2015 turned out to be a pretty good year. A busy year, but a good year. I spent a TON of time at the botanic garden, but I had photographic adventures at the Garfield Park Conservatory, Cantigny Park, Anderson Garden, Austin, and Maui as well. I didn't paint as much as I had planned, but that's okay-- I'll make up for it this year! (watercolors!) I walked a lot. I gathered up my nerve and opened my own art shop, started a side project blog, and had my best year on etsy yet (yay! go me!!!)
Here are the rest of the highlights (and some not so highlight) of 2015:
January- January was pretty quiet. I got my fitbit and was working hard to make my 10K step goal. G had to go to Dallas for training, so I spent a lot of time at the gym. I also dreamed up and created my Smallish Adventure blog (I might actually work on this blog in 2016) I also decided to take this blog in a new direction. The highlight of the month was going to the field museum to catch the Vodou Exhibit (it was sooo cool and creepy!)
February- February was pretty darned cold. I was still trying to meet my 10K step goal. Mom had her first cataract surgery and I took her to see the Orchid Show at the Chicago Botanic Garden.
March- Still trying to walk 10K steps a day but I started getting super stressed out about it-- so stressed out, I starting thinking about writing this post about how Fitbit was wrecking my life! Mom had her second cataract surgery and ended up in the ER. Her blood sugar was low, so I went to get her some coffee and a snack and by the time I returned to the hospital lobby, she passed out and the paramedics were wheeling her away to the ER! (people, low blood sugar isn't a joke!)
April- G and I took a mini vacation to Austin, TX. I LOVED it there! I posted a great review about my experience there. I would move there in a heartbeat. I also worked though a bit of self doubt and started my shopify art shop! I also started to see the first signs of spring in my garden.
May- May was super busy! I went to the Botanic Garden so much during this month! I stalked the garden looking for spring flowers and tulips. I think I went at least 6 times. I also had the dream opportunity to photograph the most perfect engagement session at the Garden. It was the absolute best! Let me just put this out there-- If you want an engagement photo session at the Garden, please call me! I also photographed that lovely couple's wedding. It was a pretty amazing experience, and despite the rain, I think it's one of the best weddings I've photographed! I also finally started my patio garden. Whew!
June- June was pretty quiet. I spent a lot of time outside enjoying my patio garden. I went to the botanic garden and stalked the peonies. For some reason, I was peony crazy this year! And you know what, when they finally showed up, they did not disappoint! I also started experimenting with acrylic paint this month. I created a few paintings that I did not hate...
July- Another pretty quiet month. The only big drama I had was my iMac screen dying. I totally thought my hard drive with all my gazillions of photos was toast so I freaked out. Thankfully, it was just the screen that died and Apple fixed it within a few days. I bought a 3 terabyte hard drive and started backing up all my photos. The highlight was taking my mom to the Garfield Park Conservatory. She totally loved that place!
August- I went to the Garden several times and quietly plotted ways to take over the world. G's mom took me to see Santana at Ravinia. Can you believe it was my first time going to a concert there? Its now one of my favorite concert venues! August was also spent creating new 2016 Calendar templates for my Art Shop and Etsy shop!
September- Here's when things started to get C R A Z Y! We made the decision to give my great uncle's financial info/bills over to his nephew, who is also his power of attorney. He then decided it would be best to sell my uncles house in order to keep paying for his nursing home care (i don't blame him!) My mom was given less than a month to pack up and move 45+ years of her and grandma's life. I spent every night/weekend there helping her pack. On top of all that, G and I had planned a vacation to Maui to celebrate our anniversary. Talk about bad timing! My poor mom had to spend a week packing by herself! (packing up 45+ of your life is not an easy task...) So, packing sucked and Hawaii was awesome. And somewhere among the stress of packing and getting the basement ready for my mom, I bought my first coloring book.
October- Mom moved in! To say it was an adjustment for her is a bit of an understatement. She spent the first two weeks in the basement crying in the dark. (I'm happy to report that it's been 3 months now and she's a lot happier! No more crying!) The highlight of October was taking her to the Anderson Japanese Garden to catch the autumn colors.
November- I had jury duty this month which was great because it forced me to sit around and write to avoid being bored out of my mind while waiting to be called (I was never called.) I spent several hours thinking about/planning blog posts, shop updates and bullet journaling. November also was the worst month because my grandma was rushed to the hospital due to severe dehydration. She spent a week in the hospital and honestly, things didn't look so good for her. Grandma returned to her nursing home after her week-long hospital stay, but she wasn't any better. Her doctor told us that we should start thinking about hospice care...
December- We decided to have hospice care come out and take care of Grandma. We spent several gut-wrenching days talking to the nursing home and hospice staff. I'm happy to say that as of writing this, grandma seems to be doing a bit better with the extra care. She's alert, she's sitting in her new, super comfy wheelchair, and she's communicating. No more laying in her bed looking awful. The Christmas holiday was wonderful-- we spent Christmas eve with grandma, and Christmas day with G's family. And here we are at the very tail end of December. I can't believe how quickly this year (especially the last few months!) have flown by!
I hope 2015 was a good year for you. What were your highlights? What are you looking forward to in 2016? Let me know in the comments section below-- I'd love to hear from you!
I hope you have a safe and happy New Year! See ya in 2016!