2016 has been a roller coaster of a year. It started off strong and then things got wonky. Overall though, there is so much to be grateful for! So here goes!
JanuaryI started off the year with a bang with a cute new haircut and a drive to train for my second triathlon. This month I was really consistent with my training and my weight loss regimen and I felt really excellent. You can read more about it here.
This month I toyed around with new posts on the blog including "Un-Recipes" and doing "Weekly Updates." I also did my first VLOG on youtube. We also celebrated a doggy birthday party for Kitty. Our Kitty girl has been showing more of her age lately. Overall she is doing okay. Our vet friend, Will, thinks she may have Cushings, which overall mostly means she drinks a lot and pees a lot. Overall she is okay but we are keeping a close eye on her. We got her now on pain meds and that seems to help tremendously with her getting around easier. We love our Kitty girl and are enjoying our time with her.
March brought more training for the sprint triathlon as well as planting seeds to get ready for spring. Technically we did that the very end of February but March was when we saw a lot of growth. We set up the seeds inn our office with grow lights and most of our plants did really well. Tyler built a greenhouse as well that is currently being used to grow lettuce. It has been under freezing for about a month now and seems that it will be for a few more weeks so I have not been able to lift the door of the greenhouse for fear that everything will freeze. I am hoping that in a few weeks I will have a decent amount of lettuce and we will have more days that get over 32 degrees Fahrenheit!
This month I went to Vancouver, WA to visit my friend, Jessica. We had a girls weekend where we enjoyed an incredible massage and I ended my streak of no alcohol in 2016. I made it 3 months though! We had a great time. The weather was lovely in Portland and we did a fair amount of walking around. Plus we stayed at a McMenamin's Grand Lodge that was really fun. I also completed the triathlon I had been training for! Also, Tyler's cousin Caine and his two daughters came and visited. It was a really fun month!
This month took us to St. Ignatius to visit Tyler's family for Mother's Day. We also did a LOT of work on our front yard garden. We went from having 7 garden boxes to 21! The whole front yard was the covered with weed barrier and rock. It was a labor of love for sure and it was worth it!
This month brought more time out in the garden! We learned some lessons about hardening our seedlings before planting in the garden bed and Tyler spent a lot of time building fences and other various things we needed to keep animals out of our garden beds. With so much snow on the ground right now, I am really enjoying reminiscing about our garden this last summer!
July was a busy month that started with a full week up at Flathead Lake at the cabin. It was so nice to be able to spend a full week there with the family. Tyler went out fishing several times and absolutely loved it. Speaking of, we need to have a fish fry here soon! Then our little family went camping for the first time to celebrate my birthday. Of course the garden kept growing and we spent a lot of time in the sunshine.
This month was not as eventful but we did manage to have a damn good time! We canned a ton of jam this month that we are still enjoying. This batch had raspberries and rhubarb from our garden and organic, local strawberries. We also celebrated Tyler's 32nd birthday with a get together at Powderhaus. Winston and his siblings turned 1! It was a fun month.
This month I posted a 3 part blog on Minimalism, Frugality, & Zero Waste. These 3 topics are near and dear to my heart and helped shape some mine and Tyler's future goals.
This month we celebrated our 2 year wedding anniversary by staying at home and working on projects. We started to winterize our yard and Tyler built our large greenhouse! This spring we will be adding a rain catching system as well. Next month we plan to build shelves and get started on our little seedlings. This month I also got published a research article in a nursing journal!
November was a month full of family and friends. We had most of Tyler's family in town to celebrate Thanksgiving. We all worked on an art project together for our outdoor Christmas decorations, which was a lot of fun. We played a lot of board games and settled in to the cooler weather.
And finally, the last month of December brought us a ton of SNOW, Christmas cheer and projects! I started ramping up Simple Whole Happy, both the blog and my social media presence, Tyler put together a ton of cutting boards, and we both shoveled a lot of snow!
I hope you all take the time to reflect on the past year and express gratitude for all that you have. From all of us here in the Animal Kingdom, Happy New Year!