It’s that time again!  Here is last years, if you’re so inclined. Also, I realized that this is my 12th year doing some form of a “Year in Review” thing, and it’s probably one of the things I look to the most around this time of year.  I love reflecting on the wonderful things I’ve accomplished (or not accomplished) and all the amazing things that I’ve been able to experience.  Is it all roses? No way. BUT. It is definitely worth the investment of a few hours (I tend to work on mine periodically through the year, if I remember).  Here’s to 12  years more!!

Initial Summary:

Where were you when 2014 began?
Sitting in the hospital room with my BRAND NEW BABY next to me and my husband sleeping on the couch in front of me.  I was awake, I whispered, “Happy New Year,” and then went back to bed.

Who were you with?
Eli and Justin.

Was 2014 a good year for you?
Yes.  But it was also hard.  When I think about this year there was a LOT of joy.  There was a lot of work, though too.  This was one of those years that we said over and over and over again, “this is just the season we are in. This too shall pass.” The season of small kids, while full of love and usually laughter, is also full of sheer, absolute, exhaustion.

What countries/states did you visit?
Visited Tennessee in the spring to visit a sick grandmother, and then in the fall for Charla and Brad’s wedding.  I also flew to Albuquerque New Mexico to teach and had some of the BEST MEXICAN FOOD HANDS DOWN THAT I HAVE EVER HAD. Ahem.

Did you keep your new years’ resolutions? 
I didn’t make any! I had a newborn and a toddler, are you kidding? I think I said I’d be doing good just to keep up, and that was definitely a theme this year. I kept up. Barely.

Did anyone close to you give birth? 
Yes! My sister Sherry gave birth to her daughter Aurora on February 26th.  Taryn had baby GoGo on May 21st.  Reba and Jake had their second baby, Dakota on December 2nd.  My friend Catie had a little girl named Laney as well, who tragically passed away after only a few days old.  Samantha and my brother-in-law Brian had baby Lily on December 22nd.  Lots of babies this year!

Did anyone close to you die? 
Laney. A beautiful little girl who lived only 7 days.

What date from 2014 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Seeing Reba give birth to Dakota will probably be one of the highlights.  Hard to forget watching someone be born.

Experiences:

What did you do in 2014 that you’d never done before?
Had two kids! Went to a child’s funeral.  Was flown out of state to teach at an APCO/NENA conference – which was like, one of my life goals.

Did you have fun in 2014?
Yeah. It was an exhausting year, though.

What do you wish you’d done more of?
Spent more time with my kids and husband. This year was a lot of work, and none of it was excessive to the point that I was neglecting my family more than absolutely necessary, I just like my kids and hubby and wish I’d spent more time with them.   If I had to pick one thing though, I would say I wish I had been able to have more dates with my husband.

What do you wish you’d done less of?
I wish I hadn’t needed so much sleep.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 30! I was hoping to do something exciting, but alas, it wasn’t to be.  I worked.

What did you want and get?
I wanted new shoes to help my plantar fasciitis. Aunt Lynn hooked me up – thanks again!! I wanted a new fridge and a new TV in 2014 – both of which I got! The fridge is pretty incredible – ICE WHENEVER I WANT IT! – and the TV was a Christmas gift that is definitely getting used!  I also really really really wanted a special edition LOTR book, and got that.

What did you want and not get?
A year without any major injuries!!  Not having to go to night shift!!

Others:

Whose behavior merited celebration? 
Benjamin’s. I love that kid. He’s becoming such a great big brother.

Whose behavior made you appalled, depressed, or sad?
In a year that has hit my coworkers and I with such sadness and mourning it’s hard to pinpoint any particular person. Society as a whole has made me very sad.  And worried.

Did somebody treat you badly in 2014?
Yes, but such is life.

Who were some new people you met?
Marlaina, Hope and Jessi.

Favorites/Least Favorites:

What was your favorite month of 2014? 
June!  I took several weeks off of work, my family came up to visit, it was Benjamin’s 4th birthday. Lots of good stuff.  It was the last month on day shift, so everything pretty much went downhill after that until December.

What was your favorite moment of the year?
My first day back on dayshift, haha! Night shift really killed me.  I had a lot of favorite moments. Seeing Amy was definitely near the top. Benjamin getting his swing set was pretty great.

What was your least favorite moment of the year? 
The multiple moments dealing with the emotional aftermath of a rough call at work.  Nothing like waking up in a cold sweat after horrible nightmares, night after night, while your brain tries to process the terrible actions committed by broken people.

What was your favorite TV program? 
Been re-watching Full Metal Alchemist, and that’s been pretty awesome.

What was the best book you read? 
I actually read a lot this year, thanks to my Kindle.  Probably “The Girl Who Circumvented Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making” AND “My Father’s Dragon”.  The first was a book for me, the second, a book for Benjamin.  We read it a LOT over the year and thoroughly enjoyed it each time.

