...I finished my first year of teaching and then started my second, and along the way realized it DOES get easier.
....I got to see Chicago and Michigan for the first time to witness true love united at a beautiful wedding and realized that I MUST go back sometime in the summer when I can enjoy the Great Lakes.
....I traveled to California and fufilled my dream to see a redwood. Traveling up the coast was truly an experience I can't even describe.
...I got to go muddin' up my driveway many times---and sliding down it now that there is snow.
....I ran my first 10K, turned 24, and went to a cousin's graduation (all in the same weekend!). I realized I can not only "run around" as my Grandma would say, but can actually RUN!
....I traveled to Wisconsin and then to New Mexico for a work experience that was entirely different from teaching. It made me realize how much I love teaching, and also that I have many options in life and am capable of many things.
----I hopped on a plane (not at LAX, but Phoenix!) and met my family in West Glacier National Park. Once again, I can not describe how beautiful this place was. I wish someone would pay me to travel and take pictures of God's creation :)
.....I went back to New Mexico, finished up working, then enjoyed a quick vacation in Tucson before heading back to ND to teach. I realized at this point, I am terrific at living out of a suitcase!
......I started my 2nd year of teaching (same room/same age) and got to experience the "River Life" while the weather was still nice. I realized you can find something wonderful and breathtaking about any place.
....I started my own photography business.
....I celebrated babies and weddings (and friendships along the way!) with all sorts of "showers!"
.....I celebrated holidays and everyday moments with family anywhere and everywhere around ND :) I realized family is always there for you and to savor those precious moments.
.....I played kickball, played volleyball, and worked at the after-school program in my "spare" time. I realized I don't really have much spare time!
MOST IMPORTANTLY: I reflect back on the year and think, man, it went SO fast, and then think, how blessed am I to have experienced SO much in a year?!? To have created SO many special memories? To have seen SO many beautiful places? To have spent time with SO many people near and dear to me?
ANSWER: VERY blessed. Thank-you to everyone that helped contribute to another wonderful year.
Happy New Year (and a belated Merry Christmas!)