There was more bad times then good this year. Or more accurately, a lot of the bad points overshadowed the good. Or their were the normal good times, but the daily grind had a lot of negative. But here, I have happily remembered many of the good. From awesome to major thrill, here is my Top Moments Countdown:
Honorable mention: The Trampled by Turtles concert with Lorn Huron as opener. They put on a wonderful show (see review blog) but the venue totally ruined the whole thing.
11-Kelly Coffey circuit workouts/running on the trail in the summer
Cool has gained so much ground on this front, and it makes it fun, quality time instead of a chore. It’s really nice to do it together. And even though it was very hot (sometimes 104F) we both ran well AND had great attitudes about it. I hope to continue our fitness stuff for a very long time.
This went from the top spot last year to 10th! But not because it was bad or anything. I packed the car to the brim, but forgot one bag. The one with all the cute outfits I had lovingly put together over the prior weeks and weeks. It was a fun trip, as always, but even though there were technically more days IN the visit, we were way more rushed. We didn’t even get to play yard games! We have to plan better next time. And some lady chastised my family when we sat down at Dawn Patrol. Even though there’s no tickets and no seating arrangement. She got ugly about it, saying “we’ve been here since 3AM.” False. They don’t open the gates until 4 AM, and shove it up your ass, lady. I had fun, and I always love the balloon races, but we were kinda running around. Plus, my mom was still recovering from her radiation/surgery. And my dad was having trouble walking around so much. We will do it better next visit!
9-Cool’s birthday in Park City
I bought Cool (and me) a massage package in Park City. So we could try out being fancy (that’s not our life). It was fun, but I just don’t think I’m a massage person. Example: They have a sign-in sheet and it asks what you don’t want in the massage. I wrote “awkwardness.” My gal was like, what do you mean you don’t want awkwardness? Long pause. What is awkwardness to you?” Umm, THIS conversation. And there was a hair treatment in the massage. But that meant either you have to walk around with straight up oil in your wet hair–or shower. So I had a weird semi-private shower, which I’m never a fan of. So the massage was good, but I just am not going to submit myself to any more of that. We did get to window shop in Park City and eat at High West, so that was nice.
8-getting the impossible raise
My worth ethic is unparalleled. And my department under-pays so there is high turnover. I ended up doing way more then my share (as I have always done) on a consistant basis. The difference was, they keep track of checklists, so I saved them and wrote everything down. Everyone in the company, everyone, everyone gets a standard 40 cent raise at their yearly review. Everyone. No exception. But I worked more so I deserved more. And I asked for it. My supervisor said no no straight away. I persisted that I worked very hard. And they couldn’t deny that. So the head of the department said he could try to ask for more, but it had only ever happened on very few rare occasions. I said we could at least try, and he said he’d talk to his boss, but don’t get my hopes up. I didn’t. But the next week, he said I got it! I got more than the standard 40 cent raise!!! One of very few–nobody in recent memory. But then, because he’s a douche and he doesn’t like me (because I caught him red-handed talking shit about me to another random employee AND went to HR about it) he ruined the moment by saying, “You got lucky.” No, you mother-fucker, I did not get lucky, I worked hard and earned it. And Cool further ruined the occasion by picking one of our biggest fights ever. So this should be higher on this list, but *sigh* other people. . . I DID buy myself a really nice fitness tracker as a gift to me. And it is hands free/cord free/phone free music. Right on my wrist–with no other device necessary.
Best idea ever! With or without alcohol. The zoo put on a 21 and over event, which is genius. I don’t always want to have kids pushing me, deal with screaming, and have little people running around scaring the animals and tapping on glass. As long as you look at the zoo before the adults get out of the alcohol lines, you can see the animals before the adults start to exhibit (pun intended) this behavior. It’s the first time we ever saw the palace cat out, because it was actually quiet. Love! And we went to the very first event, so nobody knew if it yet, and we pretty much had the place to ourselves. Subsequent events were fun too, but word had spread and it was more crowded. That May event–perfect!
