2017: THE YEAR OF JUDY !
HAPPY NEW YEAR, JUDYS!
(It's the 12th, can I still say that?)
I always love the energy at the beginning of a new year. Everyone is in high spirits and ready to take on a new beginning. While everyone on the Internet hated 2016, I personally had an incredible year. Not only do I just love even numbers; I turned 30, graduated from college, and traveled internationally. Beyond that, I feel that I am the happiest I have ever been. My relationship and friendships are stronger than ever, I am healthy, and I have job that I enjoy. Despite the presidential election and many celebrity deaths, there were so many positive things that happened in 2016, I wouldn't dare say that it sucked.
To properly celebrate a milestone year, James and I treated ourselves to a vacation to Japan. It was a graduation/holiday/early anniversary celebration, all rolled into one! Plus, our friend Enna has been living there for the past 3 years and we didn't want to miss the chance to experience Japan from an insider's perspective. To say that we had an amazing time would be an understatement. (Also, I'm really trying to quit using the word 'amazing') Over our 13 day trip, we traveled around the country by train and saw so many beautiful places. Being abroad for the holidays was a nice change and we really enjoyed being away from America's idea of Christmas. The people of Japan are so gracious and accommodating, I was inspired daily by their culture. Please stay tuned for more blog posts as I go further into detail about my trip!
Shinto and Buddhism are Japan's two major religions, so Christmas is not really about Christ in Japan. It is more of a couple's holiday, like Valentine's Day. I heard that most people get a bucket of chicken from KFC and go to a love hotel. I mean, fried chicken in bed is pretty romantic.
However, New Year's Day IS a very special holiday. This is when families get together and exchange presents and well wishes for the New Year. Many people start the day watching the first sunrise of the year and heading the temple, which is exactly what we did. (Stay tuned for more deets!!!)
Under the Japanese zodiac, 2017 is the Year of the Rooster; the Fire Rooster to be exact. If you are not familiar with the Japanese or Chinese zodiac, every year is related to an animal sign, according to a 12 year cycle. In addition, each year is associated with one of the five elements. If you are into this kinda stuff, which I'm assuming you might as a Judy, it's pretty fascinating. (I'm a fire tiger, in case you were wondering) Needless to say, there were rooster trinkets E-V-E-R-Y-W-H-E-R-E in Japan. I have an affinity for roosters because my grandfather used to raise them, so they have always been present in my life. I honestly don't mind a cock-a-doodle-doo. I wanted to buy ALL of the rooster things!!
Upon our return from Japan, I was supposed to start a job that I was offered right after graduation. I was feeling pretty good about life until I got an email letting me know that they couldn't honor the offer, due an unexpected stop in their funding stream. While I was bummed, I knew it had to have happened for a reason. While I may not know what that reason is, just yet, I still have high hopes for 2017. Now I have time to dedicate to the blog, meditation, and my animals! I'm pretty excited for this new chapter of life, despite not knowing what's in store. At the end of the day, it is up to me set the intention and create a remarkable 2017!
I look forward to an amazing year with my Judys! What will you manifest in 2017?
Please stay tuned for more blog posts as I go further into detail about my trip!