- January didn't start off awesome. It was nearly the end of the month when we received the news that my uncle, Donald, passed away. He was in very bad health -- I honestly didn't think he would make it as long as he did. I spend my summers in Florida with this guy. He taught me how to ride a 4-wheeler and pick fruit with the best of them. I still wait for him to call out of the blue just to say hello. It's unreal that he's actually gone.
- I don't know if this is buzz worthy, but we got a really bad snow storm in February and were literally snowed in for 2 weeks! I missed an entire 2 weeks of work, it was insane!
- Now for one of the most heartbreaking times of the year. In late February, our sweet Sally became so ill that we had to have her put down. We still kick ourselves that we didn't do it sooner. Rat lovers, animal lovers in general, know how hard it is to let go of your furry friends.
- This brings me to my next subject, losing our other 3 rattie girls. We had Melissa and Chelsea put down in the same day, Emilia made it a couple more months before she passed away in her cage. I can't even begin to talk about them. Losing them all was 4 separate and unbelievable heartbreaking times. It's never easy losing an animal, each one holds a very special place in my heart and each one of them always takes a piece of it when they go.
- So far 2015 is sounding like a super depressing year. Lets talk about something GOOD for a moment. After losing our girls, we knew it wouldn't be long before we added new additions to our brood. That's where Leo and Louie come in. I don't know what it is, but it seems with each passing year and each new rat that we adopt, they get sweeter and sweeter.
- Lets see, I guess my aunt's back surgery needs to make the list. I'm really, really close with my aunt, so you can imagine how difficult her surgery was for me. Luckily she did amazingly well and healed up in no time!
- I guess this is something to remember, but LaVaughn and I tried sushi for the first time this year. That's something I NEVER thought we would do. Aside from it being a kind of crappy sushi bar, it was a decent first try.
- Now for one of the most exciting things of the year... our new car! I still can't believe it sometimes, but we had a gorgeous 2011 Chevy Impala! It's been an amazing ride, one I feel so blessed to have. And come on, it's a Chevy!
- July 1st probably stands out the MOST! LaVaughn and I traveled to Mount Pleasant, Iowa to witness our best friends, Doug and Kyan, get married! LaVaughn was the witness (they only needed one other) and I was the wedding photographer. We almost opted out of going due to how far away it was, but we made it happen by spending the night in a hotel the day before. Definitely one of the most memorable and exciting things ever!
- Speaking of Doug and Kyan, we got to spend the day with them in September -- we even got to hang at their house for a while! This was a triple threat of exciting days... We got our BFBB boy and Creme Mosaic girl that day! Both were being flown in, which was super stressful. Thankfully my lovely, Doug, drove us to the airport and back twice. I love him.
- I know this isn't really anything, but we got Una spayed this year and it was incredibly heartbreaking. We have unusual attachments to our cats, so parting with her for 2 days is just too much. At least it's done now -- no more heat cycles!
- One last awesome thing that happened this year -- I won a photo contest! This wasn't a small contest either, it was a contest held over 4 different Facebook groups with thousands of members! Mind you not everyone entered, but still. It was exciting and something to be proud of.
Now it's the time we've all been waiting for! What exactly DID I accomplish on my bucket list this year?? I kept my Bucket List fairly simple this year, so my accomplishments are small
What I accomplished:
- Starting my photography business. Yes, I said it! I am now the proud owner of Megan Pritchett Photography! Before you get too excited for me, it's just in the beginning stage. I'm still putting together my portfolio, but hey, at least I have it, right? I even got to do my first OFFICIAL photoshoot this year! It wasn't a paid shoot, considering they're basically family, but it was a shoot all the same. I also have a few other small shoots, plus Doug and Kyan's wedding -- which was amazing! So I guess it's safe to say I did partially accomplish this. I wanted to start my photography business and I did just that. Yay me!
- Buying a prime lens. I was lucky enough to be able to do this in late June. I haven't set it down since I picked it up out of the package. My 50mm 1.8g is one of the best things that's ever happened to me.
- Using my camera in full manual. Check! I honestly don't remember the last time I used auto? It was back in January sometime. I've finally grasped the basics of my cameras setting and can now use them all to my advantage. Whoop whoop!
- Project 365. I can say this with honor... I DID IT!! I took a picture every single day this year! Some were on my phone, some were of something horrid as a worst case thing, hell, some were even of me! But hey, a picture is a picture and I took one every single day this year. And because of that, I feel unbelievably accomplished. Now I just need to get them all uploaded before midnight!
- Traveling. I set the bar low when I said I wanted to go to the zoo this year, which didn't happen. When we hung out with Doug and Kyan all day we did drive past the zoo. I saw the sign and everything! I know that doesn't count, so I can't check going to the zoo off of my list.
Now, what you've all been waiting for. What exactly IS on my Bucket List for 2016?
- Photography. Of course I would start with that! I want to actually get paid o 2016 for doing what I love. I just need a few more shoots for my portfolio before I can start advertising my services. This is the front runner for everything that I want to accomplish in the coming year.
- Buy a new (better) camera body. Possibly a new lens, but I'm perfectly content with my 50 for now. My camera body is having shutter issues, so I really need to replace or upgrade before I start doing anything on a super professional level.
- The Walking Dead Comics. I want to own an read ALL of the volumes! I have volume 1-8 and I've read 1-6. I know it's a silly thing to want, but I really want to own them all and be completely caught up on everything that Kirkman has written. Reading these comics has become a passion of mine, something I look forward to every day. It's something small and hopefully something I can accomplish.
- Project 365. You heard it here first! I've struggled to take dynamic and professional pictures this year, but I've taken a picture every day. It's something I'm used to now and something I'm not ready to give up yet. Here's to Project 365 2016!
- I know this will probably be another fail, but I still want to travel. I honestly don't care where I go at this point, I'm just leaving it open. I want to go to the zoo, still, so let hope that actually happens this year.
- I'm going to be brave with the last item on my list... get a tattoo! I don't have one, I've always wanted one, so I'd really like to make it happen this year. LaVaughn and I have always wanted to go in together and get a tattoo. I think 2016 will most definitely be that year.
I raise my glass to you, 2015. You've been good, a little sad at times -- hell, there was even a couple time that I wanted to throw in the towel for good. Somehow you allowed me to prevail and for that, my hat is off to you.
Here's to 2016 and all the good that is has to offer!
Happy New Year, everyone!