Florida Man on the Run

Year in Review 2018: The Beginning

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Year in Review blogs and videos are a bit cliche. Everyone does them and we all only kind enjoy reading them or watching them. So why do one at all, you might ask? Well, this post is less for you this year than it is for me. 2018 has been a fantastic year and it is important to look back on it and celebrate success. It’s also important to recognize where I feel like I fell short, where I can improve, and to do so in a public space so I’ll hold myself more accountable. A 2018 year in review is the perfect place to look back on the beginning of this journey and where I want to go next.

Panorama of Bixby Bridge and the Big Sur coast

My Favorites

2018 was packed with new places and firsts. When trying to write this year in review I decided to break my favorites down into some basic categories in an effort to bring some order to a crazy year.

Delicious Pozole from Gracias Madre

Best Food Spot: There was so much delicious food this year, but Gracias Madre was the best. The food was just fabulous and the atmosphere in the restaurant was supremely inviting. A long day in San Francisco got its perfect end with filling homestyle Mexican fare.

Favorite Place to Sleep: This was a hard one, but Anchor Pier Lodge was probably my favorite place to sleep. The views from the balcony were amazing, rooms were gorgeous, and the sea lions were wonderful companions. The wonderful staff also accommodated us at literally the last minute. Honorable mention to the Rigdon House for its beautiful location.

Most Spectacular Sunset: This sunset might get favorable treatment for being my first Pacific Ocean sunset, but Morro Rock was spectacular. I still catch myself thinking about sitting on the rocks, watching the sun set over the ocean; the last rays of sunlight casting their glow on the imposing rock above. Simply couldn’t have asked for a better sunset.

Carpet of green sorrel among the redwoods

Favorite Place: Without a doubt my favorite place was the Rockefeller Forest. I felt such peace while walking among those ancient giants. If I could move out there and visit this place everyday, I would in a heartbeat and enjoy every second. Rockefeller Forest will never leave me.

Top Destination: For a history buff like me, Boston couldn’t have been a better destination. The city is absolutely packed with attractions and served as the perfect central hub for exploring all a history lover like me could ask for. A week was too short; I’m planning a return visit for sure.

Goals For Next Year

Any good year in review should also take its time to look forward to next year. There is plenty that I could have done more this year to get this blog off the ground. At the top of that list is creating consistent content. Having lost nearly three whole months to writer’s block was a serious hurdle I put in my own way. My biggest goal this year is to get at least three pieces out each month.

Just hanging out at the highest point east of the Mississippi

On top of creating regular content on the blog, I also want to utilize social media more effectively. Not everything I produce needs to be an extended written piece. My biggest focus will be Facebook and Instagram. I still have a ton of photos to edit which can serve as regular content. Facebook will also serve as a basis for “micro-blogs” which I started prior to Boston and then fell off of using.

Finally, I want to create a better focus for my content. While I fully intend on taking some big trips again this year, if I want to create more regular content I need to focus on local content. This is another area I started to do and then let fall away as big changes came in life. I’ll be reviving the Local Series as a regular project to create monthly content.

There is a pretty clear message from my goals this year. Consistency. If I want to feel successful this year, I want it to come from satisfaction that I get through creating. These are goals I can fully control, so I’ll only have one person to blame if I fail.

Celebrating Success

Even with all that I would like to improve in the next year, I’m happy with all that I’ve done so far. I’ve gotten over my huge fear of flying by taking six flights (with even more take-offs and landings when you count layovers). I successfully planned quite a few big trips this year, all of which have (nearly) gone off without a hitch.

This year has also provided me an outlet to write. That in and of itself has been a wild success for me. My previous writing efforts eventually fell off and until this year I hadn’t been able to sit down and consistently write anything. I had worried that the struggles I had at the end of the year had returned, but once past it I realized just how much I enjoyed writing this blog.

Catching the sunset at Morro Rock

Above all else, I’m happy that I got to explore the world some. I’ve watched my mom take some amazing trips over the last eight plus years. It made me realize that I need to take the opportunity while I still have it to make these big adventures and memories with the ones I love. I turned thirty this year, and it has been a serious turning point in my outlook on life. If nothing else, that’s a wild success.

Year in Review Wrap-Up

So there we go, my first year in review post. It comes a few days into the new year, but I’m sure there is a quote out there about good things taking time. This year has been the culmination of so many ideas finally put into action. I’ve enjoyed nearly every minute of the year and I’ve been truly blessed to have spent it traveling across America with the love of my life.

Next year is already shaping up to be a great follow up. My goals are set and I’m ready to take off. 2018 was amazing and full of adventure. 2019 is set to be an even better encore. I’m ready to go and I’m hoping you’ll be there with me along the way.

Happy New Year!

Just me and Captain Lobster hanging out in Plymouth

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