Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!

Jeff & Amy, circa 2000

So, it’s 2010. How do you say it? Twenty-ten or two-thousand and ten? I kind of hate the twenty-ten but the latter is a mouthful. I don’t know. I’ll call it nothing. That’s what I do when I am unsure of someone’s name. I just call them “hey!” How was your new year's eve? Exciting? I hope. We were in bed around 9 and asleep by 10:30. Seriously. That's how freaky we are. Anyway, I’ve been reading all these decade-ending lists online and it got me thinking about the last 10 years. (On a side note, isn’t the end of the decade really the end of next year? Oh well, let the people have their fun.) Jeff and I started dating superbowl weekend of January 2000. The Rams versus someone else. We won. We dated in secret for a bit because our love was CONTROVERSIAL but it wasn’t that long, maybe a month or two but before winter was over, we were out of the closet. It’s nice that we started things off with a nice round number. Anyway, after you do the math, this means Jeff and I have been together for 10 years! That’s a long time. I was thinking about all the changes to our lives since then and it’s kind of astounding to me so I decided to bore you with a list of my life’s ups and downs for the last 10 years:

2000 – Jeff and I started dating. He was a chef; I was a travel agent working for my mom. Our first date was to Lowe’s. Yes, the hardware store. Nothing gets the loins burning like the bathroom fixture aisle. After we dated for a while, he decided to go back to school and leave the restaurant biz. We also took our first trip together to Las Vegas. It was eleven billion degrees. My meemaw and I usually went to lunch on my birthday so this year we went to the restaurant Jeff was still working at so she could meet him. We’d been dating for about 2 months at this point and when we walked in he had balloons, streamers and flowers on the table for us. He made quite an impression.

2001 – In January, Jeff asked me to move in with him and his roommate, our friend Rob. By summer, Rob had moved on and things were going great. Jeff proposed on Christmas day at 12:01am. He was still in school but almost ready to leave the food biz.

2002 – Wedding planning was in full swing this year but things at work sucked now because of Sept. 11th. The travel industry was in the crapper but we forged ahead. Jeff was now working out of the restaurant business and had started his new career as a computer guy. Sadly by fall, his mom began to lose her fight against cancer. We got married on November 29th and thankfully she was there to see it happen.

2003 – This year pretty much sucked. Jeff’s mom died in April, which sadly wasn’t our first funeral of the year. My mom had to close the travel agency after 20 years in business. By the end of the year, we were working independently out of another agency but it wasn’t really a great situation. By the end of the year, I quit the travel biz and enrolled in college.

2004 – I spent this year working odd jobs and taking a few classes. I had decided to get my degree in interior design so I spent a good deal of the year painting people’s homes. Faux finish was all the rage, you know. I had a nice little run but it was really hard physically and I wasn’t making jack. Jeff was working for an accounting firm and had to wear a tie everyday.

2005 – This was the year we decided to have a baby. Fun, right?! This was also the year we found out that I can’t have a baby like normal people. Not so fun. I also went to work as a temp in a cube farm. This was my first corporate-type job and while I worked with some awesome people (HI GUYS!) the grind was not for me. Jeff had gone to work for the lighting company he still works for now. We tried for the whole year to have a baby but it wasn’t working. It was fun, though.

2006 – This was the year I decided to shit or get off the pot in regards to school. I went to part time at the temp job and took classes full time. We also started looking into Chinese adoption. All of this came to a screeching halt when my meemaw was diagnosed with cancer. I ended up quitting everything to take care of her and by the end of summer we had moved her into our home. I went back to school in August but things weren’t going well and I wasn’t happy because of everything going on around me and my choice of study. My meemaw died that fall and it was the worst day of my life. A week later I failed a textiles text, said EFF THIS, changed my major to graphic design and started over. We had also been doing fertility stuff this whole time and nothing was working. We had abandoned the Chinese adoption because the agency was weird and we were going to give it one more go next year.

Good grief this is long. You might want to stretch or something.

2007 – I plunged headfirst into school and decided I had found my place. School was going really well and I got a part time job at an art supply store. We were still trying to get pregnant but had zero results. We switched doctors and hoped it would increase our chances. This was also the year that I took my first cake decorating class. I remember knowing after the first class that I had found my calling. I also stepped up my graphic design studies. This was also the year we remodeled our house. It was many months of dirt, dust, nails, doing dishes in the bathtub and trips to Home Depot. In the late summer, we attended an adoption workshop with Holt. I had gone as far as I wanted to go with the treatments and wanted my sanity back. We talked to a woman who told us about the wonders of Korean adoption. We were sold.

2008 – I set myself up to graduate in the spring of this year. School was going very well and I was giving it all I had and had somehow managed to make straight A’s. I continued to take cake classes and started my cake obsession. We completed our adoption paperwork in April; I graduated in May and got an internship and a part-time job in graphic design. While I was interning, I met my now boss who was looking for an interior designer who could also do graphics. Well, hello there. Two days after I started that job we got our referral call for Max. That was one of the happiest days of my life. I was still doing cakes and now people were actually asking for them! And paying real paper money (sometimes)! We went to Seoul on December 7th and came home with Max on December 11th.

2009- Well, I don’t really think I need to talk about this year since you’ve read about it all already. And if you haven’t, what is your problem? Now, we’re this family and I still make cakes but a lot more and a lot bigger and crazier and I still have my job but less of it and from home. This was the year that my life changed forever. I’m 35 now. I was 25 when Jeff and I made that trip to Home Depot. Who knew it would all end up like this? What will the next 10 hold? I have one word for you: LOTTO!

Happy New Year everyone!


johnny_VIRUS said...

Two words: license suspended! Good to talk to you among shitty circumstances. Hope all is well, let's have a Forest Park reunion soon! Wine included.

Allie said...

Wow! This is a great post! It's neat to see how much things can change in 10 years, and it was nice to get to know you a little better. :)

I think it's so incredible that you and Jeff took care of your meemaw like that. It must have been hard, but it's wonderful that she had that kind of love and support from you.

We kind of got put through the ringer the first few years of our marriage too - it sucks, of course, but there is this kind of confidence that comes from knowing you can get through bad stuff together.

Oh! And Happy New Year!

Beckett Gray said...

I found your post sort of randomly. But it's always fun to find something interesting in the blogosphere!

My non-profit recently published a new book on Chinese adoptive parenting.

“The Dragon Sisterhood: A Guide to Chinese Adoptive Parenting” .

It can be found on our blog:

I thought you might be interested.

Thanks!Beckett Gray