Wednesday, August 10, 2011

31st Year Round Up

It is time to begin another year.  Several years ago, I began journaling various happenings from the previous year on or around my birthday.  I have journaled everything from personal experiences to national disasters.  Today, I am journaling a little differently than in previous years, but there is still a little of everything.
April '11 Family Photo
Family photo taken by me.  Edited by Ashley Sisk
  1. Completed my first full year of motherhood
  2. Watched the Space Shuttle Discovery launch from Kennedy Space Center = AWESOME!!
  3. Joined Clickin' Moms and took my first Photography Class with them:  Natural Light 101
  4. Experienced the loss of my paternal and maternal grandmother's, which has been very difficult
  5. Watched my little Beester learn to crawl, climb, and walk among many other things
  6. Celebrated 3 years of marriage
  7. Completed my 5th year of Bible Study Fellowship (having studied Romans, Matthew, The Life of Moses, John, and Isaiah). Gearing up for Acts
  8. Hosted my first book club.  We read One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp
  9. Took B to Clearwater Beach, Sand Key Beach, Indian Rocks Beach, and Hilton Head Island.  He LOVES the beach.
  10. Continued to struggle to set and keep a budget
  11. Continued to be consistent with giving thanks and writing Journey of Faith Friday posts
  12. Celebrated Navy Seal Team 6's defeat of Osama Bin Laden, then saddened by the loss of 22 of their men.
  13. Began and have followed through with meal planning our dinners
  14. Attended my first couponing workshop and began seriously working to cut my grocery bill
  15.  Experienced my first "real" friendship struggle since living in Florida.  Although difficult, it was great to see the difference in conflict resolution and forgiveness that I have now versus a few years ago.
  16. Ran the Disney half marathon (my second) with my sister in law, Michelle.  Now contemplating participating in a Tough Mudder competition with my husband and a few friends.
  17. Joined YMCA........and have not used it near enough.
  18. Struggled with new fears as a result of being a mother
  19. Switched to photographing in manual mode (most of the time).  Sometimes I use another priority mode, because I still struggle with settings, especially since my zoom lens does not have a fixed aperture.
  20. Had an idea.  Followed through with it on a whim.  Had a great experience.  As a result, birthed the Quarterly Top 5 Photos meme co-hosted with Courtney of Click It Up A Notch and Sarah of Naptime Momtog
  21. Began meeting with a small group of ladies once a month for prayer time, decided to take a break from small group, and have begun volunteering once a month in our church nursery
  22. Have said goodbye to friends and welcomed new ones 
  23. Hosted our first Kentucky Derby party which led to our first time making Mint Julep's, mini Hot Browns, and Derby Pie.  It was a success!!
  24. Realized that allowing my child to explore, not only increases his coordination (core control, fine motor skills, gross motor skills, and thought process), but increases his ability to make a HUGE mess.  ARGH!!  I keep telling myself it will pay off (and I can tell it already is)
  25. Fallen in love with Still-Life Photos with Scripture
  26. Learned that children bring a whole new need for and challenge to marriage communication
  27. Had to loosen up and choose to die to my obsession with clean floors and clutter-less areas.  One I am still working on
  28. Tried to avoid becoming too involved (but remain educated) on our struggling economy, budget deficits, and all of the other crazy political happenings occurring in our country and countries around the world
  29. Felt more like Tampa is home
  30. Continuously worked on balance in my life, realizing it is okay and healthy to say, "NO."  It is unrealistic to do EVERYTHING and do it WELL.  Busyness in our culture is often equated to success, but I have learned this to be a HUGE LIE!  I want to use my gifts and use them wisely.  I am continuing to work to use them at home FIRST.....then distribute to those around me.
  31. Attended one Kentucky football game and two Kentucky basketball games.  It was our first time attending the NCAA tournament.  We were fortunate that Kentucky played their first two rounds in Tampa!

Realized that I enjoy blogging so much that it is time to choose and purchase a more appropriate long term blog name.  Be on the lookout for Amber's Articles to become Click.Pray.Love. (with a tag line that I will save for later)


Unknown said...

lovely wrap-up! Branson sent me over here ;) your blog is just gorgeous!

Unknown said...

been following for a little while, BTW. have fun guest judging Edit Me!

Secret Mom Thoughts said...

great wrap up of the year. Beautiful photo too.

Amy said...

Enjoyed reading about your full year! Happy Birthday!

Amy @ Missional Mama

Katie said...

I adore that first shot!!! You both did such an awesome job! ...and wow, that is a very full year!

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great year. Happy Birthday. I love the new name. :D

Ashley Sisk said...

So excited for all that's ahead of you. I'm still loving that first shot that I's gorgeous. And I love that shot with you in the bottom too!

Anna Boney said...

Happiest Birthday friend! Love this reflection and love that I am apart of several of those! I am LOVING your still shots with scripture. I want them all over my house! Love that you know your talents and use them! Love to you on your special day! Yes- I used the word love five times in this comment.

Amy H said...

Came over from Branson's blog and wanted to say 2 things. First, Happy Birthday! Hope it's a great one. Second, I LOVE the picture that you submitted for edit me! I can not wait to get working on it!

Heather said...

Beautiful! Have a Happy Birthday! :)

Deborah said...

First, Happy Birthday. Secondly thanks for the links on coupons and workship on outdoor lighting. I've been wanting to cut our household grocery and supply bill and have been overwelmed with which website would best help me in that area. Thanks for the recommendation. Secondly, I've been looking for a photo workshop on outdoor lighting.

I really enjoy your blog. You've inspired me in many areas.

Unknown said...

Happy birthday to you! :)

(I was sent by Branson.)

aimee said...

Beautiful photos! Happy birthday to you! Great year for you!

Tara said...

happy birthday! Great post!

Kindra said...

This is a beautiful reflection of your past year - and such a wonderful idea (I might steal it for next year :) As I read through your list, I realized that almost every one was something I either experienced with you or something that's been a part of our chats. I love you like the sister I've never had dear friend. Happy Birthday!

Anonymous said...

wow! what an enriching year :) happy b'day! hope many more dreams will come true with the new year starting today. xo

ROBIN said...

I enjoyed reading your list... Happy Birthday! That's alot to accomplish in one year! May you have a blessed year ahead of you as you continue to uncover the joys that God has for you in daily moments. :)

Gina Kleinworth said...

Looks like you have had one amazing year! Congrats on the new blog name & I'm excited to hear more about it.

Anonymous said...

Lovely blog and great list of "dones"!

Sara said...

Happy birthday Amber! Love the new name for your blog.
I came by to actually say how much I love that photo you supplied for the "edit me", it's so amazingly beautiful!
Hope you had a great day!

Lil Miss Red T-Shirt said...

I love the idea of journaling each other. You've had quite a year!