Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Highlights of 2014

I've always thought the idea of designating a whole year as good or bad was silly. Surely too much happens in one year to make such a blanket statement.

But I can say without hesitation that 2014 was pretty phenomenal, and I am closing out December with a ton of gratitude.

In the spirit of "best of" lists, here's a look back at some of the highlights of the year.

First and foremost was starting a job in January that I absolutely love, at a company I have a lot of respect and appreciation for, with the best bosses I've ever worked with. When I was a teenager, I dreamed of becoming a professional writer but didn't think it was actually possible.
View from the observation deck of our office building. Once my manager and I had our one-on-one here. Best meeting ever.

Hanging out (intentionally) inside a crevasse

Catching crab from a canoe off Golden Gardens

Hanging out with sweet nieces and nephews
Climbing Mount Rainier and doing a headstand on the summit with crampons on
Catching a swarm of bees by myself
Spending time with my dad in Florida
Day hiking 18 miles in the Enchantments
Volunteering with the Beacon Food Forest and watching it produce food for the community

Seeing dear friends get married.
Backpacking by myself for a week in the Cascades

Volunteering at City Fruit's 4th annual Cider Taste, featuring multiple ciders from 10 of Washington state's artisan cideries
I am an ambassador for City Fruit, which is an awesome nonprofit that harvests excess fruit from trees around Seattle to donate to food banks. In November, I wrote Why I Donate my Time to City Fruit for their blog about the beginnings of my interest in agriculture and food justice.

Apart from all of those things, I'm hugely grateful for good friends. For the friends who are always there to talk; who make me laugh; who remember my nut allergy; who still send me mixed CDs; who will hike with me any time of year; who give me candles homemade with their own beeswax; who are up for impromptu pasta-making and bourbon-drinking; and who have given me rides in my carless year or let me borrow their car.

In 2015, I want to be as good of a friend to those people as they have been to me. I want to keep trying new things and saying yes, even when I don't know where it will lead me. I want to play outside even more, and read even more books, though I'm not sure how that balance will shake out.

I want to be the opposite of jaded, and full of hope for things to come. Happy New Year friends!


ElizaBeth said...

You are the very antithesis of jaded, my dear friend! May 2015 bring as much adventure and joy as 2014.

AmberAnda said...

Ah, thank you friend! There are definitely moments where I have to fight the jaded feeling, haha :) Happy New Year to you, and I can't wait to hang in 2015.