2015 Year-in-review.

12:42 PM

Well hello there, 2016.


   Like always, you snuck right up on us while our guard was down.  We had hardly pushed back from the Thanksgiving table with a contended sigh and then suddenly....there you were.  Demanding that we change our calendars and take down our Christmas decor, and get organized and make resolutions and clear the slate before the fresh start of January, and our heads are still spinning.

   But before you get all of the spotlight, 2016, we need to let 2015 have it's moment in the sun.  2015 was a good one. "One for the history books" as we like to say, but aren't they all?  So let's take a  moment, and quickly, QUICKLY, review the year of our Lord, 2015.  Shall we?

//JANUARY//


   We rang in the new year with lots of family, sunshine, sand, ocean waves, and football games that made our hearts soar to impossibly hopeful heights, only to be crushed later on.


   We visited friends in Seattle to play games, eat seafood, and watch the aforementioned, soul-crushing football game. 


   We traveled to Iowa for my friend Lindsay's wedding, and I was able to briefly meet up with some old school friends from my childhood.  My girls were shy and it took a while for them to warm up, but it was so wonderful to touch base with everyone and see them with their darling little ones.

//FEBRUARY//


   After the whirlwind of January, it was nice to have a slower February.  We had a fancy dinner at home with these two for Valentine's Day, and my sister's family stayed with us for a weekend while they were in the process of moving.

//MARCH//


   March held birthday parties, car shopping, and the magic of a baby bump, continuing to grow.  Little did I know at this point that I held a SON inside of me! 



//APRIL//


  We celebrated our 6th anniversary with a little getaway to the coast, sans kiddos! 


   One beautiful Sunday after church we took off for the falls to do some hiking as a family.  You can see the trail going behind the waterfall in the picture.  Oregon never ceases to surprise me with beauty.

//MAY//


  We wanted to squeeze in one last family vacation before baby came, so in May we went to Sun river with some friends.  It was such a wonderful time.  


  But no work and all play makes Jack a dull boy so.....we resort to child labor sometimes.  Here they are dutifully helping spread wood chips underneath the play structure.  This month held a lot of finishing up house projects and getting ready for baby!

//JUNE//


  June was of course, all about baby.  We waited, and waited, and waited some more, as I went overdue again, as expected.  But we weren't about to miss out on all the fun while waiting for Jr!  So we attended the Smucker reunion at Drift Creek camp, right over my due date.  For those of you that may not know, Drift Creek is about 3 hours away from home, up winding mountain roads, with little-to-no cell service.  Sounds like the perfect place to be at night when your water breaks, right?!?  But as I expected, that didn't happen.  And we made it home safe and sound, and still pregnant.  


  Our sweet Charlotte turned 3, and baby brother was still not here.  He was now 4 days overdue.  We kept things simple and celebrated her birthday with a breakfast date with daddy, and friends at the park.  The kids played in the water and we had cupcakes and it turned out to be such a great celebration, and a great distraction as well.


I had trouble staying patient while waiting around, so we stayed busy.  For the next week, we picked berries, attended a birthday party and a tea party, and went on a hike with the Smuckers (I opted out of the actual hiking and sat in the shade. I remember feeling like an achy whale).

   June was drawing to a close, and I almost feared for a moment that my baby due on June 14 would actually stretch into JULY, when he decided to come.  On the 11th day past his due date, and mere HOURS before he was scheduled to be induced, he chose to make his way into the world.  And it was, for the third time, one of the most amazing, incredible, magical, PAINFUL, miraculous moments of my life.  Our son was HERE.



//JULY//


   Two days after William was born our Charlotte was a flower girl and it broke my heart to have to miss watching her float down that aisle.  She was perfect.  Randy sent me pictures and I was able to be all emotional and hormonal in the comfort of my home while snuggling my newborn.  It turned out pretty well after all.




   Our first picture as a family of five.  The girls were positively smitten with him.  


   July was a month of slowing down and staying indoors, instead of parades and fireworks and BBQs.  But I wouldn't trade a thing.  

//AUGUST//


  Baby's first trip to the coast in August was a smashing success, if you don't count the epic diaper blowout resulting in semi-nakedness because I did NOT have extra clothes on hand.  Clothes for HIM, that is.  Other than that, the trip was lovely.  


A friend taught me how to sew baby leggings and I had so much fun making some things for William. 


  We attended a wedding, spent some time with family, and celebrated my golden birthday, 30 on the 30th.

//SEPTEMBER//


   We finished up some home projects in September, including our master bedroom.  There are STILL a few things to be done, but I am loving the fireplace and floor that Randy put in.  


 Football season began, and hopes were high again.  I should warn my girls though...."they'll break ya heart, kid."


 This month also brought juice-making and canning.  I put up salsa, pizza sauce, applesauce, corn, , green beans.  strawberry jam, grape juice and berries.  Our grapes did SO well, and I got around 50 quarts.  BUT.  It was a hot, sticky, grueling process that I'd rather not dwell on.  However, every time we sit down to Little House on the Prairie and I make popcorn and open a jar of juice....I am grateful.

//OCTOBER//


     October held trips to the farmer's market, pumpkin patch, doctor visits, busy days and lots of coffee.  The girls started ballet, and my entire family was out for a visit to the coast.  It was such a fun, fun, wonderful month.




//NOVEMBER//



   I love the way the weather shifts in the fall in Oregon.  It gets all moody and misty and melodramatic, as if it is rather emotional about the year drawing to a close.  November held teaching Jocelyn's age group of children's church on Sundays, and celebrating Thanksgiving with family and friends.  I tried to do some preparations for Christmas, although I didn't do nearly enough, early enough.  

//DECEMBER//


  Our firstborn Jocelyn turned 5 this December.  FIVE.  I still am not quite sure how that can be.  She is growing up into quite the lady, and looked forward to her birthday date with Daddy with GREAT anticipation.  I threw a Frozen-themed party for her and in spite of the close-to-Christmas craziness, it all turned out.  I have a lot of pictures from that day, so I'll just have to save them for a future post. But for now, here's one of the cake. 




   We were all together with Randy's immediate family at the coast for the days leading up to Christmas, and it was such a special treat to be able to have vacationed at the coast with BOTH sides of our family this year.  My cup is full.  


   And on Christmas Day, our little William a.k.a "Bubba" turned 6 months old.  What a gift he is.  These year-in-a-nutshell updates are always slightly terrifying because they serve to show me how truly vaporous our lives are.  They are a mist, like the ocean spray.  Here one moment and gone the next.  2015 has FLOWN by, and 2016 is now here.  

   Well that is all for now.  I am not even going to go back over it because I am short on time, so you'll have to forgive me any grave errors.  I'd love to hear from you!  What were some of your highlights of 2015, or resolutions for 2016? 

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