month in review: January ’13

January flew by despite being full of ups and downs. The weather was cold, then hot, then cold again, and my brain chemicals didn’t know how to react. I was really hard on myself for being lazy and depressed, but I came out of it and now I’m on an emotional upswing.

cardinal

This month, I (and sometimes Daniel):

  • attended two concerts at Mockingbird before it closed down
  • reached out to a band about joining them as a vocalist
  • contacted a local photographer to look into assistant opportunities
  • started a Fair Trade blog; I’m really proud of it
  • witnessed a friend’s marriage dissolve
  • went on several walks (one, two, three, four)
  • became obsessed with Trader Joe’s (that’s worn off a bit now)
  • attended a swing dance lesson and Sock Hop
  • took a lot of photos
  • survived a couple snow days
  • attended a game night
  • started modeling for my online shop
  • experienced record sales at my online shop
  • wrote three poems
  • finished decorating the library
  • got the mullet trimmed off my outgrown pixie cut
  • felt insignificant
  • felt proud
  • watched a lot of The Wire
  • wore many layers
  • was almost always cold
  • bought a digital scale for mailing orders from home
  • talked to some llamas
  • visited many thrift stores
  • nurtured new friendships

snow

How’d I do with my 4 Simple Goals?

  1. Grow my online business: things have been looking up. I use new bookkeeping software that helps me keep track of fees, purchases, and revenue.
  2. Put money in savings every month: I should be able to do this as soon as I deposit my paycheck.
  3. Buy fair trade/ second hand as often as possible: I think I’ve stuck to this.
  4. Travel to a new place: we visited an antique mall in Ruckersville; that kind of counts.

Hope you had a fun, productive first month of the year.

2012 in review

2012 was a long year.

drops on branch

In 2012, I:

  • quit fashion blogging.
  • opened Water Lily Thrift (and sold more than 50 items on etsy alone!)
  • quit the craft store where I worked as a framer for nearly a year.
  • got poison ivy and experienced ‘roid rage.
  • celebrated Daniel’s and my two year anniversary in St. Augustine.
  • considered many academic and career options.
  • sewed a lot of things, including curtains, pillows, skirts, and a dress.
  • cooked more than ever before (and kind of enjoyed it).
  • became passionate about fair trade and buying second hand.
  • converted almost all of my makeup to organic.
  • learned barista skills.
  • photographed my newlywed friends.
  • became a better photographer.
  • won a couple giveaways.
  • wrote a few poems I’m proud of.
  • went antiquing often.
  • read 25 books!
  • moved to Charlottesville.
  • felt lonely, became better friends with myself, and made awesome new friends.
  • hosted Thanksgiving.
  • visited the Shenandoah Valley.
  • toured Florida Caverns and Luray Caverns.
  • kayaked with Andrea.
  • wrote 252 blog posts.
  • bought some pretty good clothes.
  • went on a country road adventure (and crossed the FL-GA line) with my sister to photograph old barns.
  • played a lot of Barbies with the seven year old I babysat (I miss her).
  • went to Lowry Park Zoo.
  • attended two weddings and a high school graduation.
  • had my wedding featured on Ruche’s blog.
  • was featured in the company newsletter for great customer service.
  • took nearly 1,000 photos (maybe more).
  • dyed my hair blonde (not doing that again).
  • ate lots of wonderful Asian food.
  • photographed some grad school graduate friends.
  • photographed a baptism.
  • quit church and found a church I love.
  • took adult ballet classes.
  • expanded my graphic tee collection (narwhals and elephants and cats, oh my).
  • painted, scrapbooked, modpodged, and canvas-stretched.
  • became a pet mice and rat owner. Oh, rodents.
  • saw a Bluegrass legend in concert.
  • felt defeated and uncertain.
  • felt confident and content.
  • had Christmas with part of Daniel’s family.
  • visited Baltimore.
  • experienced snow for the first time in a long time.
  • experimented with varied depths of field.
  • had horrible and wonderful work experiences.
  • felt humbled by the love of companions and the beauty of the natural world.

It’s not often that I feel that a year carried its full weight in time. But this year held a lot of change of both the psychological and the physical sort. I changed jobs three times, moved several states away, blogged a lot, opened an online business, doubted myself, loved myself, read many books, practiced patience and self-control, hosted parties, cooked real food, ate at good restaurants, played with Barbies, went to bars, discussed personal struggle with great vulnerability, put on fronts, argued, cried, practiced compassion, found a church community, adopted causes, voted, felt stupid, felt brilliant, slept in, woke up early, put my foot in my mouth, and spoke eloquently.

I overheard a woman at a restaurant in Baltimore telling her friend that she was glad 2012 was over. I have no desire to redo any part of this tumultuous year but I’m thankful for how the experience, transition, and room for contemplation have changed me. I feel that I, and my life situation, have changed for the better this year. There’s no reason things won’t keep getting better. Thanks for everything, 2012: ¬†the chaos and the calm, the tears and the laughter, the boredom and the¬†ecstasy.