Every newspaper has a Year in Review to fill in the pages when the whole world is seemingly away on holidays and doing nothing but stuffing their gobs with food and drink. Fun times, but it doesn't fill newspapers.
Not just space filler, Year in Review also gives us a chance to look back on what we've accomplished and who we were in the last 12 months. In fact, compiling this one tweaked me to all kinds of cool things I did, things I had completely forgotten about.
Of course, there were events in 2010 I will never forget. Like, I married Dave. That was kind of a big one. What a tremendous day that was. Honestly, a perfect day in every sense of the word. I was happy from the moment I woke up, really truly happy, until my head hit the pillow that night.
I started writing fiction in 2010. Never really done it before. It was blogger friend CJ Hodges MacFarlane who suggested I give #fridayflash a try. She was, and is, such a big supporter. Thanks, CJ. Once I started writing flash stories, I was hooked. It was like something exploded in my head - the stories just flew out of me - and it was thrilling to hear feedback from other writers and to be inspired by their work.
Friday Flash boosted my confidence so much that I entered a local short story writing contest and, to my surprise, won third place. I joined a writer's group that I absolutely adore. I love seeing Paula, Sasha, Linda and Dawn. They offer such good advice and they write like the wind. Such joy it is to see them every other week. I even took part in a novel marathon. Oh my! That was a challenge and a great learning experience.
Even more than giving me a creative outlet I never had before, Friday Flash was a welcome mat to a world of new friends. They are as real to me as members of my own family. They're there for me when I'm feeling down and they cheer me on when I'm climbing mountains. That alone made 2010 pretty spectacular. Meeting two of those people, Laurita Miller and Alan W. Davidson, was just over-the-top amazing. We had SUCH a good time. Wouldn't it be great if #fridayflash had a real live reunion some day? We all thought so. I swear, if it happens, you will never lack for things to talk about. If you ever get a chance to meet a fellow flasher, do so. You won't regret it.
I've had a fair bit of personal contact with other writers. I met Deb of My Great North quickly one day. I've talked with CJ and Lou Freshwater of Baby's Black Balloon and I've Skyped with Mark Kerstetter of The Bricoleur. I've received actual mail from Laura Eno of A Shift in Dimensions, Linda at Leftbrainwrite, Mark and Laurita. Laura sent me a copy of her new book, The Prophecy Moon. Linda sent a package of goodies for her Gratitude contest. Mark sent me the original art for Suis Generis and a hand drawn card for a wedding present. Laurita sent Christmas goodies, including a jelly bean house ornament. All of it was so lovely. Thank you.
Work had its ups and downs. We said goodbye to a few really good people who I miss each and every day. Times change, work changes, but what remains is that I still love what I do. Newspaper ink is in my blood. I can't help myself. No matter what happens, I find myself loving my job and loving the people I work with. I might go in there cranky, but someone always makes me laugh: kudos to my fellow graphic aces Leah Burton, Lynda Sinclair, Angie Folkes, Jason Willis, Karen Lambert, Terri Kongus, Cathy Black, Dave Opavsky, Gail Knaus, Marg Boyer, Lisa Garbett and Marianne Dawson. And thanks also to editors Rob Learn and Sarah Ryeland for being so much fun to work with.
A shout out to my friends and family for being wonderful. A hug to my mom, who I have the best telephone conversations with and who makes me laugh with all her antics. Kisses to my sons, Angus and Sam, for making my hair go gray by making me love them so much. And a heartfelt thanks to my new husband for putting up with my crap all year.
Thanks for reading, everyone.
Have a tremendous new year.
|JANUARY - icicles sparkle in our front window|
|FEBRUARY - He popped the question! |
Dave gave me a diamond and a promise for Valentine's Day.
|MARCH - My hero Dave rescued Hershey, a chocolate lab who was trapped|
in the frigid river for three days. Unfortunately, she died a short time later.
|APRIL - Nothing beats our annual spring fishing trip to Kiosk, part of Algonquin Park.|
Above, Tom and Sue Webster join Dave around the campfire.
I can hardly wait for this year!
|EARLY MAY - The weather is weird here sometimes. It snowed early in May.|
|LATE MAY - The kids went swimming at Balsam Lake Provincial Park|
during the Victoria Day long weekend.
|JUNE - Sam swims in the river.|
|JULY - The Raneys welcomed a new pup to the family. His name is Tyson|
and he really is completely adorable. This was him at Lake of Two Rivers
campground on Canada Day.
|JULY - Canada Day long weekend in Algonquin with the Raneys. |
We had just completed a tremendously scenic hike. I swear to God my calves are still swollen.
|JULY - Last year was a banner year for me, writing-wise. I won third prize in the|
Muskoka Short Story Contest for a story called For Bella.
|AUGUST - Blogging at Inverhuron Provincial Park. Blogging consumed a great|
deal of my time in 2010 and opened up a whole new world for me. Of course, friends and
family teased me mercilessly when I brought the laptop on vacation.
|SEPTEMBER - What an insane month! The festivities started with Sam's 10th birthday.|
Double-digits is a very big deal!
|SEPTEMBER 25 - Yes, we got married. WOO HOO!!! It was wonderful in every way.|
These photos are what I call 'Wedding Outtakes' - taken by Leah Burton.
In this one, Dave slips me the tongue.
|The famous photo of Trudeau dancing behind the queen.|
|SEPTEMBER - Wedding Outtake #3 - Me,|
doing an awkward happy dance.
|SEPTEMBER - Wedding Outtake #4 - Yep, my gums are flapping.|
The real Cathy, in action.
|OCTOBER - The highlight of our honeymoon in Newfoundland was meeting|
fellow bloggers Laurita Miller and Alan W. Davidson.
It was SO much fun. I love these two, I just love 'em.
|OCTOBER - Thanksgiving dinner with the Raneys and Tammy's parents,|
Dee-Dee and Dave, at Lake of Two Rivers in Algonquin Park.
Nothing tastes better than turkey on a picnic table.
|OCTOBER - I love this photo of Angus playing his guitar around the campfire.|
|NOVEMBER - Angus built a spud chucker and Dave was more|
than happy to give it a go.