Thursday, January 12, 2012

Highlights of 2011

1. In January, the Lord blessed us tremendously with a beautiful new home! By the grace of God, we were able to fix it up enough to move in at the end of February--we are oh so thankful for all those that came and helped us paint, strip wallpaper, tear down the kitchen wall, and help with plumping, electrical, etc. Although we did finish a lot of the house projects prior to moving in, it is still a work in progress! Hopefully, over 2012, we'll be able to refinish the floors, build a laundry room, put corner round in, & continue making our house a home!

2. Between being pregnant & fixing up a house, I also experienced the loss of two family members within a month's time. My uncle David passed away of a sudden heart attack in Dec. of 2010 and my grandfather passed away in his sleep in Jan. 2011. Never having lost someone so immediate to my family, this was a difficult time for me & my entire family.

My uncle is in the top right corner.

Last picture with my Grandpa Kay.

3. At the beginning of March, we celebrated the marriage of our dear friends, Matt & Megan Harris! We were so excited to be apart of their special day!

4. At the beginning of April, we discovered that my husband has Celiac's disease. Ever since I had met him, he was having horrible migraines & stomach problems pretty consistently. One day, he thought maybe I'm allergic to wheat or something. He had an old roommate who had the same the same situation and he was diagnosed with Celiac's. So, low and behold, it was wheat/gluten causing him all of these issues! So...since April, we have been cooking completely gluten-free! It's been a journey and still is! But, I've realized that its definitely not as hard as its seemed to be at first and its also making us eat healthier! Although it can be challenging sometimes to cook GF, we are so thankful that he is feeling so much better!

5. Right about the same time we discovered that James has Celiac's Disease, we also discovered that our house was infested with brown recluse spiders! So, James and some other men from our church bombed our house GOOD, (I mean there was a bomb in every room!) and somehow by the grace of God, they all disappeared! Since I was pregnant, I was not able to participate in this "bombing" event--and I was verrrrrry thankful for that! :)

6. In the spring, we were gearing up for the baby due in June. So, we decided to take a childbirth class called the Bradley Method. And for all the momma's & dada's to be out there, I highly recommend this class! It was a 6-week thing where we learned all about relaxing through contractions, good nutrition, what to expect at the hospital, terminology, heard lots of good stories from our older & wiser mother of 4, grandmother of 8 instructor, and overall calmed our nerves for the approaching labor. I really enjoyed our time during the Bradley Method class.

7. Finally, we welcomed a beautiful baby girl June 21st. Lydia Joy was 8lbs 13 oz & 21 inches long! The labor was LONG (70 hours) & HARD, but God was good and protected me and the baby. We are so thankful for his grace & his blessing of our little sweet bundle of joy.

8. Two weeks after Lydia was born, we were able to again celebrate the marriage of great friends! Although it was crazy hectic with a newborn, it was SO good to be apart of Casey & Paula's special day. :)

9. The following week in July, James and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary! We weren't able to do much to celebrate, but we did rope the grandparents into babysitting for a couple hours while we ate at our favorite restaurant, The Cheesecake Factory!! :-) I'm really bummed, but I didn't get a picture at all on our anniversary. I don't think I was quite in the mood for pictures since only having a baby 3 weeks before! ;)

10. Right before school started back up, James and I and the baby were able to take a much-needed mini-vacation to a cabin called the Lean-on Lodge. For those of you in ministry, I would highly recommend this place and its free to you! James and I got to relax, watch movies, and fish A LOT! It was such fun for me because I didn't know at all how to fish and it was a good bonding experience with the hubby! We caught several and even deep-fried some of them for dinner!

Starting in August, our life slowed down a lot thankfully. We continued to work with the school at Neighborhood Fellowship and other families in the neighborhood, adjusted to life with a baby, and spent time with family during the holidays!

Praying the Lord with continue to grow us in grace & knowledge in 2012!

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