Monday, December 31, 2012

Reflections & Resolution

A year ago today I was preparing for our big New Year's Eve party with a little hope in my step.
It had been a very challenging year for Truman and I and I was anticipating a fresh start with a little more predictability...ha! Little did I know that a few weeks later I would be finding out that I was pregnant :)

2012 has brought many trials, but along with those trials came great joy that I didn't know my life was capable of receiving. Bringing life into this world has been an incredible gift. Along with a deep love for my new daughter came a new, deeper love for my husband. He has been dragged through the mud when it comes to school and work. He studied countless hours (even after he graduated), took odd jobs, and dealt with a lot of unanticipated stress. All so that he could take care of his family and so I could stay home with the little one. He is the definition of a selfless man and that was so apparent to me this year. He loves me well, and for that I am truly grateful.

I am happy to say that he now has a job that he enjoys and I think will flourish in. Though we are moving to Omaha because of it, I am excited for what adventures my little family will be met with. I have wrestled with my feelings of moving back to Omaha for the past month and I have come to a state of peace (only by the grace of God). I am determined to focus on a life of gratitude which brings about true joy. Not happiness, but joy. There is a difference and I'm ready to experience it. 

Which brings me to my resolutions...
I know the word "resolutions" is overused during the new year and often written off as a few goals that won't last past February. But I have been forming these goals for the past few months and hope them to be life-long rather than the duration of a year. The plans of settling down in Omaha has brought on a lot of anxiety. We love Lincoln and were in agreement that we wanted to raise a family here. It is apparent that the Lord does not want us here at this time in our lives so we are trusting him and making the transition. I want to be VERY intentional this time about how I live. A big move like this brings lots of opportunity for change and I am thankful for that. A few of my/our goals are...

1. Living intentionally with relationships. Our church, 2 Pillars, has really challenged and encouraged me to be very intentional with my relationships. The gospel is not separate from the rest of our lives. It can be lived out through work, marriage, relationships and I plan to do so. Because I stay at home, our neighborhood will be my main focus. I'm a total introvert when it comes to making friends so this will require a lot of help from the holy spirit. But I want to challenge myself to get past the "acquaintance" phase. I don't want to get stuck in friendships where the topics revolve around weather and the Huskers. I want to invest myself.

2. Getting plugged in at Coram Deo. We are thankful to have a great church waiting for us in Omaha. Coram Deo is the sister church to 2 Pillars so I'm excited for the transition. However, we did a terrible job of getting plugged in last time so I am determined to do so this go around. 

3. Re-write a budget (and get out of debt!) This one doesn't need a whole lot of explaining. I'm terrible with finances, but since I'm staying home I'll be taking on a lot of the responsibility when dealing with bills, groceries, etc. I want Truman to trust me with our finances and I want to always be thankful for what we have so I don't fall into the trap of wanting more and living above our means. 

4. Technology ban. I get into the habit of waking up and checking my email, facebook, instagram, etc. right away. I want to make my quiet time a much higher priority and discipline myself more when it comes to spending time on the internet and my phone. 

5. And finally, choose a life of gratitude. I want to spend a little more time on this one so I'll write a separate blog about it. 

I really am excited for 2013 and our move to Omaha. Of course, there is nothing predictable about it, but I'm learning that joy can be found in even the most chaotic circumstance. Famous last words, right? :)

So long 2012 and cheers to a new year. 
Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas 2012

It was our first Christmas as a family of three. However, I anticipate that next year will be more exciting when Penny can actually understand what is going on. She got plenty of snuggles in with her grandparents and uncles/aunts which is always fun to watch.
 We spent some time in Central City on the river and it was so. beautiful. Watching a winter sun rise and sun set is one of my favorite things about long as I'm watching from inside by a fireplace :)
Pen got so much attention from our family and loved every minute of it. She LOVES to be held.
Getting some lovin' from Grandma.
 On Christmas morning, we tucked her in between us and slept late. It was my favorite memory from the holiday. I watched my two loves sleep soundly and my world was perfect. 
We wanted to see Les Mis really bad but I was nervous to bring Penny to a movie. We decided to give it a try and she slept most of the time! I panicked when I realized it was 2 hours and 40 minutes but I just stood in the back of the theater and bounced with her for the other half. She LOVED to watch the big screen and she even started to sing along with the music. I'm sure the people by us weren't as enamored as I was :) 

The movie was so, so good. I'm hard to please when it comes to movies but I would easily chart this up to one of the best movies I've ever seen. I had goosebumps almost the entire time and by the end the whole audience was sniffling. Such a great musical and the movie really does it justice. Towards the end of the film things start to get super emotional and as I was rocking Penny in the back I noticed an older man take his glasses off and wipe a couple tears away. I love noticing little moments like that. 
We decided not to get Pen very many gifts this year since we knew she'd be spoiled by grandparents. I couldn't help myself and had to get her a pair of baby moccs. Slightly too big right now, but I can't wait until she's running around in them!
Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. Even though Christmas is a fun time to get together with family and celebrate, I think it's amazing that the celebration of Jesus' saving grace doesn't have to stop on the 26th! So thankful for that.
Saturday, December 15, 2012

A Tribute to Beans

We had to make a very difficult decision and say goodbye to our first baby, Coco Bean.
When Penny joined our family, I knew it would change how much attention we could give Coco, but I was determined to make it work. But as the weeks went by, it became harder and harder to give her the love and attention she needed and deserved. I had to put aside my own selfishness of wanting to keep her and do what's best for her. It has been a hard weekend for me and it will take some time to get used to a house without Bean. 
I wanted to dedicate a post to our wonderful three years with her...
I have so many great memories with Coco. She has been by my side for the past three years...literally. Always snuggling up next to me when she had the chance. I will miss so many things about her. The way she pranced through the house when she was really excited, her army crawl when I took her for walks, the way she would lay on top of the couch for the entire afternoon, hearing her lick the crap out of Truman's arm in the middle of the night (it made him so mad!), the way she always had to be sitting on my lap when I was reading or writing, how she ran to Penny with concern every time she started to cry, and most of all I'll miss feeling her sleep against my back. It made me feel so safe.
It's the little things that make saying goodbye difficult. I still think I'm going to walk around the corner and see her snuggled up in her favorite blanket. I quickly pick up my underwear from the bathroom floor thinking she'll shred it to pieces. I hesitated to put my dinner plate on the couch because she'd always get into it. It's the habits that remind me she's gone. In time it won't seem so bad, I'm sure. 
It's hard for me to accept that Penny won't get to grow up with Coco. I had been dreaming of watching them grow together and it's sad to think that she won't know her. We'll get another dog once we have our own home with a backyard, but no dog could ever replace our Bean.

I spent my last day with her doing some of her favorite things.
We took a long car ride and she sat on my lap.
I took her to the pet store to get her favorite bones for her new home.
And we went on a nice, long (and a bit tearful) walk throughout the neighborhood. 
She was so excited to be getting all this love and attention that I wasn't giving her these past couple months!

With that being said, we found a wonderful new home for Coco to live. The couple has a little girl who will give Coco so much love--that makes it easier for me knowing that. We are thankful that she'll be getting lots of attention and I love knowing that she has a new best friend. I'll always remember her and I don't know that I'll ever stop missing her. 

Our last picture as a family of four (Pen wasn't too thrilled). 

We love ya, Beans!

**Sorry for the incredibly long post. If you're not a pet lover this will all seem silly to you, but I wanted to write one last post to the gal that put some spunk into our lives :)


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