Reflections on the Old Year

Last week marked the start of a New Year.   The only time I’ve made New Year’s Resolutions was when it was a homework assignment in seventh grade, but it’s still fun to reflect on the past year’s happenings and achievements.  Bear with me here and try to enjoy my reminiscing.

2012 began with a bang when I discovered I was allergic to amoxycillin, complete with ER visits and epi-pens.  In February I received an honorable mention in the United States Institute of Peace essay contest on new media as a tool for peace-building, and in March some of my closest friends and I created a beautiful, moving, dramatic German soap opera for our German class.  I also flew overseas (solo!) for the first time, to join the rest of my choir on our Vienna-Prague tour after my interview in Denver with YES Abroad.  Speaking of which, April came with the news that I could choose to live my senior year in Sarajevo on a full scholarship.  Of course I accepted, although that came with two or three moments of tremendous self-doubt and a some befuddlement as to why I was leaving a perfectly interesting, challenging, and fun final year at home.  I now know why.

May was busy, as per usual.  I played for the Pop Concert, biked to Blue Willow Restaurant on Friday mornings at 6 a.m.  for breakfast with friends, started to take out our old kitchen floor,  worked my butt off in two challenging but incredible English classes, admitted that the little yellow 20-year-old car which I liked to call mine was no longer drivable, went to Prom, joined National Honors Society, explored Wausau by bike in the warm spring weather, went on the annual family car trip to the U.P. to put the dock in and launch the sailboat (never forgetting, of course, to go swimming in the newly-melted lake).  In June things calmed down a little; I started putting aside some money by doing yard work and babysitting for several families.  I also flew to D.C. for a pre-departure orientation and got excited about the big move.

July was an exciting month.  Wausau hosted the World Whitewater Championships (including kayaking and canoeing), as well as its annual Chalk Fest and the Balloon Rally.  During this month I went to Yellow Springs, Ohio with my best friend and her entire family (six kids).  We relaxed for an incredible week in this unobtrusive hippie town.  I’m realizing that I traveled quite a lot last summer.  The weekend I returned from Ohio, my parents and I took off for a road trip to Alpena, Michigan so that I could visit my grandparents before I departed to Bosnia.  My family also painted my kitchen orange and started to pound in our “new” floorboards ( recycled from the Habitat fro Humanity re-store), something that took time and energy.  My dad did most of the grunt work.

August was full of goodbyes and hellos.  I briefly saw my German sister for a week in Wausau, and I flew to Sarajevo and jumped into something completely new: studying abroad.  By September, I knew enough Bosnian to embarrass myself and had made enough friends to survive constant embarrassment.  October included a beautiful mountain hike and a new haircut.  I also memorized two Justin Bieber songs and learned that I liked Lady Gaga.  I have no shame.   By November I had learned how to use most of the appliances in my home.  And, well, you know what I did last month.  You read my blog.

That is all the reflection I care to do.  Now it’s time to recount a few fun adventures I’ve had in the past weeks!  Check in on my next post to see what I’ve been up to lately and get the newest scoop on my latest embarrassments.

All my love,

Here are pictures from 2012- one from each month.



  1. Lady Gaga I can handle, but Justin Bieber? Sweetheart, you will be receiving a plethora of good music in an attempt to purge you of this atrocity.

    1. SHOOT I’m trying to explain that I wrote this wrong. I don’t like Justin Bieber, but he was my Halloween costume and so I learned some of his songs. Done.

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