Wow! I cannot believe we are already wrapping up 2016. I am going to do a quick rundown of my year and talk about the struggles, the excitement and everything in between. I guess the best way to do this is going by month, so I guess that is what we will do!
January: January was always the same for me throughout high school. It was cold, and it was full of cheerleading. With temperatures averaging in single digits, I was 100% okay with spending my days indoors at practice. January marked my last high school competition at our home sectional. It was a long month, and I was more than ready to be getting ready to finish up high school.
February: In February, cheerleading had slowed down but, I was focused on hitting new skills and working for more difficulty to take to college tryouts in the spring. A lot of late nights in the gym, and the last thing I was focused on was Valentine’s Day or even Winter Formal. The snow was still heavy and I was proud of my new claim to fame: I had yet to get in an accident on the ice that year (driving is not exactly my forte). School was so relaxed, and my whole month of February I was making pottery and watching videos of vlogs and cheerleading on YouTube. February was not my most productive month. But, hey… it was a fun one. About two weeks before Winter Formal I realized I did not have a dress, or a date. I asked one of my awesome cheer friends to come with me and I got expedited shipping from Tobi. It was a great time spent with great friends. Big things came with February and new experiences. I flew alone for the first time. From Indianapolis, to Charlotte, to Austin to see my sweet best friend and surprise her for her 18th birthday. It was one of my favorite things I did in 2016.
March: March was the hardest month of 2016. Hands down. March brought some unpredictable events that changed my life, and the way I viewed life. I learned to depend on God more than ever before. I began traveling more frequently to Georgia and back, to begin working with my team, and looking at houses with my parents. March was when everything started to become real. Senior Night was a big event during March and it was a game to remember.
April: April brought a lot of excitement to my life. I tried out for my college cheer team and I found out that I made it. I needed some happiness in my life after March being so difficult and that was exactly what it brought for me. My art was entered in to two of my first shows and I was loving being able to go to art shows with my friends during school. Senioritis was getting the best of me and I was taking any excuse I could to get out of going. Haha!
May: The beginning of May was my senior prom. I got to go with one of my very best friends and it was such a fun time with my girlfriends. We made a ton of memories and enjoyed one of our last high school events all together. May was a transition time as I spent the month preparing for graduation and for my graduation party. I helped at high school cheerleading tryouts and choreographed their tryout material and spent a lot of time looking through old photos and reminiscing on the past seventeen years I had spent in Mahomet.
June: June was full of time with friends. I was trying to enjoy every second I had left with my friends while preparing for a big move. In June we took a trip to my favorite resort on earth (Big Cedar Lodge) and spent a week with my mom’s side of the family. It was such a fun trip, and we made so many memories. June was my first official KSU cheer practice, and was the first time I saw the house my family would be moving in to. It ended with a trip to Nashville to spend a few days with my sister and brother in law to get a break from all the moving stress and craziness.
July: July was monumental for me. It was the biggest and the best month of 2016. The beginning of July was hard. We moved to Georgia and I was really struggling with leaving for college before all of my friends did. I felt really alone and I was really stressed and worried about adjusting to my new life. We began to get settled in our new house, and enjoyed days at our pool. I had a lot of practices and a few appearances to help keep me busy and allowed me to make some friends with the girls on my team. The end of the month though… my life changed forever. God allowed Christian and I to cross paths for the first time. July was our first and second date and July was when I fell in love with him.
August: August brought even more change. I moved again, this time in to my apartment. Christian was at football camp and I was missing him so much. I spent the first few weeks decorating and working on a canvas with Christian’s favorite bible verse to hang in his apartment. School started for both of us and we started getting settled in to the college life. On the 16th, Christian and I officially started dating. At the end of August, I found out I was going to be an aunt. My sweet niece or nephew is due in April of 2017.
September: September was a busy month. Football season was beginning and I had fallen in love with cheering for him from the sidelines. Football games were so fun to cheer at, especially when you got to watch the man you love do the thing he loves. In September, I went back to Illinois for the first time on a weekend that we did not have a game. I was only there one night, but I was so excited to surprise my friends and spend time with them. The last weekend of September I got to go to an Atlanta Braves game with my parents and my roommates. I had never been to an MLB game that was not at Busch Stadium (yes, I am a Cardinal fan!).
October: The first weekend of October, I drove to North Carolina with some teammates to watch the football game. I always hated missing seeing Christian play, so if the game was within driving distance, I was there. October was full of school, practice, and football games. I was busy, but I was starting to learn where I would belong and who I should surround myself with. I was even spending days at the pool still in October because it was still warm enough! That is one of my favorite things about living in Georgia.
November: November was the beginning of celebrating the holiday season. Oh, and my first time voting!!! Christian’s birthday is in November and we celebrated by going up to Lake Lanier to go to a huge Christmas light display. One of Christian’s favorite things is Christmas lights, so I wanted him to be able to really enjoy his birthday gift. We went to dinner at PF Chang’s and we enjoyed time just the two of us. Thanksgiving was the week after. I spent Thanksgiving in Atlanta with my parents, and my sister and brother in law drove down to spend it with us. It was such a fun time and time with family has become even more fun the older I get.
December: December was easily the most fun month of the year. Christian took me on a special birthday date before heading to Tennessee. I spent my birthday weekend in Nashville with my family and having Christian there made it even more fun. We went to dinner at my favorite restaurant in Christiana, Tennessee when we first got there. On my birthday we woke up and got breakfast from a super awesome restaurant in Murfreesboro, Tennessee called Pfunky Griddle. You can make your own pancakes on a griddle built in to your table and it is delicious. We went to see the Christmas lights at the Opry Mills Hotel and we went to see my favorite Christmas movie, White Christmas in an old little theater downtown in Franklin, Tennessee. I went home to South Carolina with Christian after our finals were finished where we spent the week. I went back to Georgia to celebrate Christmas with my family, and go to Illinois to be with my extended family. When I got back, I went back to Christian’s in South Carolina to spend a little while longer before school starts on the 9th of January.
2016 was very good to me. I can honestly say I have changed so much from the beginning to the end of 2016, but I could not be happier with where my life is taking me. I have never been this happy. It was a long ride to get here, but I know I am right where God wants me, and that is such a good feeling. Bring it on 2017!!! I am ready for ya.