Twenty Twelve

Last year, I tried to summarize 2011 in a “By The Numbers” article. I thought I would do the same for 2012, but when I typed up the list it was underwhelming. An entire year is a lot more complex than the books I read or video games I played.

Instead of giving you numbers, I want to tell the story of the whole year, month-by-month. Brace yourself, it’s going to be a long post.

Side Note: It was harder than I thought to remember everything that happened in an entire year. To recall everything, Laura and I looked at our iPhoto library and Twitter history; if that’s not a sign of the times, I don’t know what is.

Neither of us can remember where we were for last New Year’s Eve; we might have had people over to our apartment? Later in January, I traveled to Virginia to visit CARFAX headquarters, and returned to Missouri just in time for our Employee Appreciation Party (also nicknamed “CARFAX Prom”).

In February one of my last freelance projects, Skip Tunes, was released on the Mac App Store and was well-received. Laura left her job at the non-profit Marine Parents, and we both travelled to California for the first time, for my on-site interview at Apple.

By March we were already making plans to move to California; we started packing things up around the apartment and tried to coordinate with all the vendors that were going to make our move possible. On the 30th, my co-workers had a going-away dinner for me at Flat Branch, and the 31st was my last day at CARFAX. That night, we had all our Columbia friends over to our apartment one last time.

April may have been the busiest month: the month we moved. For the first week, we visited our families in Cape Girardeau. Then we went back to Columbia to do last-minute packing on the 9th, had everything moved out on the 10th, flew to California on the 11th, went apartment hunting on the 12th, visited San Francisco that weekend, and my first day at Apple was that Monday. Let me tell you, that was a whirlwind week! Before the month was done, we had already been hiking at Big Basin and been to the beach at Santa Cruz. On the 30th, I turned 25 years old. Laura surprised me with a birthday slideshow my family and friends had made for me; you guys are the best.

In May we moved into our new apartment; it didn’t take long before we got our first IKEA furniture (a couch). The car was packed completely full; Laura even had to hold boxes in her lap to get everything to fit. Laura started her job at Henri Bendel. On the 20th there was a solar eclipse. From the 25th to 28th we were back in Missouri for our friends’ wedding, and to see our families.

It seems like June was dominated by WWDC. A big group of people we knew from Missouri were in town, so we made a lot of trips up to San Francisco to see them. We added another piece of IKEA furniture (a daybed, for guests). Kyle and Stephen came along with us to see the Golden Gate Bridge and Sausalito, we visited our friend Tom at Facebook headquarters, and bumped into Mark Zuckerberg while we were there.

We spent the 4th of July up in San Francisco, where it was so cold Laura had to buy a scarf: I’ve never been shivering on the Fourth before. Later in the month, Laura’s whole family came to visit for a week, so we took them to Ghirardelli Square and some other SF sights. The day after they left, my brother paid me a surprise visit, and stayed until the end of the month. We introduced Jordan to what’s probably our favorite restaurant in the universe, The Tonga Room.

In August Laura left Henri Bendel to start her new job as a manager at Snap Fitness. She had to go to Minnesota for training, so she spent her 24th birthday on the road.

In early September, we went up to San Francisco to see Samsara, and got to hear a short introduction from the filmmakers themselves. Laura and I ran (well, “ran”) in the Color Me Rad 5K together, and Laura ran in the Title Nine 9K. On the 20th, my parents came to visit, so we went up to San Francisco to see the Painted Ladies and drink at the Monk’s Kettle. Laura went to Las Vegas for a Snap conference, and actually won money at the casino!

Our first wedding anniversary was October 1st. We spent the weekend in wine country, and managed to not visit any wineries but did sneak into a few breweries (we still need to go back and actually have wine). In the middle of the month, Laura’s friend Nicole came to visit us. We attempted to go to Fleet Week up in San Francisco, but couldn’t handle the crowds, so we hung out with friends instead. On the 20th we went camping in Yosemite; it was Laura’s first camping trip, and it was even in bear country. We came back to civilization and hosted a Halloween party where we tried to dress up as Nathan and Chloe from Uncharted (I think we did a pretty good job).

Laura went back to Missouri for the first part of November, both for her sister’s birthday and a friend’s wedding. We upgraded from a double to a queen mattress and bed (IKEA loves us). We weren’t able to go back to Missouri for Thanksgiving, but our friend Scott introduced us to his circle of family friends and we spent the holiday with them; they were so kind to us and made us feel welcome. I know I have a lot to be thankful for.

December was another busy month: on the 1st we went to a Mad Men theme party, where I realized Laura can pull off 60s hair really well. We put up and decorated our Christmas tree, and visited a lot of friends here in California. Then we headed back East to Missouri for Christmas; we were both glad to spend some more time with our families. I got to see Cape’s new casino for the first time (and threw away $40 at the craps table). When we got back, I spent a weekend at Tahoe with some of the guys, and then we had a few people over for New Year’s at our apartment.

And that’s it: an entire year in just over 1000 words.

Justin Voss

Software Engineer

I spend my days creating software at Apple, and I occassionally write or make videos that I share here.

You can follow me on Twitter, or email me at

Other Recent Posts

Subscribe via Atom or JSON Feed.