Hello everyone! It’s the end of the year!! Holy cow! I honestly feel like 2019 has been the longest, yet the slowest, year we’ve gotten through in a long time. Some weeks dragged, some weeks flew by. My year has been pretty great! I met lots of new people, got to go to a dream destination with my dream man, spent lots of quality time with loved ones, and really grew into my 26th year much better than I thought I would.
When I think about this year in general, a whole lot didn’t really happen in December. The major thing I did is go with my lovely husband Matt to Seattle, a dream trip we’ve been planning for two years. If you wanna read all about what we did while there, check out my last blog post! After you read that, come back and see what else I got into this December…
It’s Christmas Time, Y’all
For some reason, Christmas isn’t my favorite holiday. I think it has something to do with the music. After all, there are only a handful of modern Christmas songs that are completely original. The whole spirit of Christmas, however, is something I enjoy. Getting together with family and friends, drinking and eating and being together…that’s something I could do everyday! Christmas time, just like Thanksgiving, is more about togetherness than material things.
That all being said, we were not prepared for the holidays this year. After Seattle, Matt and I had a “what now?” moment that still really hasn’t gone away. Seattle is expensive, so by the time we got back into the groove of things it was the week of Christmas and we had no money! Luckily, we were able to gift souvenirs from the trip, as well as things we were able to buy with what we had leftover from the trip. It wasn’t a complete Christmas failure!
Even though we didn’t put up a tree or partake in lots of Christmas Activities, I had a lot of fun with both of our families on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. We saw my dad and had dinner with him, and then the next day we stopped by Matt’s sister’s house to spend time with the family (including my lovely four month old niece and nephew). It was nice to have some time with everyone, especially after the trip and all the extra shifts we picked up afterwards!
I got a lot of great gifts, but my two favorite are the weighted blanket I got from Matt and the bottle I got from my sister, Allison. I usually get really awful sleep (I always have, I have no idea why!), so when I saw that Matt got me a weighted blanket I was so excited to see if it would help me sleep. To no one’s surprise, it totally did. I think that first night I slept with it was the best night’s sleep I’ve gotten in a very long time.
Remember my blog post about how to make moon water? My sister sure did! I’ve always wanted a fancy apothecary-like bottle to store my moon water in, and Alla came through with exactly the kind of bottle I was looking for! It’s big and glass, with an intricate design that I would expect to see in an old Victorian doctor’s stores. I absolutely love it. To me, it makes the moon water feel extra special to see it in its own special container.
New Year’s Is Literally Tomorrow
I cannot believe we are already at the end of the year. Like I said earlier, 2019 has been a fast but slow year. It’s been a good one for me, but in general it’s been pretty wild.
Last year around this time, Matt and I were still coming down from our wedding day, and now we’ve been married a whole year! I always tell people that it’s just like before we were married (with better jewelry, of course), but honestly it’s been different in the best way. I feel like we’re more of a unit than ever before! We have our personal goals, and our shared goals. It’s nice to have an official partner in crime!
Speaking of personal goals, I have a few resolutions this year. I usually talk trash about resolutions because I think that they are a waste of time for people who can’t stick to them (aka me) but I think this year I can actually make some things happen for me! In 2020, just like in 2019, the goal is to get my license.
I didn’t get my license this year because in all honesty, I’m still terrified of driving. This year I’ve been behind the wheel more than ever before and I’ve realized that the act of driving isn’t the scary part. It’s depending on everyone else to know what they’re doing on the road too. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been driving and someone in another car is texting and swerving all over the lane next to me. It’s absolutely terrifying!!
Admittedly, my actual driving skill is not where I need it to be. I’ve been learning on and off since I was 15, so one can expect some inconsistencies in my skill. Now that Matt has been such a good teacher, I’ve been able to pinpoint what I need to work on and what I already have down. I went from not being able to accelerate over 15MPH without crying to driving with the flow of traffic on Stelzer Road with little to no problems.
What I need to work on is my nerves, for sure. I still get so damn nervous when driving! Besides that, I’ve not worked on maneuverability very much at all. Obviously, I need to do so in order to pass the test, so hopefully in 2020 I can sharpen up my skills and finally, FINALLY get my license.
My other resolutions are pretty standard: eat better, and move more. Since I’m steadily becoming lactose intolerant, I’ve already started to incorporate dairy-free alternatives into my daily life (I still be eating cheese and ice cream though…just not as much!), and I’ve been making more of an effort to plan out meals ahead of time and try new things that are better for me.
