A DC Dana Year in Review

I've been discussing Christmas letters with various friends and how social media is the ultimate year-around Christmas letter: everyone posts only positive updates about their life to subtly brag to everyone else.

My friends and I were in downward-spiral-into-oblivion moods, and one of them joked about how he wanted to reply to a particularly braggy email with:

This year, I:
Broke up with my girlfriend
Spent a lot of money to deal with that by buying unnecessary electronics
Worked in a job that I wasn't too happy with
Prepared myself for a Holiday Season alone

Ha! Now that would make a great honest Christmas letter.

I told him I was trying to figure out how to do my own year in review without sounding like a smug d-bag, but in the end- we both decided that's not possible for anyone.

I'ma do one anyway. Merry Christmas!

I will, however, try to sprinkle in some less-than-positive and/or embarrassing moments for balance though. And I'll include a photo of Chloe in Christmas attire at the end as an added prize.

Dana's 2013
This year, I:
  • Finished my Master's degree (cue angelic choir, or the George Michael song Freedom...) 
  • Traveled to Iraq and kept it from my poor mother until the day before
  • Got selected to become a Naval Officer and kept it from my poor mother until the day after
  • Discovered I don't fit in Japan

Only one of those races had obstacles, one had glow sticks, and none had mud. Sign of maturity? I think so.

    • Got completely naked in a public bath more than once (there are NO photos of this, don't get scared)
    • Was a bridesmaid (again)
    • Started blogging for the Red Cross
    • Signed up to be a communications "boot camp instructor" (because I have so much free time and because I'm so great at public speaking - if great means hives continually creep up my neck and the fact that I forget to exhale.)
    • Ate turtle for the first time
    • Ate locust for the first time

    • Ate potentially lethal blowfish...twice. (I really like eating, guys)

    • Attended one moon bounce party (>1 from last year- concerning...)

    • Accidentally wore a wedding dress to a formal event (I just thought it was pretty. I didn't realize white should've probably been avoided)


    • Attended my 5th (?) Toby Keith concert (I really like rednecks, guys)

    • Got orthotics. (Yep, 30's rule.)
    • Tried two and a half new diets (The half was a day-long juice fast. It counts.)
    • Met Marion Barry: 
    It just makes me laugh, sorry. 

    • And drank approximately 731 cups of coffee
    I did not squeeze in a season of rowing crew, or enough indoor climbing or hiking, and this year was a slow one for dating disasters, so I'm hoping to pick all that up again in 2014. 

    And, as promised, here's Chloe being forced to be festive. (It should be noted that I made her exit a storage bin under my bed first, so she was already annoyed:)

    "Dear Lord, please forgive me for what I'm about to do to my human...."
    Festive holiday "scarf" wins. 

    Merry Christmas, everyone!