I can't believe we're at the end of another year already! These year in review posts seem to come around every few weeks. Without a doubt, 2016 has been our best year yet! It's amazing to sit here and look back on our year and revel in ALL of the blessings we've received this year. Last year at this time, I was constantly thinking about and upset about the baby that we lost that should've been nearing our final weeks before meeting him or her. Last year, I was wondering if I'd get pregnant again and we were discussing to what lengths we would go to beginning in January. Last year, we just didn't know what our future held for us, but we were prayerful and hopeful.
Our mighty Lord hears and answers prayers. Here's a recap of our wonderful year...
We rang in the New Year at our friends John and Brittany's house as we have for several years now with great friends on hand. We always have a great time munching on yummy foods all night, playing cards, hanging out...we're so thankful to do life with these people. This year, there's 4 new babies to the group and a couple more on the way in the coming months.
In January we also celebrated a pretty big birthday for my sister! 40 never looked so young!!
January also brought a LARGE snowstorm to Tennessee. We spent a cozy weekend at home enjoying our unexpected winter stay-cation.
We had a fun Valentine's date in Nashville including breakfast at one of our favorite beach vacation stops that now has a place in Nashville!
We also enjoyed another February tradition in celebrating Mardi Gras with some of our closest friends!
February also brought the arrival of our expected due date for our first baby that we lost last summer. I posted a letter that I wrote to our baby. Even with the abundant blessings we've received this year, going back and reading this sent me to immediate tears. The hurt is still raw and I suspect will always be there - I think about the "what if's" every day. I love Amelia and Mae Parker with every breath in my body, but my heart still aches and misses our first baby.
We planned a special lunch and family balloon release to honor our sweet baby who should've been joining us by that time.
We enjoyed family time (and way too much food) on Easter weekend.
We partied our way through April with Stephen and Colin's birthday...
and our "Nephew" Daniel's 1st Birthday "Daniel Caught the BIG ONE!" was a huge hit!
In May I shared a sweet story about our youngest nephew Colin and how such a small act of kindness (even that from an innocent 6 year old) can have a lasting impact on someone's life. If you've not read this story, please take a few minutes to read this one. It's one of my all-time favorites.
Annnd....there was this bit of news we shared in May.
We also shared several videos of family reactions to our news. I will admit, I've gone back and watched these multiple times throughout the year, and I smile all stupidly every time.
In June we found out we'd be adding a whole lot of pink to our lives!
Sadly we spent an obscene amount of our summer glued to the tv watching Big Brother and even Big Brother After Dark late at night when they stream the live-feed from inside the house. Yes, this what I remember about a good chunk of our 2016 Summer.
(I hope Nicole uses her winnings to finally get those nostrils stretched that I mentioned throughout the summer...multiple times. Just sayin'.)
My best friend at work began a new journey in her career in July. Work is not the same without her, but we've enjoyed a lunch date during my maternity leave and she's come to love on the girls for a while too.
I shared our first two baby showers! Our first was celebrating with Stephen's family.
Then, we celebrated at work...
My family and friends showered us with much love at a "Tea for Two" themed shower.
Our sweet church family held the cutest shower for us in September...
September always means breaking out all the pumpkins and decking the house out in all its Fall glory. I look forward to this particular Saturday morning in September every year! It's the first Saturday of College Football, first Saturday for ESPN's Game Day. its my Fall decorarting day...all is right with the world!
So, on Saturday night, October 1st, I posted a pic of Stephen and I on Facebook with the caption reading something like "Holy Cow, it's October! We're going to be parents this month!! This will either be the quickest or slowest 4 weeks of our lives." Yeah. And then we had two babies the VERY. NEXT. DAY.
What's the lesson to be learned here? God's plan > my plan
I shared the girls' birth story...lengthy, but definitely worth documenting. And fun fact, you have ample time to make a SAM's run before giving birth.
The girls spent nearly three weeks in the hospital. I shared all about our Nursery living in a November post.
I also shared the "finished product" with our girls' Nursery Reveal.
Earlier this month I shared our family's 12 Days of Christmas traditions we look forward to continuing and starting with our girls.
We mailed out our best Christmas card yet...
And finally, we enjoyed a week-long Christmas with our families.
2016 taught me (loud and clear I might add) that all of my planning is mostly useless. God's timing, God's plan always takes over - and for the better. Many prayers were answered for us this year. Many unexpected blessings were given to us. We are beyond blessed and loved. Our hearts are full. Our cups running over.
I pray that our 2017 and your 2017 is just as richly blessed as our year has been.
"Give and it will be given unto you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." Luke 6:38