I went extravegent for my bithday. Not because it was a milestone year (33) but more because I had a job where I can take (paid) time off. So I used it to my advantage and did bunches of things all week. I got my hair dyed special. She took the color out, then did a rinse so it was subtle, purple highlights. I loved it! And as soon as I catch up on money, I’ll get that again. On your birthday you get to eat whatever you want, even if the other person doesn’t like that kind of food. Cool is a very picky eater, so I always have to go without a lot of foods. So I chose sushi. The restaurant was cute, and had a mural and live music too. I got a whole platter, which I never do, but it was my birthday, and I had to load up from the prior year of no sushi and the next year of no sushi. And I got mussel shooters, which are fun to eat! My actual birthday we paid for Red Butte gardens ($13/person and a total rip-off) which is MUCH smaller than Spokane’s free Manito Garden. I won’t go back unless there’s a free day. We went to Red Robin’s for lunch, which I wouldn’t choose, but my blood sugar got low and we had no other recourse and Cool panicked and got irritable. Then we went to an independent theater and saw one of the films that had been at Sundance Film Festival. It was “Swiss Army Man” see my review. I liked it, and figured it out, so felt cool. Then we had a Grapefruit Ballist Point beer on a patio and it was wonderful. We had planned to go to our library’s coffee and chocolate class but some obnoxious lady sat immediately next to me, wouldn’t stop engaging me, and when she belched in my face I called it quits and walked out early. Then sent a long complain letter to the event’s organizer–who turned out to be really, really sweet. Signed us up for the next month’s (super competitive) class, gave me coupons for free coffee at the library shop, and gave me a birthday gift of 4 artisan chocolate bars! Like, really sweet and very apologetic (that’s not usually my life). Anyway, so we went to an oyster restaurant instead. I like oysters, but found the restaurant very over-priced. The day after my birthday, Cool had paid for an experience at the aviary. I got to go in a private room with a parrot and a bird trainer. The bird painted me a picture. Well, actually she went dab-dab dab with the sponge then looked for her food treat. Then saw she had to dab more to get more food, so quickly dab-dab-dabbed in order to get more treats. I got to take pictures right up next to her and took my painting by her home. It was really neat to get up close and personal and she was a cute stuff.
We loved the year we were trick-or-treating, and I’ve always loved Halloween. But usually, one of us is stuck at work. This year–neither of us were, so we wanted to do something really big. A couple’s costume! So on Sundays we brainstormed and brainstormed, and researched, and planned. The best, easiest thing for us to do was “Lions Tigers and Bears–Oh my!” We bought more then we wanted, and made some cool accessories. Then, I face-painted my little heart out! It took forever, but we looked good. We had signed up for a fun-theme-run, so we dressed up for that. And the zombies chased us. Cool body-slammed a zombie, and outran the children. At the end, they had voting for best costume. Except, they forgot to call us up (they said if you think you’ll win just get up there anyway) so we had to push through the crowd–which Cool is never good at. There was no raised stage or anything, we were just in a parking-lot, and as short people, we were probably obscured to anyone not in the front row. And the dope-DJ who was running the thing didn’t say our name properly he called us “a lion and a tiger.” The voting was by audience cheer. We got second place, but after all the afore-mentioned factors, I think we were robbed! And I think the first place winners had stacked the crowd. So we felt we could do better. When a local restaurant announced they were having a costume contest for cash prizes ($500 Sunday night, $500 Monday night–when it had been one night the year before for $1000) we had to try! Even though it meant taking time off work. So I requested a partial day off Sunday (working corporate and having not only paid vacation, but as-needed employees to cover shifts is so nice!) to get ready and go. I did my very best face-painting work and we hung out at Gracie’s waiting for the voting. And some ten foot tall tree man took our prize! With some king and queen getting 2nd, and that Tim Burton wig head dude and his gal-friend taking 3rd. Disagree and disagree. We should have at least gotten 2nd! So we tried one more time and dressed up for work on Monday. Because their was a contest and a secret prize, and our boss encouraged everyone to dress up. He didn’t encourage us for work-spirit or anything. That douche is a nerd and his big hobby is making and dressing up in costumes–even though he’s like, 50. He has a batman, that could legit-be used for one of the movies. That’s how much time and money and effort he put into it. That is an old costume of his. This year, he was working on a Captain Sparrow costume. Which I thought was only so-so. How hard is it to get a dred-wig, a sash, and buy tall boots?! So we thought we’d at least win the work contest and beat him–cause who doesn’t love a group costume? But alas, our boss won the whole contest. And some gal painted herself silver and wore deer antlers (big deal) and beat us for 2nd place. We didn’t even place at all 😦 So we had fun, and looked good, but this didn’t rank higher because nobody knows how to properly judge a contest, and we should have won, but didn’t.
