Most years I don’t make New Year’s resolutions, but this year, I’m not going to either.  Instead, to mark the end of one year and the beginning of another, here’s a list of 8 things I’m thankful for in 2013.  [And maybe later I’ll make a 4th of July resolution and have a Valentine’s Day egg hunt.]

1. Surviving my first year and a half of college.  I could say that after a rocky start it’s been smooth sailing, but I would be lying.  Every semester presents its own challenges, some of which start with M and end with -athematica.

2. Office hours.  My favorite place to wrangle answers out of the TAs enhance my knowledge of such subjects as Fourier series, the Schrodinger equation, and much more fun.  Seriously, though.  I’ve gotten a fair number of homework assignments done at office hours thanks to TAs and other students.

3. Camping.  Last summer my family went to Acadia National Park for vacation and camped for most of a week.  Not only do I voluntarily sleep on the ground, freeze, haul water, and get bug bites, but I also enjoy all of it.  Except maybe the bug bites.

4. Hiking.  Dirt, sweat, and more bugs.  What more could I ask for?

4b.  Also, trees and grass.  I was never more thrilled to be heading back to Ithaca than after visiting New York City over Thanksgiving weekend.

5. Hezekiah.  For those who haven’t been introduced, Hezekiah is my clarinet.  We’ve been through a lot together in the past seven or so years.  We’ve been to a districts concert, Madison Square Garden, NCAA playoff games, and a whole lot of other pep band events.  I’m glad we’ve gotten to experience so much together.

6. Peanut butter.  One of my favorite foods.

7. Spending Christmas with my family.  We didn’t have any “big” plans for Christmas day, so we went to see The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug in the theaters.  I really liked it, but I’m not a Tolkien purist.  The only thing I could do without is the 300 foot falls that don’t seem to hurt anybody.  Apparently gravity works differently in Middle Earth.

8. Family and friends.  Things tend to be much less terrible when you have fellow sufferers.

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