humming quietly to myself…

…Happy birthday to me, happy birthday to me… I’m 36 today. I’m a little taller now than I appear in this picture. That’s the last time I looked cute in bangs (and I’m relieved that Dad abandoned the mutton chops within a few years of this photograph). Panda is still with me, although he’s very shabby now, has undergone several surgeries, and no longer plays Frere Jacques. I found him in a box recently, poor thing, and liberated him to sit in the armchair with my collection of Etsy bunnies. The bonding has been a little rocky, with all parties feeling faintly threatened, but I have hopes that they’ll work it out.

It’s been a mostly good 36 years. I have wonderful family and friends who are very dear to me, time to practice a craft that I love, and feel lucky to have a good job in hard times. My old wandering gene is making me feel restless these days, though. I have an internal buzzer that goes off every few years and tells me to move on. It went off over a year ago, but I don’t feel like I can leave Chicago right now, and I’m not sure where the wandering gene is telling me to go. One of my goals for this year is to do some research into places that appeal to me and plan a trip next summer to see friends and do relocation recon.

I also have some smaller-scale goals for my next year, including:

1. Paint my apartment (Why, you ask, if you’re planning to move? Primarily because it will make me ludicrously happy in the short run, but also because the move probably won’t happen for a couple of years. Also, paint chips are delicious fun and I like an excuse to collect them.)
2. Get in better shape (I’m currently using an accursed elliptical machine and hobbling around like a wounded thing)
3. Get at least 7 hours of sleep every night during the school year
4. Blog about things that are not remotely business-related
5. Write more letters (or indeed, any at all)
6. Quit Diet Coke once and for all
7. See more movies
8. Take more pictures

Wish me luck. I’ll be starting my year of good intentions with cake.

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15 thoughts on “humming quietly to myself…

  1. un bel oiseau

    sounds like a great list! especially the paint one. im thinking of that too…in my giant living room (what fun!)although i will probably leave in a year or so too.

    and…HAPPY BIRTHDAY! hope you are getting the beautiful sunshine I’m experiencing today!


  2. K-Dad

    Kateri, that is one of my favorite pictures! My version, unfortunately, is probably on a slide in a box someplace. Oh…we do have one in “your” photo album. I was talking to someone recently who, I think, had just celebrated a first birthday with her own child, and I described this photo with you standing on the table. My other favorite of you at that age is the one of you tottering into the living room 4 months later shrieking “Twee! Twee” at the sight of the Christmas tree.

    Happy, happy birthday and many happy reruns! May you succeed in your 8 goals beyond your wildest imaginations!

    Much love, Dad

  3. mortondreamer

    You look so dewey. Who came to the party? Surely Tom and Emily, Geoff and Diane. Perhaps Mike Vitale? Perhaps Len Smith (the Coolie…) Regardless, it was a sweet time, and we love you. Have a wonderful birthday!

  4. PoleStar Jewelry

    happy birthday!!!! That is quite an adorable photo. I am 32 and am enjoying my 30’s more than every other age so far. I just feel so comfortable with myself! Aside from a few small incomplete goals like you have.

    I hope you have a good one 😀

  5. Gardanne

    Happy Birthday!!! I loved your previous hydrangea post, I have a soft spot for these plants too, because of my Dad. He died 5 years ago at 88, and had a wonderful life. He had an evergreen nursery but as he got older he grew hydrangeas. I have several in my yard, and can’t walk by them without saying to myself, “Hi Dad.”

  6. Fringe

    The photo is perfect. Your dad’s pants are cooler than words. You were the cutest little wiffit ever.

    I have a suggestion for the relocation…San Diego-ish. Come out next summer for some hands-on research 🙂

    I admire your list and it really is a realistic one, no ridiculously impossible goals (except perhaps #6, let’s go on the wagon together and fight the evil dc demon)…

    Wishing you the best of everything in the coming year, mal.

    Love ya!


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