2014: A Year in Review

I know we are already seven days into 2015, and that more responsible bloggers had their 2014 blogposts up when it was still, you know, 2014, but what can I say? Sometimes it’s more fun to be lazy. Which, if you were wondering, was exactly how I spent the last few days of 2014: being lazy. After a marathon grading session and a 12-hour drive home (in which Rahul did most of the driving and I did the listening to Serial), a BREAK (in all caps) was exactly what I needed. I watched TV, ate lots (and lots) of food, enjoyed Christmas celebrations, read Wild, saw three movies (Night at the Museum, Unbroken, & Wild), and just generally did nothing responsible for the whole break. In fact, I shut my brain off so well that when I got back to the grind yesterday, I realized I hadn’t checked my work email in about a week. Huzzah!

Now that we are well into 2015, and I am missing Rahul (he returned to India to finish up his internships, after which he will back here FOREVER!), I want to take some time to reflect on 2014 and the great year that it was. All around, it was an AMAZING year, full of fun trips, exciting news, and personal victories. Find the highlights below:

2014: A Year in Review

1. The top of this list is, without question, that Rahul and I got ENGAGED IN PARIS. After talking about it for a long time, and anticipating when it would happen, Rahul surprised me by dropping to one knee and popping the question in front of the Eiffel Tower. It was the perfect moment.

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Celebrating our engagement with photos!

2. Speaking of Paris, visiting Paris added a new city to my travel log. We spent ten days wandering around this beautiful city, during which we mastered the art of eating delicious French cuisine (read=EVERYTHING), drinking red wine, and understanding one out of every seven words in French.

3. After working on my MFA in Fiction Writing for three years, I graduated and immediately became a MASTER WRITER. Just kidding about the latter part, but I did graduate. I didn’t walk, but my overwhelming feeling of accomplishment was achieved after my hour-long thesis review, in which I got to spend focused time with three accomplished writers and receive advice on the project I had worked on for a year and a half.

4. I moved out of the Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity house, which had been my home for three years. Working as their House Mom was one of my top favorite life experiences, and definitely something I never thought I would do. I was sad to move out of a house with 30 boys, where there was always someone to talk to, but also SO EXCITED to have my own apartment again, complete with real-sized closets, a KITCHEN, and actual carpet.

5. For the first time EVER, I started a Fall semester solely as an employee, and not a student/employee. I taught a total of five classes at three different colleges and, while I enjoyed each of them, I’m scaling down to four classes/two colleges in the spring. Additionally, I was able to stay at UMD as a lecturer, which is great, because I love teaching composition and I love the Terps!

6.  I ran two races in the spring, the Cherry Blossom 10-Miler and the Iron Girl Half Marathon, and beasted both of them! My 10-mile race time didn’t change much from the year before, but I upped my half-marathon time by about 16 minutes! This was a huge personal high for me. At my first half-marathon in 2011, I was determined that I wasn’t going to walk. In my mind, I didn’t train for months to walk. Well, of course, my knee started aching around mile 9, slowing me down considerably. If I taken about 5 minutes to walk to let it rest, I would have done much better–which is what I did this time! I walked during a few of the water stations, and once to take off my jacket, but that was enough to refresh me and push me through the race. Plus, I ran it with my friend Cassie, and my dad there supporting me, which was awesome.

7. In addition to visiting Paris, I saw a lot of cool places in America as well: New York City at Christmastime, the White House Garden Tour, New Orleans for a friend’s bachelorette, Minnesota to visit a bestie, and others I’m sure I’m forgetting. In addition, I saw many friends get married, start new jobs, graduate college or graduate school, and move to new places (including my sister, who is also a friend), which was exciting.

8. Rahul lived with me for a few months, which was AH-MAZING. I loved seeing his face everyday and finding fun things to do together on the weekend. My favorite? Our “Batman with Flowers” painting we created at a paint-and-wine class.

Duh Na Nuh Nuh Nuh Nuh Nuh Nuh BATMAN!

Duh Na Nuh Nuh Nuh Nuh Nuh Nuh BATMAN!

9. After being a TN resident for all my life, I officially became a MD resident. I expected it to feel more life-changing, but really it was just as simple as someone at the MVA taking my TN license and giving me a MD license in return.

10. I can’t think of a 10th event, but I’ll say that this year definitely marked the beginning of my transition from being a young adult to a full-fledged adult. Being employed, engaged, and having my own place to live has made me feel more like an adult than anything else. That doesn’t mean that I still won’t watch “Friends” on Netflix for hours on end, which is what I was just doing while working on this. But hey, in my defense, it’s snowy outside and I’m kind of sick.

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The furthest I’m traveling today is to the grocery store across the street to buy more cough medicine and tea.

I hope everyone had a successful and exciting 2014 as well. Here’s to 2015, or, as I like to call it, OUR WEDDING YEAR!

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