I’ve always had a thing for New Year’s Eve. Even when I was little, I felt a strange mandatory pressure to stay up until the apple dropped in New York City…while the rest of my family was fast asleep. Alone with the T.V., I would do a little New Year’s dance, watch the crowds of people celebrating and eventually make my way to bed, feeling satisfied that I had “properly” acknowledged the passing of another year.
Although I still love a good party on New Year’s Eve, it’s the days leading up to the New Year that I relish now. I cherish this quiet reflective time nestled between the holiday bustle and back-to-business-as-usual. The calm in the air is like a deep exhale providing time to think back on the year as a whole and set intentions for the twelve months ahead. For some of us, it’s also a time to blog 🙂
*Admittedly, I wrote this post mostly for myself as a way to chronicle, reflect and honor 2013, and to clear the path for 2014, but I hope you glean some insights too…or perhaps you’ll be inspired to write and reflect on your own journey as we move into the year ahead?
To say 2013 was a big year would be a bit of an understatement. My words for 2013 were Collaboration and Ease, and I’m happy to say both were in full effect. Upon reflection, I’m going to add LOVE to the list, another central core message/practice for me this year.
The year started off with a collaborative live painting gig with my dear friend, Lynzee Lynx, in front of thousands of people at the Inspire Truth New Year’s party. This was truly a potent experience and one that set the stage for a year of collaborative exploration. I wove the element of collaboration into all of my workshops and was so happy with the results. Watching my students laugh, play and paint together, while letting go of the “preciousness” of “MY painting,” made my heart sing and opened the door to a whole new way of approaching the process.
In January, I returned to beautiful San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, for my second year of teaching there. As expected, the retreat was a gorgeous coming together of vibrant women in a magical place. This view of our courtyard pretty much sums it up.
Upon my return home from Mexico, I happily moved into the house I spent a year designing and building. Having lived communally with other artists for my entire adult life, moving into my own space for the very first time was a bit of a dream. I spent months indulging my interior decorating geek and lavishing in the quiet of my own space. Moving into my less than 700 foot square house also proved to be a great way to sort, purge and redefine how much one actually needs to live comfortably. I still wake up everyday grateful for my little cocoon.
In February, I ventured into new territory by entering the world of online dating. I’m pretty sure I could write a whole book about my experience (Brave Intuitive Dating!), but I’ll keep it short and say that after *many* awkward dates and misadventures…it happened. We both felt the connection the second we met, and the past ten months have proved initial spark to be true. I’m beyond grateful for finding this kind of love in my life…and with the most adorable middle school math teacher to boot. #lovethatabouthim
If you’ve been following along here this year, you probably remember my “Thirty Day Blog Love Affair” that happened back in April. I mention it here because it was such a sweet chapter in my year. My intention was to fall back in love with my blog and to re-ignite my relationship with writing and sharing by writing a blog everyday for thirty days in a row. It worked! My final post also turned into my name change “coming out” party, a beautiful and vulnerable experience. You can read about the whole shebang in the most recent edition of Somerset Life Magazine’s. Woot!
Another collaborative highlight for me this year was the creation of Soul Shine Studio. This project is the collective coming together of three of my fave art buddies, Kelly Rae Roberts, Pixie Campbell, Lynzee Lynx and myself. Together we share a lovely downtown Portland studio space used for dreaming, scheming, gathering, teaching, creating…and chilling. Our connection has grown so deep as a result of this shared space…a constant source of inspiration, support and hilarity.
I’m also so happy to have connected with Miss Rachael Rice, my rock solid, rock star assistant. I can honestly say I don’t know what I’d do without her support.
In May, I had the pleasure of returning to Bali once again (it’s becoming a second home of sorts). This time around I taught two week-long retreats in two of my favorite spots: Amed and Ubud. I was joined by a couple of dear friends and the whole experience was deeply heart opening and full of adventure…as Bali always is.
Back on home turf, I taught two Northwest workshops: one at Soul Shine studio in Portland, and one in lovely Pt. Townsend, WA. In the Fall, I journeyed to the East coast where I taught back-to-back workshops in Brooklyn and Boston. Reflecting back on all these gatherings, I’m a bit overwhelmed by the richness of this “work” I am so blessed to do in the lifetime. I have met the most amazing people, witnessed huge transformation and walked away a better person for all of it. I’m truly grateful to walk this path, and so look forward to more next year (I’m leaving for Mexico tomorrow)!
This year also brought together three amazing groups of “bloomers’ from all over the world to participate in my Bloom True E-Course. I’ve run my course six times now, improving and changing it each time, and I’m consistently blown away by the impact it seems to have on people and on ME. Every course is truly adventure of the heart and soul, and with each new group, I feel vulnerable, alive, on the edge, empowered, nervous and elated as we move through the experience together.
In September, I released all new videos for the course, along with some reflections on the fear I had to move through in order to film all those videos — stepping out of my comfort at it’s finest, and worth every moment.
In closing, I’m happy to report that I managed to spend a decent amount of time painting in my own studio this year…a welcome shift from the past couple of years. I’ve posted my 2013 collection right here for your viewing pleasure 🙂
Thank you so much for following along on this ever-unfolding journey of art, love, life and growth. I am forever grateful. Wishing you joyful moments and abundant love in 2014.
I hope it blows our minds.