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At the beginning of 2013, I chose the word joy to be my inspiration for the year. It’s not that I wasn’t happy, but I wasn’t paying attention to the things that continually bring me joy. Even though I didn’t keep up with it on the blog, it was something that I consciously decided to do (and think about) every day. I realized that the things that were bringing me joy weren’t things that I could necessarily control. Things like the way the sun shines on my face as I walked to class, the feeling after a long run (where you kind of want to die, but it hurts so good…), the feeling when the most important people in my life hug me and tell me how much I mean to them, the friends who truly understand me, the times where I just have to laugh at myself because I made a huge mess or fell down the stairs (three times at formal…), the times when I haven’t watered my plants in two weeks, yet are still somehow alive, the times when something I’m reading just clicks, and the times when I just seem to be having an off day only to realize that the purpose of that day is to make all the other ones look better.

When I chose that word, I didn’t realize the impact it would truly have on my life. I began to seek out the things that make me happy instead of letting them fall in my lap. I found joy in so many expected places, but also unexpected ones. I understand now how much gratitude and joy go hand-in-hand. Being thankful for what I have has made me value my life even more.

Similarly, I get so much joy from this blog. I could not be more excited about the growth I have seen here – not only in numbers but in myself. I have developed my voice and really made this more about what I want to write and how I want to write it. I went from little blips and how-to’s to actually writing, DIYs, poetry and photography. I am blessed to have a wide range of hobbies and I am so thrilled to celebrate a new year with this blog.

Here are my favorite 13 posts from 2013:

New Years

Stand for Freedom

Planting Succulents / Gardening

Fitz and the Tantrums, our new favorite band

Wineries

Find Your Voice: Part 1

Staycation Mini Book

Goals Mind Map

A Poem

Our Story (my favorite)

DIY Gatas

The Pinnacles

Picnic at the Big Tree

I have big plans for this coming year! I graduate and get to find a big girl job but I definitely plan on keeping up with the blog regularly. Tomorrow, you can read the word that I already have picked out for 2014! It took a while, but I’m so happy with it.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for reading.

Cheers to a wonderful 2014!

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