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For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning.

~T.S. Eliot

If I could use two words to describe 2011, they would be: challenging and exhilarating. Sometimes the challenging aspects of the past year seemed to outweigh the exciting bits. Like many others out there, I have been faced with work stress, financial concerns, and family worries.

But ringing in a new year always makes me look back with a more balanced perspective on the ups and downs of the previous twelve months. It also helps me to realize how much I’ve learned and grown! In 2011, I challenged myself to take big leaps, to do things that scared me. Of course, starting Plume Perfumes was the biggest (and most wonderful!) challenge of all!

Here are just a few of the events that have made 2011 memorable for me:

  • Giving a lecture on Victorian literature and art adaptations at the Philbrook Museum in January.
  • Traveling to England (all by myself!) for a conference — and spending several days in London visiting museums and seeing the sights.
  • Officially embarking on my first business — Plume Natural Perfumery was born in June (after much work, study, and planning).
  • Participating in my first ever indie arts and crafts fairs — Indie Emporium, BAzaar, and Alliday.
  • Finding out that my brother and sister were both going to be parents!
  • Celebrating four wonderful years together with James — my love and partner in life.
  • Celebrating my best friend Diana’s completion of her PhD in December.

I don’t really like to make New Year’s resolutions (those always get broken anyway), but I do like to envision what I hope to accomplish overall in a new year — to set goals and imagine possibilities. This is a great way to visualize intentions for life and to begin clearing a path for new adventures.

In 2012, I look forward to:

  • Finishing my dissertation!
  • Moving into a new house.
  • Being a wonderful aunt to my niece and nephew.
  • Growing my business.
  • Taking a vacation!

What made 2011 particularly memorable for you??

What possibilities do you imagine for yourself in the new year??

Fragrantly Yours, Tara