Wednesday, December 28, 2016

A 2016 Reflection

It's so hard to believe that another year has come and gone. I feel like each year goes by faster and faster. Overall,  2016 was a pretty good year for me. I did, however, experience a few struggles toward the end that ended up teaching me a lot about myself. Reflecting is something that I find myself doing often, so I thought I would share my reflection of 2016 with you today. 

2016 started out with some uncertainty for me. I was in my third year of teaching and really considering looking for a job that was closer to home and in my own community. I had been commuting 45 minutes to work for 3 years and with wanting to start a family in the next few years, I knew I needed to make a change. I'll admit, I was SO nervous about many different things involved in getting a new job. The preparation (and for anyone who has ever applied for a teaching job, you know the amount of work that goes in to preparing your application), the interview process, leaving a school I came to know and love, starting all over again, leaving my amazing teaching team that had become my family, etc. After talking with many encouraging people (Michele, Amy, Emily, Lesley, Shana, Jen- thank you all for your help and support) I took the plunge and applied for two different teaching jobs closer to home. 

Within a month, I received a call. A few months and three interviews later, I was offered a job as a Second Grade Teacher. After that last interview, I remember feeling like all of my worries and fears had diminished. I knew I would be joining a great team, in a great school district, and in a community that I grew up in. 

The Summer of 2016 was an unforgettable one. We traveled to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina for our first family vacation with my husband's side of the family. This is one experience I will never forget. Let's just say what you see on the internet is not always what you get and we learned that real quick with our beach house...

Upon pulling up to the house we noticed that the house was already going to be a complete disaster. There was a trash bag on the porch, beer cans all around the patio, missing pieces of siding, and that was only the outside. After having to kick the front door to open it, we walked into a complete mess. Clogged sinks and toilets, hair caked to the floor, stained furniture, beer cans, unmade beds, dirty floors, more beer cans, I could seriously go on and on. I am not very picky when it comes to staying overnight somewhere and this place did look immaculate online.  However, in person, this house was disgusting

After the sweet housekeepers arrived, we found out that the house we were placed in was considered the "party house". The house that "no matter how much this house is cleaned, it will never be clean." Yeah... that was our breaking point. A few phone calls later (and a few threats to take our money back and leave) we were placed in a GORGEOUS 6 bedroom, private pool, ocean front home. It's funny now when we look back at the experience. But I think God had a plan and we have him to thank for leading us to a beautiful home where we could actually enjoy the week as a family. 

I also had my first experience with visiting a few of the New England states as we traveled to New Hampshire to visit my Aunt Ginger, Uncle Joe, and cousin, John. This was another experience that I will never forget. We had such a carefree week enjoying time together as family. We traveled to Mount Washington, visited the crystal clear waters of Salisburry Beach in Massachusetts, explored the cute town of Barrington, New Hampshire, and best of all, enjoyed time as a family at my Aunt and Uncle's beautiful home. We enjoyed every meal outside on the patio and ended the night by the fire eating leftovers and s'mores! 

Another exciting part of 2016 was that my husband and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary. I feel like I say this all the time, but God truly blessed me with a great man. We challenge each other every day and he may roll his eyes when I mention starting a new project (we are currently doing a shiplap wall in our bedroom and I swear he wants to kill me). But, one thing is for sure, the love we have for each other is truly one of a kind. I can't wait to see what 2017 has in store for us my love! <3 

And finally, at the end of 2016  I started this little blog. As you know, starting this blog was not an easy thing for me. I worried too much about the "what ifs" and judgement. But, this little blog has given me so much. I have learned to rely more on faith to guide me rather than my own worries and concerns. I have learned sometimes you have to struggle to find your peace. This blog has become my creative outlet and I am so thankful that I found it. It has helped me find that balance and peace in my life that I so desperately needed. I am so excited for what is to come of this blog in 2017! 

I want to challenge you to find that outlet that helps YOU find peace. Whether it be journaling, drawing, crafting, exercising, singing, selling/doing make-up or skincare, etc. Find it and hold on to it. Don't let fear or judgement hold you back. Finding balance and peace was my goal for the end of 2016 and you can bet that it will be my goal for 2017 as well.

I hope 2016 left you with many great memories and I hope 2017 blesses you with many new ones!