Dec 28 2007

The year that changed my life

Whoa. 2007 was an interesting year for me. I’m going to jot down some things so that later, I can reflect, remember and be glad for this year.

When I look through it by month, I’m just amazed at all that’s happened this year. I am not the same person I was 12 months ago–not even close. I didn’t even have the same name!

There were some rough patches (father-in-law’s hospitalization, being painfully homesick and lonely) but overall, this has been a good year for me.

So many things have happened–I was responsible for a newsroom of 200 employees, I planned a wedding, graduated from college, got married, went on a fabulous honeymoon, moved 400 miles from home, had a summer internship, and started to work from home.

January 2007

I can’t remember how I celebrated New Year’s Eve, but I think I was asleep. I was recently engaged (On Dec. 21, 2006) and just beginning my last semester of college. I also began my one-semester tenure as editor-in-chief of the campus newspaper. What a thrill! What intensity.

February 2007

I kept chugging along, taking my one class (hah), working at the newspaper, and planning my wedding. My then-fiance, his family and I celebrated his 22nd birthday that month. Actually, we celebrated several birthdays: His, his twin brother’s, and their father’s are all on the same day. Their mother’s is just a few days before.

March 2007

Spring break! My last spring break of college. Meep. I was fortunate to spend it in New York City at a journalism conference. We stayed at the Roosevelt Hotel just blocks from Times Square. I got to tour the New York Times newsroom, wander about the city, and visit with some alumni. I also may have been on MTV 3. Who knows–I don’t. I don’t even know anyone who has that channel.

My last class of college (Sociology 101, lolz) was completed by this point. It was an 8-week class, after all. I ended up walking out of it an hour early. I opted to pass/fail my grade, and I definitely passed. I had to get back to the newsroom for a big story.

April 2007

More of the same–wedding planning and newspaper editing. Such a rush, and such a wonderful time of my life. I miss my newspaper friends a lot. Also, we visited Pittsburgh and found our apartment.

May 2007

The biggest month of my life to date. May 5-graduated from college (although, I didn’t actually go to commencement). May 19-got married! Woo! May 21-a moving truck pulled up to my apartment, and loaded up all of my belongings. May 23-boarded a plane bound for Seattle for our honeymoon–a cruise to Alaska. We took a 7-night cruise and everything about it was amazing.

We flew back to Indiana, visited with our families for one last hurrah, and then boarded a plane to Pittsburgh. By then, it was the first part of June, which I’ll get to in a second.

Our wedding and honeymoon was definitely the highlight of the year. However, the week beforehand was uncertain and scary. My father-in-law was in the hospital–deathly ill. We were really close to losing him, actually. Thankfully, he recovered, and was even able to attend our wedding.

June 2007

We arrived in Pittsburgh on the first Monday of the month.

The next day, I started my internship. Ugh. Looking back, I should have tried to negotiate a later start date–I had no idea how to get around this city, and if you’ve ever been to Pittsburgh, you know that it’s hard to find your way around.

My husband started his new job on Wednesday, and it has gone really well for him.

On the 9th, I turned 22. It was just an OK birthday. I was grateful for my husband, but kind of mopey since my family and friends were so far away. I was overwhelmed by all of the recent life events that were happening. I can’t remember how I spent that day, but I was glad it was a Saturday and I didn’t have to work. I hope my 23rd birthday will be more fun.


Nothing remarkable. We spent too much money and I was exhausted at the end of every day. Weekends were spent catching up on chores. It wasn’t the funnest, so I’m glad I don’t remember much of it.


My parents and sister came to visit during the first weekend of the month. They were here during their 23rd wedding anniversary, and while wandering around the city, we saw three wedding parties being photographed. That was neat. It was really nice seeing family. Oh, and it was the hottest weekend of the year and our air conditioning stopped working. Also, the power went out for no apparent reason. Haha.

My husband went on a business trip to Los Angeles for a week. It was a good experience for him, but we really missed each other. It was a long, lonely week.

At the end of the month, my internship was over. That’s all I have to say about that.


Partly due to being homesick, and partly due to eating horrible food at a restaurant and being extremely upset about it, we made a last-minute decision to drive to Indiana for Labor Day. We headed out at about 7 p.m. that Friday and got to town by 2 a.m. or so. We surprised my husband’s mom, and they were really happy to see us. It felt so good to be there!

The next week, I drove back to Indiana again, this time, by myself. I stayed with my little sister while my parents went to Florida. It was certainly an adventure.

When I returned to Pittsburgh during the middle of the month or so, I became a full-time homemaker. I’m not sure how long this will last, but we made the decision for a few reasons. One, we don’t expect to be in this city for much longer. It wouldn’t be worthwhile to have a career-type job to only leave it a few months later. Two, we both see value in having someone maintain the home. I’ve received quite a bit of criticism for not holding an outside job, and that hurts. Still, it’s what’s working best for my husband and me, and that’s what matters most.

That month, I discovered The Tightwad Gazette and the frugal lifestyle. I made it my goal to reduce our spending so that I wouldn’t need to have an outside job. So far, by me not working, we’re spending thousands less than we did when I was. We’re money ahead. Isn’t that weird how that works?

I started my blog, Sense to Save, on Blogger at the end of September.


I continued building my blog and learning more ways to be frugal. It was a lovely month. October is one of my favorites, actually. The weather is fantastic, the leaves are beautiful, and it’s the month I met my husband. That October marked four years of us being together.

My husband’s parents came for a quick visit, and we took them all over the city. We all had a grand time.

Thanks to a friend, I started a regular freelance writing gig, which I am still doing. I earn decent money, and it’s helping us establish an emergency fund.


I migrated my blog to its own URL with the help of my savvy husband.

We took another trip to Indiana for Thanksgiving, spending it with my husband’s family and then seeing my family in the time after.

I was able to swing by my college newsroom to say hello to a few people. It was great to see them–the newspaper looked fantastic. It also provided some much-needed closure for me. That chapter of my life is over, and it’s time to move on.


It seems as soon as we got back to town, it was time to head back to Indiana for Christmas. Actually, it was just about three weeks later–so soon!

We spent time with my husband’s family for awhile. His mother broke her leg, and we tried to help with chores and errands. We spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with my side of the family this year, and drove back on Christmas Day since my husband had to work on the 26th.

What a year of big change. Here’s to 2008!

Posted under Life | 2 Comments »

2 Responses to “The year that changed my life”

  1. “I’ve received quite a bit of criticism for not holding an outside job, and that hurts. Still, it’s what’s working best for my husband and me, and that’s what matters most.”

    Congratulations on doing what’s best for your new family! I’m sorry you have been criticized for it, but you will never be able to make everyone happy. Keep on doing what’s best for your family and then you will be happy!

  2. I didn’t realize your blog was so new, you have done and amazing job in such a shirt amount of time! Congrats on all the changes of last year and many belssings in the new year.

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