First off, if you are reading this, thank you. You have pushed me to be a better person every day in 2017 and I wouldn't be who I am without you. Thank you, no matter how big or small of a piece you are in my life. Thank you!

It’s December 28th 2017 and I’m surrounded by warm tea, light and fluffy snow, and the crispy chill that comes from the Cafe 116 window as I write this. It’s time to smile and look back on another year. If you read last year’s annual year in review letter than you are well aware of the happiness and amazing opportunities I was fortunate to have last year. Spoiler Alert: This year is the same way, amazing.

So I Graduated?!?

Yep, you read that right. I graduated. I was able to call the snowy school in Fargo, ND my home for the last four years, and what amazing years those have been. From the my first week at NDSU till my final day it’s been a whirlwind and I couldn’t be more appreciative to all of the people that have supported me, grown with me, and of course cheered for the Bison with me. Crazy how time like that flies. 

I’m calling SF home now.

Yep, you read that right. If you didn’t know I accepted a full-time Marketing position at Beekeeper (the company I interned with last summer). Since joining the team in May of 2016 we have grown dramatically and are now proud to have over 90 amazing Bee’s in The Hive. All working to connect the unconnected and push each other forward. I’m pretty lucky to work with such brilliant and inspiring people. It makes the 6am and 7am meetings with the Zurich team worthwhile.

Wedding’s Anybody?

This year was marked with weddings left and right. I had the pleasure of attending over 6 weddings this fall and I won’t lie, I got tired. But I would do it all again in a heartbeat if I had too. Getting to share in each couples big day was definitely a highlight of my year and wouldn’t trade it for anything!

Delta Miles… Rack Them Up 

As you may have guessed, with 6 weddings, work trips, and the usual trips I normally have I have spent plenty of time in the sky waiting for the food and drink cart to come by and ask me if I would like some peanut’s. And I feel that it’s important to shoutout to Delta for being amazing, as usual. SFO-MSP is a mainstay for me and I wouldn’t want to fly it with anybody but Delta. 

Did I lose my pencil? 

This year has been crazy busy and I sadly have neglected writing. If you know me, you know I don’t LOVE writing, but I believe that it is good for you and everybody should do it occasionally. While I did increase the amount of writing I did from the year previously, I have a long way to do. If you want to read some of the small things I did this year, head here. As I look at 2018 this will definitely be improved upon. Watch out I’m sharpening my pencil…

So What’s 2018, Austin?

Good question, what will 2018 bring. I don’t know. There are a lot of variables to consider but I wouldn’t want it any other way. I’ll probably be challenged, will have to decide a couple (if not more) big decisions, will smile a bunch, will cringe a few times, and will always work to enjoy the little things. 

This year has taught me a lot, but ironically the biggest lesson I’ve had to relearn is to enjoy the little things. From the way snow falls when it’s freezing outside, or the dimple of a smile, to the conversation of a stranger. Enjoy the little things. All the little things around you from the make up of the environment to the person beside you they truly make you who you are. 

With that in mind. I’ll wrap up my Annual Year in Review with one quote that made me laugh, think, and smile many days in 2017.

Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going to fast - you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.
— - Eddie Cantor

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