Today is the day, the big 27! My morning started off perfectly with a sweet smile and a "happy birthday" from Matt and a million emails, texts, and FB messages. Because I'm a big fan of reflection (and because I did this post last year and loved it) I'm celebrating 27 by taking a look back at all the things 26 threw my way.
I celebrated my 26th birthday with some of my best friends at a Texas vineyard and had a blast sipping wine, nibbling on fancy cheese, and laughing till my face hurt.
I spent the year with some fabulous students and tearfully said goodbye as we all moved on. But not before a celebration and some obsessive picture taking :)
Matt and I flew to Arizona to see his family and celebrate his birthday before our big cross country move.
The biggest adventure of 26 was certainly our move to Chicago! After two full cars, a jam packed U-haul, and two and a half days on the road, we arrived in our new home!
Matt and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary together. (I can't believe we're already coming up on our second, eek!)
We explored Chicago and fell in love with our new home. The Windy City is so beautiful and I'm constantly pinching myself to see if we really live here.
I fulfilled a long time bucket wish list to see Sarah McLachlan in concert. It was beyond amazing.
My little brother flew back from Spain and came to see me in Chicago! My love affair with picture taking at The Bean was already in full swing :)
Matt and I traveled back to our grad school stomping grounds so he could get his university ring and I could propose my dissertation. Success on both fronts!
We experienced a true fall, and I fell head-over-heels in love with the season. We went apple picking, and it became one of my top 3 favorite things we've done since moving to Chicago.
Our best friend Miguel came to visit and we celebrated his birthday with our first trip to the Lincoln Park Zoo and an insane amount of good Chicago food.
Matt's sister Julie and her family came to visit us, and we got to do one of our favorite things, play tour guide!
We spent Christmas in Chicago with my family and had our first white Christmas in years. It was one of the best Christmases I've ever had and having my family in Matt and I's new city was the best present of all.
We survived our first Chicago winter complete with a blizzard and 2+ feet of snow!
Prayers were answered as Matt landed a full time position in Chicago. Best news of 26 was certainly the fact that we get to make Chicago our long time, permanent home. We celebrated and continued to say "Oh my gosh, I can't believe we get to stay here" all throughout dinner :)
After completing a million applications, interviewing all over the place, and enduring way too many hours of "what if" stress, I found out that I matched for an internship position at an incredible spot. Blessed is not even the word. One step closer to those three little initials!
My brother came back to Chicago for a spring break visit, and like any obsessive big sister, I was thrilled to have him in town and spoil him Chicago style.
To say 26 was a year of blessings is an understatement. I also learned a lot about sacrifice, conquering fear, and trusting God's plan. Throughout it all, I've been surrounded by incredible people (including you!) who have supported and encouraged me. And honestly, that is the very best birthday present a girl could ever ask for! Thank you for the bottom of my heart.