Tuesday, January 1, 2013

2012 Highlights

This past year has been full of many highlights for me. In the spirit of gratitude, I wish to list twelve of the best things that happened to me this year. I enjoyed sharing special moments and celebrating with my family and friends. 1) Getting married in Jamaica to my husband Adam This day was a dreamy one for me. So much about that moment was magical.
2) Returning to work full-time in my "dream assignment" teaching music I am back at my teaching job full-time. Over ten years ago, I had a dream in which I sat in a circle singing with young children on the carpet with my hair in dredlocks. Teaching continues to be a challenging endeavour for me. I am teaching my dream assignment-- early childhood music-- complete with dredlocks and sitting on the carpet. This aspect of my job is a lot of fun and it does not feel like work.
3) Moving to a new apartment Not quite an enjoyable process yet it has created a new energy and coziness that I am welcoming more and more into my life.
4) Taking a writing class in non-fiction writing for children I have taken other writing classes in recent years but this was a class I have been meaning to take for quite some time. This was a fun class and it lit a little fire under my ass to keep writing and try to get published. I learned how to write query letters, target publications, and select topics.
5) Joining the Heritage Singers I fell in love with Jamaican folk music as a child and I think that this admiration never left me. This year I got my "sing on" by joining the Heritage Singers, a Caribbean folk group founded in 1977. This past year, I got to perform
6) Celebrating my 35th birthday at AfroPunk It has always been a dream for me to attend the annual AfroPunk Festival in Brooklyn. This festival all started with an American documentary film called AfroPunk that came out in 2003 directed and produced by James Spooner. I had the pleasure of not only working with a film festival that screened his film but I organized my own screening at a my university campus. So when I found out that two of the headlining acts were Erykah Badu and Janelle Monae,
7) Being the Editor of TCC Newsletter I was pleased to be asked to be the editor of the Thyroid Cancer Canada Newsletter. I edited three issues: Spring 2012, Summer 2012, and Winter 2012-13 and wrote articles for three. It was a wonderful experience and I plan to continue writing for this publication from time to time however I have had to step down from the role of editor in order to devote more time to my writing.
8) Going to Cottage Dreams Thanks to some really generous cottage owners, my husband and I got to stay at a beautiful spot in Muskoka. Cottage Dreams is a program that helps "families touched by cancer reconnect and rejuvenate at a private, donated cottage". This experience was such a blessing for us and we are so grateful to the couple who gave this opportunity to us. It was like a Honeymoon #2. The five days were peaceful and serene and soothing for us as we enjoyed this lakeside cottage. We definitely wish to repeat this experience.
9) Illustrating a poster I enjoyed the process of illustrating for this poster and this cause. Drawing has always been one of my favourite hobbies and as I got older, I have less and less time to devote to it. However, there are times, when I can draw for ours on end. Earlier on this year when I was working part-time, I sought opportunities to earn income through my other talents. I am so thankful that I could use this talent and passion for a little bit of income.
10) Trying to run my food delivery business Another way I tried to earn some extra income was by running a short-lived vegan lunch delivery service. Well, maybe I was trying to run a prototype. I have grown to love cooking vegan dishes more and more. I have been toying with the idea of starting some sort of food business so when my friend in law school was requesting some healthier meal options, I took this opportunity to test out my "side hustle". I operated this business for two months and it was a lot of work. I found it challenging and fun but time consuming. In the end, I decided that for now, I will give my vegan cooking away for free.
11) Attend conferences and workshops I got the opportunity this year to attend some workshops to help me in my practice as a music and French teacher as well as a writer. I love school and learning opportunities so I was totally in my element.
12) Wedding blog My wedding blog has been fun to assemble and I have enjoyed sharing the planning phases and celebrations with friends and family. I plan to continue to add new posts in the future as I get "caught up" with all that has taken place in the past year.

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