Let’s Toast to 2016!!!

Hello My Dear Darling Friends!

Grab your glass, mug (of your favorite tea or hot chocolate), or bottle and raise it up because we are toasting to 2016!!!  In my case I have a bottle of “Lagunitas Little Sumpin'”

Let’s take some time to reflect on the good, the bad, and the BEAUTIFUL!

January: A Rocky Start

On New Years’ Eve of 2015 I was driving home with a heavy heart.  My boyfriend had a job in a different city and we got to experience the Long Distance Relationship.  I was always missing him like crazy and would often cry myself to sleep.  On my way home, I decided to stop at the Mall for some retail therapy.

I stopped at Lush Cosmetics for the first time and bought myself some goodies.


Ummmm I almost conveniently left out the fact that I missed my exit for the first mall so I stopped at the 2nd mall, but they had a power outage and had to close (when does that ever happen?!?!)  Maybe I should have taken it as a sign right there and then to go straight home.  DON’T PASS GO just GO HOME AND SAVE YOUR MONEY$$$!!!

Instead, I proceeded onward to the 3rd mall which was open and I spent way too much money and even got taken by one of those kiosks that sells hair straighteners to you.  I think it was honestly a scam.  I went home and fried my hair because I was so excited about learning how to curl my hair with a straightener.  You live and learn, right?!?!

That evening I found out that my dad was in the hospital because his kidneys were failing.  It was heartbreaking and scary.  We almost lost him, but thankfully he was able to go home a week later.

Here is a link to one of my favorite January posts:


February: Dreams Do Come True

February was thankfully more lighthearted than January was.  At the end of the year I decided that I wanted to join a gym.  They only question was which one did I want to join?  After research and reading many reviews I decided to join the YMCA.  By February I was happy that my workout habits had stuck.

Even though I was missing the love of my life, I decided to start working on bettering myself.  I drank lots of peppermint tea and started focusing on me.  My sister was a great workout buddy and I had a good routine that consisted of lifting (YAY!), Zumba, and Mixxedfit!!!

I started writing a segment called: Workout and Word of the Day and it was a great way to keep me excited about working out and accountable!  It honestly worked like a charm!

Additionally, my boyfriend bought us a greenhouse!!!  It was always my dream to garden and that was my chance :).

I had my happy little helpers that made all the difference in the world :).

Here’s one of my favorite February posts:


March: Marching along and then…

So I was marching along in March growing in confidence everyday and feeling great in my skin.  My workouts were paying off tremendously and I felt a boost of energy and liked the way my clothes hung.  I was becoming addicted to working out!

It only takes one night to change EVERYTHING!

One stormy night on my way home from the gym, a pug followed me home.  He ran out in front of my car.  I looked around but couldn’t find his owner so I carefully pulled into my driveway and he followed me right into our home and made himself right at home.

Thankfully my sister was there and I told her the story and we both laughed.  I called my boyfriend and he was super excited.  He said, “I get to name him!”  I told him that I thought he might belong to someone…  At that point I was a totally and absolutely no doubt about it, CAT LADY!  I loved the independence of the felines and had no desire for a canine companion.  I was a busy cat lady with her own life to live.

I decided to head to the store to get Mr. Pug a leash as he played with my cats when I saw a lady walking around with an umbrella.  I asked her if she was missing a pug and she said that she was dog sitting for her sister and he ran off.  She was thankful that we found him and he did NOT want to leave…

Well, the next day, my boyfriend sent me a txt with a picture captioned: “Meet Rainbow Fury.”  And all of a sudden we had a brand new 3 month old puppy!  Just like that!  Like I said, it only takes 1 night;).

Life changed forever!  At first I was honestly a little bitter.  I was on a roll with my workouts.  I had found my rhythm and routine and did NOT want to give that up.  Instead of working out, I found myself caring for and training a brand new puppy.

If your life ever feels dull and monotonous and you feel like you would like to shake things up GET A PUPPY!  They will change your life for the BEST and you will ask yourself how your ever lived your life without one <3.

Now take some time to read: Breakfast of a Bad Girl IF you DARE!!!

April- Spring has Sprung and life just got HECTIC!!!

April was honestly a bit of a blurr to me.  I know that I was working full-time at the highschool AND going to school in the evening.  On top of that, I had full-time puppy duty.  That early morning school district job was cramping my style like crazy.

In school I took Statistics, Choir, and Musicianship.  Oh and I was deeply in love with gardening!

My sister and her boyfriend moved into our Master suite and I moved into the middle room.  I think it suited Ruby and myself well <3.

