My 30th year is one I am happy to say goodbye to. It was a hard one. While I finished off an amazing internship, outside of that it was a truly tough year. (You can read about all the stuff I had to let go of here.) If you’ve watched any major news outlet over the past 6 months, you’ll find that California in it’s fragile climate has seen a crazy amount of wildfire and it affected Redding (either in imminent danger or with unhealthy smoke) for most of the summer. Even now, where I used to look over beautiful mountains cloaked with trees, they remain barren and what many around here have termed “Mordor”. Prior to the late summer, I encountered a large job transition and had earlier in the year been forced to relocate my home due to violence. Living without roommates, I’ve faced much of this flying solo. Yes I have a beautiful community. They’re stunning and truly the best. However, when it’s the middle of a work week and you all have to evacuate every person is processing through it and trying to cope as best as they can. It’s kind of every man or woman for themselves at that point. More than anything over the past year, I’ve learned so very much. With every challenge has come inherent levels of difficulty, but I’ve come out better, stronger, and more dedicated before.
This past year was a defining one for me. 12 months ago, I never thought life would look quite the way it does. I’ve discovered that home is far more sacred than I once thought. For me, it has truly become a sanctuary. It is the place where I create, where I’ve found quiet, and cultivated peace unlike ever before. I’m enjoying my season of living alone and find the quiet my days are longing for as I’m greeted by the door. It seems that with every season, there’s been a continual rebuilding. It’s one where I’m reminded both of the beauty of a space and what I place into it. A place for gathering, for memories, for littles, and for giving big hugs to whoever shows up. For dinners with friends and neighbors. For collaboration with creatives and where meetings happen over the kitchen table. While I never would have chosen this spot, with it have come some of the best gifts.
Building life around moments that matter.
Over the past year, I’ve focused on building my business with sustainable income, over delivering to clients, and going above and beyond every time. More than anything, it’s been loads of work. However, can I tell you all something? I’m ready to reclaim my life and invest in things that cultivated joy again. I love my job, what I do, and the solutions I bring to others. However, it’s easy for me to fill my schedule with 18 hour work days with no end in site. In my 31st year, I’m realizing that I’m craving relationships and intentionality with community. I long for my girls nights, neighbor dinners, teaching a local class, and serving my community. These moments are highlights of my week. I’m looking forward to creating margin specifically for the purpose of creating without demand or purpose, but solely for delight.
Adventure is in my blood.
Prior to moving to California I would go backpacking or camping with friends once a month. At the bare minimum, we would go trail running together through a local park once a week. It was amazing and needed to escape the daily grind. What does this look like now? After last summer, I’m making a point to find out (much of our natural recreation areas nearby were affected by wildfire) and am looking forward to finding hidden places and untouched spots for kayaking, hiking, and enjoying adventures (both locally, regionally, and internationally). While it won’t always look like backpacking or camping, I hope these become apart of my rhythm as well. (I might even try snowshoeing or Nordic skiing this winter as well.)
Travel and getting out of Redding.
After living in Redding for 5 years, I’m starting to get the itch to travel more. It’s the first time in 3 years I haven’t been in school, allowing for more remote work than subsequent years. In 2019, I’m planning on heading back east for a visit with friends and family and internationally as I head to Paris in the Spring. There’s still a few trips I’m thinking about for the rest of the year, but haven’t picked out the locations quite yet. With incredibly hot summers, I’m planning on a longer travel season in the summertime.
Rediscovering my why
My why has become buried. Over the past 5 years, I’ve found that the blogging world has changed at a rapid rate. Much of the past 3 years, has been focused on schooling and the blog hasn’t been able to catch up. This is the year where I’m bringing the core message of Glisten and Grace back to the forefront. Why does the blog exist? How can I serve you better? If you and I were sitting at a favorite spot, cup of coffee in hand, and we were having a heart to heart, I want it to be the same experience you would find here. More than business advice or a great recipe, I’d want you to walk away from the conversation ready to dream again, to launch something amazing, feeling believed in, and ridiculously loved. I want you to know that your voice matters, that your beauty is stunning, and that every dream in your heart is worth running after. At the beginning of every year, I take a few weeks to reflect, plan, and strategize what the space will look like for the next year. Can I tell you something? There’s something that’s been missing at the forefront of the blog for a while. It’s simply YOU. Your voice, your stories, and your heart. There are some phenomenal projects we’re launching and we can’t wait to share them with you later this month!
Building in Redding again.
In every season, my business has evolved. Some have made a large splash, providing physical locations and something for people to rally behind. Over the past two years, I’ve chosen to scale back and embrace the season in front of me. This year, I’m focused on cultivating the creative heartbeat of Redding again. It will look far less official, but is going to be equally amazing. I’m looking at local partnerships and highlighting this city unlike ever before. Just in the past year alone, can we talk about all the economic growth that has happened in this city??? There’s been makers markets, two murals released, a food truck park, new pubs and restaurants opened, and art shows. The city I call home? Yes the mountains and lakes are beautiful. But the people are stunning. After a wild year for all of us, to see what comes out of this city is something phenomenal.
30 you taught me a lot. You were a year I never dreamt of living and yet you brought a sobering reality, teaching me the depth of gratitude. The beauty of thankfulness for each moment. For the sacredness of home. For the beauty of getting to know neighbors again. For the resilience of the human spirit. 31, I have a feeling you’re going to be pretty amazing and something to write about.