XO-LP // Laura Palmer


Love Letters to a New Year.

2014: well that was a biggie

Dear 31,

I'm swaying to "Spanish Guitar" radio in our little house, back from trips to four different stores to snag all the ingredients for paella and just finished setting a table with our brand new dishes, tablecloth and platters. New Year's Eve at 31 is way different than it was at 27

This year, well it was a biggie. Like the biggest. 

There were two trips to Florida, a quick poolside vacation to Vegas, a return to Washington DC, several weekends on a stream and 11 straight days at the Iowa State Fair. I danced to the Strokes, Justin Timberlake, Fitz and the Tantrums, a whole bunch of bands at 80/35, the Head and the Heart and music at two different galas. We made a dance exit wearing trash bags as ponchos after the Cyclones won the Big 12 tournament (and people clapped for us.) I danced blind folded in the middle of the mutton busting while everyone in the stands was watching, thinking I was competing against Tracy, when really I was moonwalking alone.

Kate graduated grad school, Jane finished at Iowa and spent a summer in Des Moines. I went to a painting class with my sisters and mother and we painted canvases of a naked man. (seriously) 

My sister got married.

(and it was so, so incredible and beautiful and emotional. It was perfect.) 

Oh, and I quit my job, took another, and then left that to pursue my big time dream of being an illustrator and #goingsolo. I drew more than ever, I painted a giant basketball on a wall, I built a ladder and honored the Des Moines Fire Department, I worked with the CVB on my biggest project ever, and then did BIGGER projects for the holidays, local businesses and friends. I #mondaypunday-ed a lot. (like a lot). I felt thankful daily for Sara and Universal Printing

I drew a wine label, sold at 9 markets and now have my paper goods in 10 stores. I collaborated with other small business owners, worked on screen prints and giant canvases. I found mentors, new friends, so much inspiration and so much support in my city. I worked really hard. (And I feel like I can say that with pride.)

And somehow it worked out. And I love it. 

We launched an Art CSA through make\break. We WON AN AWARD (yay Cat, Scott and Dani, we did!) I kayaked for the first time (but not the last). I got to hug my darling, pregnant friend Chelsea and celebrate her (almost here) baby and the terrific mom she will be. I got to work with one of my best friends, Liz, on all kinds of really cool art installations and admire her drive, ambition and grace. I got to wear matching sweatshirts with Kiley. Often.

As I write it all out it seems like a dream. So many big, big days and big life changes. Kevin and I both with new jobs, planning a wedding and still riding the high from the #marryccini bliss. 

2015 you have big shoes to fill. 

Last year I wrote a ridiculous rap about the year ahead. But this year, I am only focused on one simple word: Gratitude

I am so thankful for the words, the wisdom, the challenges, joys and changes that 2014 brought our way. It was a year of confetti and gems and puns. Thanks for being such a big, big part of it. 

In 2015 I get married, I pay self-employment taxes and I will be grateful, daily.

Merry New Year, Interwebs. In 2015 may you feel grateful, energized and ready to face all the ups and downs the year tosses your way.