The past year has been a whirlwind of greatness, excitement, firsts, disappointment, learning and much, much more. When I think back to everything that has happened in one year's time, I realize how lucky I am to do what I get to do. Six months of the year, I pack up all my belongings in a 50 pound bag and I travel from place to place and country to country. Not only do I get to see the world, but I get to meet many amazing people along the way. Aside from racing my heart out, seeing the world, and traveling all around, I also get to go to school. APU has such an incredible set up with their distance education program. This will be my second year now that I am training full time, racing full time, and also going to school full time! So most importantly, thanks to APU for providing an awesome ski program, and an awesome education program!!

So a little review of the past year and some of its highlights.

January- I won my first National Championships in Rumford Maine, and podium in two other events, making my best National Champs ever, and also qualifying me for my first World Championship team.

February- Aside from other races this month, I raced at U23 World Championships in Estonia, where I will be competing in a World Cup almost exactly a year later (coming up here in a couple weeks). Here I am, blowing kisses to the crowd on TV.

March- I join 100,000 screaming norwegian fans for the World Championships in Oslo, Norway. By far the most exciting races I have ever taken part of. This will probably be my motivation for the following 10 years! Here I am giving out some of my first autographs to some of my first fans.

April- I join back with the APU crew to attend distance nationals in Sun Valley, Idaho. Here I finish the season nice and tired, going to the point of collapsing on the final day of racing up the alpine hill. Fitz took the award for the day pushing herself so hard she passed out at the finish line.

May- I discover the backcountry spring skiing in Alaska. On nordic skis and on the fat skis. My boyfriend, Jo, finally gets me on what he calls "the real" skis, and I discover a whole new world!!!

June- Glacier Camp number one of the summer. Eat, sleep, train... and repeat for seven days. Put in my largest week of my life with 23hrs... all on snow!

July- North American Woman's Training Camp. Top Canadian and US ladies gather together for a week of dryland training in Anchorage, and then a week of skiing on the glacier. Lots of good girl energy, and lots of great training!

August- Fourth glacier camp of the summer followed by a little five day break in Washington.

September- Season starts changing in Anchorage. September is also the only month of the year that I am not skiing on snow at all. Makes for a good time for lots of hiking and lots of hard training!

October- Final US Ski Team Camp down in Park City. Here we have a huge Fast and Female Event where a variety of winter athletes, and olympic medalists gather to inspire the younglins. Here I am talking about nordic skiing to the kids, sporting my pink pride!

November- I have my first period one of World Cup racing. Lots of good and lots of learning from weekend to weekend. I come six seconds from scoring points in Kuusamo, in a distance skate race.
Flyingpoint photo

December- Kikkan and I get second in the team sprint at the Dusseldorf World Cup, making me the second american to ever win a world cup medal!!!!! I do a lot of smiling, a lot of screaming, and a we both do a little dance on the podium in honor of all our teammates back home!

The final week of the year- I get some family time back home in the Methow. Between putting on a kids camp and visiting my grandparents in Seattle, there is little time to just sit and relax. But lets face it... thats rarely possible!!

So after reviewing a year of lots of joy and excitement, I just want to say thanks to all the people that have helped me throughout the 2011 year, and the many more to come. Happy New Year, and here is to a new year filled with resolutions, goals, good health, and lots of speedy skiing!

I am currently laying in bed in Rumford Maine, trying to get healthy. I have been plastered with a series of cold's for the past three weeks. With the tough travel back from Europe, and then the travel to see family, followed by the travel all the way back to Maine (cancelled flight means 48 hours with about 2hrs of sleep), I can't get rid of the cold that just keeps giving. Sometimes its hard to admit you are sick, but I have learned that having a long successful season means keeping your body healthy!

The weather here in Maine has been crazy as usual, so after a night filled with warm rain, the races have been postponed until they can doctor the snow up enough to ski on. Maybe this is a blessing in disguise, as I may have more time than expected to get healthy. If not, hopefully I will be back by the end of the week!

For now it's rest and good, positive vibes.

On a side note, the Tour de Ski is going on right now over on the World Cup circuit, and it has been amazing to follow. The North Americans have been showing a strong force. With the time change only 7 hours from the east coast to Europe, we get to wake up to live ski racing every morning. And since it is 10 days of racing, that literally means every morning!! Kikkan has been proving that she is going to be in position for the podium!!! The others have all been impressive as well, especially since its a first tour for many of these guys!!! So keep on keepin' on guys!!!

Happy New Year Everyone! Hope you all have a happy and safe holiday!