Monday, December 31, 2012

The Best of 2012

I like to think every year is the new best year of my life, but I've come to find there are different ways to define the word "best." I think my freshman year was by far the happiest year of my life. Sophomore year was just as good. Junior year was the fullest, and I learned the most. Senior year, and to some extent 2012, I have dubbed the year of adventure.

Adventures aren't always planned. Adventures are sometimes unexpected. But things expected can be just as good.

January: EXPECTED - I got to celebrate my sister's 23rd birthday with her. We are so blessed to have lived in the same town for four years now.

February: EXPECTED - I went skiing for the first time in 5 years. This time I didn't get hit in the head with the ski lift.

April: UNEXPECTED - The publication committee hired me as the new executive editor of the yearbook. I hadn't planned to do that job, and I wasn't completely aware at that point what exactly it entailed. So far it has been a great experience.

May: EXPECTED - I watched some of my friends graduate from my University. Then instead of going home, I lived in town with my sister for a month. I was car-less, so I spent the month writing, walking, and looking—quite unsuccessfully, I might add—for a place that would hire me for just a month.

June Part 1: UNEXPECTED - I needed a job badly enough that I found a babysitting job online and babysat for a family of total strangers. They had three boys ages 4, 5, and 9. Now that was an interesting experience.

June Part 2: EXPECTED - I turned 21. That was weird, and I felt old.

July: UNEXPECTED - Never in my life would I have thought I'd end up traveling alone to England to work at the Olympics for a month. I got to travel with friends and see amazing sights, and I learned a great deal through my work.

August: SORTA EXPECTED - I returned to my University for my senior year of college. I had a new roommate, Alison. We had plenty of classes together before but didn't know each other that well. We became friends in the first week of school, and it's been a lot of fun getting to know her better. 

September: UNEXPECTED - One of my friends forwarded me an email about a directed study opportunity working with Professor Peter Kerr on his book called Adam Meets Eve: Foundations for Love to Last a Lifetime. The directed study included editing the book, marketing, public relations, and publishing. I applied even though I'm not a communication major, and Prof. Kerr hired me! I am stoked for next semester. (You can tell because I've already read the book more than twice.)

October: UNEXPECTED - One of my friends who graduated from my University several years ago asked me to edit a book he was writing about financial planning. Of course I agreed, and it became my first paid gig. Check out the book here.

November: UNEXPECTED - On January 14th, I wrote a blog post. When my dad read it, he said he thought I should make a book out of it. I disagreed but decided to try anyway. I wrote a few pages at a time and sent them to my dad. He seemed to like the story, so I kept writing. Soon the project practically took over my life, and over the summer, it became a 200-page monstrosity. However, usually when I write books, I get lost somewhere near the end and cannot decide how to end it. Then one day I had an epiphany, wrote the last chapter, and typed THE END after my first full-length novel! It was 253 pages. Since then, I have finished the second draft.

December Part 1: UNEXPECTED - I have always wanted to sing Handel's Messiah with a choir. This year I got to sing with it with over 90 people, a full orchestra, and a pipe organ. It was probably the coolest thing ever. That music is absolutely incredible, and it was such a blessing and a privilege to sing it. I was a little disappointed my parents couldn't come because they're too far away and had work. However, I was taken totally by surprise when not only my grandma from Texas but also my mom from New Jersey showed up to watch the performance. I was so happy.

December Part 2: UNEXPECTED - As I discussed in this post, my scooter broke, so this year I haven't used one much. My family went to hang out with family friends at their house about a week ago, and I told them about my scooter. To my surprise, they had a Razor scooter in their garage, and they gave it to me! It meant more to me than they might ever know.

Hey 2013. I dare you to be better.

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