I hate working out in theory, but once I get to the gym I have a good time. I also am on my feet at work, as well as before and after (since I am still a pedestrian, after all). In a perfect world, I would have time to work on the parts of my body I want to shape up and tone, but I choose to relax instead 99% of the time. This year I’m going to try and be more active, if only a little bit! I feel like Future Mary will benefit from at least some morning stretches.
Just Jellicle Things
I recently saw CATS in theaters with my dear friend Damian, who originally introduced me to the Broadway version in high school. Back then, the musical made no sense to me at all, but I absolutely loved it. The 2019 version kept that same confusing energy the whole time and I was enthralled.
When I first heard they were making a movie out of the musical, I was excited! I was interested to see how they were going to do the costumes, how they were going to fit the story into a movie format, who was going to be who and all that. Then, I was horrified at the first look at the cast and the graphics. Those cats were scary.
Going into the theater with an open mind, I expected to at least have fun with the movie. I did indeed have fun, but I had way more fun than I initially thought I would. The characters are still scary looking, but in the world that director Tom Hooper and the rest of the production team have created, their looks kind of made sense. It’s honestly a beautiful movie, if you can look past the scary CGI of the cast. The choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler was divine, and I remember holding my breath at some parts just because of how beautiful Victoria’s dancing was (played by ballerina Francesca Hayward).
Of course, my favorite character in CATS is Grizabella. The only character I wasn’t worried about was Grizabella because Jennifer Hudson was cast as her, and Jennifer Hudson is literally amazing. I’ve loved her since her American Idol days, and she could honestly sing the phonebook and I’d start crying. Indeed, every time Grizabella was on screen I cried. I couldn’t help it!
Hudson was the perfect person for this role because she was the only one that I could personally trust to really live in the character. Watching her in Dreamgirls solidified my love for her way back when, so I knew she could handle “Memory”, THE song from CATS. Her Effie was so, so good. If y’all have never seen the movie Dreamgirls, go watch it and really watch Jennifer Hudson. People went for Beyonce, but I stayed for Effie. That performance alone sold me on the idea of her being Grizabella all these years later.
All in all, CATS was a good movie in my opinion. I think the fun part of the musical is that it kind of makes no sense, but there is a clear story if you don’t get caught up in the confusion. The CGI leaves a lot to be desired, but in general the choreography and the design of the setting was gorgeous, and I really enjoyed seeing the movie on the big screen. I would suggest seeing it if you’ve always wanted to see the Broadway show, but never got the chance. It’s not 100% the same, but it’s a little more streamlined for a more general audience and I think it’s a good thing they reworked the story in that way.
As for the music, it’s fun and catchy, just like the original. I think that they did a great job with the soundtrack. I found myself humming quietly along during all the songs I knew. If you like musicals, I think you’ll be just fine with this Hollywood version of the CATS playlist.
I’ve seen online that it’s a complete bomb of a movie, but I think this version will have a cult fanbase with time, much like Rocky Horror or Jupiter Ascending. People didn’t really mess with those movies when they came out, but now people are getting into the wild ride that is Jupiter Ascending, and I don’t need to tell you about the cult following of Rocky Horror, do I? I think CATS will fall under this umbrella of movies that do well later on, which I’m sure isn’t very great now for the people who made the movie, but with time will be pretty cool.
Carrying On The Family Name
This whole year, the question I’ve heard the most is “When are you and Matt having babies?” For some, this question is repetitive, intrusive, and most of the time, rude. For me, it is all of those things, but for the most part I get it. I’ve always talked about being a mom and now it seems as if we’re taking our sweet time. Since almost everyone who reads my blog knows me in real life, I figure a mini life update would be a nice way to end the year and prepare for the next!
As far as I know, Matt is the only Golubich that is fully able to carry on the family name, since his father’s siblings have either been women, or have had daughters. I could be wrong, but I think we’re the only ones that can start the next generation of Golubichs. To everyone on his side, that’s a huge deal.
My side of the family is also very excited for us to start having kids because it’ll be the first grandbaby for my parents (if you don’t count my mom’s stepkid’s kids). I’d say that’s also a huge deal for the Richmond-Leeths.
Matt and I have always talked about kids on and off throughout our relationship. We both want them for sure. Obviously, we’ll never be fully ready to start a family, but we both have our own goals we want to reach before we officially start trying for a baby. Some might call these New Year’s Resolutions as well, but to me this is 100% family planning. Matt’s goal for us? For me to officially be able to drive, legally and skillfully. My goal for us? To buy a house and move in before any babies come.
