Random Musings

Goodbye, Old Year! You were loved…

My Year in Review from mid-September 2015 to October 31, 2016

Every year, I consider October 31st my New Year’s Eve and November 1st my New Year’s Day. To me, Halloween and El Dia de Los Muertos are so special and personal that my trail of marigold beacons end and begin here. To act as Witness to this wonderful-and-heartbreaking-and-Bucket-List-achieving year, I took inventory in Jack Canfield-style. (Yes, I know starting in September makes it more than a year, but the events in Sept/Oct of last year set the stage for this year. Since I didn’t document last year, I embrace them in this list.)

While my 2016/2017 year looked full of exciting travel with a dozen writer’s events, seeing a Broadway show, and yes, I took a motherfucking trip-of-a-lifetime to India, I did all of this while nursing a broken heart over the death of loved ones, the death of a relationship, and the difficult decision to put some goals on hold. It was a year of staying busy, contemplating, healing, learning, and building.

As I set my intentions for the upcoming year, I know there will be very little travel or attending events. It has all been carefully crafted this way in an effort to conserve both financial and emotional resources. With that being said it is going to be an amazing year to CREATE!!!!!!!!!!!! All of the energy I absorbed from the Universe, I am now ready to release!

And here it is in no particular order…

Life-Changing Events

  1. Left my manufacturing job to return to art full time (four days ago!)
  2. Vowed not to take any more commissions or make sales until Tarot is complete
  3. Decided to wait to purchase my dream home
  4. Ended 10 year relationship
  5. Attended funeral of step-uncle
  6. Attended funeral of step-brother
  7. Went to India for three weeks

Not Life-Changing but Low Points

  1. Hurt knee before step-brother’s funeral (which left me in pain while I was in India)
  2. Sick after returning from India (just exhausted from traveling! Not sick from India!)
  3. Had hives for six weeks
  4. My car was sideswiped and in the shop for a week
  5. Scott Dinsmore of “Live Your Legend” died climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

Travel, Adventure, Friends, Family

  1. Met with cousin/coach twice
  2. Visited another cousin after several years
  3. Visited aunt & uncle after several years
  4. Renewed Passport
  5. Attended El Dia de Los Muertos Celebration at Cloverdale Cemetery
  6. Spent my 40th Birthday at Holi in India
  7. Watched a wedding party from balcony in New Delhi (greeted by fireworks on my first night!)
  8. Visited the Taj Mahal at Sunset and again at Sunrise *swoon*
  9. Visited a Jain Temple in Ranakpur
  10. Had a Vegan Birthday Cake in India courtesy of the Muse Juice Tour Group
  11. Given a naturally shed antelope horn – Thank you Angi & the Universe
  12. Saw a Bollywood Show at the Kingdom of Dreams
  13. Took scary Rickshaw tour through tiny streets in Delhi
  14. Took boat ride in Udaipur Lake “Venice of the West”
  15. Played “Sari, Cow, Rickshaw” in India (like Slugbug but we made an Indian version)
  16. Had a cooking lesson with an Indian Family
  17. Stayed at Manvar Camp in heart of the Great Indian Thar Desert
  18. Cried as I met elephants and camels only renewing my conviction to love, not ride, animals
  19. Bought a Sari in India
  20. Visited Forts and Palaces of India
  21. Watched an Indian Puppet Show
  22. Visited Vrindavan where Krishna spent childhood
  23. Saw “The Color Purple” on Broadway in NYC
  24. Walked through Times Square
  25. Ate at Veg Life in NYC
  26. Tried BBQ 4 Life Vegan Menu
  27. Spent/survived (LOL) week over the summer with my niece, brother, and SIL
  28. Moment of Zen with Selene the Sloth
  29. Started documenting Family Tree
  30. Drove Mini-SUV while my car was in the shop (not something I’d buy, but it sure was luxurious!)
  31. Treated myself to see Crimson Tide in the movie theater! (May not seem like a big deal, but I rarely go to theaters!)

