What a Year!

Happy New Year pic

SHINE!

I still have a calendar on my fridge.   A real life paper one.  Yes, I’m still one of the last Mohicans who hasn’t recorded all of their lives on a cell phone.  Digital everything is the name of the game these days.  I’m sure it is very convenient to have your schedule right at your fingertips any time night or day.

But, still I hang my trusty old paper calendar on the side of the fridge.

I make sure it has the big boxes for each day so I can record appointments etc.  Each year it is a big deal for me to pick out the color ink I want to use in my calendar as it is the ONLY color allowed to grace the pages of each month.  For. The. Whole. Year.

This is no joke to me.

My family knows better than to use a different color…I don’t consider myself OCD, I’m actually not sure why this matters, but it does!

Last night I pulled down the calendar and began to turn back the pages, which are the months of my life, to jog my memory on the happenings of 2018.  It’s amazing how much I had forgotten.  It’s also amazing how long this year has been.  As I’m living each day it feels fast, but when I look back to the beginning it seems like a decade ago.

Last January my husband was hired by American Airlines.  At the time he was flying for the regionals.  This move was kind of like a baseball move from the minors to the majors.  We were overjoyed!  He’d been working for the regionals for twelve years and to make the move “up” was a dream come true.

We had no idea what to expect, but we knew it was going to be good.

January was also the month my son landed his first commercial.  He was thrilled!  Turns out it was a training video for Target employees, but it was one of the first times he earned money for “acting,” so it was just as exciting for him.  If you ever get hired by Target, you might just see my brown haired, brown eyed boy sporting the famous red and khaki worn by all their employees.

February rolled around and my husband headed off to Dallas for training.   I was invited as well for their “Welcome to the Company” banquet. This is where I received my “wings.”  Some of you will remember me telling you about those, I still wear that necklace regularly.  It was such a special time for us, I will NEVER forget.

I also ran the Disney Princess Half Marathon at the end of February.  I had trained so hard for it, but still managed to hurt my leg during the race.  I limped most of it and then around the Disney parks afterwards.  I know you’re wondering why I would go to the parks with an injured leg, I don’t have an answer except that I am a child and I couldn’t resist being THAT close and not going inside.

Sadly, this race ended my ability to run for the better part of this year. It takes longer to heal as I get older, but, just like in life, I’m not going to give up even if I do limp a bit from time to time.

March brought Holy Week.

Some of you may remember I wrote a blog about this week in our small town.  It is such a special time and I love how the churches come together to remind us what this season means to our faith.  If you’d like to know more about it, click here.

I facilitated a Bible study at our little church that started in March.  A few ladies met faithfully on Wednesday nights for several weeks to learn more about God’s word.  I love personal Bible study, and I love doing it with friends. There’s just nothing quite like the setting of women who want to grow.  I learned so much.

April was filled with Wednesday night Bible study and a busy work schedule.

By the time May rolled around, 2018 was full on.

We had two college graduations and a wedding in the magical month of May.  It was bittersweet as Momma was noticeably absent for all of the festivities.  But, you know what?  It was all still good.  I’ve told you before I’ve learned you can live with joy and sadness mingling in your heart. I think it’s impossible to avoid as you age.  Heartache is the price of love but its proof we’re here doing this thing called life to the best of our ability.

June brought the beginning of summer and my college boys came home.  I was thrilled to have my family of five living under one roof for a while.  I need to say, in full transparency, having five grown people living together was a challenge.  I never want to give the impression that we live drama free, nothing could be further from the truth.  BUT, we do take the time to work things out, sometimes that involves long conversations other times it means everybody going their own ways for a while, space can be a respite when it’s not used as a weapon.

In spite of it all, we had a WONDERFUL summer.

July my husband and I celebrated twenty six years of marriage.  Boy, that number is BIG.  We’ve fought hard for our marriage, trust me when I say we are VERY different people.  It’s funny, after this many years we don’t fight like we used to.  Not because we are super mature or incredibly spiritual, quite the contrary, we are just too lazy to be mad.  You get old enough and you realize it’s just not worth all the energy it takes to fight.

We are happy and I love him more than ever.

I’d rather let it go and have a cookie than to be mad and stew over something.

Life is short.

August brought my forty eighth birthday.   Another big number.  I celebrated the WHOLE month.  Seriously, if you follow me on social media you know I’m not exaggerating.  You only get one birthday, and you should celebrate it with all your heart.  Or in my case with all of your heart and for thirty one days.   It was loads of fun and I highly recommend a month long birthday extravaganza!

Abbie and I took a trip to Charlotte, North Carolina in September.  Our first real mother/daughter trip.  We planned carefully to go to Charleston, NC, only to have our AirBNB cancel on us twelve days before we were supposed to leave!  Ugh!  Nearly lost my religion over that one.  But, not to be daunted, we regrouped and planned for Charlotte instead.

I’m so glad we did!

We took her rescue dog, Rileigh, and made all of our plans around pet friendly places.   It was such fun and I never knew how many places welcome pets.  We ate on a lot of outdoor screened in porches, but I wouldn’t change a thing about our trip and especially our time together.

I started a thirteen week journey in September.   Griefshare.   If you’ve read any of my blogs or follow me on social media, you know I lost my mother four years ago. She was my best friend, my working companion and the love of my life.  Not a single day goes by that I don’t miss her.  But, there came a time in my grief journey that I needed to learn to let go and move forward.  Griefshare taught me how to do that, and so much more.  I HIGHLY recommend this study for anyone who has lost someone they love.  Grief recovery is WORK.  But, there is life after grief.  If you’d like to read about “The Other Side” of grief, click here.

In October we thought we were getting a Hurricane.  At the last minute the beast turned and hit land directly over my older sister’s home.  Hurricane Michael changed the landscape of the Florida panhandle and left damage that looked like bombs had exploded.   My sister and I were just talking about all of the damage over the Christmas break.  Many are still jobless, homeless and working hard to restore some sense of normalcy.  Please continue to pray for this community.

By the time November arrived, I was ready for the holidays.

Thanksgiving and Christmas are my favorite times of the year.  I put my Christmas tree up before Thanksgiving, and I have yet to take it down. I know, scandalous.  I just LOVE the festive atmosphere in my house right now and I know as soon as all the red and green are packed up and stored soundly in the garage, my living room will look like a barren land.

I’m not excited about it.

December also holds something near and dear to my heart, besides the birth of our beloved Savior.  My oldest child, and only girl, graduated from college with Bachelor of Arts degree in English.  She is my lover of the written word.  I’m really not sure who is more excited about it, me or her?!  I offered to walk with her across the stage to get her degree, just in case she were to get stage fright or something, but she said she’d be okay.

Right after she rolled her eyes.  Not sure why??!!  😉

As I sit and type this, I wonder to myself what 2019 will hold.  I read a post recently that encouraged me.  It said, “a lot of good and bad has happened this year and I’d be lying if I said I’m not a little intimated by a new year, but the Lord brought us through this year and I know He will see us through the next.”

Amen!

2019, I have no idea what you have in store, I’m not a youngster anymore, I realize sparklers and fireworks are fun but fleeting.   I will tip my glass in a toast as you enter, but remain wide eyed with anticipation as you pass through.

6 thoughts on “What a Year!

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