Monday, December 31, 2012
2012: Year in Pictures
For the past few years, on New Year's Eve, I've recapped the year via photos here on this blog. This year, it's 10:30pm on the 30th, and I'd love nothing more than to fall into bed and immediately fall to sleep for an hour or two before the baby is ready to eat again. But I won't--not yet. Because it's been an incredible, blessed year, and I will not...cannot...let the temporary exhaustion trump the importance of looking back and seeing what an incredible year it was, and how everything worked together in ways that we could not have ever imagined.
In January, Justin and I took our first (and only) overnight "vacation" together since having kids. Unfortunately, it was not so much a vacation as a trip to have an aggressive form of skin cancer removed. Honestly, I've kind of blocked January from my memory--it's still hard for me to even think about, and I cannot watch Parenthood as of late because the cancer storyline is still to fresh. BUT, once we got back from Portland, we celebrated Lizzy's second birthday! It's crazy to see photos of her from January and think that it was less than a year ago--she seems so little!
February brought crazy weather that included both snow, and then just weeks later, sunshine that made it feel like spring. Lizzy's cousin Logan stayed with us in the mornings before he went to afternoon pre-K three days a week--the two loved and played like brother and sister, and it was a great confidence boost to me to know that I *could* handle two kids! I also painted the living room a happier shade of blue--well, mostly. One wall still remains unpainted.
It's behind me, I just pretend it doesn't exist.
March: In March, I made a crazy-nerdy shirt to go see Hunger Games in the theater. We bought a cow for the first time, and I found out I was pregnant with baby #2, so we spent lots of cozy mornings, afternoons, and evenings relaxing and reading on the couch.
In April, we celebrated Easter, and crazily took the FIRST family photo of 2012! We also made it blog official that I was pregnant, and hauled in a TON of dirt to finally re-do our backyard after four years of living with star thistle and red mud.
In May, we started to really see the beauty of spring, and also were blessed qith one little example of how God not only provides abundantly for our needs, but also occasionally blesses us beyond what we could ever expect with the desires of our hearts in terms of an amazing Third Day and Matt Maher concert that my friend Emily treated us to after winning tickets.
In June, we found out that baby #2 was another girl, much to our surprise! We also spent a lot of time outdoors running around, as well as watching Justin play baseball.
July was a busy, busy month for us! We continued the tradition of spending the 4th with amazing friends. My dermatologist decided to remove another spot from my stomach, which majorly stressed me out. We spent the most relaxing day at the lake where Justin and I met, which Lizzy proclaimed the BEST DAY EVER!!! Lizzy got to try the waterslides for the first time, which she loved, and we welcomed another sweet niece Lyla into the family (and I got to practice some more newborn photography)!
In August, my parents gave me a new Android phone for my birthday, complete with Instagram...which basically ensured that nearly every photo I have on my computer for the rest of the year is square ;) We also spent some time picking blueberries, and spent a LOT of time at the baseball field. All the time away from home coupled with the OB telling me that I needed to slow down to try and avoid pre-term labor made me stressed because I felt like our house was ALWAYS a disaster that we couldn't seem to catch up on (still haven't).
In September, we spent more time at the lake, Lizzy and I somehow picked almost 70 pounds of peaches just the two of us, and we remembered to appreciate the little things in life and occasionally say YES.
I remember October as being SUPER unseasonally hot. I think it was in the 90's when we went to the pumpkin patch with Kaitlin, Jess, and Jaxon. I was hugely pregnant, so that probably didn't help! Lizzy was thrilled to ride a pony, and I remember looking at the photo of her on one, and being shocked at the fact that she looked like a KID instead of a toddler. We were also blessed to experience the hands and feet of Christ in our lives.
Eight days into November, Rebecca Allison rushed into our lives (literally). Looking back, I remember November as being such a sweet time of marked slowness in our lives. We're the type of people who are always going, going, going, and being forced to slow down and spend time in bed, on the couch, and just HOME for once was actually kind of a blessing!
In December, Rebecca started smiling at us, cooing, and laughing. I caught the first smile on camera just days before Christmas. I was also reminded of the unspeakable JOY of snow from a child's perspective. Lizzy and Rebecca began to settle in to the world of sisters, and we celebrated our first Christmas as a family of four!
At the end of last year's year in pictures re-cap, I wrote the following:
Overall, it was a great year. There was definitely more good than bad,
and blessings abounded! Still, with all that's happened in December with
the skin cancer, I'm a little nervous to think about all that 2012
could and will bring--here's hoping that this time next year, we'll be
looking back and smiling at the fact that we couldn't have even imagined
all the blessings that were in store!
Well, it's next year, and I can confidently say that I am smiling. Oh Lord, I am smiling. I had no idea what all was in store, or how it would all work together so perfectly to God's purpose. I had no idea that 2012 wouldn't be remembered as the year that I was terrified that I might die from skin cancer, but as the year that brought an incredible new LIFE into our family. What an incredible blessing to have the year redeemed in that way! I am so thankful, and I cannot wait to see what 2013 will bring!