Happy New Year! Looking back and looking forward!

Hello my beautiful friends!

Another wonderful year is done and a new one must begin! I do not know if it is just me but 2017 felt like it began and ended a little too quickly. At the end of the year I like to reminisce on the many things I was blessed with throughout the year! Sometimes life moves quick when you are having fun or busy…or in my case, sleeping in and binge watching Stranger Things/Grey’s Anatomy. People forget to appreciate the little things in life and that even includes making your grandmother smile! My grandmother is my best friend and I am so thankful to have another year with her by my side. She will always be my biggest blessing in life and maybe someday I will let you all get to know her, but I will save that for another day. I understand how lucky I am to have such an amazing woman in my life and to everyone who got to experience the unconditional love of a grandparent whether for a short time or for a long time, you are all luckier than you feel.

2017 was one crazy year for myself, the world and of course American politics. Though there have been many negative events occurring in the world, it is important to always count your blessings. I can not imagine how miserable someone must be if they are always focusing on the terrible things they experience and the negative news headlines on major news channels constantly. My advice: make a list of 10 things you are thankful for at the end of every year and smile because you feel lucky that list belongs to you.

Here is my list of 10 things I am thankful for at the end of 2017

1. Another year with my beautiful grandmother who constantly shows me what unconditional love feels like.

2. My mother and my aunt are my foundation in life and I would be so lost without them by my side. I hope I make you both proud because I am a product of the both of you.

3. The two most important men in my life – my father and brother. I hope I end up with a guy that is half the man you two are.

4. One of my best friends Tania for constantly showing me love and affection. Thank you for making my lonely days brighter even if we are separated by distance. I do not know how I would breathe without you anymore.

5. Even though my health may not be 100%, I am so thankful I am here today in solid condition. I have a few cracks but nothing I can not fight through.

6. My heart. You have been through so much and have been bruised so many times. You have stayed silent about many things that shattered you and you are still beating strong and radiating love today.

7. Lemons. Thank you for making my food taste better even when I am eating bland things cause of my Gastroparesis.

8. The most handsome and healthy one year old boy named Lukas who never fails to make me smile on bad days.

9. The earth. I do not know how you do it but your strength with everything happening right now amazes me. I wish more people treated you with respect but I promise to do everything I can to positively impact the planet and teach others how to as well.

10. Last but not least, I would like to thank myself. Thank you for choosing life. Thank you for suffering in silence and choosing to smile. I am so proud of myself. I hope everyone is proud of themselves too.

There are so many others I am BEYOND thankful for and so many other things I can not dream of my life going now without. Thank you to everyone part of my life and to everyone who has impacted my life greatly.

So, that is my list of ten things and I know they are corny; but it is a good time of the year to count your blessings and those are mine. So, go ahead and make a list of ten things and keep it somewhere safe. Look back at it in 2018 whenever you are feeling down and I hope you have a huge smile on your face when you do.

I know it is the New Year and you all have a list of resolutions ready. I do not really know how I feel about New Year resolutions. Maybe my uncertainty stems from seeing many people not follow through with their resolutions. Why do we need January 1st to make a big change in life? Can we not just say I am going to start doing better tomorrow? Or I am going to begin this project next week? I still enjoy brainstorming different things I would like to accomplish throughout the New Year but it is important to always remember that there is no better time than right now. You do not need a New Year to start something new. It is important to look at your resolutions as goals throughout the year, rather than something you will begin to do in the New Year when you could have started it in three months ago when you thought about it.

Maybe you can already tell but I do have a love for making lists. They are organized and easy to look back on in the future when you need a reminder. I always find it helpful to write things down that you wish to accomplish just so you can someday read what you have written and tell yourself “wow, I did it!” Since we made a list of ten things we are thankful for, I think it is only suitable to make a list of ten goals for 2018 too!

My list of ten goals for 2018:

1. Spend more time with my loved ones because you just never know how much time you have left with them.

2. Ace my final semester in school and graduate!

3. Apply and get accepted to a university to continue my studies next year in Business.

4. Get a full-time job in my field that I am proud of.

5. Move back to the City of Toronto.

6. Continue my healthy, active routine and try to maintain an organic diet.

7. Learn French again! My biggest regret is not keeping up with it and forgetting it so 2018 is the year of adding another language to my credentials.

8. Improve my blog’s quality and increase traffic.

9. Make a positive, life-changing impact on someone’s life. Helping others is a priceless feeling.

10. Living my life to the fullest and strengthening the love I have for myself, because how do you expect to love anyone else if you can not love yourself?

Wow, I promise I am not always super corny but it is a New Year and we should all feel super grateful and motivated! As long as my New Year includes my family, friends, all of you reading this, Nutella and sour candy…what more do I need? I hope you all keep these two lists in a safe place and reminisce on them throughout the year whenever you need that smile or push in life.

I hope your New Year is filled with happiness and all things meant for you. I hope you eat a lot of your favourite food. I hope you hear good news everyday. I hope you give your loved ones big hugs to show them how much you appreciate them. I hope you constantly have a smile on your face because you deserve it.

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Photos of me taken by: Madison Skinner

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