It’s been a heck of a year, friends. I spent some time going down memory lane today, and while reading many others’ bloggers recaps and top posts, I thought I’d share a few of my thoughts from this wonderful year that has done nothing but make me smile. Enjoy perusing photos from my year (and see last year’s here) + sorry in advance for the cheesy quotes.
Home Is Where The Heart Is
This was my first full year living in the beautiful city of Denver. I can’t complain about any aspect of it – living with Noah has been a blast and I have quickly found people to share my weekends with. I loved having more people visit this year, so I could share my favorite spots + grub with them while reconnecting (here’s my Denver to do list!). My job and this blog sometimes make weeks fly by at a time before I sit back and realize how comfortable I am in this city. Noah buying a house at the end of this year was the cherry (red, yep) on top and I have loved helping him make it a cozy space for us + our roommates moving in next month.
I am thankful that the transition to Denver that made me nervous in 2013 now makes me sad to consider other options for 2015 as I consider the next step in my career. Work has been meaningful + educational (read about my path to public health), yet I know there is a lot more in store for me and I will share more when I can.
Life is Either a Daring Adventure or Nothing
I have been so lucky this year in terms of travel – from spending a weekend with my aunt + friends in San Francisco/Berkeley (including a cooking class at the Culinary Institute in Napa!), traveling to Toronto with the excuse of a wedding just to explore a big beautiful city, and camping in Buena Vista, CO, celebrating the wedding of a close Denver friend.
Noah convinced me to tag a vacation in India onto our travels with my family to Portugal (I still think he’s crazy), and we ate + romped + explored our way through those two beautiful places I can’t stop thinking about. Finally, I ended the year by spending some much-needed relaxation time with family in Portland as my grandmother moved closer to us.
Everyday Is Another Chance To Change Your Life
I finally opened up to you all this year about my previous struggles with finding a fitness routine and maintaining healthy life balance, something that felt hard to talk about while sharing healthy recipes with you all through this blog. In many ways, opening up to friends + family has helped me find the things I love about moving my body + being active.
There have been little fitness victories along the way to keep me motivated: I climbed a 14000 foot mountain, completed the Manitou Springs Incline hike, and ran my first 5K. I am learning to push myself in a healthy way and I have never felt better! Everyone says that maintenance is the hardest part about weight loss, and I know that 2015 will challenge me in that way as I won’t see such drastic changes in my body as I did this year.
People Who Love To Eat Are Always The Best People
And finally, the reason why we are all here. Food! I have a food blog! Sometimes I forget and entertain you with travel + exercise + other musings, but it all comes down to food. 2014 was such a good year for this little space – not only has traffic increased (hi new readers!), but I have worked hard to network with other bloggers, set up sponsored posts, + brainstormed other ways to support the time I put into this space. Thanks to all of you who have shared my content through social media, email, or started following me after finding me on Foodgawker/TasteSpotting/Pinterest/a BuzzFeed article or another roundup!
I said this last year, but it is even more relevant this year – this internet community has become an incredible resource for me. While I used to think blogging was a shy way to hide behind a screen, I have met up with many fellow bloggers in real life (most of whom are now incredible friends!). I made business cards (#superbusinessgirl), and talking about my blog to strangers is a fun trial in self-confidence and self-promotion.
Tons of incredible recipes have come out of my kitchen this year – except for those ice cream sandwiches that broke my camera lens. I have been inspired by food around me, food from restaurants, and the fresh seasonal pickings at local markets and grocery stores. While I love home cooking and sharing my passion for it with you all, this year was also a great one for exploring restaurants (and no surprise, our favorite food was pho – our time in Vietnam in 2013 left us hungry for it always!).
Let’s take on 2015 together: a year for more friendships through listening + believing in one another, more pushing the comfort envelope in work + play, and more good food – always.
As a reminder, it’s the last day to commit to joining Back To Basics January. I’ll be sharing the kick off post tomorrow!