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Today we went back to the butcher to get a steak for tonight (“You got a beautiful steak to share with a beautiful wife on New Years?! What more can you ask for!”), took Luna to the dog park, and then hung out at home in the backyard with a fire, and then just on our couch. For the first time in six years, we got to spend this day together and doing absolutely nothing but enjoying it together was certainly worth more than any high-priced dinner in the center – crowded in with way too many people.

So many reflect on the past year at the end of it. This year, at the beginning of this project, I’m only looking forward. I’m looking forward to a year filled with adventures and new beginnings. Of another year building a little family here in Florence. I know there will be more opportunities and beautiful experiences. I know at home in the US, it will be a year full of weddings and babies and achievements that I will celebrate with those I love – from near or far. I think it’ll be a year of challenges and final decisions, of refusing to take a backseat getting behind the wheel of issues like our immigration problems. It’s a year to show how much strength has been built up over the last year of craziness. We’ll see how it plays out.

Tomorrow is day 25 for me, but it’s also day one again. Fresh start, clean slate, all of those sayings, whatever feels right. A blank piece of paper. 2019 is my next blank page, and I may just write a book on them this year.

Now after Luna has stuck it out through the fireworks (she was very brave), we’re tucked in bed, ready to take on January. Little steps. It’ll certainly be an interesting one. I can’t wait to write it all down. Happy New Year!