Once again, in lieu of a Christmas card, I'm summarizing the more notable parts of 2009 for all interested parties. In short, it was a great year. See below.
- Rang in new year at choirmate's home. My 'dead pool' pick^1 was close, but no cigar.
- Hosted annual wintertime mulled wine party at home.
- Began final semester at Humphrey Institute wondering what lies in wait for me post-graduation.
- National Lutheran Choir tour through Mitchell, Rapid City, and Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Fun to wander around campus again.
- Presented at the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits technology conference--reminded me how much I like presenting/teaching/coaching.
- First of enjoyable, yet fruitless^2, job interviews.
- Wintry "guys weekend" trip to Rice Lake, Wisconsin. Thanks Clarance!
- Herniated lumbar disc (S1/L5) hobbles me for foreseeable future. Not recommended.
- Choir performed Bach's "St. Matthew Passion" to a packed house. Had a few short solos as Judas. (typecast?).
- Schoolwork continues at feverish pace.
- Birthday. 30 was a good year.
- Fruitless interview #2.
- Home to Cottonwood for Easter. April 12th: a busy day.
- Took my best gal to Humphrey Prom at Landmark Center. New bowtie^3 to boot.
- Two week sprint to graduation day.
- Humbled to have been chosen by peers to speak at graduation ceremony.
- Post-ceremony dinner at Rinata with loved ones--a day to remember.
- Now what?
- Fruitless interviews #3, 4.
- To Raleigh-Durham for a week with my brother. Borrowed a bike from the tallest guy in town.
- Pert Near Sandstone (cousin-in-law's band) playing Peavey Plaza (say that three times fast).
- Welcomed new (to me) kitty home. "Frida." She likes to jump and bite.
- Cheering on my best gal in Grandma's Half Marathon, Duluth. Afterward, up to Grand Marais for lake-side camping.
- Fireworks and flea market in Northfield. One great unexpected find.
- Volunteered for First Tee--fun to see young kids discover golf.
- Camping with Kallmans at Itasca State Park. Daily rain enabled me to show off my tarp and knot skills.
- Apartment-warming party in #304. A new home together.
- Cousin Anna gets married with sheep bleating in the background--a perfect day.
- Five months of disc pain--broke down and submitted to an epidural. Next-day relief. Walking/sitting/sleeping normally--a novel concept.
- J. O. B. Success!
- First day at UMN Extension. Trying to learn the lay of the land.
- Minnesota State Fair--in and out for the animal barn only.
- Inaugural dinner club with schoolmates. Good food fuels great conversation.
- First-ever performance of the Elm Quintet. Finding it very fun to sing in a small group. Hope there will be more Elm gigs in my future.
- Halloween: to Orchestra Hall in costume as the Swedish Chef. Bork bork bork!
- Friends Tim and Rachel married--an honor and pleasure to sing and stand with them.
- Friends Brian and Carleen married--some of my longest-tenured Minneapolis friends and bona fide kickball nerds.
- Three-point Thanksgiving journey to Cedar Falls, Iowa, and Cottonwood, Minnesota. Hit a few junk-shoppes along the way. Did I mention I like fountain pens?
- National Lutheran Choir concerts at Basilica of Saint Mary, Minneapolis, and in Saint Louis, Missouri--great audiences.
- Christmas celebrations all over. Glad to be together with my siblings and parents at the farm--I love being home-home.
(Preview: January 2010)
- Engaged to Brittany. She is a special one.
Hope that 2010 is filled with fruit.