2017, a Year in Review

Another year has come and gone, and so in true blogger fashion I sit here and attempt to recap the past 365 days.

Every year Kyle and I say to one another, “We need to do more!” So often we look back on the year an wonder where it went, what we did, and more times than not our list falls short. If there was a goal for 2017, it was to do a better job at getting out there and just doing. I think we made a fairly decent attempt at doing “more” this past year, both individually and as a family, so here are some highlights: (And a couple of humorous “lowlights” as well.)

  • Kyle and I made a daring dash to Langley in the middle of a snowstorm in February to visit friends overnight! Were we crazy? Yes! Was it fun? Totally! Were we amazed by how bad Lower Mainland drivers are in the snow? Absolutely!
  • Norah had her first visit to the emergency room when she decided to shove some pieces up cork up her nostrils. Thankfully, it wasn’t affecting her breathing and we were able to see a specialist the next day to remove the pieces. Also thankfully, she’s only stuck things up her nose twice since then, and those didn’t require trips to the ER.
  • Kyle completed four 10k races and one 15k race this year! He also trained really hard to do his first half marathon, but due to the forest fires that race was cancelled. He’s already gearing up to do it next summer though!
  • I did two 3k races with Isla and one 5k! In 2018 I hope to tackle more 5k races. Running does feel great once I get my legs under me, it’s just getting there that’s a lot of hard work.
  • Despite the forest fires, Kyle and I did manage to take advantage of a break in the smoke to take the girls to the waterslides! They had an absolute blast and we hope to take them again next summer.
  • My mom and I did our annual road trip to Vancouver to visit my grandpa and brother in May. We had an awesome time and I hope we can figure out a way to keep doing them in the future.
  • We had a year of renovations to the house! We redid the counters in the kitchen and put in a tile backsplash, and we also tore down our old deck and put in a bigger one. I really love how the kitchen is looking these days and I cannot wait to relax on the deck come summertime!
  • In February I scored Kyle tickets to go see Metallica in August with his friends. They had an awesome time and I’m glad he was able to go have some quality “guy” time.
  • Isla had a busy year of dance and learning! In June she completed her third year of dance and “graduated” from preschool as well! She started kindergarten in September and she is doing SO well. We recently got her report card back and we couldn’t be any prouder.
  • Norah completed swimming lessons in the fall and loves the water. She’s now constantly asking to go swimming, lol
  • In August the girls and I went to Vernon to celebrate my dad’s 60th birthday! We had a fun time visiting the orchard there and we even hit up the beach for a few hours one afternoon, which was a lot of fun!
  • At the end of the summer Kyle and I went and visited his dad and we took the girls to Horstings Farm, where we both used to work. They had a lot of fun visiting! (Driving the golf cart around the yard with Grandpa was a big highlight for them!)
  • Thanks to a whim and an invitation from friends, we rode the local steam engine train! It was a fun little touristy adventure and it was good to visit with a pair of our oldest friends for a couple hours!
  • I went back to school to get my Administrative Assistant certificate! I’m doing it all via distant learning and while it is difficult to sometimes balance the kids and school I’m getting it done!
  • Thanks to the kindness of our parents for taking in our kids and furkids, Kyle and I were able to escape to Las Vegas for a few days of “adulting” in October. It was a much needed vacation and we really enjoyed just being together and reconnecting as a couple! We already can’t wait to go back one day.

Of course, there were birthdays, anniversaries, celebrations and spontaneous get togethers all throughout the year, and I cannot be more thankful for all of our family and friends for being a part of some of those amazing memories. It’s always shocking how quickly a year can go by, but when I look back I have no regrets!

So, I wish all my amazing readers the very best in 2018!

Happy New Year!

 

 

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So long, 2016

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Into the sunset it goes …

I’m really quite awful at these Year in Review posts; I’m never quite sure what to include or omit and posts usually wind up as a garbled mess, and yet here I am at the end of 2016 trying to gather my thoughts.

