Happy New Year

Goodbye 2013. It’s been good.

“Una año que viene y otro que se va.”

Translation: “A year that’s coming and another that’s leaving.” It sounds a lot better in Spanish.

This is a cliche blog post but I don’t care. There’s so much that has happened this year that I need to be thankful for; other things that are now a lesson learned, and others that have been a complete and nothing short of a blessing.

In no particular order, here are a few things that I wouldn’t like to forget. From the most minimal little surprises of life to the biggest changes my 2013 has brought, here are my unforgetable moments of 2013.

1. I am part of a Catholic youth ministry in the Bronx that also holds religious retreats for teens and young adults. For the first time since I’ve been there, I was asked to lead my first treat which was the ultimate blessing. I’ve honestly never felt God so close in my entire life. It was such a tangible feeling and such an honor to be picked. The day before the retreat was probably one of the worst days of the year but that didn’t affect my service. It was the most amazing weekend of my life and I’m so thankful to God for letting me live it.

2. This is going to sound a little weird but I got to see a dolphin. Before you start judging, know that I didn’t pay to swim with it nor was I expecting to see it. This is what happened. I went on a cruise in May and the entire time I was there I kept saying “I really hope I see a dolphin.” People kept saying that they saw other fish swimming along the boat but never a dolphin. I spent the entire trip without spotting anything. On the final day, we were already docked and my bff was getting dressed in the bathroom. Since we docked in Puerto Rico I was looking out the window into Old San Juan and I look down into the water and there it was! The dolphin was just swimming around looking for food I guess. I as soon as my bff came out of the bathroom it was gone so, of course, I sounded like a crazy person.

Regardless, it was a pretty cool thing to witness and just when I thought I wasn’t going to see one because the trip was over.

3. My birthday was something that I really didn’t want to celebrate because getting older is something that I would like to pause. I wanted it to mean something since I was’t thrilled about turning 29. This year, I raised money for charity:water. It wasn’t much but I gave up my birthday and raised $500 to provide clean water to people in underprivileged countries.

My sister, however, felt it in her heart that I needed to celebrate my birthday so she planned a bowtie and cupcake theme party. I love bowties and I love cupcakes. She invited a bunch of people and everyone wore a bowtie, which I thought was really sweet. After not wanting to celebrate my birthday, this was a perfect ending.

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4. Eliza turned 1! She’s my cousin’s daughter and such a little blessing to our family. She’s the cutest thing I’ve ever seen and I’m so happy we got to celebrate her very first year as she ran around the entire place with cake on her face and hands. My only wish is to see her grow into a wonderful woman, and I hope God allows me that.

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5. Moving out of my parent’s house was tough, and I still think it’s a little hard. My parents are definitely expecting me to go back asap, but this has truly been life changing. Mainly because I’m not spending my money aimlessly. I haven’t really been spending money at all unless it’s for my apartment or my car. It’s been challenging but nothing I can’t handle, and it has definitely made me better at budgeting.

6. I’m in a group chat with 7 other girls who I met from my ministry. Their friendship has been truly heaven-sent. We talk about anything and everything and we’ve all agreed that we keep each other sane. Our relationship with God has made our bond even stronger and it’s so nice to have a group of people who I can go to for anything and know that I won’t be judged. We always try to help each other out and I can’t be more thankful for each of them. I love my 8 in 1 group chat.

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So that is most of my year. It had its bad moments but most were really good. I, of course, wouldn’t be anywhere without my parents who have taught me how to be strong and independent. All my good qualities I owe to them. My sister has been my best friend. We fight a lot and sometimes I think I never want to talk to her again, but she’s been there for me through the toughest moments. When I first started writing this post, I wasn’t sure if I was ready to leave 2013. Now, I can’t wait for what 2014 will bring. I feel good things coming.

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