 😉 ), saw lots of sheep, drove successfully on the left side of the road (except for a few mornings in which my dad had not yet fully awakened and I had to yell, “LEFT, Dad! LEFT!!!!!!!!!” in order to remind him that driving on the right side would kill us), visited more Harry Potter sights than most 26-year-olds would care to admit, and managed not to kill each other despite having no one else to talk to for two whole weeks. Also, my dad can’t understand King’s English, so I interpreted- a lot. One day while my dad and I were on a tour of Stirling Castle, I took a video of our tour guide. (If you watch it, I apologize in advance for the dizzy factor. I was kind of embarrassed to be caught taking a video, so I tried to do so surreptitiously by holding the camera in my pocket. Classy.)


  4. I’ve learned that my line dance community is one of the most strangely important parts of this phase of my life, and that is something I never thought I would say. I got into line dancing almost two years ago, and it continues to warm my heart. Who would have ever thought that spending my time with ladies (and two guys) more than twice my age would feel so normal and so welcoming and so… comforting? The Sassy Steppers are a hoot and a half and I don’t know what I would do if they weren’t a part of my life. Most of those lucky duckies are flying south for the winter since they are retired and have that luxury, and I miss them already. How could I not?! I mean, they dress up as nuns while at a casino! How can you not like them?!

    Don’t mistake these faces as innocent.

  5. I’ve learned that I really love this guy and don’t quite understand why he loves me, seeing as I regularly fall asleep on him, force him to attend family reunions and birthday parties and out-of-state weddings and listen to endless gossip about Darren Criss. When I ask him why he puts up with these things, his answer is, “Because I think you’re pretty awesome.” He also high-fives me every time we see a child having a meltdown in public and we giggle to ourselves and thank our lucky stars that our nights aren’t filled with bedtime routines, midnight wake-up calls and parent/teacher conferences. When we both were invited to a friend’s child’s first birthday party, we both reacted instantly in the same fashion, “Ew.” (His next statement was, “Is it so that people can stare at the thing?… Do they charge to get in the door?… I don’t understand.” Thanks, Gmail chat, for capturing such gems.)  Some people are destined to be parents; we are destined to be the aunt and uncle that travel the world and bring back foreign candy that the kids adore and the parents hate for the sugar highs they cause. (Insert evil cackle here.) I can’t wait.

    He likes me! Hey, Mikey!

  6. I’ve learned that my best friend is even greater than I ever thought possible. The girl makes me costumes for every single party and event I ever need, lets me take over her evenings on Facebook chat when I’m having yet another quarter-life crisis, bakes me delicious cupcakes, drives me all around town, fixes my clothes when I carelessly rip them, sends me the funniest cards, acts like she’s 13 with me, and encourages me when I think I can’t go on. I’ve known Senja since I was 11, and like one of my student workers says, she’s “like a fine wine. She only gets better with time.”

    Nom nom nom

    Being 26 was a fulfilling experience, and these are just but a few examples of why it was so meaningful. I could write more, but I’ve already written a novel in this post alone, so I’ll stop for now. And now that I’m filled with warm fuzzies just dreaming about how transformative it was, I can’t wait to see what 27 brings.


One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Mandy on October 18, 2012 at 8:11 am

    Congrats, Hol! You’ve made it another year! Will you promise to bring foreign candy to my little one? I want you to be Tia Holly ( or wait, what did they call you in Mexico again – I remember them having a hard time with your name….;)


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