A Girl Named Leney


The Best Year Ever

I'm sitting here at my desk this morning reflecting on this past year, as most of us do around this time, and I really am overwhelmed with what a good year it's been.
To be honest I've actually had a hard last few weeks and remembering the good things hasn't come super easily. My work load for the holidays was one I really had a hard time keeping up with amongst other things and a lot of little and not so little things kept discouraging me.
I've definitely had my fair share of melt downs this season.
However, I've grown so much in this past year, which is made even more apparent when I look back at where I was this time in 2012. So much has changed, and though some of it's been really hard and not the most fun or completely painless, it's still been good. I wouldn't change a single thing about any of it.
Good or bad.
(Except maybe the fact that I didn't read a single book on this list... 2014 is going to be the year of the book worm. I'm just going to go ahead and declare that right now.)
And truthfully, there really has been more good than bad anyway.

In fact I had decided that I was going to speak this over my year, and I really think it came true.
2013 really was the best year ever.

So, in the spirit of reflection and recounting good times, here are a few favorite moments from this past year...

Tried out freelensing.
And now I can't get enough of it.
I do it too much actually.
Is there some sort of cure for this sort of addiction??

Spent a lot of happy weekends with lots of beautiful friends.
New and old

Speaking of friends Meagan and I had more than one or two grand adventures

Had many, many, many, manymany, successful photo shoots 

Tried out more than one or two new Richmond restaurants

Discovered a reason I love taking pictures

Found a new favorite quote

Did a Q&A post

Traveled to California, New York, Chicago, North Carolina, Georgia, Charlottesville, Williamsburg and a few other local cities and places

Realized how full and complete God's goodness is

Redesigned the blog

(which I didn't do the greatest job of posting for but that's okay)

Started teaching myself French.
Which didn't get very far.
So we'll be trying again next year...

Learned how let love quiet me, what perfect love is, which way to walk, how to be challenged, how invaluable mornings are, how to weather storms, what grace is, who I am, how to just be and few other things

Saw Best Coast and Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros in concert

Took a beach trip or two or three

Went sailing.
More than once.

Bought my dream camera

Shot many wonderful engagements

Shot six weddings on my own and second shot for seven more.
 Already have several more booked for next year and I couldn't be more excited!

Made some happy lists

Attended the first annual Bacon Festival

Sang a song. And made a video.

Got better at playing the ukulele

Had my pen pal of 5+ years come visit

Updated the shop

Watched a dear friend get engaged, then get married
(all of which I had the pleasure of capturing)

Was featured on Etsy's front page and Facebook page more times than I could keep track of

Shot a lot of film

Learned how to see the art in the everyday

Had to say some goodbyes to some very dear friends who moved away which was hard but now I have more places to have an excuse to visit

Was a counselor for a cabin full of some of the most beautiful girls I've ever had the pleasure of spending a weekend with

Got to be on the news

Met and became friends with a lot of really wonderful people 

Discovered what it truly means to be thankful

Celebrated turning 22

Reached over 1,000 likes on the Facebook page

Made my first girls and guys lookbook for the shop

Had the most profitable year with my business yet

Started sharing bits and pieces of my hometown RVA

Bought my dream lens

Participated again in the Bizarre Market

Had a very wonderful and perfect Christmas

Learned to cherish solitude, how to stick up for myself and speak my mind more, that I love routine, I have a mind like a lens, that I'm worth it, what the best way is to watch the world, that I love to write, that things are never ever as bad as they seem, how to dream bigger, how some things are just givens, and how there are many many things that can take you by surprise.
In the most wonderful way.

Bring it on 2014.

See past years in review...