(Taking a walk in the snow in 2009.)
It’s about time for our late Holiday Card again…or maybe we should be more optimistic and say that we are just always going to send a New Years Card. So, HAPPY 2010!
James and I cannot believe how quickly this year has gone by. We finally feel settled in to our new home and we are really having fun decorating it. (Although we have yet to paint a single room!) The cats; Leo and Tank, have really started to feel settled as well, and actually seem to enjoy their car trips up to Connecticut to visit my parent’s house. (My mother now lovingly calls herself Grandma…and I’m still trying to get used to it.) [Thank you to my Mom and Dad who have been amazing this year by taking care of our cats when we had to suddenly leave and because they always let us take them to visit CT and play in their house and cottage - their favorite place on Earth!]
James has moved offices again now from Fairfield to Montville and won an award as a part of the Bayer Team for Best International Trial at the Clinical Exit Awards (an Industry event in London). It seems his position will include more travel in the New Year and I’m hoping I’ll be able to tag along every once and awhile. We shall see. He has also been enjoying playing both soccer and cricket and practicing yoga with work colleagues…along with picking-up a guitar and rocking out in our home at sporadic moments (I love it!).
I’ve started my official course of study at Parsons this fall and am going towards an AAS degree in Fashion Design while continuing to work full-time at The New School. 80% of the AAS program participants already have a BA/BS, so it’s filled with people who know this is what they want to do with their lives – truly inspiring – and are also working other jobs outside of fashion. I love it and it’s great to feel passionate about art again. I took Fashion Drawing I and Construction I: Sewing. My final projects were a 10-piece fashion illustration portfolio and a “please-be-perfectly-sewn” dress. (So much better than a paper or exam, in my mind!) I’ve also recently taken-up horseback riding again. I’ve just started learning how to jump for the first time and it is truly exhilarating!
In the New Year I will be continuing classes (by loading myself with four in the spring, including Italian!) and horseback riding as well as doing an Internship in Visual Display at Anthropologie in the summer! I will also continue to design and hand-sew jewelry for ChelCNYC.com as well as work on my Etsy Sites and Blog. Oh, and I crazily signed-up for a mini triathlon in September 2010 with Laura; one of James’ good friends from the UK who also happens to live in NJ. James is hoping to take some music lessons (most likely guitar) in Manhattan and getting back in to climbing and swimming again. He is also considering a Masters Program and is just beginning to look at his options.
We are both very excited for what 2010 may bring (besides our three year anniversary) and feel bittersweet about 2009 passing us by. We were very saddened by the loss of James’ brilliant father Rodney this year. His smile and great hugs will be deeply missed. On the other hand, we are thrilled by the welcoming of our nephew Harry James Whatton to James’ brother Mark and his wife Maria on May 18, 2009. (Sharing my own father’s birthday!) He is tall and thin and shows a tinge of red in his hair, which is of course adorable! James and I instantly fell in love with him this past year. And Mark and Maria are doing their best to train us in all things children (but we’re not ready yet!)! We think we may be making more than one trip to the UK from now on! ;)
My brother Eric and his wife Kelly Dean joined us for Thanksgiving this year in CT at our parent’s house and we had a brilliant time. We wish we could see more of them and we are hoping to plan a trip to Colorado to visit in the beginning of 2010. (Especially for some skiing and snowboarding!)
Please keep us in mind if you are traveling by or through Northern New Jersey and have a WONDERFUL NEW YEARS EVE CELEBRATION! (And please pass this on to anyone whom you think may want to read it!)
Sincerely (and with much love), Alex and James (Bill)