Wednesday, January 6, 2016

2015 in review

Happy New Year! This is my annual review, I love looking back on these! Bring it on 2016!


-Started out a bit rocky, with a lot of migraines  ER visits, chiropractic, physical therapy, and psychotherapy. God is good through it all. 

-My favorite resident from my retirement center job had to move to a nursing home so I went to visit him at his new place. 

-Spent Martin Luther King Jr. Day/Last day of winter break with my 2nd cousin Valentina. She is so cute, I just can't. She is 2 but seems way older and is cute on the outside and with her personality. 

-I got offered a job at this amazing new bakery and cafe, Puzzles, a social enterprise whose provides employment to those with special needs. I applied on a whim in the fall after mom met the amazing owner buying a ton of paint for the store. 400 with and without special needs people had applied and I was one of 20 who was offered a job. Due to starting up my internship and still keeping my other jobs ended up not taking up but they are awesome and I love supporting them and their small social business. 

-I started my internship with Schenectady Bridges for school. Loved it. It began a start to a crazy semester of school, work, internship, volunteer stuff, and migranes. It was crazy at times but I loved doing all of it. my internship was great though. I had the best supervisors, one of whom is my former youth pastor. I got to table at a human trafficking organization, met amazing clients moving from poverty to sustainability, met professionals from the school at Bridges out of Poverty trainings, did a lot of speaking at groups, ate lunch with clients at our soup kitchen, and learned so much. 

-Started my last semester at the community college and handed in my application to SUNY Albany. My sister Lauren was a boss at helping me with all of it. I still sometimes feel like a square peg in a round hole at college. 

-my package I sent to my kids in South Africa arrived (a month after Christmas but hey). It made me so happy to hear from the staff there when it came. THE BEST. I love them so much. 


-Visited my fave buddy at the nursing home again. 

-This winter was a bear. So much snow. 

-Valentines Day is one of my favorite holidays where my mom and I get heart-shaped ravioli at an Italian, and I has a horrible migraine for it. 

-starting as a running buddy for Girls on the Run. Its a volunteer that writes encouraging letters to the girls weekly and runs with them in their practice and official 5Ks. They also starting having me fill in as a coach. Super fun. 


-national pancake day. 

-I turned 20. I had so much anxiety over this event occurring. Although I was born an adult I was afraid of being more accountable for everything and stress. I ended up keeping it super low-key and mom and I went to her friends cabin in Lake Placid and we did crafts in our sweats, ate friendly, mexican food, good sandwiches, and pizza and read books. 


-Had an amazing Skype date with my South African loves. 

-Went to lunch at Puzzles with Nanny. 

-Every spring the volunteer club I help run at my school serve and sponsor a dinner at the City Mission and have a giveaway table with personal care items and toys for the clients that come in. It was another success this year. 

-Ran a silent auction at an Garden Party Fundraiser for the youth shelter I volunteer at. 

-My sister from another mister, Jessie and her husband Mark, told me they were expecting. OMG AHHHHH. We were hanging out and they asked me who I was babysitting, I responded, and they asked me if I would be free in October. They told me ahead of a few people and I couldn't have been more honored or excited. 

-On mom's birthday, April 20th, I was accepting into the competitive University at Albany's School of Social Welfare. It felt like I was waiting forever for the letter and my dad sent me it at while I was at work. I was so excited and relieved but GLORY to God that he makes all things possible. 

-Ran a practice 5K for Girls on the Run. Super fun but I am super out of shape. 


-Ran a 5K on Mother's Day for Girls on the Run. 

-Made this cool flower pot for Mom for Mother's Day

-GRADUATED COMMUNITY COLLEGE WITH HONORS! It's Jackie Servideo, A.A.S. (Human Services). 
classmates-loved going to school with people of all ages!
Dad + Mom

sis + off

fave professor/mentor 
my pre-achool teacher, mrs. goodfriend (her real last name), lives next-door to my grandparents 
nanny + lair 
via walt disney

-Some baby birds made a nest in a tree by the porch

-A bat got stuck between my window and the screen. TERIFFYING.

Tried to plan my classes at Albany but I had to wait until orientation. Got this picture instead. 


-Powered up the donut maker I bought on clearance the day I got my license 2 years ago. I make chocolate, coconut, powered sugar, s’more, blueberry, pumpkin, and jelly for a breakfast meeting at my internship.

-My favorite event of the summer is the Italian Fest at St. Anthony’s Church. I am a stereotypical Italian. 
fried dough, calamari, pasta fagoli, cavatelli, lemon ice, iced coffee, gluten 

-Went to the main orientation for UAlbany.

-Because I am crazy and hate free time apparently, I enrolled in one online summer course at the community college. It was Black Literature and I really liked the class and professor. 

-My internship asked me to help facilitate these workshops for teens getting summer jobs via the County Job Training Agency. Loved doing it! 

-Busy/Amazing July 4th weekend! I worked a 7-3 shift, booked it home, to make it to a 4:30 train to the city. 

 we stumbled upon this amazing pizza place. so fresh but I could have eaten anything I was so hungry. we got a cool seat to people watch (people in NYC are so beautiful it is like a museum). the roof was so cool it, it was covered in a grapevine. 
I always wondered what blockbuster meant. there was a line out the door for Odd Fellows Ice Cream. I got s'mores flavor in a waffle cone. Y-U-M. 
i loved the sign. 
we watched fireworks off the awesome roof top with dozens of other groups. the were set off the hudson.
we went to grassroots juicery for breakfast
hillsong for church

                              commodor for virgin drinks and biscuits and SMORGASBORD for lunch 
sad to leave//subway

                                                lake placid with the family for a few days

mexican restaurant and amazing cheesecake (green tea and ganache) date with mommy
-Got an A in my Black Lit summer course! 

