Like I've said before, I can remember years, not so long ago, when I thought that my life would never get better. I felt lonely and depressed and didn't have a lot of faith that things would get better. I wasn't living my life, I just existed. I was unhappy and had no hopes and dreams of my future. But here I am, 28 years old, married to my best friend and mother to 2 beautiful and healthy children, and I just had the BEST year of my life. And to be honest, I truly think that every year coming is only going to get better than the last. I think that's how I know I'm happy.
Your needs and wants change every year. Life changes every year. I am at the point in my life now, a point that I haven't always been at in the past, where I am realizing and recognizing my blessings and this is leading me to have a much better and happier life. This past year was not perfect. There were definitely struggles and challenges, but I can recognize how much I was blessed this year and look past all those negative aspects.
But really, my year was seriously A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!! Let's review shall we...
I started off 2014 with the flu. I lost 10 pounds in 3 days, but besides that it was a pretty rotten experience. I'm so glad that wasn't a sign of what was to come in 2014. Aniston turned 18 months old and went to nursery for the first time. She was so independent and did amazing! It was our first experience with sending her off into the real world, and it excelled our expectations! Spencer and I were and are so proud of her! I also turned 28... that means next month I turn 29!!! What!?!?! Am I really about to enter the last year of my 20's? I still feel 18! Time flies as you get older!
In February we celebrated Groundhog's day, because it's a real holiday and all the cool kids seriously celebrate Groundhog's Day. I spent my 10th Valentine's day with Taco Bell. I don't celebrate Valentine's day, and for the past 10 years I have used it as an excuse to eat Taco Bell. I was lucky to even find a Taco Bell because I happened to be in Atlanta at the time. I visited the Coca Cola museum in Atlanta while I was there during a crazy storm that shut down most of the city. But nothing was better than coming home to my sweet little family after a week apart from each other.
March was so exciting that the only interesting thing that happened was that Aniston went to the dentist for the first time. Life as a parent...
In April we announced that we were expecting a new addition to the family! Best. News. Ever!
In May I celebrated my 3rd Mother's Day. My last Mother's Day with only one child! My little brother Jake, aka Lord Kenneth, graduated from High School. It's crazy to think that he will be leaving us in April to spend two years as a missionary in Ireland/Scotland. We also moved into a real house as opposed to a tiny apartment and Spencer and I bought our first car together.
In June we found out that we were expecting a BOY! Best Father's Day present for Spencer. We rediscovered and became obsessed with disc golf. Seriously, our summer became consumed with disc golf tournaments and free play. Aniston also started swimming lessons! We quickly learned that Ani was quite the water baby!
In July we celebrated the 4th of July, my favorite holiday, and Aniston turned 2! Seriously, I cannot believe my little girl was 2 already! She celebrated with a Minnie Mouse birthday party of course and was blessed to have friends and family there to celebrate with her. We continued to spend crazy amounts of time at the pool and we celebrated Spencer's 28th birthday.
In August I graduated with my master's degree in Sports Management with a certificate in Athletic Administration. Huge accomplishment for a girl who only went to college to get married. Remember how that back fired and I actually graduated with my undergrad unmarried? We visited Utah, played disc golf of course and I was finally reunited with my best friend Gilbert! Aniston and I also spent 2 weeks to ourselves while Spencer worked in Utah on the new Provo Temple.
In September, Spencer and I celebrated 3 years of marriage! Let's be honest, it feels like much longer, but in the best way possible. We made a trip to Jackson Hole to
celebrate mourn the end of summer. Aniston continued her obsession with her unborn brother and loved going to doctor's appointments with me so that she could listen to brother's heartbeat. I also started an in home preschool for Aniston because she begged me to go to school. Huge success!
In October we got a free pet turtle who we named Humperdink. Spencer and I made the most of our last month before baby came, and hit up the straw maze together. We had a gorgeous fall and we spent as much time as possible outside in the leaves. I continued my tradtion of making Aniston's Halloween costumes and I made her dreams come true and dressed her as batman for Halloween.
In November, we welcomed Benson Richard into our family! Aniston is so obsessed with her baby brother. If he ever starts crying, she is quick to be by his side to sing him "Happy Kitty" from the Big Bang Theory. We were able to have my entire family in town for Thanksgiving, only two days after Benson was born. What a month of extreme blessings!
In December, I got to buy matching Christmas outfits for my two kiddos. How fun it is shopping for 2 kids instead of one? Way fun... but twice as expensive unfortunately. We took our first Christmas card photo, for a Christmas card that never made it out. Benson turned a month old, still cannot believe how fast he is growing up! We also had a crazy snowstorm that brought us more snow than we saw all year last year!
I'm not kidding when I say I tear up when I think of this past year and I just feel so overwhelmed with how blessed I truly am. We all envision our future lives when we are young. We think about our careers, family, kids, where we're going to live... but we hardly ever consider the obstacles that may occur that will hinder or distract form the things we really want or desire in life. The trick to being happy despite those trials and obstacles is to adjust. Adjust your attitude, your options and your life. It's okay to adjust things to meet your dreams and desires and goals. It's okay if things don't go exactly the way you planned, because things will never go exactly the way you plan. But you will always be able to find blessings, no matter how your life turns out, if you are willing to look hard enough. I feel blessed that this past year, I don't have to look hard to see my blessings.
Thank you 2014 for a memorable and wonderful year! Bring on 2015!
Happy New Year!!!!