Being thankful in spite of adversity: saying goodbye to 2012

Bubbles reception at the Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellars Harvest Celebration and Winemaker's Dinner
Bubbles reception at the Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellars Harvest Celebration and Winemaker’s Dinner

I really thought 2012 was going to be my year. However, beginning in the summer, life began to change for the worse. I had a few health scares and issues. I had to move suddenly due to leak and mold issues in the place I had lived for 16 years. Out of the blue, my partner walked out of my life after 15 years together. Then in August, I learned that my college program, Liberal Arts, along with my 23-year teaching position, had fallen victim to the the bad economy. Both the program and my position were eliminated effective December 15, 2012 due to a budgetary reduction in force, so I had to put on a happy face and finish the semester at an institution that no longer valued me.

In spite of all that has happened, I vowed to move forward and enjoy life. I traveled to destinations such as Denver/Keystone, Austin, Houston, St. Louis/Ste. Geneviève (Missouri)Seattle/Woodinville, Victoria (British Columbia), Asheville, Napa and Sonoma, Charlotte, Williamsburg/Norfolk, San Francisco, Finger Lakes Wine Country in New York, Chicago for Thanksgiving, Philadelphia, and back to Asheville for Christmas and New Year’s Eve. In a span of three months, I earned my Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) Level 1 Award in Wines (High Achievement) and Level 2 Award in Wines and Spirits (With Distinction). I ran/walked my first 5K, the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure Tri-Cities, in 50:13.4 minutes, an average of 16:12 minutes per mile. I flew on my first seaplane, Kenmore Air flight 320 from Seattle to Victoria, British Columbia: tail number N606KA, a 1954 Dehavilland DHC-3 C/N 37 (Otter). I also gained a new winery travel client.

The wines I’ve sampled this year have been great learning experiences and have kept my mind off of the challenges. I am thankful for the opportunities provided by ThirstyGirl’s #TGTaste events, as well as others such as Jeff Gordon Cellars, MTGA Wines, #CabernetDayWITS Technology Showcase and WineTwits Virtual Tasting, and #ChardonnayDay.

The readership of this blog has grown immensely this year, and I thank you for being a faithful supporter and reader. I will be forever grateful to Shari Stacy for taking care of my cat when I travel, Gourmet Rambler of for sharing with me a taste of Chicago’s nightlife, Chef Robin White for including me in her Thanksgiving celebration, and long-time friend Nancy Skinner Adams for including me in her Christmas Day celebration at The Grove Park Inn.

I am not sure what the future holds, but I am determined to have a new career that involves travel, wine, writing, social media, hospitality, education, or a combination thereof. In spite of great adversity, I remain thankful for what I have and hopeful for the future.


  1. Personally, I wonder why this test has been so large for you this year. What I do know and never doubted is that you have made it to the other side. I look forward to the continued success of this blog and watch you obtain each and every goal you set out to do in life. So here’s to 2013 the year the “Beth affect” was put to rest. (It’s a bit early so I will raise a glass of wine later and toast you!)

  2. Thank you for your comments! It was cathartic for me to put everything into words, so I could see where I’ve been and how I’ve survived and thrived. Cheers!

  3. A lot of changes! I am sure it has been stressful, but as you know, a little stress can produce the loveliest harvests. You can turn this into something wonderful. Sounds like you are well on your way.

    1. If I can just figure out what I want to do and where, then the stress of uncertainty would go away. I hope that doors of opportunity will make themselves known to me soon.

  4. What a year– and way to land on your feet running. Perhaps all the challenges from 2012 did make it your year–your year of seeing how strong you really are. Here’s to the fruits from all of that coming in 2013! 🙂

  5. It was certainly a challenging year and I’m sure putting it in print brought that into sharp relief for you. But it also highlighted the positive and enjoyable experiences that you managed to accomplish despite the challenges. You’ve proven you can survive and thrive, but I have no doubt 2013 will be a better year for you.

  6. It was such a treat to meet you in person this last year, Beth….I KNOW you are on to better and brighter things. Can’t wait to see how you re-define your success and your life. Whichever way it works out…you will be a winner. Always! xoxo

    1. Thank you, Kendra! I had so much fun meeting you and walking around O’Hare. I admire your creativity, energy, and perseverance. I am confident that 2013 will be your break-out year with PortaPocket! ❤

    1. It sounds so easy, but if it were, we would all be living our dream! Still trying to figure it all out and make sense of it all! 🙂

  7. I admire you for following you dreams, Elizabeth. Sounds like 2013 is treating you better! If you are ever in the Brandywine Valley, the Chambourcin is on me! 😉

  8. Well, I’m only a couple of years late reading this article, but appreciate you sharing it with me! Seeing as I just met you briefly at the WBC14 I don’t know you well, however I can feel the industry passion in your writing. Will keep reading and following your journey and look forward to hopefully seeing you next year in Finger Lakes. Miki

    1. Thanks for reading! Better late than never, right?

      On Fri, Aug 29, 2014 at 10:15 AM, Traveling Wine Chick wrote:


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