Year in Review: 2018- longest short year ever

Before it gets too far into 2019, I'd like to do my annual recap of the year before. It's more for my sake than anything else, but I know 2018 was a weird year for a lot of people - full of very highs and very lows. There was a lot of cool stuff I did last year, but there were also so many unexpected challenges, especially as 2018 came to an end. So, here it is in all it's weird glory.

  • Orlando~!  This was one incredibly magical way to kick off 2018. We did a Sisters trip with Justine and Bri to Orlando, FL - where we swam with wild manatees, played at Disneyworld, and ate butterbeer ice cream at Diagon Alley!
  • The Women's March continued to be inspiring.

  • Black Panther happened, which was incredible. I also followed up my epic 2017 The Last Jedi experiences with a screening at IMAX HQ, where I got to meet Rian Johnson and tell him just how much Rose Tico means to me.

  • Celebrations galore: Eva's bachelorette with a weekend getaway, Pi(e) day with fun Dean Winchester dancing decorations, and winning the Aladdin lottery and getting to see the show at the Pantages from front row, center.

  • Coachella was officially Beychella, and it was beyond epic and beyond magic.
  • Big events: Founding Daddy Eva tied the knot; the Infinity War finally happened - and we had a not-housewarming Marvel party; and I Instagram modeled!
  • Writing/Book stuff: YALLWest was amazing as always, and it was more wonderful because of all the new friends I made or gotten to better know. It was also National Poetry Month, which was productive for me and I had a poem published!

  • The Footrace was published. I am immensely proud of this poem, and it remains one of the best things I've written. You can read it at Strange Horizons!
  • I finally visited the Ripped Bodice (and it was glorious) for my friend Maurene's book launch!
  • One last time~ for Hamilton. I wasn't planning to see it this year, but the existence of an Asian George Washington made a viewing a must!
  • Miscellany: Family visit to the Reagan Presidential Museum to see an exhibit on Genghis Khan and Mongolia - sort of as prep for our trip in October. I had jury duty where I was actually on a jury for the first time ever. There was a Star Wars movie that I was only mildly excited about. ConSquad visited the King Tut traveling exhibit.

  • Monterey/Carmel trip: We celebrated ConSquad Dirty Thirty birthdays, stayed in a probably haunted but definitely creepy AirBnB, and visited the famous Monterey Aquarium and Scenic 17-mile drive at Pebble Beach.
  • Winchester Mystery House!! This is a site on my bucket list, and I finally got to go! It was both smaller than I expected but also huge!
  • My youngest cousin graduated from UC Santa Barbara!
  • My poem BEAUTY ROUTINE out in Liminality!
  • Geekery: using the last of our Universal Studios pass, we rode the old version of the Jurassic Park ride for the last time. We went to a Netflix pop-up, saw Tom Hanks in Henry IV, saw Years & Years, and I got to Instagram model some ElhofferDesign clothes.
  • Fourth of July was odd, considering my feelings about what's going on in this country.
  • ConSquad visited some costumes from The Crown & then prepped for SDCC.
  • SDCC: way less drama, way more chill. Only did a half-day of Hall H for once, got into Conan finally, met up with so many geek friends, roomed with so many geek girls, had the greatest heist to round out the weekend at a Harry Potter themed party. Go team!
  • SDCC book stuff: I finally met my dear April IRL after so many failed attempts, went to a Scholastic party, actually ran into Diya at con, met up with Sooz and got to fangirl at Victoria Schwab!

  • Disney fun: finally saw the rebrand of Paradise Pier into Pixar Pier, but most importantly, we finally got to see Nicole! We also spent a full day at the parks later, where we enjoyed the food and photo ops and traumatized one of our friends with the Guardians ride - we didn't know he hated drop rides until we were about to get into the lift. Oops.
  • Asian August: a glorious month of Asian cinema with the landmark Crazy Rich Asians, the irresistibly lovable To All the Boys I Loved Before, and the innovative Searching. I felt so proud, hopeful, and seen. I even got to podcast about some of it - CRA with Crazy4ComicCon and TATBILB with Books & Boba.
  • My birthday - which I celebrated with a To All the Boys Party and all my fave gals. 
  • Oh, and we were cast to be part of a Star Wars Pet Makeover show for Oh My Disney! We filmed at the end of the month for a half day, and all of us got made over in Jedi!

