100 things that made my year (2022)

I wrote one of these in 2017 and enjoyed the process (and outcome!), so when I saw Austin Kleon’s this year, I decided to write one again. Maybe I’ll make it a yearly thing.

  1. Sean and Jacqueline’s wedding in Chicago in early January. We spent a week there before the wedding, which was our first time staying somewhere that wasn’t with family after we had Charlie, who was 5 months at the time. Catching up with lots of friends in person for the first time post-pandemic was cathartic.
  2. Participating in Genuary 2022. I learned some of the basic techniques of creating generative art.
  3. Charlie’s growth. From 5 months to 17 months is a magical time for babies. They go from not being able to crawl or eat solid foods to being able to run, feed themselves almost anything, and start saying words. It has been incredible watching him grow and helping him learn.
  4. Parental leave. Spending four months being the primary caretaker during the day for Charlie was a great learning experience and I really bonded with Charlie. He is my little buddy!
  5. Walks with Charlie. We took lots of walks in the woods, parks, and along the river. Trying to foster a love of being outside for him.
  6. Solo parenting. Amanda travels for work, so I’ve done many multi-night solo stretches with Charlie starting as early as six months. They are tiring, but it is great knowing that I can do it.
  7. Woodworking. Before I started looking through my photos to write this, I thought I hadn’t made anything in the shop this year, but it turns out that isn’t true. I made a dry vase, two ring holders, and some peg people for Charlie.
  8. Culinary experimentation. Tasso ham, pastrami, gumbo, red beans and rice, enfrijoladas, King Cake, cinnamon bread, chipotles, char siu, english muffins, biscuits, blueberry pie, sous vide egg bites, tomatillo salsa, chicken in the pizza oven, Salsa de Chile Morita, galettes, Maid Rites
  9. All the baby naps. He took naps on my daily during my parental leave, and now on weekends, days off, and when he is sick now that I’m back to work.
  10. Bedtime baby snuggles. We opted not to sleep train Charlie, which has been a good decision for us. Instead we rock him to sleep every night.
  11. Experiments with booze: Making orange bitters, orgeat, allspice dram, pineapple rum, coquito, the Clyde Common eggnog, batching cocktails like the Sneaky Peat and Black Christmas.
  12. Setting up a Digital Garden with WordPress and beginning to tend it.
  13. Witnessing Amanda as a mother. She is tender, loving, caring, and considered. She is a great mother to Charlie.
  14. Watching Amanda start a new job and grow into new roles and create her own opportunities.
  15. Attending a Jewish funeral and helping my friend fill in his father’s grave with shovels, in our suits.
  16. Swim lessons with Charlie. He loves splashing and learning to kick kick kick!
  17. DIA:Beacon with Charlie, especially hearing his young voice echo in the large Serra sculptures.
  18. Going to the NY State Bridge Authority to get a Historic Bridges of the Hudson Valley poster and some cool stickers.
  19. Backyard picnics. Amanda, Charlie, and I spent a lot of time outside on picnic blankets with snacks while Charlie was learning to crawl and walk.
  20. Making pizza on the porch. We got an Ooni, which was a great purchase. Making pizza at home is a fun activity, and a great thing to do when guests come over, too.
  21. Publishing a generative art project on fx(hash) – Pattern Plus Plus.
  22. Catching up with Chef Eric, an old friend from Irvington, who now lives in Croton, and works in the crypto space.
  23. Going to Amish Country and seeing the Amish ride electric bicycles. Then emailing Kevin Kelly about it and having him respond! KK has written about Amish Hackers, so I thought he would be interested.
  24. Helping Grandma make the Easter Cheese (mostly eggs and milk) this year, and eating some.
  25. Bill Strohm and Judy Alexander meeting Charlie. In many ways they were great mentors to me in high school and I kept in touch through college and afterward.
  26. Taking Amanda out in the guideboat. I finished it in 2021 about two weeks before Charlie was born, and Amanda was way too pregnant by then to go out.
  27. Finding morels in our backyard!
  28. Finding a great daycare for Charlie. He loves going and interacting with his friends, and he is learning new things there every week. We feel good with him being there while we work.
  29. Helping Jon with his timber framing project. It was a great learning experience.
  30. Our garden! Tomatoes, tomatillos, peas, kale, radishes, jalapenos, hungarian black peppers, okra, potatoes, dill, thyme, chives, sage, oregano, mint, nasturtium, calendula, borage, chamomile.
  31. Planting the seeds for the garden with Charlie, watering and checking on the plants with him, Charlie grabbing tomatoes right off the vine and eating them, Charlie helping us sort tomatoes at the end of the season.
  32. Experimenting with a new way to water the tomatoes: Wick irrigation.
  33. Going to see the Sol LeWitt prints gallery at Williams College
  34. Eating at the West Taghkanic Diner.
  35. The Baci Baby! To this day, Charlie is known as the Baci Baby at Pizzeria Baci, and some of the only non-pizza photos on their feed are of Charlie.
  36. Getting into making tiki drinks at home.
  37. Streets blocked off in downtown Peekskill on Fridays and Saturday evenings in the summer for restaurants and music.
  38. Charlie’s first birthday. It was small, but we were were with the people who helped us navigate the first year of Charlie’s life. It was special.
  39. Building Charlie a swingset, publishing the plans, then later building one for Miles (our friends’ son, close in age to Charlie)
