Goodbye, 2017

2017 was an interesting year. It was busy, for us. Fluid. Full of unsteadiness, financial insecurity, lack of routine. Lots of uncertainty. Change.

In 2017, I changed jobs four times. Four. I waited tables by day at Mellow Mushroom. I worked nights and weekends as a nurse in a group home for developmentally disabled ladies, working 12 days straight every other week. I then did questionable work for a brand-new assisted living facility that seemed a bit doomed for failure from the start. And now I'm working full-time (actual full-time, 36-40 hours, finally) for a different assisted living facility.

In 2017, my husband turned 30. I planned a surprise trip for him to Asheville, North Carolina, where we met up with his best friend, whom he hadn't seen since our wedding. It was a wonderful experience, and I was pretty proud of myself for pulling off such stealthy shenanigans.

In 2017, I chopped off twelve inches of hair and donated it to Children With Hair Loss, a goal I've had for years but have been too scared to do or too limited by my dyed locks.

In 2017, we struggled financially. We slashed our budget like never before. But through all of it, we didn't increase our consumer debt. Not even for Christmas. 2017 is the first year I have stayed within a cash budget and not gone into debt to buy Christmas gifts.

In 2017, I made new friends through my many, many jobs. I know people in Huntsville now, and that's a nice feeling. I also had the opportunity to meet up with my oldest of friends, Anna, my childhood and still BFF, twice this year. Seeing her is rare since she lives in Texas.

In 2017, I got rid of my leased Honda CR-V! No. More. Leasing. Cars. Ever. I now drive a nine-year-old hybrid with payments that are about half what the lease payments were.

In 2017, WE BOUGHT A HOUSE! We got to leave the third-floor apartment, and we now have our own space, our own yard. The homesteading dreams are being put into motion.

In 2017, I got paid for writing/blogging for the first time in my life. I received $15 for writing a book review, plus I made $12.90 from Amazon for being an affiliate blogger.

In 2017, spurred into action by one of the most politically tumultuous times in history, we got registered and voted.

In 2017, we shared more time with family. We went to birthday parties. Holiday dinners. Sometimes just to visit, because we're close enough for that now.

2017, I have mixed feelings about you. You held momentous, happy, life occasions amidst struggle and dissatisfaction. I'm thankful for your experiences, yet happy to move on and leave you behind.

Goodbye, 2017.

Hello, 2018.

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