Overall, 2016 was a pretty good year for our household. The good definitely outweighed the bad, and we had some wonderfully memorable moments both as a family and individually:

  • Kyle entered his first road race in February and did so amazing! I’m so proud of how far he’s come as a runner and while a foot injury pushed back his training over the summer I’m excited to see where 2017 takes him!
  • Norah turned 1! It still baffles my mind that she’s getting so big so fast, and she’s developing into quite the little person full of personality! It’s said that every child is different, and Norah has definitely set herself apart from her sister in so many amazing ways.
  • Isla started preschool! While it’s just twice a week for a couple of hours, she has transitioned so well to her morning routine on those days. She loves school and her friends and I’m so glad. Fingers crossed that continues when she heads off to kindergarten next September! *sob*
  • I got back into playing slo-pitch! I missed playing so much when I was pregnant with Norah, so it was great to get back on the team and have some “me” time. I’m already pumped for the season to start next year.
  • We raced together! Back in May we all signed up for the Blackwell Dairy Race, with Kyle running the 15K and the girls and I doing the 3K Fun Run. It was an awesome day and we’re already looking forward to next year’s race, amongst others!
  • Kyle got LASIK eye surgery! He’s worn glasses/contacts forEVER, so the decision to finally have laser eye surgery done was a huge one. Our eye doctor finally gave him the go-ahead, and he’s now been rocking perfect vision since August!
  • We road tripped! Isla, Norah and I got in some travel time with my mom, heading off to Vancouver, the Kangaroo Farm, and Kelowna for some fun and adventures. We’re already plotting our Vancouver adventure for next spring ;)
  • We had lake days! While the weather wasn’t fantastic this past summer, we still managed to get a couple lake days in, visiting friends at the Little Shuswap and banking some SUP time.
  • We renovated our basement! After a disappointing house hunt, Kyle and I decided we’d stay put for a bit longer and make our basement into a space that was more family-friendly. Thanks to the help of a friend, we were able to transform our oddly-configured basement into a more inviting space!

I know I’ve left about a million things off this list, but that’s not to say that they don’t matter. Like I said, it’s been a good year and I’m so thankful that I’ve been able to spend it with so many of my favourite people. I already know that 2017 is going to be one for the books as well and I’m looking forward to everything it brings our way!

Happy New Year, my amazing She Writes Words readers! May 2017 bring you all the very best!

What were some of your favourite moments this past year?

2015: A Year in Review

I’m a sucker for year in review posts but they’re always so much work to do. I always seem to get lost going through old posts and finding images to accompany the memories. In fact, I started a Year in Review post for 2015 and made it to March before I got sidetracked by something and didn’t look at it again.

Then I came across this post by Stephany, who borrowed/adapted the idea from Kathleen, and the angels sang as my love/hate relationship with Year in Review posts was resolved! (Thank you, beautiful souls!)

So, I present to you, 2015: A Year in Review, survey style!

1. What did you do in 2015 that you’d never done before?

Travelled by myself with Isla! Whenever I’ve travelled a long ways (i.e., more than an hour) with her, I’ve always had someone with me to help tend to her. This spring I made a trip down to the Lower Mainland to visit a friend and brought Isla with me, and it was a successful journey!

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2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I’m not big on making resolutions, so I didn’t really make any. My only goal of the year was to have a healthy little girl delivered in June, and I think I succeeded there ;) I have a few goals in mind for next year, but I’m not going to get too wrapped up in making sure I meet them just yet.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

I did. Can’t get closer than that!

4. Did anyone close to you die?

I’m fortunate enough to say that no one has, but a member of my slo-pitch team passed away in September and it really hit me hard. It’s still hard to think about, honestly, and it hurts my heart when I do.

5. What places did you visit?

We didn’t do a lot of travelling because of me being pregnant and having Norah, but I did go to a Maroon 5 concert in Vancouver, Langley, my hometown, and then we made a couple of day trips to the Little Shuswap Lake during the summer. Low key, but fun nonetheless!

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6. What would you like to have in 2016 that you didn’t have in 2015?

More “me” time. My #1 goal is to get back to playing slo-pitch again, and even if that’s the only time to myself that I get, I’ll be happy with that!

7. What dates from 2015 will be etched upon your memory, and why?

Most definitely the day Norah was born, reasons being obvious.

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8. What was your biggest achievement of this year?

Getting Isla potty trained was a huge achievement for both of us, and of course, delivering an amazing little girl in June was the best thing that happened.