I had a handfull of fun posts in April here are a few:

My Little Piece of Paradise

April Showers Bring May Flowers

New Gym Nervousness

May: Get Your $hit Together

I was deeply unhappy with my job so one day, I quit.  My boyfriend was completely supportive of me, thankfully.

I feel blessed that I was able to focus on school and take myself out of an atmosphere that was zapping me of creativity.

“When you stop growing it’s time to get going!”

I was also going through some challenges with my household and the prospect of getting new tenants was stressful.  It is hard to find good tenants that you can trust.  This was definitely a month of change and deep breaths.

You know you want to read:

Get Your $hit Together!!!

June: Organize My Life

June was full of changes.  My sister and her boyfriend moved out and we successfully found a good tenant so that meant that I got to move down into the office.  I stood up for myself and as a result I landed a job with our business. I was thrilled to help out with my 1st website.

Here’s the first website that I helped build: Check out Arnies!

The changes in my life were taxing and I was a ball of emotions so I decided to embrace the waves of change by deliberately decluttering and making positive changes 🙂

I believe that I started doing daily prompt posts in June:


July: Nearly My Favorite Month of the Year!!!

July was ALL about self-care.  I got to go to the spa multiple times and one week Christopher bought us 2 massages in one week.  I also got to go bra shopping and overall just enjoy myself.

I started going to the library and discovered my favorite book: “Tiny Beautiful Things”

I got some shocking news that month and had some heartache to heal from, but we made it through.  My boyfriend and I also got to move back into our Master suite!  Oh and Christopher bought me new running shoes!!!

Yeah, July was pretty amazing!!!

Here is a fun post about the 4th of July:

4th of July Through the Years

Yeah, I would definitely do July all over again if I could!  It was a DAMN good month!!!  Xoxoxo.

August: August was exciting too and we made our dreams come true!

August was another emotional month.  We had tenants who got a new puppy.  I was very skeptical and it turns out that I was on to something because their puppy ended up having parvo and she gave it to Ruby.  They were thankfully able to find a vet who took their puppy and promised to care for her.

We could have lost Ruby, but we were thankfully able to successfully treat her and nurse her back to health.

August is my birthday month and Christopher bought us tickets to NEW ZEALAND!!!!  We were actually planning on moving there for good…

In august I also discovered that Alleyjandra loves bubble baths.  That’s not typical of cats, but she is pretty AND AMAZING!!!

Someday soon I will elaborate on this lovely bubble bath story with kitty.  Please remind me :).

Here is my Birthday post!


September: We traveled around the world then back again.

September was thrilling because we made it to New Zealand!!!  It was a grand adventure with a crazy long flight.  We were going to move permanently, but we just couldn’t wait for our kitties to get shipped to us so we decided to come home and save up money to someday buy a house in New Zealand.

The good news is that we got our work visas approved.  I will elaborate on our New Zealand adventures more in the future.  For now, enjoy the pics!

Take some time to read:

Surprise I’m in New Zealand!!!

October: School Daze

I made it back right in time to start school full swing.  Computer Science Foundations felt way over my head, but I did my best.

We also decided to invest in our own home gym.  In addition I started getting in great shape again because I was working out everyday.

Here is an emotional post:


November:Illness and a screeching halt.  Oh, let’s build a yurt!!!

I got really sick then fell pretty far behind in school.  It was super stressful.  I was literally out of commission for nearly 3 weeks.  In the meantime, my boyfriend decided that it was a good idea for us to build a yurt.

So I got excited about it too!  And overindulged in “The Gilmore Girls.”  It was perfect timing because “A Year in the Life” happened to come out that month… WHO KNEW?!?!

December: Here WE Are!

After being sick forever and falling far behind in school I was honestly super depressed this month.  This was probably the most down I have felt in a long time.

I want to thank YOU, my readers, from the bottom of my heart for being so supportive and encouraging.  Your kind words gave me hope and have inspired me and have ultimately pulled me out of my funk.  I feel so blessed to know you all and I am looking forward to sharing future adventures with you.

Thank goodness the New Year is nearly here!!!

I don’t know if you could tell, but I started to run out of steam by the time I reached July.  It is 2:30 am so I guess I have a valid excuse.

Thank you for joining me on this journey through 2016!!!

I will see you tomorrow!!!  And now I shall head to bed!!!

Love, Joy, and Blessings Always,

Alana Xoxoxo

2 thoughts on “Let’s Toast to 2016!!!

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