Reflections on 2014

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Vanessa and I went to Ice Sculptures on White Bear Lake. It was so neat! A gorgeous but insanely frigid (2 degree) day!-January

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my wonderful roommates, Ambrosia, Julia, and Megan

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Nate and I in a big pool of corn kernels at Sever’s Corn Maze-October

2014 in Review: I always enjoy doing a little reflecting on my life over the past year. As always, it’s amazing to see what I’ve learned and how God has been faithful thru it all!

  1. what did you do this past year that you’d never done before?
  • Had an accident with a snowbank and had to get my bumper replaced! (Feb.)
  • Lived/live in a house with 3 other women and 1 bathroom (Mar.-present)
  • I am now a city girl! (live in St. Paul) (Mar.-present)
  • Joined and performed in a band playing the “fiddle” (Mar. thru Aug.)
  • Completed my seventh year of teaching (May)
  • Lost a pet-my beloved yorkie (May)
  • Planned a 2-week to Europe! (Jan.-July)
  • Went on a 2-week trip to Europe (June-July)
  • Went on a vacation with a close friend-Theresa! (June-July)
  • Swam in Iceland’s Blue Lagoon (June)
  • Swam in the Mediterranean Sea, biked the boardwalk of Barcelona, ate “jamón ibérico,” experienced “Las Ramblas” and “Boqueria Market” (June)
  • Hopped on and off trains without missing one—despite many close calls!, saw the Rhine River and the Cathedral of Cologne in Germany (July)
  • Attended a wedding in a foreign country (July)
  • Sang in German at my brother’s wedding in Eitorf, Germany (July)
  • Got a third sister-in-law! Met many other amazing people overseas!!!! (June-July)
  • Finished reading thru the Bible (yes it took me over 2 years, but so worth it!) (Aug.)
  • Met NSN (Nathan S. Nasgovitz) (Sept.)
  • Went to the largest candy store in MN (& largest puzzle store in the country)! (Oct.)
  • Heard the Piano Guys in concert (Oct.)
  • Spent Thanksgiving in rural Wisconsin (Nov.)
    blue lagoon

    Iceland’s Blue Lagoon-June

    Iceland’s Blue Lagoon-June

  1. did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
    According to last year’s year in review, my resolution for 2014 was to continue to see myself and others through the lens of Christ. With the Lord’s help, I have been doing better at this every day. I don’t really do New Year’s resolutions, but daily resolutions. In 2015, I hope to continually learn how to accept love and grace and, in turn, offer it to others. God is also leading me to spread the wisdom I have been given to others.
  2. did anyone close to you give birth?
    Yes, lots of births! Owen Raine (Jan.) to Nathan & Kat; Selah to Michelle & Joe (July); Grace to Josh & Vanessa (Nov.). Plus another friend and 3 of my cousins had babies this year too!
  3. did anyone close to you die?
    Yes, Preston Hercules Bettger (my dog since age 15)
  4. what countries did you visit?
    Spain & Germany!
  5. what would you like to have this year that you lacked last year?
    I didn’t totally lack these, but would like more of them: PEACE and PATIENCE amidst storms, chaos and unanswered questions. GRATITUTE in all things. GRACE for myself and others.
  6. what date from this year will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
    June 25-July 8 an unforgettable trip!; July 5, 2014-Tim and Amelie’s wedding! I was there!; Sept. 4, 2014, my first date with Nathan
  7. what was your biggest achievement of the year?
  • Successfully planning and going on the trip to Europe! Really trying to enjoy each moment on the trip and being grateful for this amazing opportunity
  • Finishing God’s Word after 2 years of faithfully (mostly) reading thru it in chronological order

    barri gotic barcelona

    Barri Gotic (Gothic Neighborhood), Barcelona-June

  1. what was your biggest failure?
    treating myself as less of a person than others; not accepting myself and others the way Christ does
  2. did you suffer illness or injury?
    Nothing major, I am very grateful for my health!
  3. what was the best thing you bought?
    my trip to Europe!!!!
  4. whose behavior merited celebration?
  • My close friends’: Theresa, Michelle, Vanessa, Dallas; my roommates’: Ambrosia, Megan, Jules; my guy’s (Nathan!); my parents’ and sibs’
  1. whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
    children’s/mine
  2. where did most of your money go?
    Europe trip, school loans
  3. what did you get really, really, really excited about?
    3 reallys is quite a lot for someone like me. But I was pretty pumped about traveling to Spain and Germany; also about accomplishing reading thru the Bible
  4. compared to this time last year, are you happier or sadder?
    Happier!!!!!
  5. thinner or fatter?
    Theresa and me citadel park

    Theresa and me-Citadel Park, Barcelona-June

    Same, thanks God!

