January started off pretty terribly. I was hating my job but had a seemingly hopeful new job prospect. I was constantly broke as we were saving diligently to buy our home.
February came and I tried to be more positive. We finally closed on our new house!
Unfortunately, I was sick for much of that month. That hopeful job prospect also fell through which was disappointing (although in retrospect, I'm always amazed by how things work out). February also marked tax returns (note: getting married does NOT get you the tax breaks they say), but I finally got myself a much needed hair cut.
March brought some really awesome things. D and I celebrated our first anniversary, and I worked diligently to make a homemade anniversary gift.
[Framed maps of US and all continents marked with every place we've been together]
March is always a special month for us since it marks lots of anniversaries and firsts for us. We celebrated by having a cabin getaway in the NC mountains whilst planning our big road trip in April.
The most significant change I made in March was to start running [again]. I made the commitment and started dabbling in running again.
With spring beginning to shine it's sun again, we had a pretty busy April. We officially had our spring break road trip planned, which gave me something to look forward to. I was reading a lot, and becoming inspired by other bloggers training for half marathons. We had quite the scare when Raleigh was hit by a major tornado only 2 miles from our house. Being lucky enough to have zero damages at our house, we road tripped it in D's new car to Philly and NYC for the week.
May brought lots of stress with standardized testing at school, but I managed to make it through and continue running!
June brought the end of school and the beginning of summer. We road tripped again to Birmingham to see my friend KDS get married!
July was definitely a month of frustration and sadness. I finally got offered a job at an elementary school, which was amazing. Within the same week, we lost a great friend and one of the best people I've ever met. The loss of BFW changed so much in ours and our closest friends' lives.
In the midst of the tragedy, I missed my first 10k, but continued to run before beginning training for my first half marathon.
August was a month of recovery and good things. We celebrated my birthday at the beach. I got some amazing gifts, and officially started training for my half. I also started my new teaching job, which I was loving.
September was a month sprinkled with good and bad. Running was going really well at the beginning. I had some family drama (which has unfolded and continued to remain pretty negative over the rest of the year). I did run my first long run of nine miles in September though!
October was an emotional month but lended breaks and a trip to Georgia. I ran my first 10k and did tons better than I thought I could (thanks to the support of great friends getting up early and cheering me on!). We traveled home where I spent quality time with my family and celebrated the great life of BFW.
I did get sick immediately following this trip which was nerve wracking as I was preparing for the half in November.
November was a pretty good round-out for 2011. I succeeded in the biggest accomplishment in my life so far, finishing my first half marathon. I'm so grateful for D's support and that of my family and friends!
Finally, December has been good to us. I PR'ed on my first 5k since the half marathon. D and I celebrated pre-Christmas in the Bahamas. Santa was so good to me.
[So lucky to have D to support my running endeavors]
I'm looking forward to closing out 2011 and leaving the sadness and family drama in the wind for a bit. It's nice to look back and see that really there's been lots of wonderful to at least balance out a lot of the big shit from this year. I really am such a lucky girl.