Monday, December 28, 2015

My 2015

Here we are, on the last days of the year. Were we not just waving hello to 2015? Scribbling down new goals and anticipating a fresh canvas, full of unknown adventures? Now we’re saying goodbye, laughing at all the goals we failed to keep past the first week of the year, and hoping for better this coming year.

Perhaps I didn’t quite do everything I had hoped to this year, but it’s been an amazing (if not a little wild) ride anyway. I think this year was something like riding in the back of a pickup truck. Where you hope each bump doesn’t send you flying out onto the rocky road, but the exhilaration of the ride and wind makes the uncomfortable bits worth it all the same.

JANUARY: Opened up the new year with some lazy days enjoying the last days of Christmas break, then went into a whirl of a weekend trip out of town immediately followed by another trip to my bestie’s house for a week. Then it was back to life and catching up on the normal things that got forgotten in the midst of the Christmas season and trips. At this point I was planning on rewriting Fallen Matter for my big writing project of the year but. . .plans changed.

FEBRUARY: The first day of February brought on some disappointment but also a strange sense of peace and new, exciting plans. Rooglewood Press announced the winners for their Five Enchanted Roses novella contest and my entry, Burning Thorns, was not amidst the winners. Oddly, I was okay with that. I realized I didn’t want BT to be a little novella. It could be so much more. So Fallen Matter got forgotten when it was clear BT wanted to be a novel. It just felt right. I got to work almost immediately planning out the novel. February was the month of plotting.

MARCH: In the midst of some busyness and fun, I officially started writing the Burning Thorns novel. Due to quite a few events though, not much got written.

APRIL: On the first of April I did something a little crazy. . . I, um, got braces on my teeth. Yeah, I’m in my 20s and am a brace face. And no, it was not an April Fool’s joke. They’re for real and look rather ridiculous. But it was something I’ve wanted to do for a long time and the orthodontist said I could really use them, so I thought, “Hey, two years of braces for a lifetime of healthy teeth? I could do that.” (I hate them, but I’m gritting my teeth and dealing with it. See what I did there?)
April brought in Easter which I always love! We still dye Easter eggs even though we’re basically a houseful of adults.
I did some more writing on Burning Thorns throughout the month, but not nearly as much as I should have. I couldn’t seem to quite get back into that writing groove.
Near the end of the month, we had a huge scare when one of my dearest friends was unexpectedly hospitalized with some serious health issues. She has always been one of the healthiest people I know, so it was a shock. Thankfully, she pulled through and is fine now. I cannot be more grateful to God for taking care of her.

MAY: The warm days of May spurred on a good deal of watching ABCs Once Upon a Time, reading, and general laziness. I was writing, but still just bits here and there. It was progress, but not much.
Avengers 2: Age of Ultron came out and a good friend and I went to see it. Obviously squealing ensued.
Much of the last bit of the month was spent getting my grandmother moved and settled from one apartment to another.
By the month’s end, I realized I wasn’t going to get much written unless I had something pushing me to it. So I had a plan. . .

JUNE: On June 1st I started a 30k goal for the month, my own little Camp NaNoWriMo. A few others I knew were also doing a Camp NaNo during June so it was the perfect time to really get those words in. Needless to say, much writing was spent in the month of June. (And there may also have been more Once Upon a Time marathoning between writing.)
Halfway through the month, I learned one of my friends was pregnant with her and her husband’s second child. Such joyful news!
Some family I had only ever met once before visited during the month and we had too much fun seeing them.
By the end of the month, I had a whole new 30k words on Burning Thorns and well on my way to the ending.

JULY: July exploded into a whirlwind of busyness. My main goal was to finish BT and catch up on the many, many things I had abandoned for writing in June. Instead my grandmother had surgery and came to our house to recover while I spent much time at her apartment dogsitting and keeping things in order there. Things quieted by the last half of the month and, on July 31st, I wrote “The End” to the first draft of the Burning Thorns novel.

AUGUST: With BT finished, I finally had more time for other things. I pored myself into catching up on emails and things the first couple weeks of August. By the second half of August, I was blissfully free and spent much time reading and watching Doctor Who, as one does. By the end of the month, I realized I rather missed writing and tried my hand at my first piece of flash fiction. I’ve been meaning to try more, it seems rather addicting.

