I was home for the holidays and saw family, friends and strangers. I hiked in the California sunshine, ate burritos, mended some pants, went through boxes of school work and things from my all parts of my life and talked and listened and talked and listened. I sang an improvised four-part harmony of Amazing Grace at a jazz club in New York, went to the Brooklyn Museum, ate ramen, saw Hansel and Gretel at the Metropolitan, hiked the tallest mountain in Massachusetts, knitted, sang karaoke and ate all-you-can-eat sushi. All of this I did with amazing and inspirational people who mean a lot to me. That’s a pretty cool thing, I’d say. I dig them.

Although it doesn’t nearly match the depth of my appreciation, I want to dedicate a paragraph to the people I shared time with during my visit in the states. Damn, you people are cool. Sister, mom, dad, brother-in-law, old friends. I wish there was a way to shoot up permanent messages in the sky that can be seen all across the world so you all could know forever how much you mean to me, how much you inspire me, and as a constant encouragement that I believe so completely in what you do. I am so grateful that you are you and that you are fiery. Isn’t it marvelous that there are billions of people out there in the world and they each carry with them their own little world? Then those worlds collide and impact one another but still continue as their own world? And isn’t it cool that my world gets to be shared with your worlds, and that we choose to have our worlds collide?

Jeez. Wow. Time. Gah. Cool! This year I’m going to lead a choir through a fantastic organization. I’m also going to study part time so I have time to breathe and be a human for a bit. I’d like to give myself time to believe in what I do, make music for fun, sing out of joy for expression and not for the sake of performing. I’ve applied for a new job (!). There are many uncertainties but many budding plans and ideas. For example, cooling and focusing my jets a bit. How about that! Can I do it?!

2014 was another rich year of learning, exploring, piecing together the depth of history and experiences, stretching and retracting and meeting people, putting my active mind into perspective. I was accepted to the Royal Academy of Music in Stockholm. I visited Armenia, Italy (x2!) and Denmark through music/art. I fell in love and moved in with a loving partner. My grandfather passed away. I learned family history that drastically shifted my perspective and understanding. I sang a lot. I also laughed, cried, menstruated, created, talked, felt inspired, felt disappointed, listened and worked a lot. Pretty good!

Sorry for the list, but just like writing job applications and resumes it can be an important practice to go through what has actually happened, remember who has been a part of it, where I have taken myself and where I want to go. This year I am going to focus on practice. Practices of music, love, appreciation, intention, pleasure, centering myself, focus, creativity, opening and grounding. I have felt so muddled by expectations and ‘shoulds’ and I am ready to shed them. I feel like I’ve said that before, but with each year I put on and each layer I peel off I find the strength to do take it even further.

So, that is what I have to say after my last post in March! Hopefully it won’t be too long before I write again… Until next time!