So I owe you all and myself a blog post. I have owed you one for a long time. Sometimes we wander and need a new beginning to remind us to get back on track. So here we are at the beginning of 2018. So what better time to get back on track, right?

I have told you all in the past that I am not really a resolution girl. Again, I know that I could stand to lose some weight, I could be more positive, drink more water etc., etc. Instead, I am taking this time to look back at 2017.

I will admit that there are aspects of this past year that scared the bejeezus out of me. I will be the first to tell you that the current state of politics has awoken a great deal of anxiety in me that I never knew I had. I am not getting into that. Instead there were some good things that happened in my life and I am trying to focus on those events.

I just turned 45 this past week. I am halfway through my 40’s. I am officially closer to 50 than 40. Sigh…I have more gray hair than I used to and I also have a great hairdresser. I find myself more reflective than I used to be. I am a little more cautious but also at times, I care less about what other people think. I wonder if that is normal. I find that rules are more important to me. I can’t tell if that is the OCD or being older. Nevertheless, here I am. I am more comfortable than I think I have ever been in my life. And most of the time I don’t feel middle-aged. Sure, in addition to the gray hair (that only briefly exist…) I have more fine lines near my eyes. And there are also more laugh lines, but those were worth every chuckle, snort and belly aching laugh that made them.

Over the course of the last week, I have found myself thinking about being more mindful. I suppose that this is a normal New Year thought. Am I as present as I should be? Probably not. But I can accept that I am a work in progress, even now. The thing is that there is still much in my little space in this world to be thankful for.

This past year I have gotten to see thirteen Broadway shows. I have gotten to take my niece, Kennedy, to a couple of shows and this makes me happier than I can explain. I saw Hamilton. I love Hamilton. I will see it again, this I promise. (Not a brag but seriously almost 9 months later and I am still floating from this experience). This has helped me reflect on art as a whole. And what exactly it gives back to the world. I could not be more thrilled that my husband indulges me in this love. He may endure it at times and he may grit his teeth through the money spent to renew our season tickets but I could not be more grateful that he shares this with me.

I was able to attend every one of my nieces’ field hockey games. I am sad at this since both of the girls are now in high school and this time in their (and my) life is dwindling. But it was worth the vacation days and every second of sweating and losing my voice. And I will support them both through soccer and basketball and track and whatever new endeavor they decide to take on.

I also welcomed my newest niece this past fall. I am an aunt for the ninth time. That is just crazy. I am out of baby practice but the little tree frog is pretty amazing.

Over the holidays I was luck enough to get to spend time with all 9 of my nieces and nephews. This is a rare occurrence but one that makes me happy nonetheless. They are all growing up too fast. But those crazy, sweet faces bring a smile to my face, as I type this. I am so incredibly lucky that most of the kids live close by but the Seattle four are not as easy to get some time with. So thank you to my brother-in-law for knowing how important it is to share your kids with us.

I found out that a dear friend of mine passed away recently. It has weighed heavy on my heart. I have thought about her and her family and how they are coping. I have wished that there was something that I could do for all of them. A bright light that has come from this has been reconnecting with another dear friend that was a huge part of my teenage years. I have been thinking about the impact on the world that we leave. And while my friend’s light is no longer shining directly on this planet, the memories of her and the light that she shared is still here. I have been thinking of how my life was a little better having called her a friend.

There are so many more things that have happened it is just impossible to narrow them down. And unfortunately, I will forget more than I would like to but it was all worth it. Every last experience.

Not all of the things that happened in this past year were great but I am learning to find positive in them. There always seems to be a lesson. And I think that is what has made me look back with fondness at 2017. Even in the dark parts, there is always some light to look forward to. No regrets or regerts if that applies. I feel a bit like Pollyanna in this, but sometimes that is the best way to reflect. I have been guilty of getting sucked into negativity and if there is anything that could closely resemble a resolution for me this is it. Be Positive.

So in my rambling, here we start 2018. I am another year older and hopefully a little wiser. I hope and what might be considered praying (not being terribly religious of a person…) that this year gives more understanding to the world. More tolerance, more love. I hope for the best for my family or at least the best of what the universe has in store. As I hope this for all of your reading along.

Happy New Year my friends. Thanks for sticking with me.