Reflecting on 2016

Before I move on and start outlining my hopes for 2017, let’s put this baby to bed properly!

In 2016…

  • I turned forty (finally, after waiting a whole forty years for this to happen). It’s strange to explain but, forty has always seemed like the perfect age to be, for me anyway. I have always expected to be more together, more substantial, more content at forty, I don’t know why, I just have. So has this happened? Well, believe it or not, actually, yes… in a way….sort of.
    Something changed within myself this year, it was a slow but tangible change that I felt deeply. It has maybe taken me longer than most, but turning forty forced me to accept adulthood, to be comfortable growing older. I actually do feel more relaxed, more reflective, less self conscious, and more content in my skin. Sounds cheesy, but I am liking it so far.
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  • I took my family to Paris.  What a landmark trip, The hot chocolate, the old apartments, the Seine, the relaxed mood of my husband. This is just the start of my travels with my family. The kids enjoyed Paris enormously and were little cultural sponges, and I realized that there are so many places that I want to share and explore with them. My husband and I are in talks about this Summer, so watch this space for more travels.

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    Lounging on the banks of the Seine
  • I got nostalgic meeting up with many old friends in London, and realized that we could pick up exactly where we left off. It’s been a tough old year for Gen-Xers, with the loss of so many formative role models in 2016, and my visit to the city I grew up in felt more poignant than ever. My love affair with the city has endured well, no matter how much it changes. Post London/Paris,  I have realized, that being in a city, any city, will lift me up when I’m down. So there will be a lot more Metro-ing in 2017img_2253
  • I started painting and drawing more. I plan to continue painting without a purpose through this year, hopefully I’ll get a little better at it. img_4406
  • I started voicing my opinion more. Nowadays, when I see a stranger with a great haircut, I tell them that they have a great haircut, and it makes them smile. I speak out about other, more worrying, things as well. If the 2016 elections have taught me anything at all, it is to be vocal about the injustices you see. Life is too short, and too important to not stick up for those who need your support.

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    Vienna VA
  • I fell off the wagon when it came to the gym, ate more, but somehow got back into my Yoga practice. I need to get back into shape, but I’m not freaking out about it. I guess that’s just the Yoga talking!
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    Giant macarons
  • I developed an obsession with books written by Neil Gaiman and Jessie Burton. Getting into a good book is my favorite thing in the whole, wide world, and I think I’ve found my favorite soulfood. Sigh.img_4912
  • I finally found the perfect location for my summer camp, and it was a huge, rollicking good time. The camp makes me realize how much I love teaching every year, but last year especially so. The bigger spaces, and extra help meant that we could be extra ambitious with our projects. Hence, my many Parkour related injuries.
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  • I got off my backside and visited more museums and galleries. Nothing like it for oiling those cogs in your brain. This has kept me motivated to keep producing work at a steady rate.

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    from the Bingata exhibition, The Textile Gallery, DC

 

Writing this list has helped me realize what I want to do more of in 2017. I want to teach more, paint more, travel more, reflect more, worry less, snack less, and engage with other people more. Whatever you want from 2017, I wish you the best in this New Year.
Now I’m off to clean out my workroom, whilst listening to the sonorous voice of Neil Gaiman. 😉

 

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