I believe 110% that life is what you make it. You can’t just sit back and hope that this year is better, different, that you’ll get everything you wished for. You have to decide what you want and chase after it with everything you have.
And that’s exactly what I did in 2014. Looking back, I can hardly believe we crammed so much into twelve months. Brandon and I had a year filled with amazing friends, grand adventures, and a whole lot of love; and that’s everything I could ever hope for. We celebrated our first wedding anniversary. We started our journey towards a healthier life; Brandon lost 55 pounds and I lost 70. We traveled to new places - and lots of them! Some of our favorite travel adventures included: numerous weekend getaways to Chico and Big Sky, tons of weekends in Billings with our families, road tripping to Seattle & Portland for our first anniversary (and to see some of our best friends!), exploring Yellowstone and Glacier, and discovering new parts of the Gallatin National Forrest in our own backyard. Plus, I got to travel the state shooting gorgeous weddings, adventure to Wyoming to see one of my best friends graduate nursing school (still SO proud of her!), and Brandon got to travel to Washington D.C. for a work related conference (and lots of sight-seeing too)! We relaxed in hot springs, climbed mountains, put our feet in the Pacific ocean, hiked in the beautiful Columbia River Gorge, chased uncountable waterfalls and sunsets, viewed Seattle from the top of the Space Needle, watched Derek Jeter kick ass against the Mariners in his final season, ran our first 5k in the mud, saw some of our favorite musicians live (and even got to met a few in person - like Cassadee Pope!), got in touch with our MT roots at some rodeos, attended*almost* every single Bobcat Football game of the season, I invested tons of time and energy into improving my photography skills and business, my sister adopted a beautiful little lady and we officially gained another niece, Brandon had his first private pilot lesson and got to fly a plane over the Bridgers, we made new friends, cherished our time with old friends, and continued to fall even more madly in love with each other.
2014 was spectacular. To say the least. It’s been my best year yet, and I truly believe it’s because I decided it would be. That’s not to say it didn’t have plenty of rough patches too: I was in a number of pretty brutal car wrecks, severe illness and injury found their way to a number of people in my family, there have been arguments, and tears, and challenges. But hardships don’t mean you get to give up on your goals and dreams; they’re a reason to push even harder towards them.
Today is the first day of a new chapter. 365 pages left of this part of your story. “2015 has never happened before. What will you do with it?” - That’s on the 2015 calendar I just ordered, and it’s something I’ve been thinking of for the last month. In the middle of December Brandon and I took a weekend getaway to our favorite resort in Big Sky, and as we sat in a hot tub overlooking the mountains we spent hours declaring our goals and dreams for 2015. I’m so thankful to have a husband that not only chases his dreams, but also pushes me to chase after my own, and joins me in dreaming BIG together. I won’t spill all of our plans for this upcoming year, but I will let you know that we have even bigger things planned for 2015. I’ll be focusing my business on my true passion: wedding/couple photography, Brandon and I will be continuing our health journey (and accomplishing the weight loss goals we set last year), we’ll be traveling everywhere the wind takes us, climbing even more mountains and chasing even more sunsets and waterfalls, and I’ll be striving to create a better work/life balance. 2014 was amazing, but it was also a bit exhausting. I ran on full speed for most of the year, and I never really had a chance to slow down. I pushed myself to the limits more than a few times, and I grew because of it. But this year I’m slowing down. I’m going to say “NO” more, so that I can continue to say “YES” to myself. I’m learning what’s truly important in life, and I’m prioritizing it. Family, friends, adventure, dreams, and love.
I’m a bit behind on blogging my 2014 adventures, and I promise this winter there will be lots of recaps coming your way, but I thought today was a perfect time to share a small glimpse of our past year with you. So CHEERS to 2014, and to making 2015 even better!
And also, THANK YOU!!! 2014 would not have been what it was without all of you: my friends, family, fans, supporters, and clients. I’ve been so lucky to do life with each and every one of you this past year - you’re the absolute BEST.