It's New Year's Eve, and this is when all the end-of-year retrospectives come out. My favorites are always the music lists. It's been a while, dear readers and random followers, so you may not know what is going on in my life. Here is a musical year in review.
January - Nothing to Prove by the Doubleclicks - I started working as a freelance writer and editor. Through my connections at BioWare, I've been getting tapped to write for independent video games. (See, I'm still geeky.) The first indie game I worked on, 9 Lives: Casey and Sphynx, was released in July. Just recently, I started working with an old friend from BioWare on an-as-yet-unfunded indie game. Cross your fingers for us!
February/March - Same Love by Macklemore - Two landmark cases were heard by the US Supreme Court concerning marriage equality for all, regardless of sexual orientation. Although the outcome didn't affect me directly, it affected the kind of world my children would inherit. I want them to live in a world where love is love and everyone has the same basic rights. As of this writing, 18 states have marriage equality. Onward and upward!
April - Hanohano 'o Maui by Keali'i Reichel - Our little 'ohana returned to Maui for the first time since 2009. We stayed at the wonderful Hale Maui again, and the girls were thrilled that "the ocean is in our backyard!" Favorite things: Aloha Mixed Plate in Lahaina, Honokowai Beach Park, The Fish Market in Honokowai, Roselani ice cream (especially haupia flavor - ono!), Iao Valley, Haleakala, the swap meet. Maui no ka 'oi!
May - Ya Viene El Sol by Ozomatli - Dusty and I celebrated ten years of marriage with an evening of fine dining at Pink Door in Seattle and rocking out with Ozomatli. I just adore my husband. He is my favorite.
June - Take on Me by a-ha - On my first solo trip in nearly seven years, I went back to Maryland to help my parents clean out their house and downsize to a condo closer to my sister. THERE WAS SO MUCH STUFF, Y'ALL. Among the stuff, though, were treasures, including a life-sized cardboard cutout of Legolas (swoon) and the very first full-length LP I ever owned, a-ha's Hunting High and Low (Thanks, Pacheco Brothers!).
July/August - Hello, Seattle by Owl City - Summer in the Seattle area is glorious! We went canoeing and swimming in Lake Washington. We went up to the Space Needle for the first time when friends visited. We tried new-to-us restaurants that are now family favorites. We took the bus into the city for adventures. Seriously, we live in a fantastic part of the country. Don't be jealous of our boogie.
September - The Fox by Ylvis - This song was the soundtrack of summer's end; apparently, it has been turned into a children's book. Diana started full-day kindergarten and Tala started morning preschool. It is amazing how much freedom those few hours has given me. I can actually do a Costco run in under an hour! I can have a pedicure on a Thursday morning! I can write! Funny thing is, I now spend a lot more time at school volunteering in the library and as an art docent (read: unpaid art teacher). I just LOVE being the art docent. Teaching art to my kids is so much fun, but it's a lot of work. I had a lot of respect for teachers before, but after seeing how much work has to go into just one lesson once a month, I am even more in awe of those who do this for a living.
October - Hopoe by Makaha Sons - Diana performed for the first time in our annual hula halau ho'ike, in front of 400+ people at the Meydenbauer Theatre. I was so proud of her for building up enough courage to get onstage in front of so many people! I danced my first solo as Hopoe in the legend of Pele, and sang an oli for the first time with three of my hula sisters, taking a tiny step in the very long journey of becoming a hula 'olapa.
November - Wobble by V.I.C. - We went on a fantastic cruise to the Bahamas with our nieces and their families. The girls loved playing on the beach almost every day and Dusty and I loved hanging out with family we don't get to see very often. The nieces and I danced to this song about a quajillion times. The ship DJ needs more records.
December - Thrift Shop by Macklemore - As the Ruling Hausfrau who does a lot of the tidying up, I am intensely aware of how much STUFF we have. Now that the season of conspicuous consumption is over, I want to reduce, reuse, and recycle like a good hippie and try the Buy Nothing New for a Year Challenge. I've already begun by purchasing our new-to-us set of drinking glasses at my favorite local thrift shop for under $5.00. What what what what.
BONUS TRACK! - Let It Go sung by Idina Menzel in Frozen - We just watched this movie a few days ago and the whole family loved it. I really identified with this song in the movie and the character who sings it. The song talks about letting go of the past and others' expectations of you, about owning your power and allowing it to flourish. I carry that message into the new year. Go, grow, and glow.