It's that time of year when the holidays are approaching and the "Top whatever ...." lists are starting. It just wouldn't be the same if I didn't add my own lists of 2011! Wow, when I think of how many things I've done this year it makes me tired! But at the same time, this has been a wonderful year and I wouldn't change anything! Looking back, there a few things that I have learned to love, and a few things that I have grown to miss (more on that later). But, looking at all of the things I have accomplished this year, I am pretty proud of myself for getting through the tough times, and persevering to get to the good times. Here is a list of my top 5 accomplishments:
1. Moving to Italy! Who would have ever thought that we would actually do it?!? Well, we did and it has been so wonderful in so many ways. Not only have we been blessed with many travel opportunities as a result, but it has also allowed Josh and I to become closer and learn more about each other. This move has not only opened my eyes to other parts of the world, it has strengthened my marriage.
2. Graduating with my MBA in May! I started my MBA with Capella in January of 2009 and finished in May- that was a great feeling to finally be finished! Although, every now and then I find myself looking for that intellectual stimulation that comes with studying and research...
3. Leaving Capella- This was one of the hardest things I've done in a long time (professionally speaking). I had finally found a company who's values align with my own, and in an industry that I feel passionate about. I finally found my niche. My co-workers were fantastic and it was a fun place to work. It was a really sad day when I had to leave the company, but I hope to go back someday. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that they'll want me back.
4. Starting my first official teaching role. In May I started teaching English as a second language in Milan, and it's been a really fun experience! It was quite a change switching from a sales role to teaching, but it's worth it. I've had the opportunity to meet a lot of Italians, see a lot of the city, and start practicing the art of teaching which is on my long term career plan. Eventually I would love to teach at the college level, so this is a great opportunity to start working on those skills :)
5. Learning a new language- Italian. At first learning Italian was strange- I would translate from English to Spanish, then to Italian. By no means am I good with the Spanish language, but what I did learn in High School and college came flooding back to me when I started working on Italian. Thankfully that has stopped and I am able to think only in Italian without Spanish getting in the way. Also, our new friends in Italy have been wonderful in helping me practice my listening and speaking skills. I'm not fluent yet... but I met my goal of becoming conversational this year! I can speak in present terms, present continuous, as well as the basic past tenses. Now I need to work on my vocabulary and future tenses... I've always wanted to learn Italian, and now I'm doing it!
Ok, maybe I am "tooting my own horn" a bit... but this year has seriously changed my life in many ways. These five events are the largest life changing events that I have experienced this year, so I thought I would share. I also have another list or two that I would like to post before the end of the year... so stay tuned!