Health, Personal Growth, Classes

  1. Read 16 Books during breaks and lunches at work. Not a large number, but it’s a start!
  2. Attended all five workshops through the Idaho Writer’s Guild for the 2016 Series
  3. #1: Michael Brent Collings -“Finding Laughter in Horror, Horror in Laughter, and Thrills a plenty”
  4. #2: Eilis Flynn – “Stirring the Plot: Make your Story Work, No Matter the Genre”
  5. #3: Elaine Ambrose “Write Funny Now” & AK Turner “Sharpening Pencils and Wit”
  6. #4: Amy Allgeyer & Kate Kae Myers “Children’s Literature: Writing, Revising, and Submitting for the Middle-Grade and Young-Adult Markets”
  7. #5: All Day Workshop with Robert Dugoni – “Advanced Fiction Writing – How to Write a Bestseller”
  8. Attended Cabin Workshop with Elisabeth Sharp McKetta for “Submitting for Publication”
  9. Attended Idaho Writer’s Guild Workshop with Elisabeth Sharp McKetta for “Setting as Character”
  10. Attended Start-Up Grind Event with Illustrator Steve Moore
  11. Flew to Napa Valley for Elizabeth Gilbert’s “Writing, Truth, and Community” Seminar
  12. Drove to Bend, OR for the Deschutes Public Library Author! Author! Series with Elizabeth Gilbert
  13. Met Elizabeth Gilbert as she listened in on my experience with my Praying Mantis Prophet
  14. Took six week “Memoir Workshop” with Stacie Rice
  15. Attended all day event – “TedxBoise Talks: Reframing Radical” at Egyptian Theater
  16. Attended five “Live Your Legend” meetings
  17. Invested in therapy after break-up of 10 year relationship
  18. Participated in five week “Awakening Prosperity” Seminar with Jack Canfield and Dawa Tarchin Phillips
  19. Completed two rounds of Oprah & Deepak Chopra’s “21 Day Meditation Challenge”
  20. Tried Matcha Tea
  21. Had my first full body massage in Napa Valley
  22. Worked through “The Success Principles” by Jack Canfield
  23. Did online “10 Day Transformation” by Jack Canfield
  24. First year I attempted National November Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) – I wrote approx. 15,000 words while working 50+ hours a week, grieving a break-up, traveling to two Writer’s Workshops, and having family in town over Thanksgiving. Respectable first attempt!
  25. Posted about India Trip in Morbidly Adorable Travelers Group on Facebook
  26. Made Lifetime Goal List
  27. Got a library card! This is so exciting!!!!!!!!! Unlimited resources!
  28. Took advantage of free Wellness Visits through health insurance
  29. Quit my full-time manufacturing job (a few days ago!)

Art, Writing, Business

  1. Finished Tarot Painting – 9 of Wands
  2. Initiated Registration of Morbidly Adorable Trademark
  3. Registered alternative website domains for MorbidlyAdorable.com
  4. Started New Website with Divi
  5. Inaugural post of “Girl with the Octopus Heart” Blog
  6. Wrote “Child-Size Chopsticks”
  7. Wrote “Here’s Not Here”
  8. Submitted story to Creative Nonfiction – “Child-Size Chopsticks” (magazine decided not to publish the book, but I’m glad I submitted anyway)
  9. Submitted to online publication Kaleidoscope – “Child-Size Chopsticks” (Accepted my publication then declined it. This was an exercise in WTF?!)
  10. Submitted to Chicken Soup for the Soul – “Tiny Prophet” (still awaiting response)
  11. Created three fashion worlds for Triune
  12. Created Vegan Travel List
  13. Spoke with Starshine Arts after four years
  14. Created New Business Cards through Oubly


  1. Maintained 50+ hours at work each week to pay off the following responsibilities:
  2. Paid off Car
  3. Paid off Debt
  4. Paid off Trip to India
  5. Exceeded 800+ Credit Score (I know it’s tacky to talk finances, but this is badass!)
  6. Approved for a home loan (thrilling even though I decided to push back buying a house)
  7. Saved enough for a Ramen Budget and a Library Card while I go back to painting full-time
  8. Donated to ASPCA for 6 months (would love to and will do more in the future!)

My goals for November 1, 2016 to October 31, 2017

  •  Achieve 50,000 words for NaNoRiMo (starts tomorrow!)
  • Paint 52 Tarot Paintings
  • Read 52 Books
  • Meditative Ritual every day
  • Complete the Benson Family Tree

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