I’m struggling to find words to describe 2016. It was a year of big losses (my grandfather and deciding to end our neverending infertility battle) and exciting highs (lots of visitors, a trip to Tahoe, and the National Park Service Centennial). The presidential election nearly sent me into a panic attack and I am saddened by the blatant disregard for human life here in the states and across the globe. It was also a rough year health-wise for myself and several of my loved ones. In the end, however, I’m making efforts to remember all the good that happened instead of fixating on the dumpster fire portions, lol. I put together a photo summary of 2016 below:
I lost my paternal grandfather. He is the only grandfather I have ever known. My other grandfather and great-grandfathers all passed before I was born.
We visited Harpers Ferry National Historical Park with friends when they were in town visiting.
We took visitors to Antietam National Battlefield.
We took visitors to Gettysburg National Military Park.
Hubs and I built a rolling workbench and shelves for the garage at our new place.
Duck Donuts. It’s delicious. So many combinations of flavors and toppings (think the Chipotle of the donut world).
My cousin spent a week and a half with us and we did a lot of exploring, including a trip to Shenandoah National Park.
We also took my cousin to Gettysburg (our second visit in two months).
When my family came to visit, we drove down to Montpelier (one of the few things around here none of us had done).
My dad volunteered as tribute and stayed home with me to pull the super overgrown shrubs at our new house.
We spent many hours during my family’s visit playing Nertz. :)
We made our first visit to a Virginia winery (Bull Run Winery) for a tasting.
I made my first, of what I hope is many, trips to Austin for a work conference.
We visited Blackwater Falls State Park in West Virginia and completed a few short hikes.
While I had earned my masters degree at the end of last summer, I finally walked in my commencement ceremony.
I got to cross a mobile visitor center off my #ParkNerd list in Shenandoah National Park.
Hubs and I finally hiked Maryland Heights in Harpers Ferry National Historical Park.
I made (don’t forget to wear gloves!) and surprised Hubs with a cactus/succulent garden when he was missing the desert.
We saw the Old Army Guard perform during an independence event at Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine
Rackers really enjoys sunny walks on the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail.
We spent an enjoyable week in Lake Tahoe with Hubs’ college buddies.
We spent the day of the National Park Service Centennial in Shenandoah National Park.
I checked off several bucket list items attending the 2016 Farm Aid Concert in Bristow, VA.
Hubs was in the wedding of two of our dear friends back in his hometown (Las Vegas).
We visited Mount Vernon with a couple of friends who happened to be in town for work.
I rocked a pantsuit at the polls. The election didn’t turn out how I had hoped, but I was proud to cast my historic vote.
My in-laws stayed with us for several weeks and we visited Valley Forge and Independence National Historical Park.
There is no better way to end the year than spending Christmas in Wisconsin with my family.