  • Labor Day weekend ended, and I had the worst start to the week back - got into my first ever car accident, and it really just brought me down. I'd been feeling kind of unsatisfied and restless with myself, and this worsened my mood a lot. Thankfully, I had a nice chat with a friend.
  • Cat's birthday and the beginning of our new and intense obsession with Spider-Man thanks to the release of the game. We all fell in love with Peter Parker, and the love is going strong.
  • Saw the Queen B again this year, and got to launch the long awaited VENGEFUL with Victoria Schwab at the Grove.
  • House anniversary! One year since we got our place, and we finally planned and executed a Halloween-themed housewarming.
  • Family trip to China: it was a glorious 2 weeks exploring just a small part of China, including Mongolia. Each city we went to had its own personality, its own rich stories, and its own set of truly amazing sites. Only in China can you end up at the Forbidden City and be slightly unimpressed to hear the history only goes back a few hundred years versus the thousand year old structures and sites you saw a few days ago in Xi'an, the capitol of the Tang Dynasty.

  • China also marked my first visit to a foreign Disneyland. Shanghai Disney was huge and so cool, both familiar and so different to Disney at home.
  • Geeky miscellany: I was on my first panel at a convention, what! It was at L.A. Comic Con. We got to see Sarah Maas on the last stop of her Kingdom of Ash tour, the last book in her debut fantasy series. Cat and I threw together a last minute costume for us and Loki that ended up being a huge hit. It was Spider-Man themed, of course! Oh, and our episode of Star Wars Pet Makeover was released!

  • Harry Potter month - with a new Fantastic Beasts movie out, we headed back to the Wizarding World. The movie ended up being meh, but it was cool to see the cast around on the day we spent drinking butterbeer and taking photos with Goldie in cosplay!
  • Mid-Term Elections: vote vote!
  • Two days after voting day, some asshole broke into my parents' house. Another terrible first time experience for all of us. Luckily, no one was home, and it wasn't as bad as it could have been, but the house was a mess for days and both sentimental and religious items were taken. I'm still pissed about it, and truly hope whoever did it has had nothing but endless bad luck since they did this.
  • Fun with friends: I was elated to see my dear friend Julie on her book tour and to hang out with her and C.B. Lee. We spent more time with Laura, who helped us meet our first corgi, Waffles!
  • I finally got an Elhofferdesign Hamilton Blue Coat dress!
  • Backstreet's Back - we headed back to Vegas to see BSB and Celine Dion. It was super fun and made even more so by our impromptu hotel-room photoshoot.
  • Hopping on the Disney train - we finally did it. We got APs in preparation for the upcoming Star Wars land. We did a bunch of superhero photo ops finally, and then we went back to enjoy the holiday decor. It was also Max's first Disney trip then! Our friend also invited us to an early screening of Mary Poppins Returns at the Disney lot, and that was cool!
  • Fashion: Aquaman was a pretty fun movie, but mostly, I was pleased that my long awaited Elhofferdesign Padme sweater could double as a geekchic Aquaman themed outfit, too. I bought a leopard faux fur coat, something I thought I'd never do, but I love it. 2018 was a year of my expanding fashion horizons.
  • Personally, December dealt another blow in that we had a family health scare.
  • Into the Spiderverse: this movie was fantastic and heartfelt and stunning -and it just made us all even more in love with Spider-Man. I literally started a new friendship with a fellow writer over this obsession, and I started reading some Spidey comics.
  • And we sent out our Star Wars Makeover photo as our holiday cards. We had our first real Christmas and New Years at our house - complete with our childhood tree.
  • Rang in the New Year with a couple friends, toasting with sparkling pomegranate juice in Founding Fathers glasses!

And that was my 2018! Like I said, highs and lows, especially some personal lows towards the end of the year. I'm trying to use the energy of the new year to pull myself out of some of the blues I went through, and I'm optimistic about it. I've made some small goals and am working towards supporting my Word of the Year, which you can read about at Girl On the Roam!

How was your 2018? What do you hope for in 2019?