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The Firsts of the New Year

The late Mary Casey Forry wrote this column for publication on New Year’s Day 1987:

Dear Diary:

What an exhilarating day. So much fun doing things for the first time in the new year.

At 7:04 am, got out of bed for the first time and hurried downstairs to make first cup of tea of the new year. Was a little upset that I missed the first sunrise, but rationalized that I needed the extra sleep so that I could experience all the firsts with a rested mind and body.

At 7:07am, gave dog his first Milk Bones of the new year and sent him on his way to experience his own firsts, while at the same time getting my first breath of fresh morning air.

At 7:11am, had first cup of tea of new year and sat down with first morning paper.

At 7:30 am, had first shower of new year. Went upstairs and dressed for the first time and went back downstairs for second time of the new year. Husband and children still sleeping so sat down and watched the morning news for the first time and enjoyed the solitude. Uncovered the bird’s cage and listened to her squawk incessantly for the first time of the new year.

At 7:45 am, scanned the cable stations for something decent to watch and gleefully tuned out the Home Shopping Club, Jimmy Swaggart and Jim and Tammy Bakker for the first time of the new year.

At 8:00am, made myself second cup of tea of new year and went to back porch, sat down and toasted new year with plants.

At 9:45am, husband and children came downstairs for the first time. I helped husband prepare first hearty breakfast of new year, after which I loaded the dishes and other utensils into dishwasher for the first time.

At 10:15 am, went upstairs for the second time to see if children had tidied up their rooms. Came downstairs for the third time and announced for the first time of the new year that I wanted them to go up and make their beds. They said they would for the first time and continued to watch Rose Bowl Parade on television.

At 10:25 am, went upstairs for the third time to see if, indeed, children had done what I had asked. Came downstairs for the fourth time, and told them for the second time that I wanted them to go upstairs for the first time and clean their rooms. They told me for the second time that they would do so, and I, like a fool, believed them.

At 10:45, I asked them for the first time to go upstairs for the first time and get dressed for church. I went upstairs for the fourth time, and surveyed their rooms. Came downstairs for the fifth time and announced for the first time that this was the last time I was going to tell them to go clean those rooms.
At 11:45am, set off for church for the first time of the new year. Not a moment too soon.

At 12:45 pm, emerged from church for the first time, feeling renewed and relaxed for the first time since children got up.

At 1:15 pm, husband, children, their grandmother and I arrived at restaurant for annual New Year’s Day Dinner. Told children for the fourth time to stop needling one another. The previous warnings were during breakfast, in the car on the way to church, and in the car on the way to the restaurant.

At 3:00 pm, arrived back home with husband, children, and their grandmother. Husband sat down to watch first football game and to have first nap of new year. Son made first batch of chocolate chip cookies to tide him over the afternoon famine between lunch and dinner. Daughter assisted and for the first time of the new year, they did something peacefully together.

At 6:30pm, I made the first evening meal of the new year, after which I loaded the dishwasher for the second time and turned it on for the first time. When the cycle finished, I unloaded the dishwasher and put the dishes away for the first time of the new year.

At 8:30 pm, I completed a number of other firsts such as, watering plants, giving dog his evening meal, and listening while children played one of their Christmas games. Daughter accused son of cheating no less than six times, which son called her a baby and told her to shut up no less than seven.

At 8:45 pm, told them I had enough of their nonsense to last me through the new year, and to go upstairs and unmake their beds and get into them for the first time of the new year.