SEPTEMBER: Since I had finished BT, I had no intentions of doing anything writerly until October when NaNoWriMo plotting began. As a result, September was spent with the family, fun romps through town, meeting with friends a time or two, and just general living. Then, on September 30th, I got a call from the owner of my favorite secondhand bookstore. Next thing I knew, I was going to my first job interview.

OCTOBER: On October 5th, I got another call and officially had my first job. (Let’s just say there was much squealing and jumping up and down.) My excitement dampened a little when I had my first car accident. Nothing major, just a blown out tire. Still, it was a little unnerving, especially since I started my new job the very next day. Not exactly what I wanted to happen before beginning a new job. But God took care of me and I made it to my first day of work on October 9th and had the best time. From there I was whisked into work and plotting More Black than Night for NaNoWriMo. I discovered working in your favorite bookstore is the best thing in the world (and getting a paycheck ain’t bad either). NaNo planning was rather slow and being stubborn, but by the end of the month I had a full outline and was ready for the insanity that is NaNo. I just. . .didn’t know how much insanity.

NOVEMBER: The first week of NaNo started out great and I was feeling optimistic. Then life exploded and, honestly, I think I’m still recovering from that second week of NaNo. Between work, sleeping away from home, health problems in the family, and trying to keep up with my wordcount, I was kind of ready to collapse. Things got 100x better in the third week and I fell back in love with my NaNo. On November 23rd, I shockingly fully finished More Black than Night at 76,700 words, my shortest novel to date.
The rest of the month was spent rejuvenating, nearly exploding from too much food on Thanksgiving, etc. etc. Went to see The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 and cried my eyes out. Ya know, things.

DECEMBER: Suddenly it was December! Which meant CHRISTMAS and fun December things! The month started out great when on the 1st my new laptop I had ordered came in. Yep, Larry, my first and only laptop I’ve had for over 8 years, was ready to retire. Now I have Lois, a small laptop that has a touchscreen and whose screen flips over and is shiiiiny. I loveth her! (What? You don’t name and love your laptops? Well, why not?)
The rest of the months was spent decorating for Christmas, falling in love with my job at the bookstore more and more, and general busyness. My plan for December was to watch movies and read for most of the month, instead I’ve spent it barely home. But that’s okay. I enjoy busy days, too. (Lets just not talk about how little I’ve read this year, okay? It’s embarrassing.) There has been a Christmas family gathering, much Christmas shopping, having a fantastic Christmas, all the Christmas things. And now. . .now saying goodbye to 2015.

Whew! It’s been an interesting year for sure. Getting braces, having car trouble, spontaneously landing my first job, the craziest NaNo of my life, writing two full novels—it’s been something! There were definitely things I wanted to do that didn’t get done (and things I didn’t that did. . .), but, overall, I’d say 2015 has been a wonderful year.

If you read all that nonsense, you deserve a cookie (or 12)! This probably bored you to tears. This post was more for me, a log if you will, to remember this year by. Of course, this only scratched the surface. Life really isn’t about the highlights, but those in between moments that can’t be put into words, but are so important. Some have been good, some have been pretty awful, but it’s my life and I’m so grateful to God for blessing me with it.

What’s in store for 2016? Well, that’s yet to be seen. But for now, I’ll be enjoying these last days of 2015.

What about you? What was some of your biggest 2015 highlights? Do tell! How was your year in general? I hope you had a beautiful one and the next will be even better. I’ll see you all in 2016!!


  1. What a fun idea, logging the highlights of every month! (I do something similar on my birthday each year--I read over the last year's worth of journal entries and then write a new one reflecting on that and looking ahead into the next year.)

    And it sounds like you've had quite the eventful 365 days! All the awesmazing writerly things, the fun friends/family times, getting a job (it's so good to hear that you're loving it that much!), etc. :D I didn't know you got braces, by the way! I had braces for two years (up until I was 16)... Yeah. Not the funnest thing ever, that's for sure. But definitely worth it. How are yours treating you?

    What a beautiful way of saying it: "Life really isn’t about the highlights, but those in between moments that can’t be put into words, but are so important." So true. We tend to be on the lookout for those big life events, when really our lives are defined much more by how we live those little moments, day to day. And those pile up into something special.

