Winding Down: My Top Ten Moments of 2014 in Photos

Written by Nathalie Kalbach. Posted in General Announcements

It has become a tradition of mine and other blogger friends to wind down the year with some  Top “insert number”- Lists of work , posts and photos, before the year ends. It makes me go back and look at what I have done and accomplished and it also makes me dwell in memories. Too often we forget about the things we did and accomplished throughout the year- often just bashing ourselves for not fulfilling all the wonderful new year’s resolutions from last year.  Maybe this makes you wanna do it too – if so – share :)


2014 was a year I traveled a lot for workshops, I had a couple amazing dear friends over from Europe and I had some really wonderful moments. In no particular order:




The first 3 times we had snow in 2014 I was totally excited…like a little kid. I know everyone thinks as I am from Germany , that I am used to loads of snow, but I lived in the north of Germany in Hamburg, which rather as the climate of Seattle and not a lot of snow. I do admit though  that by the 4th time as a pedestrian in a city I got a bit fed up with snow – LOL- isn’t the grass always greener on the other side ? 😉

2. Strolls through the hood with friends


HA – another snow pictures – lol. But actually it stands for the wonderful moments I had with my friends that came over from Europe and were excited to stroll through my new neighborhood even though the City of Cities was so close by. I loved every minute with them- living in a different country makes you miss your friends a lot – I am very thankful for being able to stay in touch with my friends and see them, because I know that this is not the norm for many people that move to a new country.

3. Hikes and Walks 


I took this photo on a hike in Hong Kong. It was a wonderful little hike I took with my husband and we stumbled across these mating butterflies. We both worked a lot this year and had many projects that kept us more busy than usual – I am happy about the moments we had just to ourselves enjoying the beauty of nature – and I hope we will be able to create some more moments in 2015 🙂

4. Temple Hong Kong, China


In the middle of a bustling city was this old temple – and oasis of calmness and beauty. It felt like being away from everything and I loved taking it in for a moment.

5. Batu Caves in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


This was just an breathtaking sight – several Indian Temples in a cave which you get to by walking past this huge statue, up a lot of stairs …touched by cute looking but nasty monkeys.

6. Meeting Penny and Val and their Mom


When I was invited by Val and Penny to teach in Malaysia, a lot of people were concerned that I would travel there, especially as just a couple days before the flight, the first Malaysian Airline airplane vanished. The news as always had a very special way in portraying country and people and had many people prejudiced. I am so glad I went. Penny, Val and their Mom hosted me and my husband in the most amazing way ever. I learned so much about this country, I ate the best food of my life at places I would have probably not have set my foot in if by myself (tehehehe) and I was reminded once again, that you need to open your heart and mind in order to get back a million more times. I hope some day I can have Penny and Val come and visit us and I hope they will enjoy the same hospitality in the country I live as I did in their country.

7. Studio and Outside Time


2014 I spent a lot of time in my studio and also some time outside on the deck in between. I do love the ability to get out on our deck from my studio and I love to step out and just sit there for a couple minutes, to take a break from working on my desk or on a painting.


8. Laughing like crazy


This photo , which is also going into  my “worst photos ever” category, stands for the awesome times I had with my friends where I almost peed my pants because I was laughing so hard. This Photos was a meager attempt of taking a selfie of Jenn, Julie, Birgit, me and the Statue of Liberty …as you can see…it was just an attempt …what a great carefree fun time we had.

9. At ease with myself


This photo taken by the amazing Sara Stadtmiller, is one of the few photos of myself that I really like. I often doubt myself and the day when Liquitex was so awesome to send a video crew and Sara to photograph I unfortunately felt very uneasy and very aware of myself. Sara had a wonderful way to make me feel calm and enjoy this day and when I look at this photo, I am reminded that at the moments I am creating, I am happy and I just don’t care about anything else around me.

10. Relax


Throughout this year I forgot how to relax …the more I enjoyed the past couple weeks several evenings with my loved ones in front of the fireplace -just watching the fire, reading, talking, watching schtuff, wrapping gifts and having a nice relaxed time.


2014 was pretty amazing, but balancing every aspect of my life has been hard at times. Every time something works well in one place I feel I fail in many other places. For 2015 I wish for more relaxing time, more time with family and friends, and that I take some things lighter or more lightly.

What do you wish for for 2015 for yourself?






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Comments (3)

  • Seth


    What wonderful memories Natalie of the past year. Thanks for sharing this and allowing us to join you for such special experiences.


  • Sue Clarke


    The photos are wonderful and what a year you’ve had. Lots of travel and creativity Nat. I wish for a paying job now that my son is 12 years old and settled in middle school. I also hope to create on a more regular basis as it centers me. The mating butterflies is such a unique photo. Happy New Year!


  • Rebecca Buchanan


    Nathalie, this post really touched me. I am much older than you, but you inspire me very much. Here you share your memories with us in such an open and honest way. I love your imperfect selfie–the laughter and love shine through anyway. Your story about Val, Penny, their mother and their hospitality is heartwarming. Thank you for sharing about self-doubt–that certainly resonates with so many of us. Yes, I could count on one hand the number of photos of myself that I actually like. And yet you are courageous enough to ‘keep on keeping on’ and we are all the better for it. The word courage comes from the latin word for ‘heart’. You certainly have a lot of heart. Thank you for sharing–Cheers to 2015!


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