2021 in Review

At the beginning of the year, it was hard to know what was to come. Would it be like 2020? Would I still accomplish my goal of seeing at least one musical? Would singing come back to church? There was no way of knowing if things would be back to what we think of as “normal”. 2021 was both a difficult and good year for me.

January

My Birthday:

Since my birthday is so close to Christmas, it can be hard to know what gifts I will get.

  1. Original Frozen Broadway Cast
  2. Hufflepuff Pandora Charm
  3. Sherlock Holmes: A Gripping Casebook of Stories

Due to COVID, I was concerned I wouldn’t get my typical birthday dinner, which was boeuf beourginon and creme brûlée. This year, someone from church decided to make it- so in many ways it felt like a birthday present.

Reading:

  1. Lion, Witch, and the Wardrobe
  2. Prince Caspian
  3. Voyage of the Dawn Treader
  4. The Silver Chair
  5. Horse and His Boy
  6. The Magician’s Nephew
  7. The Last Battle
  8. Castle in the Air
  9. House of Many Ways- don’t know where to put this (finished it the 1st of Feb.)

February

Discovering Blumenthal’s Upcoming Season:

This was a surprise because usually they announce it in March. That was I discovered Frozen, Wicked, Anastasia, and Hadestown were coming back to Charlotte.

Virtual Frozen Reunion:

Well, I actually got to visit with some of the Original Cast Members through Zoom. That was actually pretty fun. Listening to both the soundtrack and doing this reunion made up for the postponement of 202. Frozen was one of the musicals I was hoping Charlotte was going to get again- to make up for that.

March

Visit to Pineville:

Sometimes visiting a nearby town is fun. Pineville, in my opinion, is part of Charlotte. Exploring the town are enjoyable- getting coffee and going to a park.

April

Reading:

  1. Yellow-Lighted Bookshop- must read for bookworms
  2. Harbor on the Starless Sea
  3. Song of Achilles- The Illiad told from Patroclus’ POV
  4. Hard Times
  5. Peter Pan

Exploring:

There are some parts of Charlotte that I never really been to, so my family decided to go to South End. In addition, we went to Lake Norman State Park for some hiking

Puzzling:

I ended up working on a new puzzle this month- which was Broadway-themed.

Movies:

My sister and I watched a Netflix original Movie Musical this month. It was called “A Week Away”, which had the feeling of “Camp Rock”. As in the Summer Camp vibe. I even was reminded of Winterlight, the high school youth conference I used to go to.

May

Reading

  1. To Kill a Mockingbird
  2. Little Paris Bookshop
  3. House in the Cerulean Sea
  4. The Movie Musical

Church:

Well, something exciting started this month. For months, there was no singing in the congregation. Now, we were allowed to start singing- finally church started to feel “normal” again”.

Musicals:

Well, now I knew for a fact that Wicked will be happening this year. So, I will be able to see at least one musical. As in, now I know when their presale will happen- only for the regulars and will get a discount. Interesting how I could the musical this year- after all 2021 marks 15 years of loving Wicked.

Movies:

“Tolkien” was a movie I wanted to watch for a while, but it was hard to figure out how. Especially after watching “Man Who Invented Christmas”, which had a similar concept.

June

Reading:

  1. The Lightning Thief
  2. The Sea of Monsters
  3. The Titan’s Curse
  4. The Battle of the Labyrinth
  5. The Last Olympian

Florida:

Time for vacation in Ponte Vedra, Florida. We could finally spend time on the beach, go to the outdoor mall, and have dinner at CAPS. I may not be a beach person, but still love walking on the beach to find sea glass.

July

Reading:

  1. Circe
  2. The Lost Hero
  3. The Son of Neptune
  4. The Mark of Athena
  5. The House of Hades

Musicals:

Finally, I saw my first musical in person this year. It was a musical I saw with CPCC, who does well-done productions. That musical was Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Had a really talented Narrator and Joseph. During “Close Every Door”, I was in tears- I knew the song was heartbreaking coming in, but wasn’t expecting that reaction. By the way, one of the young actresses in the children’s chorus was my Young Cosette in CPCC’s Les Mis (which I saw in 2013).

Job Highlight:

I had struggled to get a job for a while. After discovering Bitty & Beau’s was coming to Charlotte, I was hoping to get the job. Once I found out about the hiring fair, I quickly signed up. Well, in July I got a major surprise—turns out I got the job

August

Reading:

  1. Blood of Olympus
  2. Last Bookshop in London
  3. Nevermoor: The Trials of Morrigan Crow

Immersive Van Gogh:

This was a Blumenthal supported event, which proved to be very popular. It show Van Gogh’s paintings in an unique way. It was almost as you were part of the painting. To me the experience was mesmerizing

September

Reading:

  1. Wundersmith: The Calling of Morrigan Crow
  2. The Day the World Came to Town
  3. Hollowpox: The Hunt for Morrigan Crow

Kanuga- Parish Retreat

Another type of “normal”- every year, our Parish goes on a retreat to Kanuga, an Episcopalian Conference Center. A weekend of singing, fellowship, hiking, a bonfire, and chilling out. Even an enjoyable Eucharist at the lakeside.

Wicked

Well, my 5th time seeing the musical. It was my 2nd date with my mom seeing the same musical. Wicked is just as magical and spectacular as always. Still transports me to OZ.

October

Reading:

  1. Ella Enchanted
  2. The BFG
  3. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
  4. Alice in Wonderland

Start of Job:

Well, October was the start of my job at Bitty & Beau’s Coffee. One of my best parts of the year.

November

Reading:

  1. Through the Looking Glass
  2. Man Who Invented Christmas
  3. A Christmas Carol

Thanksgiving:

This year, for Thanksgiving, my family went to Burlington to visit family. Well, turkey, cranberries, mashed sweet potatoes with marshmallows, rolls, and of course you must have complete the meal with pumpkin pie.

December

It is very hard not to look forward to the month of December due to it being a festive month.

Reading:

  1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
  2. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
  3. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Spirit of Christmas:

  1. Christmas Concert- Charlotte Choir School
  2. Candlelight Christmas Eve Service
  3. Seeing decorations and lights- including the balls down Hillside
  4. Festive drinks- discovered Peppermint Park Latte and Candy Cane Frappe
  5. Christmas dinner with family and friends
  6. The fun in unwrapping gifts
  7. Work Holiday Party
  8. The Christmas movies
  9. Bach Cantata- felt like Christmas Eve came early

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