There are five days left yet, but I can say now: 2010 has been the most extraordinary year of my life. 365 days ago, I could not have dreamed the places I would go, the adventures I would have, the things I would do, the races I would run, and, most of all, the people I would meet. I am amazed by how far I have come, and grateful to all the people that have helped me get here.

One year ago: I was “Decision Support Tech” at a small company, writing reports and monitoring six servers. I’d written a handful of blogs and attended a couple user group meetings. I had run two 5K races. I was just finishing my term as President of the Oshkosh Jaycees. I cooked and baked a lot.

Today: I am a Database Administrator at Kimberly Clark, working on hundreds of servers all over the world. I blog on my own site, I blog at, I have blogged for SQL University, I have not only attended but spoken at user groups and SQL Saturdays, and I am helping to lead the PASS WIT group. I have run almost 300 miles this year, including five 5Ks, a five-mile, and a 10K. For the Jaycees, I’ve chaired two events, including a first-year masquerade ball, collected school supplies, collected hats and mittens, and enjoyed every event. I am a much better cook and now I blog about that too.

A year can change so many things. For me, 2010 made me realize what I really love and want to focus on.

A year ago, I sat down and wrote a few goals for myself. I’ve been reviewing them every quarter. Here are my fourth quarter results.

WI SSUG meetings:

I attended the October meeting and listened to Ted Krueger (Twitter | Blog) speak. He gave an excellent presentation on query execution plans. Thanks Ted!

There was no meeting in November due to PASS Summit. In December, I didn’t attend because of the weather. Quite frankly, I’m very disappointed in the WI SSUG right now. I have to drive an hour and a half to make it to the meetings, and I’ve been weighing if it’s worth it for a few months. I’m hoping for positive changes in 2011.

Blog Once a Week:

Since October 1, I’ve posted 7 technical blogs. That’s not a lot. However, my main focus this quarter has been my new job. Moving to Kimberly Clark has been a huge change, with a tremendous amount to learn about their business, software, tools, and processes. I’ve also changed from working with, and thus writing primarily about, Reporting Services to being a production DBA, and am just beginning to shift my learning and writing focus.

The most exciting blogging news is that I have moved my tech blogs to this site,, and I’m really happy I’ve joined that community.


I read a lot of blogs, and I grab books I need to reference. I am working through MCTS 70-432 Exam Microsoft SQL Server 2008 – Implementation and Maintenance , in preparation for taking the exam in January. I also got a wonderful Christmas present from my friend Aaron Nelson (Twitter | Blog), and will be tackling Windows PowerShell in Action over the next few weeks. (Thanks Aaron!) It’s a lot harder for me to read a tech book cover-to-cover than, say, the Neil Gaiman book currently sitting on my coffee table.


On 10/10/10, I ran my first 10K (6.2 miles). That was a great race, and I’m proud of myself for making that distance. I also ran the St. Joe’s 5K on 1016, a 5 mile Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving, and the Race for the Light 5K on 124. That was a lot of running in 8 weeks! I set several personal bests during those races.

What’s amazing to me is that I ran 268.69 miles in 2010. Me, the girl who couldn’t run a quarter mile a year and a half ago. And I love it. I have good runs and bad runs and meh runs, but I love it. I have enjoyed sweating in the July heat, and sucking in the cold December air, and splashing through mud puddles in March, and crunching through leaf piles in October. I have big plans for my running shoes next year.


It was a busy three months for the Oshkosh Jaycees. We held our first masquerade ball, Oshquerade, which I chaired. It was a great event and a great learning experience. I collected hats & mittens for our partner elementary school. I also went on a visit to the school with Santa to hand out Christmas cookies. My six-year term on board of directors has come to an end, and wow, has it has been an incredible journey.


I almost forgot that I set a goal to make what I thought was one of the most difficult things I would ever try: Hollandaise sauce. But I went for it on the morning of Christmas Eve, and it was delicious! It wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be. Just keep the heat low and stir, stir, stir. I think my favorite recipe from this year is either chicken marsala or savory popcorn.

2010 has been extraordinary. But the best part, hands down, has been the people I’ve met. Through Jaycee events, SQL events, running, and new coworkers, I’ve met a lot of amazing people.

I don’t know what 2011 has in store for me, but I can’t wait to find out.