    Happy last few days of 2015! May 2016 be your brightest year yet! ^_^

    1. Oh, right! Katie's comment reminds me that YOU NAMED YOUR NEW COMPUTER LOIS. And you had Larry before. :D :D :D Let me hug you! Bryan Davis fans FTW!

    2. Oh, I love that idea with your journal. What a special thing to have! I'm thinking this may have to be a new tradition. It's a fun thing to have and relive each year with!

      It has been a good year. ^_^
      Yeeeah, I'm kind of embarrassed about the braces. But that's a pretty big part of this year, so I decided to add it. They're ridiculous looking, but I don't think I'll regret them once it's over with. Mine are treating me...okay. They're doing what they supposed to but they sure are a pain sometimes. Lol.

      I agree! Oswald Chambers talks a lot about how our life isn't about the mountain tops, but the mundane life in the valley. I've always loved how he put that, even if it's not always an easy thing to accept.

      SOMEONE WHO UNDERSTANDS. Larry and Lois, yep! It makes me so happy someone got the reference. Bryan Davis fans unite! *fistpump*

      Thank you, Tracey! I hope you have a wonderful 2016! <333

  2. You had your computer for EIGHT years?! Whoah. I'm not sure how yours last that long. :P Mine last three to four at the most... And then crash. And die. It's bothersome. -.-

    I think my greatest highlight was going to a writing conference. That was soooo much fun. ^.^

    1. LOL! The funny thing is no one really knows how it's lived that long. And it still works, just a little sluggish now. It's a MONSTER laptop though. My brother and I joke that it's a slightly portable desktop computer instead of a laptop. XD I was ready for something small and accessible. It's also this big gamer laptop though, so I guess that's why it's still kicking.

      Oh my goodness, a writing conference! That's my life dream. Someday, someday... How awesome you got to go to one!

  3. Wait a minute. Is it already almost 2016?? *darts to look at calendar* IT IS THERE ARE SERIOUSLY ONLY THREE MORE DAYS WHAT IS HAPPENING?!


    Yeaaah, it's kinda impossible for me to grasp that 2016 is just around the corner. (Three more days, people!) This year has been so...difficult. In fact, it's probably the most difficult year I've ever had. It's been full of car crashes (two within the same month), trips to the hospital (including my very first trip in an ambulance and my first surgery), and lots and LOTS of heartache and distress. I was seriously DONE with 2015 by the time July rolled around. But, despite all the trials, 2015 has been a huge learning experience. I've really learned to appreciate the little things and treasure all the AMAZING gifts that God has placed in my life. So yes, it was a tough journey, but I'm trusting in my Savior for lots of wonderful adventures in 2016!

    Annnyway, that's my year in a nutshell. We're seriously in the same boat as far as braces go. I got mine on St. Patrick's Day and will be wearing them for about the same length of time as you. (Kudos to you for getting them when you're an adult, by the way!) I'm so grateful to have come to known YOU and all my wonderful blogging buddies this year <333 One of my plans for the next year is to...drumroll...start my own blog!! So we'll see how that goes :)

    Enjoy the rest of 2015, Christine!!!


      *tries to breathe*

      Oh man, it breaks my heart to hear what a horrible year you've had! I'm so sorry! I completely understand about the health problems and heartache, we've had a lot of that these past few years ourselves. It's so hard, but God is good! As difficult as these years have been, I don't think I'd want to change them. They've really helped me grow and get closer and closer to God. I'm so glad you're leaning on Him. He is so good!

      That's funny we got our braces almost the same time! That'll be awesome if we get them off around the same time, too. Oh, what a glorious day that will be!

      I'm so grateful for you and all my dear internet pals as well! You are just the sweetest and make me smile with every comment.
      AAAAAHHHHH!!! Did you just say you're getting a BLOG?!?!? :D :D :D THIS MAKES ME SO HAPPY! I kid you not when I say I'm CONSTANTLY wishing you had a blog. You must get one!

      You too!! I so very hope your 2016 is much, much better and just a wonderful year!

  4. Seems like you did a lot of awesome things this year, and the fact that you remember most of them is impressive. I am trying to think of the things I did this year but it's a blank :D

    1. It has been a good year I think.

      Oh man, I never remember ANYTHING. I keep this one sentence journal thing, where I just write once sentence every day of something good that happened that day. So I simply went through the journal to see all of this year's highlights. Otherwise this post never would have happened. My memory is horrible!

