I need a break from prepping all of my Thailand posts, so I decided now would be a good time to reflect on 2016 and 2017. Warning: this will probably be a fairly long post, so if you want to read it all make sure you have caffeine handy!
I started teaching viola and violin here in Korea, and have been teaching more beginners than I ever did before. It took me a while to get in the groove of teaching beginners after so many decades with more advanced students, but I have a fantastic group of kids (and an adult!) whom I love working with. I’ll be sad to leave them behind when we PCS.
I also started playing in a small combo with a few of the 8th Army Band soldiers, which was a blast. Hopefully, we’ll be able to pick up more gigs once the warmer weather hits and the many festivals start up again. I had my first (and last?) performances on electric violin with the 8th Army Band holiday concerts. It was so much fun to stretch my musical wings this year in these different ways.
In April, one of my best friends and I started an online scales club to help hold each other accountable with our practicing. This has been amazing for keeping my chops up and I love the daily discipline of scales and exercises. I plan to continue it for the rest of my playing career.
Not exactly professional news, as I don’t think I’ll ever pursue work in the financial planning field, but I was very happy to pass the national Certified Financial Planner exam back in March. It was grueling to prepare for, and I’m really proud of myself for following through on my coursework and taking and passing the exam.
I have made so many wonderful friends here in Seoul. From my monthly book club, to outings with band spouses, to wonderful neighbors, this has been the most social year of my life. It can be challenging to keep up with friends back in the states due to the time difference, but I am so grateful for all of my friends, old and new alike. I’m so lucky with the wonderful friends and family I have in my life!
This year has pretty much been a case of treading water, physically speaking. I did make it through another round of Insanity and most of P90X3, but I’ve struggled to be really consistent with my workouts. I’ve had a few weird aches and pains that I think are just a result of getting older. I’m really looking forward to making the switch to a standing desk later this month.
We got to go to so many cool places this year! Jinhae for the tattoo, an amazing long weekend in Tokyo, a trip to Jeju Island, and finally two weeks in Thailand, not to mention multiple day trips here in Korea.
Things I’m looking forward to this year, in no particular order:
- A trip to Bhutan next month
- A trip to Taiwan once my cousin and her family move there this summer
- A return to Jinhae for the tattoo
- A PCS back to the east coast in the fall
- Having a really successful year of practicing and exercising
- Separate visits from each of my parents
- More time exploring this wonderful country before we have to leave