20 questions

I normally don't do things like this, but a favorite site of mine, simplemom.net had the idea, and it looked like a good way to round up my thoughts on the year. 

1. What was the single best thing that happened this past year? adding copeland to our family
2. What was the single most challenging thing that happened? adjusting to having copeland in our family and having my parents be gone. there isn't one single most challenging thing, it was more the sequence and timing of the challenges, so close together and so inopportune.

3. What was an unexpected joy this past year? i never, in my wildest dreams, imagined myself so content, satisfied, and happy as a mother. 

4. What was an unexpected obstacle? most obstacles were unexpected. being unemployed and having a husband brake his ankle were most unexpected.
5. Pick three words to describe 2011. eventful, trying, fortunate

6. Pick three words your spouse would use to describe your 2011 (don’t ask them; guess based on how you think your spouse sees you). accomplished fulfilling demanding

7. Pick three words your spouse would use to describe their 2011 (again, without asking). challenging, new, joyful

8. What were the best books you read this year? the book of mormon. for the first time i read it in 30 days, a little less than the time it took to translate it. it was a whole new book for me. 

9. With whom were your most valuable relationships? my God, husband and new son. my parents. my sister in law. my brother. my parents in law. my friends. my coworkers and students... the usual. 

10. What was your biggest personal change from January to December of this past year? i am a different person than I was last January but it's hard to pin it to one thing. i'm not sure i have changed but i would hope i have learned to be more loving.
11. In what way(s) did you grow emotionally? i still struggle voicing my feelings always but i know i was forced to be better at sharing my feelings since there were so many.
12. In what way(s) did you grow spiritually? i know God let's us struggle until the exact minute that we can do it no longer, then he steps in and takes it. usually we surprise ourselves and that minute is a lot further than we expect. i have felt this so many times this past year. i know he is acutely mindful of our struggling.
13. In what way(s) did you grow physically? this is a dumb question for a pregnant person, how did i not grow physically? well,after having a baby i appreciate my body. still don't eat, sleep, or exercise like i would want, but i'm appreciative.
 14. In what way(s) did you grow in your relationships with others? anything regarding parenting, i'm more hungry for, grateful for, and understanding about having experienced it myself. i'm more grateful for all my husband does, since i am more reliant upon him than ever before. most of my family relationships have deepened as a result of cope too.

15. What was the most enjoyable part of your work (both professionally and at home)? meeting new people at Kirton & McConkie who were inspiring. getting out of the house to teach spunky new 9-12 year olds. getting familiarized (again) with my new little guy.
16. What was the most challenging part of your work (both professionally and at home)? remembering 200+ peoples names and faces as a receptionist at work. Keeping a gaggle of 9-12 year olds focused at a dance class. being my best self while juggling dishes, menu planning and dinner every night, and of course, laundry and other cleaning while on zero sleep.

17. What was your single biggest time waster in your life this past year? the internet. silly thing.
18. What was the best way you used your time this past year? a the time working was great, as was growing a baby, and now taking care of him.

19. What was biggest thing you learned this past year? i can do hard things.

20. Create a phrase or statement that describes 2011 for you. this is cheesy. no thanks. but 2011 has been very good.
happy new year all!


our season recap

this christmas season was good. we watched miracle on 34th street, new and old. we made swedish rice pudding with a lucky almond in it. we had dear ones around us. we went to concerts and loved the excuse to get fancy. we went to church and sang those fantastic carols. we consumed amazing amounts of food. we made big love packages for family far away. we tried to recycle wrapping paper and give more handmade gifts. we left the lights low and burned candles non stop. we got a taste of the real joy of giving by having our own little one to spoil.


christmas day was wonderful. it started with a rough night. we all had tired eyes in the morning. 

 then there was a blow out, and cope was in a diaper for a while.

cope loved unwrapping things. and we loved giving them. i think i better understand the scripture, "If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?"

i finally got the iphone. that's my father in law in the background looking all smug for giving a gift that made me cry. yes i'm crying, and my in-laws are a dream

can't imagine life without this holiday, and without our little love bug to celebrate it. 


winter hats

here we come christmas! we are all giddy here.
i hope yours is very merry.




1461 days of happiness

that's four years. today.
where does time go?


one year ago today...

...we were in bruge, belgium with russo.
getting ready to surprise family and come home for christmas.
i was pregnant.
it was such a thrilling time. we had no idea what good things were in store.
 but at the moment, life was pretty. life was good. 
still is.
but this time of year does make me miss belgium, just a little bit. all the good blurs out the bad and i find myself want to go back in time. i miss the magical markets with seemingly endless stalls selling trinkets, cured meat, and warm goodies. i miss the creative stringing of lights. i miss the huge town squares swarming with people unafraid to walk forever in the cold. i miss ice skating with a bunch of seven year olds and not caring. i miss ward christmas feasts after church and watching the first presidency christmas devotional for sacrament meeting. i miss our salt of the earth friends we made who taught me so much about reaching out to others. i miss the sudden blizzards, and maybe even the bone piercing temperatures. of course i miss the shopping and nutella covered waffles. there is such an urgency to explore the newness of it all that isn't present with my familiar life in utah. that is what i miss most and hope i can recreate every day.
but like i said, life is still good. thousands of times better than then.

 thanking my lucky stars for that great growing experience.