So, the majority of the past year of posts are all peppered with exclamations of how I can't believe it's been X amount of time since I blogged last, or how I can't get a grip on blogging because life is just going way too fast. There's a lot of truth to that. There's also a ton of truth to, "okay... now that I'm back from this trip, and I've seen these people and have this story to tell, I need to go type it up." Does blogging ever feel like a chore to you?
As naturally as writing has always come to me, I feel like the blogging trend has sucked and chopped me up like a blender. Do I keep posting the materialistic junk I want? Do I recount true life? How real can I be? Am I relevant? Where's the balance?
Where's the middle of the road? I don't have the bottom line answer. I know that I want to feel like this is less of a burden. The community I've been immersed in for the past several years is irreplaceable, but I have this tinge of guilt every time I realize just how neglected this little space is, when it, in some ways, has given me so much, and once, made me so fulfilled. I will say that I want to stay true to myself, as hokey as it may sound. So, you won't ever see ads splayed up here. I won't ever be a fashion blogger, nor will I be broadcasting tutorials here anytime in the near future. You will still get lots of my day-to-day life, lots of pictures of the things I love, some deep thoughts here and there, some materialistic nuggets--the ramblings from a 28-year-old girl. Because at the end of the day, that's who I am. Why try fit a mold? I know this blog will continue to evolve as I do, but for now, it's still going to be my little sanctuary. A corkboard of thoughts and inspiration, recounting life and connecting with all of you. Because that's what it's all about, yes?
Back to this crazy life I lead. The end of the year is always one of my most savored times... the holidays and my birthday are obvious reasons why, but just the finality of looking back and reminiscing about every trip, every laugh, every goal accomplished--or not--is just therapeutic. It's like December is the curtain call (ahem, theater nerd right here!).
And as such, January is the opening number. As bleak as it can be, post-holiday depression and weather aside, there really is something so beautifully inspiring about the promise of January and a new year.
So, as for 2013, here's what I gained...
- I fell in love with Nashville. Every day, I do it again. I say it a lot, I know, but I am just downright giddy, being able to experience life in this fabulous city. I catch myself smiling at highway signs boasting my new(-ish) town's name. This place was made for me. And there's something so supremely satisfying about knowing without a shadow of a doubt that you're exactly where you need to be.
- I satiated that wanderlust! Most of my ventures were back to the glorious, glorious motherland, but I also managed to make it to both Charleston, SC, and NYC. They were both fabulous vacations, and polar opposites. ST and I lazed away in the sunny Palmetto State this summer, while I pounded pavement to take in as much as possible with three sweet girlfriends over a handful of rainy, freezing days in the Big Apple.
- Home... I got to go home more than I imagined I would. I'm so grateful for that. I am over-the-moon for Nashville, but there's nothing like being home, surrounded by the people who know me best, driving through my hometown (that's hardly changed in 20 years), sleeping in the (guest) room my parents still refer to as mine. I will always have a place for Texas in my heart, to be sure, but that fact is greatly due to the fantastic niche of people I love there.
- I accomplished a lifelong desire and was finally baptized! I really love our church here, and never envisioned that I would feel at home in a church as large as ours. As disappointed as I had been in myself that the timing of baptism never worked out quite right, I'm completely confident it was all for a reason. I'm so grateful to have been baptized here at my home church.
- In until-now-undisclosed-news, I began the tedious process of leaving my current role as an event planner and transitioning to a role that will afford me much more interaction with constituents and to delve into communications and social media at Vanderbilt. I am sad to leave my current office of five, but really, really excited to take on this new role!! January 15th is my first day!
- I tirelessly followed my beloved Baylor Bears, and witnessed them repeatedly make history, week after week. Never been prouder to be a Bear!
- Cue the sapfest, but I really just fell more in love with my guy. Living together brought its obvious adjustments, but we really hit our stride this year and I haven't been this happy in a while. We got through our latest move together, and have tackled the endless demands of a big, old house together. I love living life with him. We know we've got a good thing going, and that makes my heart just swell.
- I like to think I spent a lot of quality time with my dear friends--girls I hardly knew just over a year ago. I'm thankful that Nashville has sucked them all into its haze too. ST and I host everyone quite a bit at home, and the nights where we're all here, eating everything in sight and laughing until we hurt are among my most cherished Nashville nights thus far. I love my girlfriends immensely.
- We saw lots, and lots, and lots of shows--fabulous bands, near and far--some whom I've loved forever, some whom I've discovered recently... which is exactly what Nashvillians should be doing. Just off the top of my head, we saw Casey James, Tristan Prettyman, Anya Marina, Alt-J, Lord Huron, Wild Feathers, Lumineers, John Mayer, Ben Rector, Matt Nathanson, The Weeks, Moon Taxi... and I'm 100% certain I'm leaving someone out. I can't tell you how lucky I feel... I don't want to live in a world without music.
- Lastly, while I maybe didn't get everything accomplished that I had talked about, I really balanced a lot. And I'm pretty proud of myself. From the typical 9-5 and nannying most every day after, to diving into junior league, getting involved in church, and still striving to be a presence in the lives of my boyfriend, my friends, my family... I wasn't perfect, but I'm proud of how well I managed this year.
So there you go. My 2013. I'll be back with my plans for 2014 soon, but until then, I just want to say that I encourage you to be grateful for your experiences of the past year. Don't look at the twelve months and think about how you really should've hit the gym more, or it would've been better if you had managed to escape to that vacation. Because at the end of the day, every experience--big and small--gave you some sort of perspective or insight that is irreplaceable. Forgive my sing-songy advice, but think about it.
Lots of love, cheers to 2014!