2018 | Year in Review

2018 was here and gone in a flash. It actually was a great year for me. The year of “Harvest”. As I reflect and prepare to embark on the journey of 2019 I just wanted to take a moment as I always do to honor some of the highlights from the 12 chapters of this year.



My partner, Cadre, and I took our first trip together as a couple to Toronto, Ontario. It was our first time in Canada and we had a blast celebrating the one year anniversary of our first date. It was so nice to escape for a long weekend and explore the city. One of my favorite touristy events was having dinner at the 360º CN Tower restaurant. We enjoyed a tasty meal while rotating the city 1100ft in the sky! I definitely want to go back, but only next time when it’s warm :)


February marked my official journey to minimalism. I went through my entire home after reading Simple Matters and The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and got rid of ~75% of my clothes and books and 50% of other belongings that no longer brought me joy. Since beginning this ongoing journey I have felt so much lighter and have shifted my focus to showing appreciation to the things I have.


In March I decided to start taking Mental Health Days seriously. I decided to honor my body and take advantage of my paid time off at work. I put myself ahead of my work and knew that if I just needed an extra day here and there I will prioritize self care in order to activate a true sense of work-life balance. I’m proud to say I carried this with me throughout the remainder of the year and it definitely allowed me to be in a better head space.



April was the only trip I made to my home town, Winston Salem, NC all year long. It was so memorable because it was also the one time all year my family was all together. We celebrated my mother’s 53rd birthday and Mother’s Day all in that one weekend. We went to Tanglewood and had a photoshoot with my camera and tripod allowing me to have a full workout running back and forth through the grass field in heels just to set the timer on the camera. It was full of laughs and an overall great weekend.


One word, Mexico. Ah. A much needed escape with my partner which came to be after a bored night of me browsing the internet for travel deals. We slipped away for a week in Cancun at an amazing all-inclusive resort. I don’t think I’ve ever eaten so much in my life! We had so much fun trying paddle boarding, yoga on the pier, and Cadre even got to try out a local boxing gym! If you missed my travel vlog check it out here.



I regained inspiration to share my passions online in June. I launched my wellNESS tribe and began to give free weekly virtual mini-yoga classes, inspiration, and journal prompts. I loved connecting with so many individuals which ultimately led me to launch private yoga sessions and grow my personal yoga and wellness business. This budding idea of just wanted to help people to prioritize self care has paved a way for me to launch my affordable online yoga + wellness membership program coming in 2019!


My personal new year :) I turned 29 and brought in my birthday solo at Getaway House DC. It was such an incredible experience that allowed room for creativity, writing, reflection and more. Many ideas were birthed during this time away and I fell a bit more in love with myself.



If you’ve been following me for awhile you know that I love love. Hey, I even have it tattooed on my finger. My brother Andre (Cadre’s younger brother) tied the knot with his beautiful bride, Afiya. The only wedding I attended in 2018 and it was lovely. I got a chance to meet the family and everyone took me in with so much love and acceptance. It was a beautiful time and I’m so excited about their future together :)



As I settled into my new neighborhood of Potomac Yard’s/Old Town Alexandria I knew I needed to find a closer yoga studio to practice at. I found one that I absolutely love and recommitted to a group yoga practice in September. Prioritizing my personal practice 3x a week has done wonders for my growth as a yoga teacher. I love my home practice but I find that it’s sometimes difficult to practice for me when I’m constantly wanting to think of flows for the classes I teach. Deciding to become a member at a local yoga studio has allowed me to shift this focus and ensure that I’m present for my own self care.


While we’re on the topic of yoga, in October I was booked for my first city event. I got to lead vinyasa flow classes for the DC stop of the Namasdrake tour. One weekend, two days, 5 classes, and a total of 250 students. It was so much fun and a leap out of my comfort zone. I met so many amazing individuals, some who still practice with me 1-on-1 today! It opened a door to my knowing my worth and allowed the flowing in of so many other great opportunities.



November marked a time of slowing down. As the year started to rush to an end I felt myself having difficulty keeping up. I remember one night completely breaking down and crying for no reason. Feeling overwhelmed and confused until I realized it was because God was birthing me into a new situation and I was fighting it. While I held all of this in my best friend was also having a difficult time with things and was brave enough to say something. Me trying to find ways to help her ultimately helped me to help myself. I was able to slip away with Cadre for a day of hiking. Phones on airplane mode and nothing but conversation and laughs. It helped. I also developed a new journaling practice which helped me to truly process my thoughts, triggers, and more.



November blurred into December as it was a time for me to slow down and identify shifts I need to make. I came to a conclusion and decided I’m officially ready for what the future has to hold. So here’s to following your dreams, stepping out on faith, and prioritizing living over merely existing. Here’s to 2018! What a beautiful year.

xo Vanessa Michele

Vanessa.Michele | Christian. Writer. Content Creator. Giver of Love. Collector of Quotes. Yoga Enthusiast. Scientist by day. Welcome to my life!