This past year was a lot different than years past but it was filled with so many wonderful moments and was a significant year for us in many ways. I had a lot of fun looking back at photos from the year and thinking of what some of the highlights were. Even though we’re already a few days into 2017, I thought I’d share them with you (in no particular order).
This was our first full year living on Pender Island and we spent a lot of our home time exploring different spots on the island. There are so many nooks and crannies and beautiful viewpoints and all of them feel like a totally different place and leave me awe-inspired every time. Living on this beautiful island will never get old, and I love being able to share it with friends and family.
One of the biggest blessings about this year was being able to host friends, family, and musicians in our house. At the beginning of the year I joined about 10 other friends for a collaborative benefit concert, and we spent many evenings rehearsing in our house. We hosted eight house concerts and lots of guests come through, and we even got to be part of helping our friends WhiteBird record their first album. It was a musically fulfilling year, for sure!
In the spring we gathered up the Fairly Odd Folk and hit the road for a two week tour through Alberta. It was a joyous time, made even more fun by the presence of Phoenix, our three year old honourary tour manager.
Also in the spring we filmed a few music videos with very talented friends of ours, and I had my first acting roles! We filmed the Hibernate video with Ross and Madison Bodenmann here on Pender Island, and then flew to Ontario to film the Brave Face music video (and another one which we’ll be releasing soon) with Cole and Lydia of Portage Creative. It was really fun and stretching to do a little bit of acting in the videos, something I haven’t done before but I really enjoyed it!
In the summer I spent a LOT of time in my garden. It still doesn’t look like much, but I did a lot of weeding and built a couple garden beds. This year I hope to clean up more of the garden and do some planting as well.
In the summer we got to be part of the Folk on the Rocks Festival in Yellowknife, NWT. It was the first time to Canada’s north for all of us and we were enamoured by the wonderful community and the long summer nights. Someday I’d love to visit in the winter and check out the northern lights.
The highlight of the year for me was FINALLY releasing Dearestly, my second studio full length album. I recorded it in fall of 2015 with Howard Redekopp and Josh Gwilliam at the lovely OCL Studios, and being able to finally share it with the world after a long wait has been so wonderful. It’s very humbling to release music that is so close to my heart and have it be part of so many people’s lives. The album is still a pay-what-you-feel download on my website, and we have CDs and vinyl too, so feel free to check it out if you haven’t yet!
In the fall Zoltan and I got to take Dearestly on the road with a 50 date solo tour across Canada. He built a beautiful stage set up and I came up with a really fun solo set, and we headed out on a long adventure. We got to see many of you, and that was the highlight for me, reconnecting with friends and making so many beautiful new connections.
We finished the year at our home on Pender with sweet Maxine (our kitty, if you haven’t yet been acquainted) and a quiet Christmas and New Years. It’s wonderful to be back in our house and spend time with our friends who I missed like crazy when we were on tour. I’ve been able to do a lot of reflecting on the past year, and look ahead to 2017 and set some goals and intentions. I am so grateful to the growth that happened last year, and I am so excited to see what adventures lay ahead for us in 2017! Happy New Year to all of you, and I hope to do more writing on here in the coming weeks and months.