2014: well that was a biggie
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.