This was a fantastic year for me—it felt like a fresh start. I started a new position at work, moved into a new apartment, met my new nephew and started dating somebody new and wonderful. Oh, and I ran the Chicago Marathon for the first time! I could wax poetic about all the good times with family and friends or jaw-droppingly good food I ate, but instead I’ll just share five simple but wonderful things I did in 2015.
1. I walked everywhere.
To work, to street festivals, to dinner with friends, anywhere possible. My apartment’s location makes most places in Milwaukee walkable, and I think it’s important to slow down and experience the city at street level. Plus, I get to snap pretty photos, like this sunny yellow house in the neighborhood over.
2. I went camping for the first time in forever.
I hadn’t been camping since I was a kid, so it was a fun challenge to go as an adult, setting up my own tent, cooking my own food over the fire and fending off the vicious mosquitos of the Mississippi River backwaters on my own. We kayaked all day and shored up at a muddy island midday to eat our PB&J lunches in the sun. I’d relive that moment in a heartbeat.
3. I saw Sleater-Kinney live (twice)!
There’s nothing I love more than fierce lady rockers. Carrie Brownstein is a guitar god, Corin Tucker sings to my soul and I melted into a puddle when I saw them first in the dead of Milwaukee winter and later in summer at the Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago. (You can probably guess which concert the photo above was taken at.)
4. I got nostalgic at my alma mater.
Has it really been almost five years since I graduated from Ohio State? Yikes! Although I have family living near Columbus, I hadn’t been back to campus in a few years, so I was giddy when I took my boyfriend there for a speed tour. There’s no better place to be than the Oval on a sunny day, lounging in the grass or being stereotypical college kids tossing around a frisbee.
5. I caught the marathon bug.
Like, big time. After my first marathon in 2012, the initial post-race pain was a bit of a shock. I think it scared me from doing another one until this year’s race in Chicago, but now I’m hooked! With a bit of experience under my belt, I knew how to pace myself better. Now I’m looking forward to adding speed workouts to my training plan to gun for a PR in 2016. Maybe I’ll also work up to buying a race photo rather than taking a screenshot.
Happy New Year’s Eve, everyone!
YOUR TURN: What simple moments of 2015 made your year special?