twentieth year of life. { 2015 }

new year's has never made much of a difference for me. probably because my birthday is just a week later and that's where the looking back at the memories and looking for what's ahead comes.
twenty. I have a lot of memories. the twentieth year of my life was full of new and unexpected things. full of wonders. traveling. growth. art. love. trust. spontaneity. fear. gratitude... those were the things coming to my mind first as I looked back. the year where I started to learn the most important lessons of self-acceptance and self-care. and the year where I looked at who I want to be and what I want to do and set out goals to pursue. the year where I made scary choices of letting go and putting trust into the unknown future. the year where I stopped holding onto things, grabbing onto them to have them under control, but started learning to let God be in control instead. and the year where I learnt that I know little about Love.  the one thing I thought I knew. but I don't really know the true meaning of the word. Love. all that it contains. the simplicity and complexity of love. slowly I started learning.
there were so many little memories and moments worth remembering but here are some of the big things that got captured, and that were some of the biggest parts of the twentieth. or at least the ones I just throught of.

it was the year that I was not in high school for any part of it anymore. but in college. growing in my creative process. spending months working on continuous projects and presenting my soul in an artwork and exhibiting it in galleries. it wasn't always easy, but I've grown and did more than I thought possible for me, and that's what's important.

I hosted a charity thrift store with my awesome sister and lots of amazing friends who helped. it has been my dream for a while to do that and spread the word about sweatshops that our clothes comes from and I was so excited to see that idea come to life with some amazing people joining in. and it was way better than any of my expectations.

I came back to my second home in California almost two years after I said my goodbyes. and I spent precious time reconnecting with my second family, dear friends, and finally went on other than skype dates with my best friend, Joshua, and fell in love. fell in love all over again with this place and its people.

we got an additional member of the family, named her Emma, and spoiled her beyond repair. she's brought lots of laughter and smiles into our home. and ruins all of our efforts of not becoming hugely attached to animals.

spent the summer showing my Czech home to my dear Joshua. we made memories hiking up mountains in the Austrian Alps. and we kept growing to know one another more and more, falling in love, dreaming of the future, worrying about the future, trusting God with the future.

witnessed the start of forever for my best girlfriend and the love of her life. standing by her side and tearing up as they made their vows and became one. laughing the day away in the presence of very special people. (and I caught the bouquet!)

went back to the memories of this wonderful place, the cabin, my childhood, and shared it with another person. coming here is coming home.

spent a very special quality time with my loving parents throughout the year with both of my sisters gone, boyfriend on the other side of the world, and friends spread across the planet, they became my closest friends I could share everything with.

said several hard goodbyes to the kindest heart, unsure of the future, months full of letters and skype calls, and counting down the days until another hug.

started shooting on a film camera that Josh got for me.
became a part of and captured three beautiful weddings full of treasured memories. and once again realized how passionate I am about capturing important moments of life for people. there's nothing quite like that.

!!! found out I'm going to be an aunt !!! <3 

jumped in the paddles of Amsterdam, reunited with my sister after three months of her being away. and fell in love with this beautiful city.

visited my lovely Drabek in Liege, Belgium and spent days catching up, laughing, crying, and getting sick. she's one special friend, and I'm thankful we manage to stay close despite the distance.

went to Maui, Hawaii to meet Josh's grandparents and back to California, Lake Tahoe, and finally SLO. breathed the warm salty air and watched sunsets. became part of Josh's family during this november trip and felt so loved and welcomed and thankful. 

on december 5th I said yes to a forever with this wonderful guy and the kindest heart I know. I got engaged ! <3 few lines can't contain all the feelings and thoughts on this.

got surprised by Josh coming for Christmas break. and felt so blessed to have the whole growing family together for a few days. felt fully loved and taken care of by my dearest. and started learning what loving selflessly really means.

it was a good, good year. so beautifully handcrafted by the loving God. the twenty-first might be even bigger, and better. I can hardly wait to see it unfold! grow a little, care more, love better, breathe deeper, smile bigger.

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