2017 | A Year in Review

2017_collage

I loved seeing everyone’s ‘A Year in Review’ on their Instastories towards the end of 2017, as I’ve been doing these for the last few years here on my blog as a way for me to look back and reflect on the past year. However, seeing as it’s already mid-January, I’m a little late to the party in getting this post up.

jan5bday (1)
Taken on Jason’s birthday at the beginning of the month. We had a bunch of people over at our new place to celebrate!

That’s because my 2017 ended with Jason and I finally finding a place and moving in New Year’s Eve! The last couple of weeks have been an absolute whirlwind, but we’re slowly getting all settled in and I finally had the time to sit down and put together this post. I also decided to call this year’s post ‘A Year in Review’ instead of my usual ‘A Year in Pictures’, as I think it just sounds better.

Anyways, get comfortable because here we go!

I wanted to start off talking about the end of April/beginning of May, as it was a really emotional time for me. I had officially completed my undergrad, which was a huge accomplishment for me, and I felt on top of the world. And just a few days later, I was off to the Dominican Republic for a much needed vacation to relax and celebrate.

dominican_collage
I had an amazing trip to the Dominican Republic, which you can read about here.

IMG_4923However, while I was in the Dominican, my cat, Sweeney, got incredibly sick. Coming home to a weak, lethargic and unrecognizable cat in just one week was an absolute shock and completely heartbreaking for me. After a ton of tests, he was diagnosed with anemia—which was caused by a parasite—and he was also diagnosed with diabetes and FIV. Between the vet visits, all the tests we had done and everything we had to get for him, I racked up a ton of money in vet bills, which put a lot of stress on me financially. I ended up setting up a GoFundMe page, which showed me how amazing and generous people can be in a time of need—I can’t even begin to express how thankful I am to those who donated! I also am extremely thankful for my mom, who’s my absolute rock, and of course, thankful for Sweeney getting back to his happy and healthy self.

Here are some photos of him from the last few months!

sweeney_collage
So much love for my sweet, handsome boy.

Feeling like I needed a little getaway, Jason and I took a road trip to Owen Sound over the May long weekend to check out the numerous waterfalls in Grey County. Seeing all the beautiful waterfalls, whilst being surrounded by nature and breathing in the fresh air, was just what I needed.

DSC_0264
Enjoying the view at Inglis Falls.

June was a very exciting month, as it meant convocation! It felt unreal to graduate from one of the world’s most prestigious universities with honours and it was honestly just one of the happiest, proudest, and most wondrous days of my life.

DSC_0511

IMG_5453
All dressed up to celebrate Jimmy and Rosa.

Also in June, Jason’s dad married his longtime partner, and I was so happy to be a part of their special day!

Fast forward to the end of July, which is when I left my job of almost 7 years, which was both liberating and terrifying. Liberating because even though it was a job that had been so good to me, and one which I had learned and grown so much from, it had ran its course and it was time to cut the cord. Terrifying because I had been there for so long and because I have always had a job ever since I was 16, so it meant I was unemployed for the first time in my life. No longer having an income coming in was definitely scary, but it also really taught me how to become smarter with my money. It also made me a lot less materialistic, as I am definitely guilty of years of purchasing material items I don’t need in order to fill a temporary happiness. That has also been hugely liberating to breakaway from.

Over the summer, Jason and I spent quite a few weekends up north, camping at Algonquin and staying at friend’s cottages. I absolutely love being up north.

algonquin_collage

cottage_collage

I also went to Elora Quarry for the first time ever!

IMG_6421

In August, my best friend got married, and I couldn’t have been more honoured to be a part of her special day. This was my first time being a bridesmaid, so I was super nervous, but I was also so excited to be able to stand next to her when she said “I do”!

21369516_722899204569416_8245573971468161218_n
Photo by Nick Janzen Photography.
wedding_collage
Photos by wine.

And just one month before that, one of my other best friends got engaged in Italy! Which means I get to be a bridesmaid again—I can’t wait to stand beside another amazing woman on her big day!

21463375_10208797403606883_300144203036781452_n
Some of the gang at the National Bridal Show in September.

End of August was another emotional time for me, as we said goodbye to our home of almost 18 years, as my parents wanted to downsize and they also wanted to move out of our hometown. It definitely took some getting use to, but my parents are so happy in their new home.

In September, I volunteered at TIFF again (I opted out last year), and this year I worked with Industry. I scored free tickets to an advanced screening of the film Three Christs, which my mom and I went to, and Jason and I also got free tickets for the North American premiere of Brawl in Cell Block 99.

IMG_7042
Vince Vaughn and Don Johnson were literally sitting just a few rows behind us.

Other highlights from this year include:

Going to Niagara Falls twice—first, in July for Jenn’s bachelorette (which was hilarious and so much fun), and then with Jason for a belated anniversary (we’ve gone to Niagara the previous two years in the fall, so it’s sort of become tradition).

bachelorette_collage

niagara_collage

I also saw exhibits at the Royal Ontario Museum and the Art Gallery of Ontario.

IMG_3636
Chihuly at the ROM. Blown glass has never looked so awesome.
IMG_6926
Out of the Depths: The Blue Whale Story at the ROM.
fromthefaraway
Georgia O’Keeffe at the AGO. You couldn’t take pictures at this exhibit, so here’s a photo of From the Faraway, Nearby, which I bought a print of (photo from the AGO website).
IMG_7485
Guillermo Del Toro’s At Home with Monsters at the AGO. I went on opening day (which also happened to be my birthday), and it was the best birthday gift ever.

I also got to see my third Banksy in person!

IMG_4524

I saw some wicked shows.

IMG_5762
Silversun Pickups and Third Eye Blind at Echo Beach.
IMG_6096
Jimmy Eat World and Incubus at Molson Budweiser Stage (still weird to say). Incubus is one of my favourite bands, so I was so excited to finally see them live!
aof_collage
And I also finally got to see Alexisonfire live at the Danforth Music Hall!

IMG_5945

I also attended a few blogger events, and I hope I get the opportunity to attend more in 2018! I attended the Revlon ColorStay All Day Event at The Loft at Baro. Gigi Gorgeous was there, and it was such a fun event. I also got to go to the NYX Cosmetics Canada Supernatural Event at The Stirling Room. Lots of food, drinks, and I got my aura read, which was both cool and insanely accurate. I also attended a High Tea and Press Event at the Globe and Mail Centre with Maye Musk and Lisa Corbo, which was so lovely and intimate. It was put together in honour of the highly anticipated charity fashion show, which is held for the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre.nyx_collage

IMG_8822

In terms of my blog, I am over the moon with how many amazing brands I had the opportunity to work with this year! One of the biggest highlights was definitely being contacted by the PR team for Live Clean, as Live Clean is one of my favourite brands, which I’ve used and loved for years.

bblogger_collage

Unfortunately, I didn’t manage to grow my Instagram following as much as I had hoped this year. I feel like my account is at a bit of a standstill at the moment—no growth and steadily losing followers. I know a lot of people feel the same and are upset with the Instagram algorithm, which is really frustrating and discouraging. However, I seriously love my blog (which also got a much needed facelift this year!), and I love writing and creating content on here. At the end of the day, whether 5 people read my blog or 500, as long as I am satisfied with what I am putting out, then I’m happy! Having real people (other than my mom) read my blog and tell me they love it is just a wonderful bonus!


And there you have it, my ‘Year in Review’ for 2017! Hats off to you reading this if you actually made it the end. I hope your 2018 is treating you well so far and here’s to making 2018 the best year yet!

ellerow_signoff

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s