I don't know that I was entirely ready to close the book on 2015. It was SUCH a good year and so restoring for my soul in so many ways. After two incredibly challenging years and then such an incredibly stellar 2015, I'm trying to approach 2016 staying optimistic about what this year could also hold....but I'd be lying if I said I'm not somewhat apprehensive about it also :)
So I have the biggest desire to start a new blog page for a fresh start focused on fun outdoor outings, travel, global health, and environmental health considerations.....but I'm realistic about how little I post here. I keep trying to figure out how to get better about routinely posting (and uploading pictures, etc) BUT I'm not sure how to go about doing so. For now the intermittent posts will continue here. :)
Argentina work trip was successful. Christmas was easy and rewarding. Best bud (Reg D) has been staying here for a few weeks but will transition across town this weekend so he can spend his last two months in country closer to the mountain. The dogs and I have found ourselves happily tromping through the immense amount of powder in the hills and on the mountain a couple times in the last two weeks. I'm in the final days of prepping this next term, and never realized how challenging it can be to schedule a handful of guest speakers!
2015 held an answered dream to travel to Africa and I still feel so in awe and blessed of the trip I got to take to Tanzania. Returning to spend three days with my prior host families in Argentina touched my heart in another huge way at the end of this year. (It was also really fascinating to see how much the country itself had changed in the last fifteen years, and I was stoked that my ability to communicate in Spanish was so much better than I thought it might have been.) The dogs and I took some incredible trips to hike/camp/explore Central Oregon earlier in the year and those moments truly filled me up in another way. I did my first solo backpacking trip in the spring and also took that incredible solo road trip through some of the western National Parks in the US and Canada in Aug/Sept. In all honesty that road trip was probably the highlight of 2015 and I thoroughly enjoyed just camping in the back of my SUV. The dogs and I backpacked twice with Reg D, spent an epic Spring Break (and all the winter holidays) with Reg D, and I also took 6 people out hiking/snowshoeing who usually don't get out into the woods much. Ironically this last year was less about physical activity however and focused on achieving other major dreams & travel. I also made significant process on paying down debts and did a good job budgeting money to cover a lack of employment for two months this summer.
2016's goals are returning to focus on physical activity, skill development, and debt reduction. I'm hoping to get 850 miles in this year (and will be tracking mileage again), run a race (of 3-10 miles) in another state, and go on a kayak camping trip. I made a goal of getting acupuncture once a month in order to allow that mileage to happen (have I mentioned the fascia around the muscles on my right leg is perpetually tight?). I also am hoping to work on my fear of horses this year. I got bit on the shoulder by an injured horse when I was a kid and ever since then I've been a bit nervous/skittish around them. If there's one thing the last few years have taught me...it's to face your fears head on, because there is a good chance they're going to arrive regardless and it's better to be prepared. I want to work on improving my Spanish and learning a third language (mainly for work trips), I'm going to take the GRE finally and start applying to PhD programs (cause I finally realized again it's my passion to continue to do something with global environmental health), and hopefully have my credit card paid off by Feb/March and my car by May/June. There are a few other "hopes" for this year, (I'm feeling called to go do service work in India) but I'm also focusing on what's on the realistic list while being open to other opportunities that might present.
For now, I'm going to bite off the bit that I can control though, which will be an easy jog with the dogs and organizing the stress course I'm teaching this term. Here's to 2016, may it provide just what each one of us needs!