-my cousins moved back to the area and I've been there to hang or babysit about once a week since then!

-Jessie's baby shower for Baby Kate!!! Ahhhh it was the cutest shower ever!! Global/travel theme for the jet-setting mama to be! The food was so good! I, okay mostly mom made her this blanket from a youtube tutorial we almost threw in the towel a few times (pun intended) while sewing but I am so glad we didn't! 
I also bought that book in South Africa for this occasion 2 years ago.
-FaceTime shenanigans 

-My niece, Giovanna's belated birthday party 

-More babysitting! 

-First day of school at Albany (8/24)!! God is good!

-started botox for my migraines! a better treatment was a long time coming. The first treatment is usually the most ineffective but I actually saw a slight improvement. Thank you, Jesus! I went to my favorite bakery/cafe in after and ate some feelings. 

-I applied for this research assistant job at school about health disparities in HIV/AIDS populations and got an interview. The day after the interview I got a text from my internship supervisor (I volunteered there through the summer and said I would email them back to volunteer once I get settled into school about 2 weeks after I said that) saying they had a few paid positions opened up and they would like to hire me for it. I also found it I got the research fellowship. I had wanted to work with my internship so badly the whole time it was the perfect choice after all. I put in my notice at my nursing home job I had been at for 4 years (my resignation letter was a whole page singe space) it there were 40 hours in a day and I could have work that job, my new one, and babysitting I would have also stayed. God is so good and he knows what he is doing. 
dress I wore to the fellowship interview, they also liked my heavy yardstick resume paper
-Watched Giovanna and Luca over Labor Day weekend. Lauren, Rockie, and Mom can over too!

-Visited Erinn on Labor Day Monday in Onieonta 

-lunch with nanny 


-trip to Schoarie with mom to our favorite country store/cafe


-Lauren's 24th birthday. I tried to get her an improv class but she is a pain so I got her a waffle iron that sits in our basement. 

-10/16--BEST DAY! Baby Kate Elizabeth Zwigenthal was born!!! I got a text and left work early and was over within an hour!! The party of 3 was glowing!!!

-My 44 year old cousin Andrea, had baby Antonio the next day! 

-Dad took me to my fave non fast food Mexican place and mom and laur met us later. 

-Got Dad tickets to Jim Gaffigan at Madison Square Garden with Lauren for his birthday/Christmas

-Went out with my cousin Andrea and Lauren for Thanksgiving Eve
-My Mom hosted Thanksgiving this year. It was one of the best in recent memory. Food was so good. So much family there from both sides. Being loud. Laughing louder. Looking at pictures and making new ones. 

-For the 3rd year I participated in Dresscember. I don't ask people for the money for the cause I just donate on my own. 

-Happy Hanaukkah!! Love thy Jewish neighbor! Celebrated with Mrs. Goodfriend, Mom, Dad, Aunt Lisa, Poppy, and Nanny. 

My favorite Professor Do, made everyone in the class coffee cupcake

-My first time babysitting Kate!! Mark's mom was visiting from South Africa and I got to send back letters for my loves there!!! Ahhh my favorite!! I totally thought I would never see Mark and Jessie after Kate was born but I couldn't be more opposite, I'm there once a week! 
So sweet and chubby!
-My cousin Andrea had a Christmas party at her house. I bought these photo props earlier that day and they were a hit! BFF Presh also had a Christmas party that night too but I didn't take any pictures. 

-I found out at work I got a 3.94 for my first semester at Albany!! I started crying at work and everyone was congratulating me! I got an A in Into to African-American History, an A in Africa in the Modern World, an A in Developing African Nations, an A- in Human Behavior and the Social Environment, and an A Social Work Practice. 

-Christmas was so wonderful as well! Christmas Eve Eve Mom and Laur made a ton of Christmas cookies and I watched Gia and Luca and gave them their gifts. Christmas Eve we went to church as a family, ate at a Japanese restaurant, and went to Aunt Pat's. Christmas Day we ate monkey bread. Opened presents (my fave gift was a chargeable hand warmer and home videos on DVD). I got my mom Christmas stocking in the shape of a high heel with her name on, a relic from her childhood. We ate dinner at Nanny and Poppy's. Andrea announced she was pregnant!!!!!! AHHH I still cannot believe it!! I so excited for my grandparents to be great grandparents!! We then went back to our house for apps and desserts with Mom's side of the family. We watched our new home videos and it was so much fun! Such a great day. Happy Birthday Jesus!

-New Year's Eve! It's mom and dad's turn to host. I visited Mark, Jessie, and Kate for a bit. I LOVE having friends where you can do mundane stuff with like a trip to the grocery store and it is still fun and life giving. Lauren and I visited Nanny and Poppy. I actually fell asleep around 10 on the couch! 

Thank you Lord, for the highs and lows of 2015! I can't wait to see what you have in store for 2016, to you be the Glory!