I’ve never experienced a year with such a singular focus as this one. I started the year not pregnant and I’m ending the year not pregnant but I spent most of the moments in between consumed entirely by the babies inside me. Pretty much every single major decision made this year revolved around my pregnancy, the biggest of which, was the decision to leave teaching after 8 years in the classroom. It wasn’t an easy choice but it was the right choice.

Some thoughts on the year:

I find myself more and more distanced from the pop culture world. I don’t know the big movies or popular TV shows and I find that I don’t care or miss them. This morning I was watching one of the morning shows as it did a rundown of the biggest pop culture news stories from this year and some I didn’t remember and others felt as though they happened in a different lifetime.

Actually the me that started this year feels like a “me” from a different lifetime as well. Maybe that’s from experience or maybe that’s just a part of getting older.

I made a commitment to have more faith this year and I failed at that miserably. I spent it worrying instead. I think I aged about a decade from worry this year. However, in a practical way we have settled into a different church and found renewed faith in that change.

At the end of last year we visited a school fair for the county where we were able to view the different school choice options. There we fell in love with one of the choices and we prayed very hard that if it was indeed the right place for Andrew, he would be offered a spot at the school. We were thrilled to receive his acceptance letter in March (It was a lottery system so all you could really do was hope and pray.) It turns out it was a fantastic choice and we are so SO happy that all our kids will get to attend this school. No more school choices until High School!!

Other random things that happened include planting our butterfly garden, Andrew starting soccer and scoring his first of several goals, Allison starting preschool and loving it as well as her decision to completely potty train 100% on Thanksgiving Day. I got what will likely be “the first” minivan which it turns out I like very much and in the first 4 months of owning it I put over 7000 miles on it. I will be interested to see what the total mileage is at the year mark. I live in my car.

Of course the most monumental event this year was adding another member to our family. Molly’s birth was both beautiful and awful but the one thing that went right was that we got to bring home a healthy baby and in the end that was all I ever wanted anyway.

The few high points were very high and the low point extremely low but the rest in the middle was pretty decent and makes me excited to see what the next year holds.

Finally, on to resolutions and a look at how I did on the 2013 ones.

These were my resolutions last year:

1) Read 40 adult length books (ie: kids’ bedtime stories don’t count)

Verict- Not quite. Here were the books I read

1) Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
2) Something Blue by Emily Giffin
3) Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi
4)Through the Ever Night by Veronica Rossi
5) You are Not So Smart by David McRaney
6) Across the Universe by Beth Revis
7) A Million Suns by Beth Revis
8) Shades of Earth by Beth Revis
9) Matched by Ally Condie
10) Crossed by Ally Condie
11) Reached by Ally Condie
12) Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
13) Partials by Dan Wells
14) Fragments by Dan Wells
15) Proof of Heaven by Eben Alexander
16) Legend by Marie Lu
17) Prodigy by Marie Lu
18) The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
19) The evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
20) Sisterland by Curtis Sittenfeld
21) Inferno by Dan Brown
22) The Girl Who Fell from the Sky by Heidi Durrow
23) To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
24) The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
25) Colony East by Scott Cramer
26) The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman
27) Divergent by Veronica Roth (a re-read)
28) Insurgent by Veronica Roth (another re-read)
29) Allegiant by Veronica Roth
30) The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman

2) Of the 40 books, fill in my “gap” by reading at least 5 classic novels. You know, those books I should have read in high school but got by on the Cliffs Notes or just never read at all.

Phew. So, not a bad list and not bad considering I spent a good chunk of time mindlessly absorbed in Candy Crush which I’ve now given up completely. I will make it to 40 next year. I also only hit on one of those more classic stories that I should have read before which is of course To Kill a Mockingbird. I read another of the books on the list of 100 books to read before you die which was Cloud Atlas (very good but also a very challenging read). And finally, I broke out of my box and read in a totally different genre than I’m used to. Across the Universe and it’s sequels were very much Sci-Fi and I’m happy to say I really enjoyed them even though I’ve always turned my nose up at that sort of thing. Finally, I’ve got about 80 pages left in The Dovekeepers which I hope to finish today. It’s an incredible book but also very long and not a quick read but definitely worth reading!

3) Learn to sew by taking on 3 projects- a dress for Allison, a blanket, and whatever else I decide when the time comes.

Verict: Mostly

I didn’t make the dress but I did make blankets for Allison and Andrew, had assistance but made pillows for the playroom and again had assistance but also heavily embellished curtains for Allison’s big girl bedroom. Three projects- check, the dress? Nope, and now I have to make two!

4) Photograph night lightning.

Verict: Not even close

I will blame pregnancy for this one. It just didn’t seem like a very responsible thing to stand out in a lightning storm. Plus I still haven’t found a dark enough location. The beach during turtle season is my best bet but when we went this past summer there weren’t any storms.

5) Re-engage in some sort of physical activity. I’m thinking bike riding since A got my bike fixed for me for Christmas.

We did go out bike riding. Then I got pregnant. Then we got a new car that no longer holds the bike rack on the back of it. But I joined a gym and started C25K.

So here are the new ones for 2014

  1. Read 40 books– same as before
  2. Run a 5K– running the entire time, no stopping and dying on the side of the road or anything
  3. Going along with number 2, get my body back in shape by eating better and more natural foods. We will be replanting our vegetable garden in the spring and that will help but we are also going to switch to organic meats and continue to cut back on processed foods (which we are already doing pretty well with).
  4. Finish the darn baby blanket I started making 6 months ago!
  5. Take on and complete a new photo project.

Oh and you know, keep everyone happy and fed and entertained (and dressed most of the time). 🙂

Happy New Year!


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