Goodbye, 2012. Hello, 2013!

2 Jan

Some might be saying “good riddance” to the year 2012. But instead, I kiss it goodbye gracefully and full of happiness. 2012 was a good year for me in many ways…here are my highlights:

Took up Salsa Dancing. For my 2011 new years celebration, my friend Riya and I went Salsa dancing, which was the first time for me. And I loved it! Throughout the year, I continued to dance at the salsa clubs, meeting new people and making friends, and actually becoming a pretty good salsa dancer! It’s definitely a hobby I’ll keep 🙂

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Me and Riya, getting ready to dance the night away

Earned my masters degree in communication. January 2011 marked the beginning of my graduate school career. 3 semesters later, I was finally done! The entire experience was a challenging one, but so rewarding. I learned a lot and through various means, made some close friends in the department, had the opportunity to teach Public Speaking courses for two semesters, and read more words and studied more theories than I ever had before. It was a challenge I thoroughly enjoyed.

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Graduation day: Me and Dr. B., one of the professors who I had to defend in front of – and he passed me!

Got a great internship. Part of my masters was an internship in the field that I want to start my career in. This led me to my Marketing Communications internship at Johnson Controls, Inc. I’ve learned so much in the short time I’ve been there, and have been able to work on so many different projects. I’ve even established myself as the resident editor and proofer of all written materials in my department (which is a good thing). I feel very lucky to be able to work there.

Found an awesome boyfriend. Working there has also led me to my boyfriend – a mutual co-worker of ours introduced us, which eventually led to a date, and then led to us being a couple. He’s so great (and a nerd like me!) and I couldn’t be happier 🙂

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Drew and I at our holiday company party.

Delved into baking and cupcakes. While I’ve always enjoyed baking, I really stepped it up in 2012. I became obsessed with making cupcakes of all sorts of flavors – from standard chocolate, to indulgent cream cheese buttercreams, to classy white wine cupcakes – I’ve been working on perfecting my baking, frosting, and decorating skills. I even made a few sales! I shall continue to bake and improve and make the boyfriend taste-test!

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Pumpkin spice cake with cream cheese buttercream.

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Lemon cake, chocolate cake, strawberry cake.

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Chocolate cake filled with strawberry jam, topped with strawberry buttercream.

 

Took up coffee drinking. Not really the best thing, per sy. But it’s yummy and helps me be awake when I start work at 7:30am each morning.

Moved into a new place, bought a new car, bought a new computer. Lots of new (and wallet-draining) stuff, but all for good reason. The old apartment was only for students, which I no longer am. The new place, and one new roommate, was a good change. Besides, we now have more space, and room to decorate! My old car, which lasted me for 7 years since I was 16, was on its death bed. So a new (well, it’s an ’06) car was necessary. And I love it! My old laptop, which lasted 5 years and lived in two countries, was also on its death bed. Which is why I’m writing this post from my new Macbook Pro…which is so awesome. Things most certainly are not everything, but definitely make it easier to operate life!

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Goodbye, 1996 Sable! You were good to me while you were mine.

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Hello, shiny new car!

 

Made many new and close friends. I think this happens every year, but this year I made some really close and lasting friendships, and in different circles of people too. I’ve also managed to maintain old friendships…I’m such a Girl Scout! “Make new friends, but keep the old.” And I’ve done exactly that!

Took on some health challenges, and succeeded. Finally, I have been continuously working on improving my health. Through exercise (unofficial Zumba expert), food, and lifestyle. I gave up red meat, and only sometimes eat poultry or fish. I learned to like more vegetables, eat plenty of fruits, and discovered alternative protein and heathy carb options. And I feel great because of it! The “Eat Clean Diet,” “Elf4Health,” and “Strike Sugar Challenge” all taught me much more about proper nutrition. Yum!

Now for the coming year. I was thinking about it earlier, and the tradition of New Years resolutions seems like it could be random. It’s really just another day. However, if looked at symbolically, it can be a renewal, a refresher, or for some a redo. I’d like to think that for me, the beginning of a new year is a way to reflect on the past, look forward into the future, and figure out what to do in the present. So here are some of my “resolutions” for 2013.

Lift weights 1-2 times per week. I don’t already do this, and have been “meaning” to do so for quite some time.

Incorporate more culture into my life. I watch tv, go to the movies, play in an orchestra, and read plenty. But that’s not enough – I want to incorporate more of that into my life, in an effort to always continue learning. I already got off to a good start with this yesterday, as I went to the Milwaukee Art Museum with a couple friends and debated what makes something “art.” It was fun! The boyfriend has also gotten me hooked on a new Pandora station, so now I have something else to listen to at work.

Keep up this blog! I dropped off the face of the blog earth this past month, but really will work at making this a more constant and consistent outlet. It’s a good way for me to document life, practice my writing, and keep up with the blog world. So far, I’m 2 for 2 as far as blog posts for the year!

Become a better cook and baker. Now that I’ve developed an obsession with baking, it’s time to perfect it. And cooking. My birthday and Christmas brought me many food-related gifts – cook books, utensils, and appliances. Time to put them to work!

Find a long-term job. As mentioned above, I work as an intern at Johnson Controls. However, like all internships, this one must come to an end, and soon (less than a month from now). So here’s to finding a full-time job to start up with once I leave my current one!

So there it is. And now that I’ve written it all for the world to see, I’ll have to stick to it! Thanks for holding me accountable, WordPress 🙂

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