  6. richer or poorer?
    Poorer. Sadly, trips are not cheap!
  7. what do you wish you’d done more of?
  • being present in the moment
  • being grateful
  1. what do you wish you’d done less of?
  • Complaining and being negative
  • Worrying
  • Watching TV and eating in bed
  1. how will you be spending your birthday? hopefully it will be spent with the people I care the most about doing something I really love. Yay, I will officially be in my 30s!
  2. how will you be spending the holidays?
    Probably in the Midwest again-not as much fanfare as this year, but at least (hopefully) I will get to see Nathan (brother), Kat, Brendan & Owen again!
  3. did you fall in love this past year? I don’t think so…not yet
  4. how many one-night stands? None
  5. what was your favorite TV program?
  • Downton Abbey, Gilmore Girls
  1. do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
    No,  I try not to do that
  2. what was the best book you read?

    Let Your Life Speak
    by Parker J. Palmer

Self-Compassion: Stop Beating Yourself up and Leave Insecurity Behind by Kristin Neff and Torn: Rescuing the Gospel from the Gay-Vs.-Christians Debate by Justin Lee

  1. what was your greatest musical discovery?

the Piano Guys, Cantus (vocal group from Mnpls)

Overall, more appreciation for and love of classical music…it can touch me and calm me like no other music.

  1. what did you want and get?
  • a wonderful new adorable nephew, Owen Raine. I also finally got to meet him in person at Christmas!
  • a trip to Europe
  • a new sis, Amelie!
  • a wonderful godly man I am getting to know
  • Christmas with the whole fam
  • healthy & safety, love…who can ask for more?
  1. what did you want and not get?
    •To be anxiety free, to be free of stomach & food issues
  2. what was your favorite film of this year?
    One Hundred Foot Journey
  3. what did you do on your last birthday, and how old were you?
    I turned 30! Vanessa took me out to my favorite place, Victor’s 1929 Café, and 3 of my close gal friends, Michelle, Theresa, and Steph, surprised me and were there too! Later that week I celebrated with three other friends, Ambrosia, Julia and Dallas at Namaste Café in Uptown!
  4. how would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2014?
    Layers, there never can me too many, especially in the winter. Skinny jeans (just one pair), leg warmers, boots. The same short sleeved sweater dress with rotating striped shirts. A variety of scarves. Coordinating jewelry. Short, spunky hair, big black glasses, minimal makeup. I like looking nice, but mostly I just like being comfortable! And warm!
  5. what kept you sane?
  • God’s Truth; writing; exercising (yoga); outdoors and creation; Classical music/Pandora One; Friends & family; Nathan; Stability and confidence at work; Reading; Counseling; Quiet/serenity; eating & cooking great food
  1. which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
    none really stand out, but I really loved Tom Hanks in Saving Mr. Banks and watched him again in Sleepless in Seattle. Can I say it—I just love him, so timeless!
  2. what political issue stirred you the most? I try to stay away from the news, I get too stirred up
  3. who was the best new person you met?
  • Nathan S. Nasgovitiz
  • my nephew Owen
  • my roomies, Jules & Megan (and also I got to know Ambrosia better)
  1. tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2014: One thing God has reminded me of is His faithfulness. I had a year of much transition. I started out the year having major anxiety about my living situation, looking for housing, looking for a new job and obsessing over the trip. Thru it all, He was faithful and everything worked out or is being worked out! I am learning how to daily surrender and breathe through each moment; I am continuing to trust that my Lord is always with me, cares about these “little things” and “has my back!”

Also, toward the end of this year, I took an eye-opening class through my church-all about discovering myself. Thru this and my own reflection, God has taught me I am someone with a lot to offer the world. I don’t need to be shy or ashamed about sharing my story, my unique giftings and strengths. Over the years, in my struggles with severe depression, anxiety, and other life stressors, I have been poured into by so many amazing people, “angels” God has put in my path. And, because of this, I am now ready to give back; I am so excited because I have recently become a mentor to a young woman at my church! So pumped to see what will come of this relationship all because of God’s faithfulness in my life!

  1. quote a song lyric that sums up your year:

I am not alone
I am not alone
You will go before me
You will never leave me

german sunset

a German sunset-July

In the midst of deep sorrow
I see your light is breaking through
the dark of night will not overtake me
I am pressing into you
Lord, you fight my every battle
And I will not fear ~ Kari Jobe
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So faithful, so constant, so love and so true
So powerful in all You do
You fill me, You see me
You know my every move
You love for me to sing to You

I know that You are for me, I know that You are for me
I know that You will never forsake me in my weakness
And I know that You have come now even if to write upon my heart
To remind me who You are ~ Kari Jobe

***************************************************************************

“Great is Thy faithfulness!” “Great is Thy faithfulness!”
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided—
“Great is Thy faithfulness,” Lord, unto me!

T and A wedding

Tim and Amelie’s wedding-July

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my bro Nathan & fam (Kat, Brendan & Owen) moved from Oregon to Oshkosh, WI! It was so great to see them at Christmas and finally meet Owen!!!!

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my classroom

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me new house in St. Paul

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close friends Clara & Dave @ Bethel’s Festival of Christmas-Dec.

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Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos) celebration at MN History Museum-Oct.

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