After yet another unannounced hiatus, I’m finally back and in a new year no less. I know that I shouldn’t feel a need to exactly explain myself, so I’ll save the words, but just know that I’m finally in a better place now. After several days of finding myself not wanting to lift a muscle – potatoing precious hours away, I’ve finally come to a place that’s definitely more elevated than where I last left off.
Coming back, I feel the need to present a little year in review and highlight all of the moments this past year has brought, both dark and light. Moving onto a new chapter, it feels only right to close out the last one.
Let’s dive into some memorable milestones of 2016:
- January – Cruise. I actually documented my entire trip on a GoPro and created a small vlog because I’ve never been on a cruise before. I wanted something I can keep forever, plus I decided to try this vlogging business. I went with family and we left from NY to hit the Caribbean. Let me tell you, I got so, so sea sick. But I literally had the time of my life. From snorkeling with sea turtles to ATVing to exploring the islands. I couldn’t have asked for a better way to start off the year.
- February 28th. I remember this date so clearly because it was when Jennsemble was born. I remembered the thought process leading up to this day, tossing back ideas of creating a blog and just going for it. I remember having tons of doubts, the biggest surrounding what other people would think. I think the biggest push in all of this the never ending support I received from important people in my life. So a special thank you for making all of this possible.
- May – 5 Years. This May, like every other May, I turned a year older and so did my significant other. More importantly, this specific May marked our five years together. Believe it or not, we never travelled anywhere together so we spent our birthdays and anniversary in Philadelphia for a small getaway. It was a beautiful first of many to come and I’m so grateful to have someone who is so supportive and challenges me.
- July – New frands. I decided to get out of my shell and meet some new people. Blogging has seriously opened up my network of people and has allowed me to spread my social butterfly wings just a little more. I think the most memorable meeting was a dinner at Root & Bone with a bunch of strangers I met through Instagram. This meeting marked the seed of our growing friendship.
- August – Tiger Lilly. My son, Gunner, has been lonely for quite some time. Even though I know he loves us humans, I strongly believed he needed another furry companion to keep him sane. SO I added a baby girl to my furbaby family. She was intended to be his little sister, but they fell in love and became inseparable. They’re now husbun and wife. They melt my heart. (P.S. they’re bunnies in case anyone is wondering what the heck I’m talking about)
- September – NYFW. Another first of many! I attended several events during New York Fashion Week with my new frands (hey Ingrid & Eddie). It was a complete whirlwind of exhilaration and fun. I can’t wait for next year!
- December – Graduating. I couldn’t have ended 2016 on a better note than literally closing a chapter of my life by completing my undergraduate career. I’m done with school and classes, now it’s time to adult. I admit that I’m scared because I’m still uncertain for what I truly want to be, but I’m taking it step by step. Plus, I really miss school. I know, #nerd.
With all highlights, there have also been plenty of things that I’ve learned and have grown from. Here are a major few:
- Love Yourself. This has been the biggest lesson I’ve learned this past year. Discovering my self worth and accepting my all has been the hugest game changer in making me happier.
- Stop Caring What Others Think. For real. Once I put this past me, I just felt lighter. Like a weight has lifted. Opinions are important, but the one that matters most is yourself. There will always be haters and negative people who want to bring you down. Don’t let them.
- Let Go Of Things You Can’t Change. I’m the type of person that gets stuck on the past, persistently overthinking and overanalyzing. I’ve learned to stop stressing over things I can’t change and just learn to move forward, adapt, and improve.
- Pay Attention to Your Body. With this past year, I’ve had several episodes where my health was just not up to par. I’ve ignored it in the past, but it grew so bad to the point where I couldn’t function anymore. After many tests and medical visits, I got down to the source of the problem and have slowly learned to adjust to the news. I definitely have my off days, sometimes off weeks, but I’m hanging in there.
- Be Positive. Have a positive mind and spread kindness. There’s too little time in the world to focus on the bad and be negative. A brighter outlook will improve all aspects and bring you one step closer to happiness. Plus, it really doesn’t hurt. It heals.
- Take a Break When You Need One. I’m a workaholic, especially when I’m stressed. I pile so many things on my plate and definitely bite off more than I can chew. All of this breaks me and I get burned out. It’s so important to hit pause and recharge. Potato. It feels great.
- Be Creative. Have fun! Blogging is my outlet from everyday duties and a way to let my creative mind stretch it’s legs. Remind yourself why you started and push yourself to have fun with things you love. This even goes toward fashion. You never need brand names to dress appropriately. When you make something out of nothing, you are gold. Believe it or not, the “necklace” I’m wearing in these photos is actually a belt. Break the rules and make your own.
Even though I’m several days late, thank you so much 2016 for a wonderful year. I can only imagine what 2017 has in store for me.