I’ve been saying for the past year that the next time I move is the last time I move for a long time. I absolutely hate moving. It sucks. I have to put everything I own into boxes, move the boxes, and unpack everything while also trying to go about my daily life like I didn’t just spend a whole day/week/month migrating to another place. I’m too lazy and too set in my routine to move anymore! I’ll happily move one more time, but after that I’m done for a long while.
Not to mention, when we start trying for a baby and if I get pregnant before we move, that means I’m going to have to add the stress of moving onto whatever stressors come with being pregnant. I’m not trynna do that. I know my limits now, so for Future Pregnant Mary, I’m putting a hard goal in place to move into our new home before we get the baby ball rolling.
As for driving, well, I already talked about that earlier. Matt’s big concern is having to cart everyone around all the time. He’s great at driving but he hates doing it, so he really wants me to get my license before we start trying. I respect that, mostly because I should’ve learned to drive a long time ago, but also because I can imagine being the only driver in a family would turn into more of a hassle than I can really understand. Getting my license really is something simple that I can accomplish to make Present Matt and Future Matt happy, so imma conquer my driving phobia and do it not only for him, but for me and our future.
December of 2020 is the deadline for all of this business, purely because my birth control expires at the beginning of that month. However, we’ve talked about getting my birth control removed sooner than that if we can get the ball rolling on those two big goals, as well as getting our physical and financial health up to where we want it to be.
For now, we’re playing the baby making game by ear. Like I said, no one is ever really ready to have kids. I feel like we can at least set ourselves up for a successful transition into parenthood. At the end of the day we know we both want to go into parenthood together. 2020 is going to be the year of getting all our ducks in a row to make the dream a reality! So be patient, Golubichs, Richmond-Leeths, and friends…Baby G is gonna happen eventually!
You Already Know What It Is
That’s right, it’s Music Obsession Time! December has been kind of dry for music for me, mostly because I haven’t been walking to work as much (thank you, body, for STILL not adjusting to Ohio time. I wake up too late to catch the bus half the time smh). That being said, I’ve made an effort to explore Spotify and keep my ears open for new music this month.
Since it is the Most Wonderful Time of the Year, I’ve made two playlists for you guys! One Christmas playlist, and one regular playlist. Hopefully you aren’t too sick of Christmas music, because I’ve got some interesting tracks on there.
My dad loves all kinds of music, so naturally he’s into Christmas music. Since I’ve become an adult, he has been obsessed with Sufjan Stevens’s Christmas music. I love Sufjan Stevens, but I didn’t include any of his Christmas tracks because I wanted to be a little more nostalgic with the playlist this year. In that vein, I decided to think back to all the Christmas songs I hated less than normal growing up, and decided on some good stuff from my childhood. Barbara Streisand, the Waitresses, and John Lennon, among a few other artists, all have Christmas songs that I like. I also decided to include more “modern” Christmas songs that I’ve liked on my own, like Kelly Clarkson and Ariana Grande’s tracks. Crywolf also came out with a well-received Christmas song this year, so I threw it in there. And no Christmas playlist is complete without at least one Charlie Brown Christmas track!
As for the non-Christmas-y playlist, I made notes of songs I loved in Seattle and included tracks from Rozz Dyliams, the Weeknd, and Alaina Castillo along with some oldies but goodies from Linkin Park (my artist of the decade according to Spotify) and Tears for Fears (whose album Songs from the Big Chair I always go back to at this time of year). Finally, since it is the month of Matt and I’s wedding anniversary, I put our first dance song and our last dance song as little bookends to the playlist. James Arthur, Jason Mraz, and Colbie Caillat knew what they were doing when they wrote those songs, ya know?
Thanks for a great year, everyone. 2019 really was a great year for me. I’ve found myself happier than ever. I still have my highs and lows, but I believe that with age, I’ve learned to navigate the Emotion Sea a little bit better every year.
I’m looking forward to 2020, not only for the media I plan on consuming, but for the cruise in September, the accomplishments I have yet to reach both at my job and in my personal life, and the positive changes that will hopefully change my life for the better! Stay tuned for your regularly scheduled blog posts every Monday! If you haven’t already, consider following me on Twitter to keep up with when I actually post the dang posts (I’m never consistent, let’s be real). See y’all next year! :P