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Capturing moments. Sharing adventures.

Los Angeles native. Tennessee transplant. 

Happy Halfway of the Year!

Happy Halfway of the Year!

WE ARE HALFWAY THROUGH 2017! #howdidthishappen Technically, we're just under halfway. Either way, happy official halfway-there month! I'm just going to take a moment here for remembrance and reflection.

Remembrance as in that one time that I celebrated the new year. And the time I celebrated it again...

Way back when it was December 31st, 2016 I got to ring in the new year with Matt. We went to Chattanooga during the day, got some hot dogs and ice cream, and found out what we were rated on the love tester. (At first it said I was clammy! And then I did it a second time and it gave me passionate; Matt got hot ;) .) The main event was finally using the gift certificate I had from when April was here and we literally missed the boat (there's a time change an hour forward from Nashville to Chattanooga). The Southern Belle Riverboat cruise was still fun over a year later. Plus, it included dinner. We also enjoyed talking with the boat captain and watching the waterway. We had been officially engaged for three weeks at that point, and Matt would tell everyone we came up to, "We just got engaged!" I was kind of afraid they thought "just" meant like that day. But even so, it didn't really matter. It still counted.

It had been a long day and we were both pretty tired. Me especially. It was actually a huge struggle once we made our way back to Nashville to get motivated enough to go to the New Year's Eve party. And once we got there, our moods didn't improve too much until we talked it out seconds before the ball dropped. It was clutch timing.

There's no one else I would have rather been with than Matt and our other friends to bring in 2017! 

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The second new year celebration was the Chinese New Year. Amanda and I ventured over to Hillsboro Village where the Chinese New Year festival was going on. Coming from Los Angeles where there's a Chinatown, a Little Ethiopia, Koreatown and various other cultural enclaves, it's nice to celebrate and experience another culture again. 

Everything lined up so perfectly too. We got a solid parking space and walked out of the car to see the dragon coming down the street right in front of us! We went over to the event area and watched lion dances and a man wrote our names in Chinese. It was a lot of fun. 

It's the year of the rooster in case you didn't know, and I feel like that seems fitting since this year has been a wake up call for me in a lot of ways.

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chinese new year
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As far as reflection on those new year goals I made... I actually feel better than I thought I would about them. I honestly haven't looked at them in a couple months and overall it seems surprisingly like I'm on track to achieving the goals I set. Matt and I actually made ours together and broke them down under a couple categories:

Spiritual

One of our goals was going to the temple once a month. I missed going in February, but have been diligent since. Matt and I are focusing on going to the temple each week before we're married as well. 

Another goal was reading and finishing the book of Mormon again. Since Matt has been back from school, we haven't been great at reading together at night, but it just so happens that I started doing something called "Personal Progress" and one of the requirements is reading the whole Book of Mormon. So it's still my hope to finish it before we get married! (I've still got a long ways to go, but I'm hopeful.) Personal progress though has really kept me spiritually on track when there's been so many distractions, and I've learned SO MUCH from doing it. It's a program for young women in our church, and because I'm a convert and was baptized when I was 20, I missed out on programs like that. Attending a singles ward in Nashville with others that didn't get a chance to complete their Personal Progress, we all got together and started doing it. It's been amazing and so encouraging.

Health

Although I haven't done any yoga this year (one of my goals was to do yoga once a week), I have succeeded in consistently going to kickboxing at the YMCA, and doing stairs with my co-workers. I was also really excited to look at this and see that one of my goals was to lose 20 pounds and... I HAVE!! Since I started Weight Watchers last November, I have really tried to change my lifestyle and focus on being more accountable for what I eat. It has made an incredible difference. 

Relationship

As in #relationshipgoals ;)

We haven't kept up with the joint online journal we share like we wanted to, but we're pretty good about having a date night a week. We got off track when Matt came back home, but have started to purposefully do that again (it's easy now to just make plans with each other, but it's also nice to have someone responsible for thoughtfully putting time into spending time together). 

We've also kept up with the daily question book we use, and have read two marriage prep books #relationshipgoalsmet 

Education/Learning

Matt has successfully "gone to college" (haha - one of his goals). We're lagging on the other ones though — reading the Book of Mormon in Italian, taking a class together, keeping up with DuoLingo... 

Family

This one is focused on family history work, and I definitely need to put more of a focus into this because I haven't really done anything since January. 

We also put some goals into an adventure category — things we'd like to do this year — and job/life change goals, which is really just to keep each other informed and support the other. Doing well on that too :) 

It feels really good to take a step back and see that I am following through with the goals that I set. Sometimes, in the day to day, there are so many other goals that I've been setting and still need to get done that I feel a little down. Like keeping up with this blog for instance. And when large looming dates are coming — such as a wedding — I really want to start fresh and make this deadline for myself that all those projects that I've been meaning to do need to be done by then. When really, it doesn't. And I didn't even include planning a wedding into those goals, so doing that is basically bonus points for myself I think? I'll take it day by day and try to focus on the bigger picture. A little quote I try to keep with me is, "This day is all that matters. Just do what you can right now."

What kinds of things did you write for your goals? I hope you get a chance to reflect and adjust if necessary, but also focus on what you have accomplished and how far you've come.  

Chattanooga: Hiking Lula Lake Trail

Chattanooga: Hiking Lula Lake Trail

700 miles

700 miles