2015 was without a doubt one for the record books. It was full of moments that created memories to last a lifetime. I thought I would take a moment to share some of the highlights and look ahead to 2016. Before I do, I want to thank all of the readers who spend time visiting Pretty Little Pastimes and sending me your wonderful messages and comments. Cheers!
In 2015, I had the opportunity to explore new cities and also revisit some old favorites. From Hawaii to Maine and some amazing spots in-between, I took my domestic travel to new places and spaces. I also drove north and spent a lovely weekend with my sorority alumnae chapter in Montreal. Passport + pals + poutine = perfection!
2015 was also a year of challenge. After a long break, I made the leap and started a graduate school program. The thought of trading my guilty pleasure television binges for case studies and group projects was enough to make me ill, but I put my head down and completed the first two semesters of a challenging MBA program. Eye. on. the. prize.
And the most exciting thing to happen in my life during 2015 was … drumroll please … I got MARRIED! After six years of dating, moving across the country twice, and expanding our little family to four with the addition of our two pups, Alex and I exchanged vows in a lovely and intimate ceremony in Santa Barbara, California. It was the most perfect day of celebration and I was so honored to leave my days as a Miss behind for our new chapter as Mr. & Mrs.
Looking ahead to 2016, I have been reluctant to make any formal resolutions. But I have taken the time to think about where I hope this year takes me and the things I hope to accomplish. Here are a couple of those intentions:
Travel: Over the least two years I have made a true effort to spend more time traveling. Life gets busy and distractions come easy, so I have learned to plan ahead. I now start making plans for my next vacation right after I come back from a trip. Not only does this allow for more time to research and save, but it also helps fight the inevitable post-vacation blues. In 2016 we plan to explore Spain and Portugal and I can not wait!
Aside from international travel, I also want to travel to new areas of New England. If my spontaneous cross country moves have taught me anything, it is that you should explore the states and spaces around you, because you never know when an opportunity might come that will having you packing your boxes and relocating somewhere brand spankin’ new and many miles away.
Connect: Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, planning a wedding is stressful. And planning a wedding from 3,000 miles away is that much more challenging. However, I adored spending so much time with my friends this year while planning for our nuptials. From multiple trips back to California to my bachelorette party in New Orleans, I have seen many of my closest friends more in the last year that I have in the last six. After the wedding, I really got thinking that I need to make more of an effort to stay tightly connected with my friends and not let distance get in the way. Whether it is a quick trip or an actual phone call (do you even remember life before texting?), this year I want to remind my friends how much they mean to me.
Reflect: I don’t plan on starting a journal this year, but I do plan to hit the pause button more often. I am a victim of my own insistence on spreading myself too thin. Call me a glutton for punishment, but I always keep a lot on my plate. I am stubborn and even a weeee bit competitive, so I don’t like saying I can’t do something. But this can get me in trouble. I take on a heavy workload, school load, and even hold leadership positions in multiple volunteer capacities. On top of that I try to live an active lifestyle, travel, and spend time with my little family. Oh yea, and I like to blog.
One thing that 2015 taught me is that I need to slow down. I also need to be able to let the stress come and then let it go! … I’ll give you a minute to finishing singing the Frozen soundtrack … It’s okay to feel overwhelmed, but it’s also okay to accept that you are human. I need to stop, take a deep breath, reevaluate the magnitude of the situation (where does it really measure up in the bigger picture?), and constantly remember that I have one hell of a great life and need to keep smiling.
Push: My plan isn’t to lose weight, or to fit into my high school jeans. Instead I plan to continue to strive for a more healthy lifestyle. The wedding was really a wonderful motivation to fit in my workouts and resist too many sweet treats. Now that the wedding is over, I don’t want to slow down my progress. I won’t say that I was the thinnest I have ever been in my life standing at the alter, but I was certainly the strongest. To say, three decades into my life, that I am the strongest I have ever been is a great accomplishment and one that makes me feel very proud. This year I will work towards bringing down my average mile time, bringing up my weight resistance, and spending more time in the kitchen experimenting with healthy dishes. Recipes to come.
I am truly looking forward to seeing what 2016 brings and I am thrilled you are along for the ride!