Top 9 & Year in Review

My instagram has been my very casual & brief blog for the past year, since work has introduced a new norm for me in my life. So my top nine photos are recipeless, or using recipes I haven’t reposted here yet. But let me tell you about the year I had… It’s kind of crazy to think that my job is what it is.

January: Trip to India. I finally saw the Taj Mahal. I got dressed up for my brother & sister in law’s wedding celebration. Spent some time in a temple or two. Now that I’m on the other side of the year, this trip doesn’t seem as bad as I felt like it was, but there are still some things that I can’t unsee. And I got to skip inauguration day so what could’ve been better?

February: Crunch time for ECCC. Flew out to Seattle to do a fan event, but most of the beginning of this year was a blur.

March: ECCC happened. My first time doing social media for a show AT the show. NYCC last year was a treat and a privilege, being able to help out the social media coordinator at the time. This was different, since I was in charge of what was being posted and where. It was insane. It was a rush. There was a lot going on. A lot of things I could improve on. I’ve got high hopes.
Oh did I mention I went to PAX East the following weekend? Not like I was tired or anything. Nah. Nope. And I waited on two 2-hour lines to play games that I never ended up buying. Pyre had a very interesting battle system, but I would’ve only played that for the art and the story, the gameplay wasn’t really my jam. We Happy Few was a massive letdown because I got up there and died in game immediately because the tutorial was no good, and then they pushed me out of the booth. Cool.

April: Star Wars Celebration in Orlando. An entire line of Star Wars fans sang me happy birthday in the queue hall. As tired as I was, that’s something that not everyone can say happened to them. It was a pretty cool show. Billie Lourd is an absolute saint. I cried a little. I got to see John Williams conduct an orchestra playing Star Wars music 100 feet away from me. I was in a room with the utmost of nerd royalty, and the most dedicated of fans. Really unbelievable. I also got to dance with the Cantina band. #lifegoals

C2E2, my first time being in Chicago. My first time approaching a celebrity, one that happened to also be one of my favorites, and he didn’t let me down and I was so so thankful. I messed up here though, so C2E2 was my first show that I cried at for screwing up. I lost that game, but learned. I’m the kind of person that messes up and never ever does it again out of fear of messing up. So at least there’s that! Went to Lou Manati’s for some Chicago pizza. I’m from NY, so obviously that’s always going to win for me for pizza, but it was good and I respect it.

May: Looks like I didn’t go anywhere? Wow. Phew. But I know for certain I was busy doing some prep for…

June: BookCon! Walking into the Javits for anything outside of the car show or NYCC is baffling to me, so this was a mix of surprise and delight. But also some more learnings at work for me. I really, truly learned a lot this year, and looking back on it now, every month taught me something completely different about the way I can work.

June also brought my childhood best friend’s wedding. Knoxville is a great time! I saw a gun in a bar on accident as it fell out of someone’s pants, so that was a trip and a half. It was my first time being a bridesmaid, making my hair and make-up look photo ready, and it was such a wonderful day. Still so happy for my homegirl.

June also brought some quality time with some of my fam in Saratoga Springs to go see Dave Matthews Band. Always a good time.

July: My first team trip to Seattle. I learned a lot here, I got to experience more of Seattle from a local perspective. I got to spend time with my coworkers and meet new interesting people for work. I made a bit of a fool of myself at a BBQ that my team won’t let me live down.

August: My first excessive road trip with my husband. Turns out if you put me in a car for more than 17 hours, I will resort to having a temper tantrum to get out immediately. Good news though, we got to chase a really epic lightning storm down the east coast, so I have some cool video on my phone that no one will ever see again because I’m the only one that cares. Got to see the eclipse with my own eyes. I can still see (for now). It was a really interesting experience. We had some tacos and hung out at the beach. The drive back was easier, but still long.

September: Went to Providence for our 4th anniversary. Got tattoos (yes, plural). Saw the firewater festival and that was pretty cool, but I don’t know that I’m anxious to go back to RI anytime soon.

Got to fly out to PAX West the weekend after. More Seattle time. More games. So many dragons. Pretty cool experience, glad I went.

One of my close friends started work with me. It’s nice to have new common ground with someone from my past.

Also got to see my favorite internet family the McElroys perform at an absolutely beautiful theater in Brooklyn. Lin Manuel Miranda and John Hodgeman showed up. Blessed.

October: NYCC. Coming full circle for my first year at ReedPOP. Had a moment where I lost the game again. Always growing and learning, no time to keep feeling disappointed with how you performed. Got to watch my husband have a fan experience with 2/4 McElroys that made me unbelievably happy. Learned how to play beyblade from an enthusiastic 5th grader. Met some awesome volunteers for NYCC that made my weekend so much more enjoyable. Got to meet some of my favorite podcasters and hand out beers to TV personalities. For work.

Got to see my other favorite boys, Rhett and Link, perform in Huntington. We were the oldest people in the room for a while, but that meant no line at the bar. #kidatheart
Spent some quality time with my Aunt and Uncle eating good BBQ.

Back to Seattle for the last time this year, spending time with some of the best Harry Potter fans this girl could’ve dreamed of. Really cool to have those experiences with fans. People when they aren’t on the internet are pretty solid.

November & December: A belated birthday party for my husband, a family filled Thanksgiving, and a panicky “oh shit how will I finish my Christmas shopping” few weeks.

I traveled 9/12 months of this year. That’s incredible.
I learned a lot of valuable lessons and grew as a human being.
I’m still disappointed with a lot of my mistakes, but like I said before, it’s no help to dwell on them now. Learn and grow.
I was nominated for a bunch of awards at work. People are noticing me. It only makes me want to work harder.
I still have so much to do. To improve on. Things I want to accomplish in my position. I need to learn to negotiate. Ugh.

I want to continue to be creative on my own, and I think that was a big portion of my life that went missing this year. While my life was enriched by the amount of cool things I did at and through work, my poor poor blog remained untouched, my life goals were put a little bit on the back burner, and I spent more time worried about things than I did being positive and enjoying the ride. I used to actively say “I’m just riding the wave” and I think I need to channel more of that back into my day to day for 2018. I also think I need to spend more time being creative. Being on multiple teams at work, while it can be a little tough to balance, honestly gives me so much insight on how I could trade ideas back and forth from one project to another. Being that creative in my daily life will help me drive that innovation forward. I need to pay attention to me more.

Overall I’m happy. Really, pleased. I love my job. The people I work with are good people. My husband is a good husband. My home and family are good.

Life has 3 major buckets to it: Work, Life and Love. Not all buckets can be full at once, but if you can learn to balance the three, you will be in good shape.
My work bucket is at it’s tipping point certainly, but thankfully the patience from my life and love buckets are keeping me afloat. I’m good. I’m great, even.

I am learning and growing. And looking forward to 2018.

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