What were your favorite films of this year? 
Guardians of the Galaxy for SURE.  We’ve probably watched it half a dozen times.

What was your favorite video game you played this year?
Mario Kart 8!

What was your favorite new technology/application?
Not new technology, but I really love our Wii.  It’s been a lot of fun!

What was your greatest musical discovery?
Thinking out loud” by Ed Sheeran.

What was the best thing you bought? 
The fridge!

Self-reflection:

What was your biggest achievement of the year? 
I did really good the first half of the year being healthy.

What was your biggest failure? 
The second half of the year, when all my healthy behaviors fell apart when I got injured AND moved to night shift.

Did you suffer illness or injury? 
Plantar Fasciitis.  The bane of my existence.  Started shortly after I started going to the gym regularly…and it sucks. It ruined most of my summer/fall – I was in too much pain to do ANYTHING.

Where did most of your money go?
After bills and groceries, diapers, wipes, and shoes to combat my PF and a fridge… I don’t know.

What kept you sane?
Knowing that I had to stay sane – we couldn’t all go crazy.  Knowing that this is a season, and it’s a busy and hard season, and we will miss parts of it when it’s over.

What political issue stirred you the most? 
I’m deleting this question for next year. I never like to talk politics in my blog.

Who did you miss?
My sisters. Amy. I got to see Amy though, even though it was just briefly!

What did you get really, really, really excited about? 
Jake and Reba moving to Austin, my Christmas presents (especially the Evenstar and LOTR special edition book, hubby did GOOD this year!!)

Compared to this time last year, are you:
I. happier or sadder? Happier
ii. thinner or fatter? Thinner, but only because I’m not 9 months pregnant. I really need to work on that…
iii. richer or poorer? POORER

Did you fall in love in 2014? 
Over and over again!

Did you lose anything important this year?
Does faith in society count?  That’s not true; not really, but it has been difficult to see the news lately. So much brokenness, so much media manipulation.  We forget that the news media is full of someone’s interpretation of events, and that behind every criminal and every cop are two people who are probably not nearly as bad as we think they are, but who are a combination of their circumstances, their decisions, their heart, their soul, their families… and both of them have worth. Both of them are humans with souls that were given a chance in life.  The fact that some make bad decisions is regrettable; but I think we forget their humanity (and our own) when watching the news and commenting on it.  So I guess I lost my hope that the news media could be unbiased – although I knew it before, I’ve seen such blatant manipulation of facts that I’m just incredibly disheartened by it.

What was your proudest moment of 2014?
Teaching in New Mexico.

What was your most embarrassing moment of 2014?
I have no idea.  Luckily I let go of these things pretty easily…

Gauge your:
(On a scale of: Very Good, Good, Fairly Good, Fairly Bad, Bad, Very Bad)
• Relational Health – Very Good
• Emotional Health – Fairly good
• Physical Health – Fairly bad
• Social Health – Bad (I don’t do ANYTHING besides work/family/coffee with Leslie x1/week IF I’M LUCKY)
• Spiritual Health – Good
• Intellectual Health – Good
• Financial Health –  Fairly good

It seems to me, each year, that one of these things is bad. Balance is a terrible, terrible thing.

In the future:

How will you be spending Christmas? 
Already had it! We spent it at home, with the family, and it was awesome.  We got Benjamin, Chloe and Eli a swing set (Well, it’s really for Benjamin and Eli, but Chloe gets it too since she lives with us) and they LOVED it. Benjamin is just big enough – he learned how to swing on his own, and spent HOURS out there on Christmas.  We had lots of family visit.

How will you be spending New Years? 
NYE will be with my family since it’s Eli’s first birthday! Speaking of, I’ve got to get a jump on his birthday letter… anyways. The next day I work in the morning, and then I’ll spend some time with Charla and Brad, who will be in town up from Houston. Yay for family!

What would you like to have in 2015 that you lacked in 2014? 
Dancing lessons. That was my Christmas present for 2013, but I had to go to night shift so Justin never had the chance to deliver.  Also, more financial stability.

What are your plans for 2015?
I’ve got some work goals and home goals, and my plans are to work towards my goals. Hah!

Will you make any new years resolutions for 2015?
Nope. I’m making goals independent of the new year. I might make a “New Years Goal” to not buy any candy in 2015, like I did in previous years but failed at.

In Conclusion:

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2014: 

Night shift sucks when you have a family and a baby who doesn’t sleep through the night and a husband who desperately needs sleep and time to get out of the house.

Also, organization is absolutely critical to success.  This last month I’ve started journaling some goals and tasks to help keep track of life and it’s been pretty awesome.

Quote a song lyric that sums up your year: 

Baby, it’s 3am I must be lonely.

(This really is so accurate – between breastfeeding the first 6 months and then night shift, I was awake and without my husband a lot)

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