Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2013 Year in Review

I feel like each year is busier than the next. And I suppose that's true - as children get older, time gets filled up, and more things take priority.

2013 was full of love, laughter, tears, and changes. I'm thankful for so many people in my life and glad to have them going into this new year.

Here is a bit of last year in review:

David and I took a couple of trips - one to Charleston, SC in February and one to the NC mountains (Sapphire Valley) in November. We decided before Xander was born that we would try to get away, just the two of us, at least once a year. It doesn't have to be a big deal, expensive or exotic, just...away. It's amazing how some time alone with your spouse can make you love and appreciate your whole family unit even more. We are incredibly thankful for our parents who keep our kids and make this possible.

We spent time with friends, and friends who are cousins.

We moved to Huntersville in July. The house-hunting began in January and concluded with a house purchased on July 16. We chose to rent our old house out instead of sell it, since the market is still slow in our old neighborhood. We absolutely love our new house! And though the commute is long and some of the logistics have yet to be worked out, we know this was a good choice. When Xander starts kindergarten next fall, we'll especially see the benefits.

We had our annual beach trip with our extended families this summer. It's always so nice to see our Texas family. We love them!

Since my dad and Karen moved back to NC last fall, we've been able to see them more often, which is such a blessing!

We took two trips to the mountains - one to celebrate my mom's 60th birthday in March.

And one for David's family reunion in September.

Xander went to his first Panthers football game.

We hosted Thanksgiving at our new house, which was great. Everything went off without a hitch and it wasn't even too stressful! I had lots of help and everyone was so kind and gracious.

My job continues steadily along. I've been at CML for almost 8 years now, four years of which have been part-time. I still love working part-time and thoroughly enjoy what I do - telling stories, singing songs, reading books and playing with preschoolers. It's a great fit for me and for our family. Scheduling continues to be a challenge for me, but I am so incredibly thankful to have a job, especially one as flexible, fun and fulfilling as the one I have.
The library was rebranded this year. Check it out:

David has been at Neighboring Concepts for almost 3 years now. It's a great group of people whom he enjoys working with. You can go to their website and see some of the great things they've done.

Though we moved further away from our church, we continue to serve and attend there. We've been going there for almost six years and have many friends, believe wholeheartedly in the mission to reach the lost of the city of Charlotte and are very invested. Though the drive is difficult at times, we are excited to continue to be a part of Ridge church for this season of our lives.

Our kiddos continue to grow, develop, try new things, and enjoy life. Having a two-year-old and four-year-old means life is never dull.

Xander continues to thrive at preschool. His writing, coloring, and cutting skills have come a long way. In fact, his printed capital letters look better than many adults' I've seen! He is continuing to learn social skills, though he's in a classroom with mostly girls, so I'm sure he's learning a lot about things he really cares nothing about! The teacher commented on how even-keeled and unwavering he is, even amidst the girl-drama.

Amelia Jayne continues to grow, too. She is now fully 2 and not only tests me at home, but also gets into some trouble at school. There have been a few days that she had to be sent to the "principal's office" (which basically means she was removed from the class for being disruptive). She is smart and witty, too. She is the first to call out her colors, animals, animal sounds, etc. She holds a pencil like a 5-year-old and loves to have stories read to her.

I'm so proud of them!

I am so incredibly thankful for my family.

"Be Present" continued to be my theme throughout 2013.

For 2014, I want to remember to "Be a blessing."

A friend of mine posted this to facebook last week and it struck a chord with me. This year I want to walk closely with my Lord and savior...and to bless those around me.

Happy New Year from my family to yours!

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