2016 has surprised me in so many ways. Back in January I certainly would not have thought I’d be writing this at my parents house in the U.K & working in Luxembourg in the new year. In fact I had absolutely no idea where i’d be- no direction, no big goal- for the first time in 23 years I had no plan. 2016, for this reason, is going to go down in history as one of those in between years- a building year. A year of growth and big change- some change heartbreaking and some quiet and internal. Despite all this rockiness and change, there was so.much.good. So much good. Here, I’m gonna shed light on it all
Best of Luna Bell
Luna had a big year between vet visits, trips to grandmas and chasing balls. She was spayed, got all her vaccines and declawed (I researched thoroughly and spent many hours in worry over it, its not the right decision for all kitties but it was for Luna B). She spent most of all that looking at me from her carrier like “I trust you, but why are we doing this again?”.Her little nose is so cute.
My favourite day with her however, had to be during a snow day. In the winter I was on a teaching placement that, to be truthful, had me quite emotionally drained. There was a chunk of time- 2 days I think- where we got calls that it was a snow day so I got to stay home. It was MUCH needed & Luna stayed with me all day, cooking and watching movies and catching up on lesson planning. She really is the best company.My favourite photo of her in 2016 has to be this one though. Always a distraction while I’m working, she’ll come sit on my lap and manoeuvre into the weirdest poses.She really is my best choice. When I decided to take this 6 month job, she was my first worry, my first thought. Originally I had wanted to fly her to the UK to stay with my parents but when that changed due to their impending move in 2017, she ended up staying with my grandma in Canada. This was my first month without her in her whole life and its been really hard for me, but I know 6 months will fly by and I’ll be back with her soon, figuring out our new plan. For now, she is happy as a clam at grandmas- spoiled with tuna everyday and stairs to bolt up and down and lots of love.
My favourite trip of 2016 hands down, without a doubt, was Kauai & Maui with Andrew’s family. Hawaii is just one of those places where I instantly feel good. I feel like I am where I’m supposed to be and like nothing else matters. Theres such a sense of peace and home I get when I’m there. I don’t know when and I don’t know how, but all my roads lead back to Hawaii- maybe not in 2017, but at some point(maybe for another ytt:) ). This particular trip can be summed up in one word: MAGIC. Everyday was absolutely spectacular-from rainbows to oceans to mountains to chickens to snorkeling with turtles and fish… magic. Magic. Magic.On the trip I learned that I need the ocean like I need oxygen- too long without it is not okay. I also learned that Andrew is a waaayyy better surfer than I am (although, I still felt very blue crush standing for the first time- then getting hit in the noggin with the board :p) and that yoga on a towel is just as good as yoga on a $100.00 yoga mat. I learned that you don’t really need a lot of material things if you are deeply happy- I felt I could have let go of everything I own and lived with just the clothes in my case. I learned there is more to life than worrying about whether you’ve made or are making the right or wrong choice.
Best Canada Moments
For most of the year I was home in Canada and there were lots of favourites. My little brother leaving home and going off to university for one!! It was a hard shift, being that my parents would still be in UK and he was coming back to live in Canada, but we all got through and he is doing wonderfully. I’m so proud of him and happy I got to see it all unfold.
I spent a lot of time this spring & summer on the waterfront in the town where I lived. A rocky beach was only a 10 minute walk from where I lived and there was a sand one about 40 minutes away by bus. These quiet moments were my favourite. Often, I’d go after work, having sat all day long needing some movement.
Field trip with my best girls is up there in the charts as well. Such a happy fun day all 4 of us together! The National was pretty amazing too.
Before my brother started school, my family came to the town I was living in for a vacation. We went to Wolfe Island and had such a wonderful time together. All 4 of us together is hard to come by sometimes so it was great to take it easy.
My best friends and I also went on a roadtrip to Vermont before left for Luxemboug where they threw me a ‘Happy Everything’ party. Complete with halloween, christmas, birthday, new years, valentines and cinco de mayo. Best. trip. ever.
2016 was the year I completed my first 200hr yoga teacher training. May 1st, graduation day, will forever be one of my most favourite days of my entire life. It was incredible. Full of love and harmony and emotion. I came home almost vibrating with energy. Yoga has been an important path for me for a long time and will continue to be.
Creative Self Study
One of my ‘resolutions’ for 2016 was to give myself more space for creative release. I’ve always loved art, I took art class all throughout high school and loved it immensely but never felt it was something to take seriously. Now i know that it is seriously something I need to allow time for in my life for my own wellness. Making that space was one of the best things I did for myself in 2016- it will continue on in 2017!
I got my first tattoo this year commemorating my scoliosis & spinal fusion surgery. I did it on a random day and couldn’t love it more than I do. I walked in, no hand to hold and no plan other than wanting a lotus. Afterwards there was such a feeling of freedom of control and respect for my body. It was a fantastic little experience.
Those are the big favourites of 2016! Of course I have a million and one other favourite moments- they’re smaller moments though, little snippets of love and generosity that are saved in my memory forever. These, however, are the big photographable moments of yoga, travel and teaching throughout 2016. I’ve loved looking through all my photos & videos from the year and hope you will with your own photos & videos!
All I can say now is THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU.