2017 Ends and a Funeral

Hey guys! Well, I am woefully behind on my traditional end of the year post where I talk about the highlights of the year and what I have learned. Sorry about that. Covering the Countdown to Christmas with 33 films in addition to my work and other videos just about did me in! It was fun but it was a lot of work. If you haven’t listened to our podcast on the Top 10 Hallmark Christmas movies of 2017 you should!

So let’s talk about 2017. It’s certainly been an interesting year. In the government we got a new president and everyone seems to be freaking out at every big and little thing that happens. I have been more measured about it. I agree with some stuff President Trump has done and I disagree with others. Regardless, I have disengaged with most political discussion because it has just became so toxic and honestly irritating.

There are some people who have become outrage-aholics who find something to be angry about in everything. I think my tipping point was when a bunch of people were mad at Melania Trump for wearing high heels to get on a plane to visit the Texas flood victims. Never mind she was wearing sneakers getting off the plane. It’s just so ridiculous. I can’t take the constant outrage. I still read and am informed, but I keep it to myself 80% of the time.

On a lighter note I got introduced to Doctor Who in 2017 so that’s one more pop culture phenomenon I can check off my box! It’s a delight! Listen to our podcast breaking down the first and most recent seasons of the show.2017 marked a personal milestone for me of 10 years since I quit my job and decided to become self-employed. That moment changed everything and brought me out of a really dark place. I promised myself then I would never let myself be that unhappy again and I never have. It has been sobering to think about the last 10 years and the many highs and lows that came along the way. 2018 will mark 10 years of writing this blog which is hard to believe. I know I haven’t been quite as consistent lately but it’s still a part of my life. 10 years! Some of you have been around from the beginning so if you have any ideas for how to celebrate this accomplishment let me know.

To celebrate quiting my job back in 2007 Camille, Sarah, Aly and I got a room in the SLC Marriott. It was so fun!

Other highlights of 2017 include my trip to DC to visit my sister and her family in April. This trip was such a great mixture of family, relax and touristing. I hope to go back again soon!

The Mall in Washington

One of the best things about 2017 was making new friends including 2 here in Utah that have become very dear to me in Stanford Clark and Phaedra Johnson. We have so much in common including a love of movies and it has filled a void in my life that I didn’t realize how much I was missing. We have had a particular blast with The Utah Movie Club where we meet once a month and usually watch a terrible live action Disney movie- because why not? I also got approved to be on my first press list for movie screenings which was was very exciting!

My friend Phaedra and I at the STEP premiere at the Broadway
Stanford and I went to see a bunch of classic movies together including Citizen Kane, All About Eve, Some Like it Hot and The Godfather. My kind of fellow!

I also became friends through the movies with Camille Hunt who has proven to be a really fun lovely person I’m excited to get to know better. There are friends from my ward and tons of people I’ve podcasted with that have made 2017 the year of the friendship.

Of course I had many great experiences on my channel and blogs and I’ve moved more from doing editing content to doing podcasts. One of the best experiences was becoming better friends with Amber Nielsen and starting on the Hallmarkies podcast. I don’t think either of us had any idea how much time and effort it would take but now that I’m immersed in it I’m glad it has. And Amber has been a total delight keeping me laughing through even the worst movies!

I had a great time writing for rotoscopers.com and my work for them allowed me to go to D23 for the first time in July. It was an exhausting experience but one I will never forget. Just seeing a night with Alan Menken was reason enough to go!

There was also SLC Comicon that was a delight and I got to meet my childhood hero Jodi Benson (aka Ariel from The Little Mermaid) and it was amazing! She even sang for us!

I also got the chance to go to Sundance in 2017 where I got to see the movie STEP which I fell in love with. I even got to meet Coach G and some of the team profiled in the inspiring documentary.

In July I got to go to Capitol Reef National Park and spend time with all 5 of nieces, which is a rare treat!

And in September I drove to Denver with my friend Phaedra and we went to the new Frozen Musical, which was amazing! I dressed up in Elsa cosplay and it was so great to see how the little girls responded. I felt like a real princess for the day! It was also great to meet up with one of my fellow youtubers and friends Larry who lives in Denver. I hope we make many trips there and become even better friends.

I love this picture. I was so happy! We all were

Also in September I went to RHAP-con where I got to meet my fellow Survivor fans (even though this season was super lame). I got to meet Rob, Tyson and Neleh, which was so cool.

While I didn’t get as much swimming in as I would have liked I did finish my 11th marathon open water swim in August at the Deer Creek Swim, and I was able to do it with my Dad! It was such a thrilling experience and I can’t wait to do it again in 2018.

Me and my paddler Jacqueline who is the best

So those are most of the highlights of the year. 2017 was a year of friendship and many happy memories, which I am so grateful for! Thanks for being a part of a great year!

Now to the funeral part of the title of this post. Last Friday my Grandpa Wagner passed away from natural causes. He was a challenging man but it is always sobering when someone in our family passes away. In addition, President Monson, the prophet of my church, passed away a few days ago. I can’t help but think about my life during such times and wonder how I can do better and leave a more powerful legacy. Both men are very different but they both have things to teach me and I am grateful for that.

On Friday I am going to California for my Grandpa’s funeral. I am actually looking forward to it because it will be fun to see all my cousins and my sister Megan. Plus, I hope I can be supportive to my father and Grandma during this challenging time. If you want to learn more about my Grandpa I wrote this post about him and Grabber Construction in 2013 that explains him quite well.

My Grandpa- the inventor!

I will let you know how things go at the funeral but in the meantime I am grateful for a wonderful 2017 and am looking forward to an exciting 2018! My goal for this year is to try to do something spiritually enriching every day even if it is trying harder to say a sincere, thoughtful praryer.

What was a highlight for you in 2017? What are you looking forward to in 2018? Let me know! Thanks again for all of your love and support reading my silly thoughts!


One thought on “2017 Ends and a Funeral

  1. I hope your 2018 will be as great as your 2017! I stay informed about politics as well (and I’m liberal so I’m even more exhausted about the presidency), but 2017 also brought me a sense of belonging in the film Twitter community that I never knew I wanted to be a part of until I met people like you, and it also brought me a new job! My last job ended in 2016 and it hit me hard because I loved my old job, but now I get to work at a place I love again! Btw I’ve told you this before, but I just want to thank you again because you’re the reason why I became a blogger. You inspired me and made it look fun, and a year later I am still going, so thank you for helping me discover something about myself, Rachel!

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