Then and now

A lot of people are doing decade posts, but I don’t think I will try to summarize (especially since I have this ongoing question as to when the end of a decade really is — I always think the decade really ENDS with 2010, not 2009, but I can see why people might think that way) the 0X decade. Instead I would compare the differences for me between 1999 and 2009. And even though I DO think the decade actually ends on Dec. 31, 2010, for me it works better to compare the X9 years, because, wow! how some things have changed.

Work

In 1999, I was finishing library school in August and started the lovely fun of looking for a job. Ironically, the job that I ended up getting was one that I applied for almost immediately in August, yet didn’t actually interview for until December.

In 2009, I am close to finishing my tenth year of that very job, and doing very well with it. I am in good shape financially as a result of that remarkably well-paying job.

Computer

1999: My computer is a hand-me-down from my parents, and only has about 4 GB of storage on the hard disk drive. I mostly use the computers at school, and then at my sister’s, for complex stuff, since my own is not able for much, and I don’t have anything beyond the bare minimum of software or Internet service at home. Which doesn’t mean I don’t wish for more, but I can’t afford it.

2009: I am enjoying my own laptop. It has 320 GB on the HDD, plus an external drive for backup. (And I want another one, because I believe in double backups.) I have a good bit of powerful software, and I truly enjoy using it. I’m getting more and more gadgetty as I grow older and more options appear. I have also bought the pieces to be able to rebuild myself a new desktop but using Linux as the OS. I mostly built my own once before, and I don’t want to lose the skills. Also, I’d really like to have a backup computer for when this laptop starts to suffer, plus I’d like a place to experiment with all open source software. And I do a lot of my stuff on the Internet.

House

1999: I had lived out the lease on my apartment, put a whole bunch in storage, and moved in to my sister’s house while I hunted for a job.

2009: I am living in my own house since June 2002. I’m spending quite a bit on it these days. I yearn to renovate the kitchen, but all things in their own time.

Hobbies

1999: At this point, I mostly did crossstitch, some sewing, and was struggling to learn knitting. I hadn’t yet learned how truly powerful my fiber crafts could be.

2009: I have expanded my hobbies considerably beyond what I was doing in 1999. I have now expanded my sewing, started in on quilting, moved past simple crossstitch to add in some embroidery, moved further back in the process from knitting to add in spinning, and then took a detour into weaving, which winds back into the sewing as well.

Family

1999: I am single and content. The youngest niece was born this year, and both siblings have declared themselves finished. Both parents are in good shape.

2009: I am still single and content. All the nieces and nephews are getting big — one’s in college! — and I try to visit regularly to keep up with what is going on in their lives, as well as my siblings and in-laws. We all have a summer vacation together every year, mostly a week at the beach and I am really looking forward to this coming year. Both parents are still in excellent shape, both retired and loving it.

Church

1999: I am still living in NC and worshiping with Brooks Ave. church. It’s a good place to be. I know that I will probably be leaving soon, as I apply for jobs, and leaving my church family will be one of the hard things.

2009: I’ve been at my church here in VA for a while, but there’s trouble in the air. During the course of the year, I finally decide that I have to leave my current congregation and move to another. I visit around a bit, but even as I consider a new one, I hold off on actually making a decision in order to give myself time to heal. I maintain connections with some dear friends at my old congregation, however, because I didn’t leave in anger, more a difference of opinion, and I refuse to cut all connections.

Books

1999: Books are vital to my life. I read mostly fiction, and have been trying to expand my horizons a bit with a book club, but I still read mostly genre fiction.

2009: Books continue to be vital to my life, and genre fiction is definitely still up there, but my horizons have expanded quite a bit more. I read a lot more nonfiction than before, especially in the area of fiber crafts, but also a lot more history as well.

Lots of changes in the last ten years, and more to come.

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