  40. Pushing Charlie on that swingset multiple times a week as long as the weather was nice.
  41. Building more of a community – Meg and Jeremy, Erica and Trevor, Helen and Kolson, play dates with daycare parents
  42. Starting my weekly blogging habit and sticking with it.
  43. Crashing another team’s meetup in NYC to hang out with them.
  44. Prince Street Pizza. Spicy Pepperoni slice. A delicacy.
  45. Reading. I finished 26 books this year (less than previous years), and I started many more. Some standouts: Eager, The Amish, English Creek, Trust.
  46. Attending a team meetup in San Francisco for work.
  47. Visiting with old friends William and Jenna in Walnut Creek, CA. Meeting their youngest, Harrison, for the first time.
  48. Tiki drinks at Smuggler’s Cove, Pagan Idol, and Tonga Room.
  49. Visiting Alcatraz. The flies were awful.
  50. Visiting Muir Woods.
  51. Taking a new role as a lead of an engineering team at Automattic.
  52. Engaging more with the indie web by sending webmentions and using microformats.
  53. Attending a division meetup with 200 other Automatticians in Denver. Meeting most of Team51 for the first time.
  54. Seeing first-hand how a large company like Automattic responds to major security incidents.
  55. Ice cream at the Blue Pig.
  56. Dinner and walks in Cold Spring.
  57. Anniversary dinner with Amanda at The Bird & Bottle in Garrison.
  58. BLTs with garden tomatoes.
  59. Charlie learning to walk.
  60. Reading books to Charlie.
  61. Jon and Kristin’s wedding reception.
  62. Ice cream, swings, merry-go-round, and farm brewery day in Goshen.
  63. Restaurants with Charlie
  64. Volunteering to be the photographer for Charlie’s daycare Fall Festival
  65. Charlie learning animal noises. Cows, horses, chickens, turkeys, lions, dogs.
  66. Rossi & Sons in Poughkeepsie. Incredible sandwiches.
  67. Going to the Adirondacks for the first time and staying in the Whiteface Lodge in Lake Placid with my parents. Going in the hottub and heated pool in 30F weather was fun, as was seeing an old Adirondack guideboat. High Falls Gorge, milkweed and moody winter skies. Adirondack Mountain Club, maple stand, birch bark.
  68. Charlie’s bathtimes. He loves playing in the bath and is so happy!
  69. Charlie wanting to help us and be involved with whatever we are working on. He is so sweet and even though it takes longer, he is a good helper. It is about fostering that spirit, not maximizing efficiency.
  70. Saturday Morning Donuts, a semi-irregular toddler playdate.
  71. Charlie’s Mario halloween costume. Miles as Luigi, Belle as Princess Peach.
  72. Decorating and having friends over for Amanda’s birthday.
  73. Picking out a Christmas tree and Charlie helping us decorate it.
  74. Taking Charlie to the zoo. Bronx Zoo first, then Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.
  75. Charlie’s Cheers! Now an essential part of having any beverage.
  76. Seeing my art behind Matt at the State of the Word this year.
  77. Tumblr Important Internet checkmarks.
  78. Twexit. More people moving back to blogging and Mastodon.
  79. Bucking tradition and doing Thanksgiving ham.
  80. Charlie’s first Ikea trip.
  81. Learning things quickly with ChatGPT. Asking questions is a great way to learn!
  82. Finding the Sippin Santa tiki drink recipes.
  83. Playing in the snow with Charlie.
  84. Charlie playing with his cousin Nora (3 weeks older than him) at Christmas.
  85. Learning to play Pitch.
  86. Programming more and getting good feedback: Building CLI commands, custom blocks, and plugins that fetch content and turn them into posts.
  87. Going to the farmers market on Saturday mornings
  88. Verplanck Italian fest sausage. Great sausage and peppers sandwiches on what is almost always the hottest week of the year. But a fun local thing nonetheless.
  89. Breakfast and lunch dates with Amanda, something we’ve prioritized for some “us” time since having Charlie.
  90. The Hudson Valley’s sunsets.
  91. Charlie’s giggles, especially when we can see his 6 teeth.
  92. Charlie coming to my door to say Hi while I’m on calls. I usually only close my door when I’m on calls, but since it has panes of glass, he comes up and smiles at me and I melt every time.
  93. Indie games like Wordle, Worldle, and more. Fun diversions.
  94. At work I spearheaded a project where I figured out how to transition to a new method of connecting to our sites via SSH and implemented it. I learned a ton in the process!
  95. Visiting Erin and Tyler in Sewickley, PA, and meeting their son. Charlie had a great time meeting their dog, cats, and chickens, as well as running around their yard and putting mud in his hair.
  96. Sharing struggles more openly with friends and having them reciprocate and open up as well.
  97. Connecting with long-time friends on a different level now that we have children.
  98. Some shows we enjoyed: The new season of Westworld, House of Dragons, new season of Ozark, Billions, Wheel of Time. And of course Goncharov, Scorsese’s 1973 mafia film.
  99. Listening to some new music: Michael Kiwanuka, Slim Gaillard, Caspar Babypants.
  100. Nice, friendly, helpful neighbors. We are grateful to live in our neighborhood.

Likes, Bookmarks, and Reposts

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4 responses to “100 things that made my year (2022)”

  1. Tiffany Bridge Avatar

    @cagrimmett I almost spit out my Diet Coke when I got to Goncharov. So great to see others appreciating that film.

  2. Moodthy Alghorairi Avatar

    I love this post. It’s important to just appreciate the good moments. We also didn’t sleep train our toddler and it was a little tough at times, but it felt right for her, just based on who she is as a person. The garden picnics and home pizza sound divine!

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