      Hope you have a wonderful 2016, dear Skye! *hugs*

  5. This didn't bore me one bit, I read the whole thing :D.
    You work at a bookstore?! That's SO cool! That's the perfect place for any bookworm to work *nods*.
    Lois sounds like quite a cute little laptop, you should post a picture of her! Sadly, I haven't named my laptop yet ... and I've had it for four months ... my poor laptop :(.
    My biggest highlight of 2015 ... hmm ... well, I'm cheating and giving you one that happened three months before January 2015: my little sister, Elaina, was born. And I love 'er to bits :D.

    ~Savannah Perran

    1. Awww, I'm glad! ^_^
      I do! It's just a little secondhand bookstore owned by this sweet couple, so I'm the only employee, and it's too fun! I love it so much.
      I really love my new laptop. I guess I should share pics. Awww, you should name yours. *nods, nods*
      A new little sister! EEEEEE!!! That's so exciting! And I think that does count for 2015, since you got to have her for all the year. Elaina is a gorgeous name, too. I love it!

    2. Ooo, your job sounds SO awesome!
      My laptop is red with the letters HP on it, so my little sister told me to name it Harry Potter. I turned that name down :D.
      Aww, I'm glad you like Elaina's name! I'll have to tell her that :).

    3. I really love it. ^_^
      LOLZY. That's great! My new laptop is an HP one, too!
      D'awww, precious. Yes, I love it!

  6. I think the craziest thing that happened this year, is that my brother got married, and he's the first of the family, so it was really strange to us. But we have an awesome sister in law and they're expecting! It will be so weird yet awesome to be an Aunt! :D

    And then during Spring, I attended Master's School of Art, where I met tons of awesome people and learned so much! Not to mention some friends that we hadn't seen for three years came and stayed with us for a time. That was truly special.

    We've been so blessed this year, I really should make an account in my journal, similar to what you did, which I loved by the way. I didn't get bored at all. It's so cool to see what can happen in just one year!

    I named my laptop Stella. :D She's pretty awesome.

    1. Oh wow! That is crazy. We've yet to have a marriage between my siblings and I, so I can't even imagine how different that is. But so exciting! And a baby on the way? Aaahhh! You're going to be an aunt! I'm thrilled for you! :D

      How cool! It sounds like you had a really amazing year! So much awesome going on.

      Awww, thanks! So glad you enjoyed it. ^_^

      Stella! That is so cute. I love!

      Hope you have another great year!

  7. I loved reading about your year! As an ex-brace-face myself, I can tell you that you made the right decision! I know it's a lot of pain and irritation for a while, but it'll be more than worth it in the end. Let me know if you have any questions or problems!

    I'm really glad to hear that your friend was okay. I'm also glad to hear that you got a lot of writing done, despite the fact that things didn't exactly go according to plan. ;) And YESSS. Working at your favorite bookstore must be AWESOME. Dream job right there!

    I can't wait to see what 2016 brings us both! ♥

    1. D'awww, thank you!
      That makes me feel a lot better! Sometimes I wonder if I'm crazy getting braces, but I know once they're off I'll be glad. They are quite a pain though, yes. You are so nice. Thank you! *hugs*

      Every year brings new surprises for sure. But this one has been a good one.
      Working at the bookstore is SO much fun! I never thought I'd get a job like this. God is so good!

      Me too! Let's make it a grand one. Hope you're doing well. Love ya, girl! <3

  8. I love seeing your whole year laid out like this! :) AND YOU WROTE 2 NOVELS YOU'RE AMAZIIIING! I hope your new year will be a lovely and fantastic and marvelous and blessed and wordish and bookish next chapter of your life! Love you! ^_^ <3

    1. I never would have survived this crazy year without meh Celti! *huggles* I think crazy is a better term than amazing! :P But, again, I seriously doubt those two novels would have made it if not for my writing buddy. You kept me from not COMPLETELY losing my sanity during the process. You da best!

      THANK YOU! I hope you have the bestest year. Love you toooo! <333

  9. Wow you had a big year! So much happened! Congrats on all of your accomplishments. I'm lucky enough to not have to have braces. Yay. XD I hope 2016 is even better!

    1. It was a pretty full year! Thank you so much! ^_^ Lol. That's a blessing for sure. I cannot wait to get these silly things off.

      Yours too! <333


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