Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A Look Back at 2013

2013... Seems I've blinked and the year has ended!

Such a year of changes.  A season of unknowns...and a few storms.  In any of the uncertainties though, they just brought us closer to Him.  Whenever life knocked us down this year, God was always there to pick us up and dust us off.  And with any storm cloud, sunshine soon follows. 
2013 was also filled with its share of blessings and JOY. 

Looking back, here are a few of my favorites...

January... Choosing to SUBMIT as my word for the year and being wowed at how appropriate that word would be in 2013.  A birthday blessing that will always hold a place in my heart.  My baby turned a teenager!  We finally made it to a Harlem Globetrotters game to use Noah's free ticket for being a 2000 baby.  And the kids experienced their first mosh pit at Winter Jam with their youth group.

February... Tina gets a birthday-palooza hotel fest weekend.  I bravely started my first Bible study.  We found lots of joy from a teeny tiny source.  And our Upward Season came to an end.

March...  The kids were surprised with a No Snow-Snow Day.  Our family started cleaning the Big House.  My first scripture journal was started (goal to be better at this in 2014!) 

April... I attended my first Women of Joy conference.  
So many things discovered there, including a new found love for author Liz Curtis Higgs.  We started a tradition of pillow talk before bed with the kids.  And we hosted our first youth Bible study at our home.

May... spring showers, dirt therapy, and the annual joy of window boxes.  We made it through another Mother's Day.  Tina graduates middle school!  Impromptu date night returns.   Hello boat season!  Firsts for Tina...entering a local pageant and making the high school dance team.

June...  Sweet summertime.  VBS.  Swinging in the sunshine.  The kids experience church camp together.  Fishing on the river.  Cinema on the square.  20 years together!

July...  Austin's 19th birthday in Heaven.  Our first trip to Florida with Mom & Tina.  Noah takes home an unexpected souvenir

August... Back to school.  The ending of my job and beginning of a stressful season.  A beautiful addition to our family - my littlest niece!

September... a long weekend on the lake.  Bike Nights at the Fire Dept.  A new ministry for me at EHBC.  Tina's first dance performance

October... Glorious Autumn!  Fall Break.  A mini vaca.  A free John Michael Montgomery concert in our little town.  Festivals, apples, leaves, Hay rides and a Great pumpkin chase.  Honored to be chosen as a monthly contributor at Still Standing Magazine.  Our first Trunk or Treat. 

November... Thankfulness begins.  A visit to school.  My first experience with unemployment.  Purpose driven acts for Austin.  Thanksgiving meal deliveries to those without.

December.... Christmastime.  Another possible ice storm.  Chosen for a book review.  And another book that chose me.    The blessing of a job offer for the new year!  Our annual no-presents present day.  And an unexpected, upside down Christmas that's given us an extra gift of time.   

"I will tell of the kindnesses of the Lord,
    the deeds for which he is to be praised,
    according to all the Lord has done for us—"
What a year!
Thank you for joining me along the way.
Wishing you a Happy New Year
filled with, of course, lots and lots of JOY!


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