As I reflected back on 2019, I realized so many amazing things happened. It’s easy for me to think of this as a crappy year after our last few months, but as I reminisced through pictures, I realized a lot of good things happened, too. There were definitely both highs and lows, but I was reminded how blessed I am to have the most incredible people in my life. For this post, I wanted to do a review of 2019, so I pulled the most important picture(s) from each month to share!
In January of 2019, I got my first gravel bike! For those who have been following along for awhile, you know that bikes were not something I enjoyed. Jake had gotten me two bikes prior to this one and things just did not go well. I kept falling off my road bike and I did not like mountain biking. We decided to try ONE more time. I’m so thankful we did. I LOVE this bike. SO much. I am playing around with the idea of doing a gravel race in 2020! Stay tuned…
In February of 2019, we added another pup to our family! Rhea-girl, you sure make our lives better!
In March of 2019, my precious niece, Eleanor, was born! Being an aunt is one of my favorite things; getting to watch Eleanor grow up has been such a wonderful experience. This girl is loved so much by her Aunt Chelsea and Uncle Jake!
In April of 2019, I had my worst marathon. I’ve only done two, so I don’t have much to compare it to, but in my 16 years of racing, this race hurt the worst – physically and emotionally. I wanted to quit from mile 15 on. I will never forget how my legs locked up. My muscles just stopped working. It was the weirdest thing. I kept stopping to sit on curbs to slam my glutes/hips into them to try to get my muscles to loosen up. It was awful. BUT, I finished. I definitely cried a few times during the end of the race AND once I crossed the finish line, but I didn’t quit. I think that’s part of the beauty of the marathon. It’s definitely a distance that demands respect. I THINK I want to attempt another in 2020…stay tuned.
In May of 2019, we moved into our new home! We love this place and cannot wait to make even more memories here.
Also in May of 2019, we celebrated our first wedding anniversary! Our wedding day will always be one of my favorites. I love doing life with this guy.
In June of 2019, I had one of the coolest experiences of my life. I attended a Trail Sisters Running Retreat in Boulder, CO. Not only did I travel by myself for the first time, but I went to the camp only knowing Gina, the founder of Trail Sisters. The retreat, as a whole, was one of the most exciting, inspiring things I have gotten to do. While there, I got to run with Courtney Dauwalter, who is an amazing ultra runner. I got to run 18 miles with her in the mountains. I still can’t believe it. Hands-down one of the best experiences.
In July of 2019, we went on our first beach vacation together! We camped in the van on our way to Gulf Shores, AL. It was such a fun week for us to just get away and enjoy some sunshine.
In August of 2019, I had to take time off from running due to an ankle sprain in November of 2018. It was the worst, but I rehabbed and slowly built up my running base. I am still dealing with the ankle a little bit, so I’m being careful, but I am SO grateful to be running with these girls (plus a few more) again. They all had long runs on this day in August and made a short loop in their routes so I could join them for 4 miles. It meant so much to me that they would do that – true running friends!
In September of 2019, I started my new job as an instructional learning coach AND turned 31. Jake sent me the most beautiful bouquet at school. It was a great birthday!
In October of 2019, I got a new car! I had been driving Jake’s Subaru since he got a new truck. I loved the Subaru, but had always wanted an SUV. Jake found a 2004 Lexus GX470 in amazing condition, which I was ecstatic about – hands-down my favorite vehicle!
Also in October of 2019, Jake participated in the Lineman’s Rodeo in KC with some guys from City Utilities. It was incredible to see what he does on a daily basis.
One of the hardest things happened in 2019 – my Grandma was diagnosed with stage 4 liver cancer. My sweet Grandma Carlene was one of the best people I know. Watching her decline was awful. I am so thankful for the time we got to spend together before she went to Heaven. This picture was taken in November of 2019.
Also in November of 2019, I ran Dogwood again. I did the 25k. While I was glad to be running trail again, I think I’m ready for a break from Dogwood. The race didn’t excite me like it usually does. I tweaked my bad ankle on a downhill, so I was pretty negative for most of the race. I also think my heart wasn’t in it – I thought about my Grandma a lot while running and I just wanted to be with her. I didn’t have the energy and motivation I normally do.
My sweet Grandma passed away on November 23, 2019. She was surrounded by her family, which is exactly what she wanted. Knowing that she is in Heaven now and no longer suffering made us all feel relief, but I know everyone is still grieving. The grief comes and goes – it hits me at the strangest times. I miss her, and I know a lot of people do. If you were lucky enough to know her, you know how special she was.
In December of 2019, we had my Grandma’s funeral and burial. I loved being able to see my family, but both events were hard. Her services were incredible, though, and I know she would’ve been so pleased with how they turned out. I love you, Grandma. I cannot wait to see you again.
Also in December of 2019, and actually THIS morning (12/31), Alex completed her 365 day running streak! We all met to run together to celebrate. There’s nothing quite like ending your year with a run with some of your favorites. Alex, I am SO dang proud of you!! Now enjoy some downtime!
While 2019 ended on kind of a crummy note, there were so many wonderful things that happened. I KNOW 2020 is going to be special. Take some time today to reflect on your year in 2019 – I enjoyed looking back on all of these memories.
I have also started to set some intentions for 2020. I don’t really do New Year’s resolutions, but I do like to be intentional about what I want my new year to consist of – I am glad to be back into running, but 2020 will consist of more strength training and recovery. I need both to continue running healthy! I also want to spend more time with our families. We have gotten to be around them more toward the end of this year and I have loved it.
I hope your last day of 2019 is a great one! Here’s to 2020!
Happy Tuesday, friends!