Hey everyone! Gosh oh golly, a lot sure has happened since this time last year. I thought it would be fun to do a little bit of a reflection and appreciation of everything and everyone in my life right now.
Remember my resolutions post from last year? Well, I am pretty impressed with myself; I actually followed through with all of them! Well, mostly. I still suck at French, but I’m giving it an OK effort. So there’s that. Je parle français terribles. Le sigh. But, my pronunciation est magnifique!
I think it’s pretty incredible how we can sometimes make things happen when we put our minds to making them happen. Which, is essentially called trying, right? I love it when it trying works. Obviously I haven’t tried very hard with learning French; it’s a beautiful language, I picked it up quickly, and I really enjoy speaking it… but time. You know, there is only so much. Plus I became addicted to Breaking Bad and Downton Abbey thanks to many a late night rendezvous with my roku, and that cuts time down considerably. This year’s resolution should be less internet tv, non?
Anyway, here are 6 of my favorite things about 2012. If you have a favorite moment of 2012 or a resolution that you are proud to have followed through with, please share in the comments! I love love love reading happy news.
1) My first cookbook was published!!
Back in June Fair Winds Press published my book Great Gluten-Free Vegan Eats. During the writing of the book I laughed, I cried, I and probably stress-freakout-yelled at my poor husband for no good reason more times than I’d care to admit. So seeing it printed and sitting on the shelves of bookstores, and on people’s bookshelves, and just out there, is an incredible feeling. It is truly a childhood dream come true.
Also! As if that wasn’t good enough, GGFVE was listed as one of the Top 5 cookbooks of 2012 by Vegetarian Times Magazine AND as one of the Top 10 Vegan Cookbooks of 2012 by VegNews Magazine. Wow. Wow. Wow. The amount of gratitude I have for all of you who are reading this post now, or who have purchased my book and said nice things is just too much to even try and explain in this post… but it’s there, and it’s big, and it’s wonderful. Thank you all for your support. Thank you Veg News, and thank you Vegetarian Times.
2) I finished my second book!
Well, “finished”, is subjective, as I am still working with the awesome team at Fair Winds with the final touches, but by gosh, it’s almost completely done and will be on shelves this Spring! More on that to come…
3) I got on board with Veg News Magazine as an Allergy Free columnist!
If you’re looking for allergy friendly fare, Veg News Magazine now has you covered. I’ve been a fan of Veg News since I was a wee vegan, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to be contributing to the magazine with recipes 100% free of the top common food allergens. My first article debuts in this month’s (Jan/Feb 2013) issue shown up above. Go getcha one!
And, I also had a good time helping to create their Ultimate Vegan Thanksgiving Feast (Nov/Dec 2012) feature along with two of my favorite vegan chefs, Nava Atlas and Ayinde Howell, who I admire and adore. Gorgeous photography and food styling by Kate Echle.
4) I found myself in the city.
As many of you know, my family and I trekked 500 miles east and relocated from the rural-ish landscape of Ohio to Philadelphia, PA in late 2011. And in the little over a year that I’ve been here, I have found myself reborn, if you will. I had no clue that I was such a city slicker at heart, but I’ve never felt more at peace than I do here in Philly. Luckily, my husband and kids feel the same way. We love the city!
And we really adore the big city. I also fell madly in love with NYC (shh…don’t tell Philly!) and found myself visiting there quite a bit over the course of this past year. Friends. Mentors. Food. Fantastic memories. New York is simply fabulous.
I can’t say that I really miss those cornfields I grew to know so well back in Ohio–although I dearly miss my family and friends who are surrounded by them. Cornfields seriously encompass everything where I come from. It took me all of 30 years, but I finally realized that I much prefer the fast click of my shoes on city sidewalks to driving (forever and ever!) down country roads.
This conglomeration of tiny towns is where I grew up and pretty much where my entire family lives. Those green patches? Corn. And soybeans, of course.
It is fun to visit though…
5) I went on my very first TV show!
I was so lucky to have the opportunity to not only meet, but cook with the ultra talented and inspirational Julieanna Hever on her new TV show “What Would Julieanna Do?”. Talk about an awesome time. I had such a blast, and Julieanna is even more gorgeous in real life than in all those pictures and videos she’s in. Both inside and out.
6) I Got Back to Nature and Upped My Healthy*
This year I took stock of my many bad habits, and tried to weed them out one by one. Some were petty and some had a pretty big impact to my health… and some I’m still happily holding onto (special shout out to sugar and red wine! ). But, there are a few things I’m particularly proud of.
I started to brew my own Kombucha (highly recommended to those of you who are hooked on the booch, and don’t wanna break the bank), and Hennaing my hair (if you’ve followed this blog for a while, you may have noticed my hair color changes on the regular. It’s true, I love change… just now I’m doing it with ground up henna leaves rather than the chemical bomb I was so terrifyingly accustomed to), and I even finally started yoga!** I also upped my running milage. Even though I’ve been running for over 8 years now, I could never get past 5 miles in one run. Ever. This year though, I began long distance running and now I can easily go 15 miles straight. Which, to me, is crazy. And awesome. I registered for my first 1/2 marathon in April with plans to do a whole 26er by the end of this year (probably the Philly Marathon or NYC. Either would be phenomenal).
2012 was amazing, and I can’t wait to see what this year brings. I don’t have any resolutions for this year… other than me wanting to really get familiar with yoga, run a marathon, and write another book. And that internet tv thing. I guess those all totally count.
Happy New Year, everyone! May it be filled with joy and love and inner peace.
*Spoiler: I’m going to begin a series this year on Manifest Vegan highlighting a few of these said items and some other fun tricks I’ve picked up over the years–and for the un-initiated, I’ll share my thoughts/experiences in case you’d like to try some of them out too.
** Okay, well I only started doing yoga hardcore yesterday (I know!), but I committed to the idea well over 6 months ago. Plus, it happened before I made this list, so it counts. By the way, I am already head over heels for yoga.