4-my thousand day in a row mile
I ran so many days-in-a-row that I made it to #1000 this summer! To commemorate the occasion, I made flyers at work, inviting people. Even though I knew those duds and douches wouldn’t show, I was excited and there was an off-chance someone might share in that excitement–plus, I could get acknowledgement of my huge accomplishment, and tie it to my resume that way. As part of the work event, I made it a coin drive fund-raiser so we could adopt a bird at the aviary. The money goes towards feeding and care and they give you free aviary passes, a plush of your bird, and a certificate. Only my supervisor came to my mile, but I really hadn’t expected anyone at all, so that was OK. I wore my running skirt and felt awesome. And I used our concert window chalk and painted my accomplishment all over Rusty. On the way from the fundraiser to work, I was stuck in traffic. I don’t use my air conditioner–ever–in order to save money, so my windows were both down. I heard a, “I promise I’m not hitting on you.” Firstly, I didn’t expect it. Secondly, I thought–that can’t be for ME. Thirdly, I was like–do I really want to engage with this? So after a long time, I turned my head, and some guy stuck in the traffic jam beside me, asked, “Did you really run so many days in a row??? That’s cool!” So that was nice. While I was at work that night, our Hispanic cleaning gal brought her whole family inside our lab. They all looked really happy, and they asked if any of us spoke Spanish–none of us do, all of us randomly speak German, if any second language at all. Her husband had his phone and somehow conveyed that they wanted to buy a car. I heard “Isuzu” and realized what happened. They saw all my window paint, but couldn’t read English. So they assumed I was selling my beautiful Rusty for $1000, and they were ready to take it that night! I was like, “No, no,no, not for sale.” And they looked very disappointed. And everyone in my lab teased me that I broke their hearts for the rest of that week. Only like 3 people at work donated to the coin drive (I TOLD you I work with duds) but 2 of them donated $20s. So we got to adopt a bird for $50. I chose a black vulture 1) because vultures are important to our world and Andy N. Condor has enlightened me to their cuteness and cause. 2) Little Chewy and Vader of Tracy Aviary didn’t have any sponsors for 2016, and that made me sad for them. 3) Our lab is SO vulture! We are the clean-up crew of the medical industry as we have to sniff out mistakes and correct them. We deal with icky samples. And–we’re all anti-social and sort of put-down upon by the hoity-toity management and the super-social client services and phlebotomists. I hung the flyer, the certificate/facts, and the vulture plush in the lab. Everybody likes it and we named out vulture plush, Culture, which is appropriate for us.
Brandi always makes our list. She always puts on an exciting show that you come away from amped up. But the venue was awesome! We were right in the middle of the Deer Valley bunny area, with mountains and trees all around. And Park City is always fun–we of course snuck into their mini Arts-Fest (only for 2 min) and ate beer cheese pretzels and drank cocktails at our fave- High West. It also made it the best time because we packed our own tailgate and pic-nic. We had greek pitas, watermelon-rum slushees, salads and s’mores in (separate) mason jars. It was delicious, and topped off the day nicely. Oh, and we got the very best parking spot where we could exit the concert first, and easily, because one of the Deer Valley maintenance workers gave us a good tip.
2-Utah Arts Festival
It was bigger and better then I ever expected! There were booths where we got to see SLC’s creative side. The live music was cool, and we got to see Beats Antique–a legit band that made my countdown–at the end, right in the park. The highlight of the day was getting a sampling of foods from there different food trucks. And we came home with Rogue Bear and a beautiful pinned moth.
We wanted to do something on our holiday weekend, but didn’t know what exactly. At that time, we lived right within walking of downtown, but lots of things were closed, and nothing spectacular was going on. But they do convert the whole arena each year for “Pioneer Days Rodeo.” We thought we’d go check it out and kill some time. We both wore our best cowgirl outfits and walked down. Out front we stumbled on to a signing! It was my dream at pretty much every event I’ve ever attended to have a meet and greet with the main person, but that’s not my life. And here, we were standing in the middle of a meet & greet, but we didn’t know who any of the rodeo people were. . . Still, the main guy invited us to get autographs, gave us a magazine to get signed, we had hats for them to sign. They talked, and took pictures. Everyone was really nice! And inside the rodeo we had a lot of fun and excitement watching all the events. We had no idea we would like the rodeo so much! We had SO much fun that while we were sitting in the stands, we used my phone to buy tickets for the next evening as well.
So that’s the best of 2016, and I look forward to an very very much better 2017!