Before tomorrow we must reflect on yesterday. If we don’t remember our mistakes we cannot learn from them, if we don’t remember our growth we cannot continue, if we don’t remember our smiles we cannot be grateful. Let us be in the moment, recognize it for what it is and make the choice of how we will recall this day.

2015 was filled with travel

Sitting in the back of my parent’s station wagon driving to Ocean City, MD I’d stare out the window at the houses passing by wondering who lived there, imagining the clever conversations they must be having, the interesting food they must be eating and the great belly laughs that filled their sunshine filled homes. I was ten years old and I romanticized what existed in these houses, believing the lives they led were filled with TV moments. I’m not ten years old anymore but the romantic in me is still thriving. Now my lens has shifted from the houses on Route 50 to the rest of the world. Whether driving through the charming town of Valladolid or walking the tourist filled Avenue des Champs-Elysees I am equally enamored with the history and the landmarks as I am with the daily routine of those that live there. (Smithsonian Folklife Festival 2015, posted August 15, 2015)

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2015 was filled with art

I love art. I love visual art and performance art; the Caravaggio hanging in the Galleria Borghese in Rome, the saxophonist in Central Park, the cow sculptures that grazed New York City streets in the summer of 2000, Frida Kahlo’s letters to her secret lover José Bartoli, the play “Astro Boy and the God of Comics” directed by Natsu Onoda Power, “The Goldfinch” by Donna Tart. Art is what makes me feel more than me, more than a software sales professional, more than a mother living in the suburbs of Northern Virginia. Art connects me to something beyond my circumstance. When I find myself in a moment of art that moment is transformed from ordinary to memorable, adding nuance to the experience and settling itself deep down in the foundation of me.

I want to give my children a box full of crayons, with every color imaginable, so that they can create out of nothing, think beyond the lines and transform ordinary into art. (Make Art, Live Art! posted June 2, 2015)

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2015 was filled with friendship

When I was four I had an imaginary friend who only listened, never judged. When I was eleven I had friends that were cool, sometimes funny and riddled with self-doubt. When I was thirteen I had mild-mannered, reserved friends that allowed me to be brash, bold and obnoxious. When I was thirty five I had twenty two Mom friends that fulfilled a need but held no meaning. When its Spring we need our rain boots, in Winter we need a scarf, when we are fifteen we need sameness, when we are forty we need difference. Through all the seasons and fads we need understanding. I understand that you are bragging because you need acceptance, I understand that you are quiet because you are content, I understand that you are moving away because you need adventure and not because you don’t need me. I understand that today we are building a friendship founded in sameness and through understanding it will evolve to difference. (Art in the City, posted November 24, 2015)

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2015 was filled with family

I’ve lived an ordinary life. I haven’t won the lottery or an Oscar but I also don’t know what a prison or a rehab center look like. I’ve gone hungry because of my slim fast diet in college and the sporadic years throughout my youth and adulthood of discovering the secret to a flat stomach, not eating. The only scars I carry are on my left shin and left elbow from a bicycle accident when I was eight. (An Ordinary Life, posted July 6, 2015)

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2015 was filled with love

These words, so simple and natural to some, carry so much weight. These words express gratitude. When we say “I love you” we are in fact saying “Thank you for thinking I’m clever and talented and beautiful and always defending me against all those that don’t, please always stay, you are my cheerleader, my bodyguard, my comfort, with you I beam and radiate confidence.”

I exchange these words with my friends, including them in texts, emails and cards. Some embrace it and effortlessly and naturally repeat it quickly and often. Some are slowly graduating from “luv ya” to “love ya” to “love you” and will eventually find the right reason to say “I love you”. (“I Love You”, posted February 27, 2015)

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and gratitude

There are many things in life to be grateful for; that warm cup of coffee in the morning that allows you to resemble some form of an intelligent person, the delicious hug your child gives you when you least expect it, taking a sip of a smooth glass of Bordeaux while you look across the table at your friend’s laughing eyes, laying in bed next to your son reading “Nate” while he interrupts occasionally to tell you about something funny he did at school that day, trying on that new dress and seeing the reaction on your husband’s face and sleeping each night in a cozy bed of 500 thread-count sheets. (Grand Cayman, posted January 22, 2015)

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