There are so many amazing moments that brought joy into our lives in 2016. And I truly hope that you and your family made the most of this past year. For those who have lost loves one this past year, and the loss of many cultural icons in 2016, this year might have been a very difficult one. For those who are in remission or recovery and are on their way to better 2016, we salute you. For those that struggled and lost hope in 2016, I’m here to let you know that there are better days on the horizon, even when we are in our darkest moments.
This year I chose not to send Christmas Cards. I seem to send them in opposite years and this was the off year. However one of the things I love to share is a Christmas letter to all of our friends and family. And this year dear readers, I wanted to share it with you too. I want you to know that even if you had a tough time in 2016, every day when you wake up and give thanks, there’s another chance to make it your best day ever. And by making it your best day ever, one day at a time, soon enough you’ll have created the BEST YEAR EVER! And for my family and I, 2016 was our best year ever – even better than 2015 and much, much better than 2014.
Christmas Letter 2016 – The Boyer-Lawrence Family
We are truly grateful for another year on earth and another trip around the sun. We had the opportunity to travel often and spend time with loved ones all over North America. Most of all, we are extremely grateful for the health of our parents and siblings, of course, our own excellent health.
January was my 40th birthday! I absolutely love being 40 – it’s much more fun than my thirties and it seems like I am more mindful of the moments in my life now that I am in a new decade. We celebrated with family and friends up at Blue Mountain, with an overnight stay at a beautiful house on the water, tubing at Blue Mountain and a trip to Scandinave Spa. I also had the opportunity to travel to Chicago for a few days for my first Next Level You event. It was a pivotal event for my business in 2016, and I signed up immediately for 2017.
In February we spent a lot of time outside, though not in the snow as it was a very mild winter here in Southern Ontario and we didn’t see much precipitation. It was a month of preparation and planning for our busy spring season in USANA.
March started off with the USANA National Celebration in Toronto, where are large group from our Holistic Lifestyle Creators tribe attended the live event and spent almost three days in training and personal development with over a thousand of our Canadian associates. We also launched the 5th edition of the 30 Day Whole Body Detox program at the end of the month. It’s amazing how this program has grown year after year, with close to 500 people completing the program in 2016.
The 4 weeks that made up April were the busiest time in my USANA business ever and it was all worth it, as thanks to the support and efforts of myself and our tribe, I advanced to Ruby Director in USANA, which is the 2nd of our leadership levels. And at the very same time, my business partner, Amy Ballantyne, also advanced to Gold Director, the first of the leadership levels. The last week of this 4 week ‘run’ ended with me spraining my ankle and not being able to walk or drive for a few weeks. Worst sprain of my life! We also celebrated Dan’s 34 birthday – yes I’m six years older than my husband and it’s awesome.
To celebrate Dan’s birthday, we went to visit Great Wolf Lodge in Niagara for the first time ever in early May. Céline loved the water slides and wave pools, while I nursed my ankle and read a lot in the adults area. It was a great time for everyone! We also met our adopted squirrels, they had been abandoned by their mother and Dan took care of them. There were three to begin and two survived, partly thanks to Dan’s love and care. Squirrely and Growly still visit us almost daily in our back yard.
June marked the end of Jardin for Céline, and official graduation to first grade in September. Our little garden in our front yard was also starting to sprout and although we still haven’t figured out how to make our carrots grow, we did have radishes, cucumbers, lots of salads, peas and beans, plus parsley and thyme. It was so much fun to watch how the plot changed over the summer months. This is a project we will be repeating. Both Dan and Céline also played baseball this year. Céline loved it and will be playing again next summer!
In July we had the amazing opportunity to visit my family in BC. My sister and her family live in North Vancouver and my parents are in Lake Country. It felt like two vacations in one, since we spent time with both. We love the climate and lifestyle in BC, and of course the ocean, lakes and mountains are all stunning. Who knows? Maybe we’ll end up there one day.
USANA’s annual convention is every August, and this year’s 24th anniversary celebration was INCREDIBLE!! With the launch of the new InCelligence technology and the new flagship product, the Cellsentials, these announcements really cemented USANA’s future as a leader in cell technology. I am thrilled to continue to be partnered with USANA as this company is disrupting nutritional supplementation by creating a whole new category of supplements and technology. I also had another opportunity to fly to New York City for a taping of The Dr. Oz Show (link goes to the episode) again, this time with 5 more of our Holistic Lifestyle Creators teammates. What a fun-filled day! We flew in, walked through Times Square and Central Park, went to the studio for the taping and then flew home that night.
Céline started first grade in September. She is finally going to school full days, every day, except when we are on vacation. She has been enjoying school for the most part and is on track with her reading and writing. One of the ways we have been supporting her at home is by writing her daily gratitude. She started that in January of this year and has really improved and hopefully, is living with a more grateful heart. We also celebrated her 6th birthday at the end of the month with family and friends. She decided to host an Echoage party, where half of the money donated by her guests was for charity and half for her presents. She chose to support the WWF and already told us she wants to do it again next year.
October began with another personal development seminar, thankfully this one was in Toronto as our instructors, Tony & Tammy Daum flew in from Florida to teach The Art of Abundant Wealth. It was a phenomenal course and I’ve already signed up for The Art of Communication in April 2017. We finished the month with the last harvest from our garden since September and October were so mild, we had lots of things that were still growing. And Céline and I had matching Wonder Woman costumes for Halloween (I am so excited for the new movie!).
We enjoyed a trip of a lifetime in November! I won a 4 day stay at the Westin Playa Conchal in Costa Rica through a business growth contest with USANA and we extended the trip to 8 days with a stay in Playa Potrero and a visit with my friend Chantale in Playa Coco. We had the best of both worlds, a luxury stay at a world-class resort and the opportunity to live like a local. Costa Rica is as beautiful as it looks, and we went at the end of the rainy season, so the weather was excellent and everything was lush and green. We look forward to another visit for a 2nd trip of a lifetime.
As we wrap up December of 2016, I find myself often overwhelmed with such gratitude that it brings tears to my eyes. That may seem a bit silly to some, but for me, I do my best to live as gratefully as possible. I was able to take one last trip in December, to Las Vegas for the Go Pro Recruiting Mastery, the world’s largest generic training event for professional Network Marketers like me. It was a phenomenal experience and I’m glad I went. I am grateful for all of the amazing experiences this past year and even for the more difficult ones. It’s all a part of my path, and I’m at peace with that.
From our family to yours, we wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Julie, Dan et Céline xoxo
Lifestyle & Leadership Masterclass – Thursday Jan 12th at Le Jardin in Woodbridge with one of my mentors, Natalie Dion. Registration now open! www.lifestylemasterclass.eventbrite.ca
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