2016 – Engagement, Graduation, and more!

So far, 2016 has been quite a year. It was a bit of a rough start from the first day of the year (I fell down a flight of stairs on New Year’s Day thanks to my clumsiness).

Later in January, my grandpa passed away at 89, and it was painful to lose him. He was full of a lot of wittiness and wisdom. He visited my family wherever we were in the states, and he was always there for us. I take comfort in knowing he lived a long, full life. He always told me that aging is a privilege, not a right.

I took to my graduate school studies to help drown out some of the grief I was enduring throughout February. I successfully defended my thesis proposal in mid-February. Later in February, the Graduate School hired me to help them out with their social media. Despite the rough beginning of the year, things were starting to look up.

On March 12, Jody proposed to me at Horsetooth Reservoir with a beautiful moissanite ring. We had customized the band, but I hadn’t seen the finished product until that day. I was overjoyed! We have been together for three years through all of the ups and downs, and we love each other dearly.

Jody and Sydney Engagement

Jody and I at the Horsetooth Reservoir the day we got engaged.

Throughout April, I worked diligently on my thesis and continued to work at the Graduate School. After three years (one year of graduate school, a year off, and another year of graduate school), on May 12th, I successfully defended my thesis.

I cannot tell you how difficult it was to decide to take a year off graduate school, but for the sake of my health and happiness, I was so glad I did. I felt reinvigorated and more determined than ever in Fall 2015 to write my thesis and finish the program. Thank you to all of the people in my Fall 2013 cohort and from previous cohorts for your advice! Your encouragement and support helped me throughout the year.

I have met some amazing people in my graduate program this past year as well, and I feel lucky to have met all of them! I walked with a handful of them for commencement on Friday, May 13th, and I should receive my diploma in late August.

Later in May, on May 31, it was my birthday, and I turned 25 years old. It broke my heart a little bit to have to pick a new age bracket for a survey, but again, aging is a privilege.

Graduate School Commencement

Here I am with my family for my master’s degree graduation.

One year from today (June 24, 2017), my fiancé Jody and I will be getting married at Prairie Berry Winery in Black Hills, South Dakota. We’re going to have a lot of wine and cork decor! We’re in the infancy stages planning for our wedding, but please feel free to take a look at our website: www.theknot.com/us/sydneyandjody. We’ll add engagement photos later this year and our registry as well. We’re planning on going to Italy and Spain for our honeymoon!

The Homestead

The Homestead at Prairie Berry via Black Hills Bride.

Because my graduate student status is coming to an end, my last day of working at the Graduate School will be coming to an end soon. I’m looking forward to reading, volunteering, traveling, visiting family, brushing up on some skills, and relaxing this summer as well.

In August, Jody and I will be moving down to Loveland, and we plan on adopting a dog. Who knows how the rest of the year will go? I feel so blessed for the all of the wonderful “f’s” in my life: family, fiancé, and friends. Thank you to my followers too!

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