Every year is special, but the older I get the more I value each moment I'm alive and what it's taught me. The future is so full of hope. . . endless wonder, bursting with possibilities.
Although I don't believe life is measured or counted "successful" by the things we do, the amount of money we make, the success of a business, or by the things we have, it is fun to take a look back through the last 365 days. . . 365 days that have held our joy, our tears, our dreams, our failures, and most importantly-- our growth.
No matter what your year has looked like, I hope you remember that most victories and true triumphs in life, are in the making.
Here are a few things from 2014 that I want to remember. Successful or not, at least we are out there trying and that's worth remembering:
The power of community really sunk in deep for me this year. Getting to live and share our lives with people who understand and absolutely love us-- without any agenda or underlying motive is a rare thing. It's something we are incredibly grateful to have found, and we treasure the relationships that are getting stronger and growing deeper.
I jumped into the world of writing, photography, and graphic design...exploring each avenue a little deeper. I'm hoping to master each one a little better in the next year, but this year was a great start.
Seth turned 14, Dylan turned 11, and Lily turned 10 years old!! Each stage our children pass through has been my favorite-- all so different, yet so incredible. It's amazing how they shape so much of who I have become and where I want to go in life. So grateful to wake up everyday with them in it!
We officially began the adoption process!! Woo-hoo!! I think it's safe to say that neither Jared or I have ever filled out so much paperwork in our entire lives. 2014 will forever live in our memories as, "The Year of Paperwork!" Haha, at least it gave us a good excuse to hold all those midnight ice-cream parties :) We couldn't be more excited to see what the future holds for our family over the next few years in this area!
We opened a little ETSY shop and officially became small business owners! Yay!! Having this shop has not only helped us to raise funds for our adoption, but it has allowed us to help other adoptive families through fundraising and donations. We couldn't be more grateful for our customers and all the support they've shown us!
Jared and I celebrated 16 years of being married :)
I faced my fears and boarded a plane to Texas to spend 3 days with a bunch of girls I'd never met in person. Seriously was scared to death, but turned out to be one of the biggest highlights of my year! We weren't made to do life alone, and these girls have become lifelong friends.
My sweet little girl decided she wanted to cut her hair, so she could donate it to kiddos in need.
The boys started playing flag football and made some great friendships. Their coach is amazing and they can't wait for next season!
As a family, we learned that taking baby steps is the most effective way to get anything done...whether it's eating better, pursuing your dreams, or working towards decluttering the house. . .nothing great happens overnight. The greatest progress for us has come in small, consistent effort.
And finally, this from The Ellen Show. I know this clip wasn't made in 2014, but it made us laugh so hard, and over the last few weeks Jared has come home from work referring to himself in the third person. It always makes me laugh, and on the hard days, it's the little things that are worth remembering!