Like all other bloggers, today, I'm going to reflect on the year that was and the year to come.
I have to say, 2011 was a pretty great year. Here are some highlights:
1. I moved to Yellowknife in October of 2010 and by Jan. 1, 2011, I was settled into the northern lifestyle. I was in the thick of the -40 C days and frozen eyelashes, and I was already accustomed to wearing my Canada Goose parka every single day. I don't think I even complained that much, which I view as a huge triumph. (Others might try to debunk that statement, but I'm pretty sure I was a trooper.)
2. Last January I became a blogger, starting Newly Northern Nicole with a post on Jan. 4 entitled Parka Blues. Now, although my posts aren't always consistent, I've done my best to keep all of you updated on the goings on of my crazy life over the past year. (I hope in 2012 I'll be even better. Resolution maybe!?)
3. I stopped producing turds. Well, not really. I actually still do that... everybody poops right!? But I did stop taking shitty photos. Or, I at least started taking some that are worthy of print with the help of the Nikon D90 Ian bought me early last year. I still have a lot to learn, like how to change the settings so that I'm not just shooting on auto, but I at least have a better understanding of what makes a good photo... which brings me to my fourth accomplishment of 2011.
4. In March, I became a member of the paparazzi. I was visiting Vancouver to surprise my dad for his 75th birthday when I came across Katie Holmes and Suri at the Granville Island Market. It was pretty awesome. I was right in there with a couple of other legit paparazzi snapping photos, feeling simultaneously like an asshole and a bad ass.
5. I taught a class. I wouldn't say this was one of my shining moments, but I still did it, which I think is an accomplishment in and of itself.
6. I came in second place in a costume contest. Yes. This is totally worthy of the list. I rocked my schoolmarm getup.
7. I went to Rankin Inlet, Nunavut for seven weeks and wrote seven issues of Kivalliq News without missing a deadline. While there, I also went caribou hunting, ate narwhal, caribou kidney, caribou bone marrow and caribou tongue.
8. I bought my first car -- a 2000 Rav4. Actually, Ian and I bought it, which is an even bigger deal. Talk about commitment!! I feel like such a grown up. I also learned how to drive stick.
9. I was a category winner in Up Here Magazine's photo contest. Talk about taking a photo worthy of print!
10. I moved to Jasper to work for The Fitzhugh newspaper, and took Ian along for the ride. (The second half of that is huge. I never thought I would find a guy to take with me on my adventures. I always thought a partner would just slow me down. But, so far, I have no regrets. Ian's been a welcome addition to my life the past year and I hope that will continue in 2012.)
11. I refinished a dresser all by myself and started the winter of DIY, which I think will become the spring, summer and fall of DIY.
12. I opened an Etsy store, Pickled Yarn.
13. And I took my first train trip. I returned home to Jasper from Vancouver (a 20 hour trip) on VIA Rail earlier this week. It was a gorgeous ride, and despite only getting three hours of sleep, it was definitely worth the experience of seeing my new Australian friend, Tom, see snow for the first time in his life.
All in all, it was a fantastic year. I can't wait to see what 2012 will bring. My goals are to continue honing my photography skills, to grow my Etsy store, to keep up my new DIY lifestyle and to explore all of Jasper's hiking trails.
I wish everyone a happy and healthy 2012. I look forward to hearing about your goals, resolutions and hopes for the new year.