2015/2016: a review/preview


Oh, 2015.  You were swell.  Where do I even begin with you?

  • I traveled to Kansas to meet missionaries at other Catholic camps around the country.
  • I participated in my very first March for Life in Washington DC. There were a lot of people there.  It wasn’t my favorite thing.  #IntrovertProbs
  • I went to Baltimore for a conference and I discovered the magic of Maryland crab and Miss Shirley’s.
  • I traveled around West Virginia to do youth nights and I realized that I kinda sorta like giving talks and testimonies.
  • I saw Matt Maher and David Crowder live for the first time. David Crowder is now definitively one of my favorite Christian artists and live acts.
  • I took Amtrak for the first time and I don’t know if I’ll ever do it again. Or if I do, I’ll reserve a space in the sleeper car.
  • I went to a traveling relic exhibition and now have a bunch of third-class relics of my favorite saints. I totally cried a little in the presence of the fragment of the Holy Lance that pierced Jesus’ Heart.  FEELS.
  • I got a spiritual mentor.
  • I fell into the Divine Mercy devotion and became BFFs with St. Therese of Lisieux and St. Faustina.
  • I consecrated myself to Mary!
  • I completed my first missionary year in West Virginia and discerned a call to a second year.
  • I spent my summer with the best people (Bishop Hodges summer staff!) and in the most beautiful of places (Colorado!). And with the best Colorado family, sampling the best Colorado craft beers.
  • I saw my very favorite band, U2, live in Chicago in July. BEST SUMMER EVER.
  • I attended my first state fair and saw my first black bear ALL IN THE SAME DAY. #WestVirginiaLyfe
  • I TURNED 25.
  • I visited Steubenville, Ohio a few times to see some summer staff friends and to see the incomparable Mike Mangione perform live.
  • I went to my first National Catholic Youth Conference where I saw Matt Maher again and totally waved at him outside Lucas Oil Stadium. And he waved back.  No bigs.
  • I made my acting debut in a promo video for my workplace’s summer camp program. It’ll premiere in the new year.  No fan mail, please.
  • I’ve started getting serious about discerning my vocation!
  • I went to Pittsburgh for the first time and ate at a fondue restaurant. It was fab.  Beer cheese is life.
  • I rekindled my childhood love for Star Wars just in time for the new movie.
  • I got my wisdom teeth out, in my first surgery ever. It was pretty low-key and recovery was easy.  But I did really, really miss tacos during recovery.  And food in general.
  • I’ve grown so much in my faith and my relationship with Christ. I look back on old blog posts and old writings on my Tumblr and I can’t believe how far I’ve come.

It’s been a big, beautiful, blessed year.  I kind of doubt that 2016 can top it.  But it has plenty of time to try.

Here’s what’s slated so far for my 2016!

  • I’m making a return trip to Washington DC for the March for Life (eek!) and to Baltimore for that same conference. And for Miss Shirley’s.  I’m going to eat ALL the Maryland crab.
  • I’m traveling around West Virginia again for a whole new series of youth nights with a whole new series of talks.
  • I’m going to bring a few changes to this blog that hopefully wind up being improvements! Stay tuned.
  • I’m going to get more intentional about building a following and community on this blog and social media. I’m excited.
  • I’m going to keep chugging along on my vocation discernment journey.
  • I’m considering applying for something called the GIVEN Forum, a conference for Catholic women. It looks rad.  And if I get accepted, it’s entirely funded for me.  YES PLEASE.
  • I’m moving on from Bishop Hodges. Or at least I’m pretty sure I am.  Things could always change.  But my second missionary year ends at the end of May, and I’m excited to see where God wants me next.


I hope your 2015 was blessed and that 2016 is looking even brighter.  Any favorite moments from the past year?  Give me a shout.  I’d love to celebrate ‘em with you!



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