As this year winds down and the holidays demand more of my time, I have a feeling I may not be available to reflect on 2014 if I do not do so right now — so I have decided to post this a little bit early. This year has been one hell of a roller coaster ride with crazy lows and soaring highs. I cannot use my tagline enough: I am truly blessed to have loved, lost and gained so much!
January: I began the year with anticipation of continuing my running training by running at least one race every month. I started strong, partaking in the Niles Frigid 5k where the ice was plenty and the temperatures were under 0 degrees. I even had icicles hanging from my eyelashes when I crossed the finish line!
January also brought some of the best people I’ve ever met into my life: my two roommates. After hesitantly responding to a roommate ad on Facebook, I moved into our cozy apartment to bypass the two hour commute to school. This was a good decision for many reasons, but these girls are the biggest!
February: February was by far the hardest month of my whole life. You all know the story, I broke up with my best friend of eight years and my world shattered. I also began a new internship, focused on my 24 credits of study, and maintained two part-time jobs. I was beyond stressed; I was barely holding myself together. My greatest strength during that month were my parents, friends, and faith.
March: March brought about a break from the mayhem of life when I went on a road trip during Spring Break. After spending the night in Nashville, three of my best girls and myself continued to Florida where we jumped on a Bahamian cruise. I don’t know if I have ever had so much fun! We soaked up the sun, drank some martinis, ate way too much food, and danced every night away. I never wanted the vacation to end.
April: I achieved my greatest success to date in April: I graduated with my Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Business! After the toughest semester a person should ever have to handle, I was extremely proud of myself. To celebrate, my parents and I ventured to Traverse City, MI for a wine tasting weekend. I was in love.
May: I joined the professional working world in May when I began as assistant manager for Shadowland on Silver Beach. My responsibilities escalated quickly, and I became the events assistant manager as well. We managed 60 weddings and over 30 business and special events in 2014. I guess my time management during school really paid off!
June & July: The summer months kept me busy due to the wedding season. However, any free time I found was spent with friends. I met a lot of new people this summer, but I also built upon friendships I already had established. There is nothing better than being surrounded by people who care about you and who you care for back. (Somewhere along these two months I also decided to call off dating for awhile, and was all the more better.)
August: How can I ever forget this craziness? In August I jumped from 10,000 feet in the air to free fall over 2,000 feet and then coast to a stop in a random Michigan field. Why? Just to say I have!
September: Unlike most families, mine celebrates their Christmas during September. This is because my grandparents are snowbirds and migrate to Florida before the big Michigan freeze can occur. This year, the family hosted a family reunion. It was great to see my entire family, especially my cousins. We used to be close as children, always terrorizing my grandparent’s neighbors during the summers, but now we’re grown and running our own lives and starting our own families so time spent together is limited.
September also brought along the beginnings of my relationship to Army. On the same evening of the family reunion, we met on a blind date set up by our families. We clicked right away… and have been happy ever since.
October: I became old in October. An old 23-year-old. I also assisted in hosting the fourth annual breast cancer awareness fundraiser at Shadowland: Little Black Dress Party. The party was a huge hit, bring in the most donations to date. Free carousel rides, delicious hor d’evours, live music and dancing, the opportunity to dress up, and the best photo booth ever were all present to help make the night one never to forget.
November: I think I visited Chicago more in November than I have in any given year in the past. For Army’s birthday we ventured to the aquarium and my first Bull’s game, and on Black Friday a large group of us went yacht shopping (I was the buyer!) and to the Bean. There are plans to return to the city after Christmas as well, and I cannot wait!
December: I was offered a new job at the beginning of December, which left me with a tough decision. I chose to take the offer, and end my position at Shadowland come the beginning of the year. For a girl who loves everything to do with weddings, and more importantly loved the people she works with at Shadowland, this decision broke my heart. However, it is one that I believe is for the best and will open numerous doors in my future.
December consisted of a lot of holiday joy. An employee party at the winery ended with Army and me saying the three big words to one another. Presents for friends were crafted, spurring on my Pinterest addiction. Gifts for family were bought during a shopping trip with my cousins. The Hobbit came out, and J. K. Rowling released a number of new stories on Pottermore.
Next up: the actual Christmas celebrations, trip to Chicago, last day at Shadowland, and New Years Party.
It has been a full year and I cannot wait to see what 2015 brings to my life!