I turn 32 today, and since I’m blogging more, I’d like to kick off a tradition of writing birthday posts, a la

This past year was incredibly challenging, both at home and at work. With the stress of the pregnancy, a difficult period at work, and the uncertainty of the changing pandemic situation, the past year really ground me under its heel.

Thankfully, most of that is now behind me–Charlie is doing well and a joy to be around, my position at work has changed for the better, and I’m actively dealing with the stress and anxiety that cropped up over the past year. The pandemic is still here, but we are taking precautions and mostly getting on with our lives.

Right now I’m on paternity leave, which I’m thankful for. It has given me time to be with Charlie and space to slow down, reset, and recharge. I’m mostly feeling like myself again, though with a new facet of being a father. I’m getting new ideas, have more energy, and am getting the hang of caring for a baby. Things are trending up.

One thing in particular to call out: This time last year we were scared, anxious, and all we wanted was to meet and snuggle this baby. Now he is snoozing on my chest while I write this post and it is an incredible feeling.

I don’t know what the next year has in store, but here are the vectors I’d like to guide my place in it:

  • Spend as much quality time as I can with Amanda and Charlie. Help Charlie learn, grow, and explore the world.
  • Read less news and social media; read fewer contemporary books and more old books.
  • Make more art.
  • Spend more time outside, tending to the garden, going for walks in the woods, and paddling on the Hudson. Get out in all weather, not just “nice” days.
  • Make more in the workshop.
  • Make some improvements around the house and yard.
  • Continue blogging regularly.
  • Take part more in the local community in Peekskill

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