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Monday, December 31, 2018

A Year in Review - 2018

I don't believe in resolutions, in setting unrealistic goals for a new year, a "new you".   What I do believe in is reflection, in taking a minute to look back before you look ahead.  There is something magical about really sitting down to reflect on the year you've had.   This post, that goes live at the end of every December is my chance to look at all the beautiful places I've been, reflect on all the awesome people I've met, celebrate the things I accomplished and take some time to acknowledge the things I have to work on.   Year in review 2017201620152014.

My tribe at the summit of Mount Hunger

If I had to pick one word to describe this year, it's "challenge".  This year challenged me in ways I would have never imagined.  It challenged me to grow, to move, to get out of my comfort zones, to make big decisions, to challenge the way I thought and the way I acted.  Plain and simple, this year was a challenge.  Some challenges I embraced head-on, with courage and stamina.  And other challenges were spent crying into my whiskey on my couch.  I was challenged emotionally with relationships, financially with buying this house and taking over all my horses bills, and physically with diet and exercise (and a little too much beer). 

Olive and I at Mt. Moriah in the Whites on our first backpacking trip

I learned to embrace some loneliness and waking up on the holidays alone.   I learned to budget as financial burdens increased.  I learned to take my health even more seriously, and held myself accountable for my actions.  This probably isn't the happy uplifting way to start my review you were imagining but man, transparency is my new love language.  I know right now I am in the middle of it (well, end of the year) and that I am going to look back in ten years and laugh.  Laugh at how life has changed and how many new challenges I have had to overcome, maybe even challenges that will make this year look like a cake walk.  

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Fast Friends and Hermit Thrush Brewery - Vermont

I used to joke "I have enough friends"

At the end of the day, I thought I did.  I'm lucky to have so many amazing humans I can call on in an instant - childhood friends, scuba diving friends, horse friends, running friends, family friends.  You name em, I've got em.  I wasn't really looking for more companions as my schedule spiraled with book clubs, girls nights, scuba Wednesdays, family dinners and post work happy hours.  But sometimes, you meet someone in the strangest of circumstances and an awesome individual strolls into your life.

Sometimes you don't know you needed this type of friend until they show up and take up much-needed space.  Someone you can truly be yourself around, talking about the hard shit and the good times, the struggles with family, the perils of dating and the dangers of falling in love.   Turns out, I didn't have enough friends after all or at least not the type of friend I needed at that point in time. 

Hiking Katahdin with friends 

I met R in the funniest of circumstances.  We actually went on a few to be exact.  But let me rewind a bit.  Before we went on these seven dates, before we had even met face to face we really didn't
 hit it off.  I thought R was a jerk and his pickup lines were stupid and well, he thought I seemed like a pretentious bitch (my words, not his).  First impressions were not good and it just wasn't the start of something good, don't you agree?  

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Here not There - Christmas in New York City

I have a love/hate relationship with New York City.  
I love that there is so much to do, so much to see, so many great restaurants to eat at and bars to drink at.   But I hate all the people, the insane crowds, and long lines to do just about anything anywhere.  

Grand Central decorated for the Holidays 

Last month's trip to New York City was my perfect type of city visit.  It was mid-week on a dreary rainy day which meant the city was practically empty.  Even then, as we woke up and threw on our rain coats and walked down the block to the coffee shop, waiting in a (relatively) short coffee line, he turned to me and said "Welcome to the waiting in line capital of the world".  He lived in the city and was certainly burnt out of city and it's crowds.  But for me this was a fun adventure, a spontaneous mid- week trip.  I sort of giggled and thought to myself, this isn't so bad.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Kingdom Trails - Mountain Biking - East Burke, VT 2018

2018 has been all about learning to do things on my own.  Buy a home, navigate holidays, make the bed, move furniture, walk the dog, cut your own Christmas tree.... *insert menial task here* and the list goes on and on.   I am no stranger to a solo hike or adventure and I describe myself as a very independent person.  But let's face it, there are some things you have to sort of re-learn to do alone.  

Mountain biking is something I always did with someone else or with a group.  Honestly, it was a hobby of Thatchers that I absolutely hated at first and eventually learned to love.  It was never something I did on my own, or something I sought out as a solo activity.   Something I wanted to tackle this fall even if it meant solo, was mountain biking at my favorite New England spot -  Kingdom Trails.  

I posted all about it last year, but if you don't feel like backreading just know its an amazing trail system loaded with tons of flowing non-technical trails through picturesque Vermont.  It's the kind of mountain biking I love and the type I haven't been able to find outside of Utah.  Even outside the awesome trail network, the entire town just has that laid back Vermont and bike town vibe - the Moab of the Northeast if you will,.  A weekend in East Burke was the fall trip I always looked forward to.