9. What was your biggest failure?

Probably not starting my Couch to 5K training. I’m kicking myself for not being able to get in gear for that, but life just got all busy.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

Other than the usual pregnancy aches and pains, and common colds, I didn’t have anything seriously wrong with me.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

I didn’t necessarily buy it myself, but Kyle and I bought a new (to us) Ford F150 and it’s a wonder when we have both the girls loaded in it. So spacious!!

And it wasn’t necessarily something I bought, but enrolling Isla in dance lessons was one of the best investments I made. She loves to dance and I can really see her passion growing.

12. Where did most of your money go?

Without making an effort to look back at our bank statements, I’d say the majority of our income went towards the “usual” things like bills and food. Kyle and I both had some dental work done this year, but thankfully a decent-sized chunk of it was covered by our dental plan. We also put in a new retaining wall and fence in our backyard in June, so that cost a bit to do as well.

13. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

The arrival of our baby girl in June and going to the Maroon 5 concert in March top my list, for sure!

14. What song will always remind you of 2015?

“This Summer’s Gonna Hurt Like a Mother–” by Maroon 5.

15. Compared to this time last year, are you: a) happier or sadder? b) thinner or fatter? c) richer or poorer?

I’m definitely happier and thinner (having a baby will do that!), and I’d say our finances are about the same as they were last year.

16. What do you wish you’d done more of?

I wish we adventured a bit more, but it was hard because I was super pregnant and the summer was so hot that it was tough to do anything outside with a newborn. Next year will be different, for sure.

17. What do you wish you’d done less of?

I wish I had kept my patience with Isla a lot more. It’s tough to remember that she’s only 3 sometimes; she acts like she’s 10 years older than she actually is sometimes and I think I lost my cool too often because of that. As she works on her listening, I’m working hard on my patience.

18. How did you spend Christmas?

Christmas Eve was spend with my mom, brother, step-dad and step brother. Christmas morning was brunch with my dad and brother, and Christmas dinner was with Kyle’s mom, step-dad, sister, nephew, aunt & uncle. Whew!

19. What was your favourite TV program?

I didn’t adopt many new shows this year. Grey’s Anatomy, The Walking Dead, Big Bang Theory, and The Voice were all on my “must watch right away” list as per usual.

20. What was the best book you read?

Apparently I only read three books this year. *insert sad face* I gave Jennifer Weiner’s “Who Do You Love” 5 out of 5 stars, so I guess that was the best book I read!

21. What was your greatest food discovery?

The homemade Shake & Bake recipe I found was a pretty awesome find! I think it’s even better than the store-bought stuff too.

22. What did you want and get?

This is an interesting question because it’s tough to answer it without sounding completely self-absorbed and materialistic. All I really wanted was for my family to be happy and healthy, and I definitely think I got that.

23. What did you want and not get?

There’s wasn’t much that I didn’t get – my cup is full and I’m grateful.

24. What was your favourite film of 2015?

Man, I didn’t watch too many movies this year, to be honest! I can’t even think of the “new” movies I watched. “Wild” came out On Demand this year – I really enjoyed that movie! We’ll go with that.

25. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

Honestly – I don’t remember what I did on my birthday. How horrible is that? I know I turned 29 though. Ugh.

26. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

Honestly, 2015 was a ridiculously satisfying year for me! I can’t think of much that would have made it better!

27. How would you describe your personal fashion concept of 2015?

“If it fits, is practical, and is comfy, wear it.”

28. What kept you sane?

My husband. He’s been my rock and saving grace on so many occasions this year, I don’t know what I’d do without him!

29. What political issue stirred you the most?

Man, so much went on this year and I’m not one to publicly discuss politics, but I think the whole refugee crisis has made me think the most. A close second is all the mass shootings that have happened in the US. That’s all I care to say.

30. Who did you miss?

I still miss my grandma immensely, and it’s been almost 4 years since she’s gone. I don’t know if that space in my heart will ever heal, to be honest.

31. Who was the best new person you met?

I can’t say I met any new people. How sad does that make me sound? I did, however, build up some better friendships with other people, so that’s a plus.

32. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2015.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help, no matter how big or small the issue may be.

33. Show us one of your favourite photos from the year. 

Our first photo as a family of four:

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