Today is the last day at a job I’ve had for eleven years. Yes, I’ve anticipated this for months. Yes, I’m excited. Yes, today I’m getting all sentimental and sad. It’s been a great job with a great boss and co-workers. *sheesh* Eleven years is a LONG TIME! I got to thinking what the past eleven years have held (since I’m all sentimental and stuff today), and I decided to pick one picture of a highlight for each of those years. Now, picking just ONE highlight and just ONE picture for an entire year is somewhat difficult and makes you skip some pretty important things that have happened. Friends and family have gotten married; babies have been born; grandparents have died. God took me through the greatest times and the most horrible, gut wrenching trials. But through the highs and through the lows, God is good, and life is great.
2004: I had worked over the summer as a waitress at a Christian camp in Colorado. I came home with the decision of transferring to Wichita State University after having gone to college in South Carolina a couple years before. Aaaand, I needed a job. A friend from church called and said, “Hey, how would you like to learn to do what I do?” And I said, “What do you do?” Thus, the great learning of the great financial world began. It changed my life.
2005: One of my sisters had promised me that if she didn’t get married before she turned 30, then we would go to Europe together. She missed it by four months, and being the stinker that I am, I held her to it even when it meant she took the trip a couple months before her wedding. I’m glad we did it though (and I think she’s glad too).
2006: I was in the throes of taking 18 hours a semester and going through the summer to finish my degree and working 30 hours a week. This photo is from a fun summer photography class I took – it was actually with 35mm film that we developed ourselves.
2007: God blessed greatly and provided a chance for me to go to Washington, DC for a semester to do an internship with Mrs. Bush. Work let me take a leave of absence for that time.
2008: Graduation!!!!! What.A.Relief.
2009: I had always loved to travel, but since school was over with and I had an awesome job that let me take off quite a bit, traveling was kicked into high gear – this year was San Francisco, Kentucky, Baltimore, Estes Park and South Carolina.
2010: THIS MAN asked me out. ‘Nuff said.
2011: Vacation to Yellowstone with my whole family. What a trip! We had talked about doing it for years, and it was amazing.
2012: Ok, I deviated from the rule this year because I couldn’t choose just one highlight. Caleb and I bought our little bungalow for us to move in after getting married. And my book, Blinded by His Shadow, was published! Both were lifelong dreams.
2013: THE best year of my life.
2014: Another trip! Grace, Matthew and I decided last minute to go to France and Germany. So glad we did because life changes, and we wouldn’t have been able to do it any other time.
2015: Saying goodbye to seeing these crazy, fun and great people everyday! OH.MY.GOODNESS. There have been crrrraaaaaaazy times.
Life is busy. Most of the time I fight against this fact. I hate not being able to sit and soak more; I am annoyed when I can’t just pop over to family and friends’ houses for an afternoon. I remember days when mom had ladies over, days when we would go nowhere at all, days we would spend hanging out at an auction, days of relaxing…
…the problem is with remembering, I lump my whole life into one week’s worth of experiences. I say, “I remember days of not going anywhere” or “I remember doing this and such.” I forget that those memories came in seasons of life. Seasons that have stretched over *ahem* 31 years of life. There are days when I do still stay home all day, days where I get a ton of work done, days where I visit family and friends. I can’t do everything all the time, but I can do many things over time.
“Busy” is good as long as I pair it with “flexible” and “caring” and “relaxing here and there.”
Anyway, those are my thoughts for the moment. Now for some pictures of the last month…of the family gatherings and vacations, of the house renovation, of the adventures and relaxation.
Vacation with the Kings to Idaho and New Mexico to see Caleb’s grandma and Tom:
Work on the house (we upgraded from doing dishes in the bathtub to having a real sink!):
Building my Etsy shop:
Misc. family and church activities:
And, yes, relaxing:
Life is full, and that makes life good.
Our family has always gotten into the big finale of sports competitions. We may not keep up with the whole season of something, but come the World Series, the Olympics and March Madness, we are all about it. Well, of course, the Superbowl is no exception.
Throughout the years, I’ve had Superbowl parties and gone to Superbowl parties. I’ve watched it sometimes by myself, many times with my parents and sometimes with friends and other family. I’ve watched it in an airport and in a bus barn. But this year was a new one. This year I watched the Superbowl at My Man’s fire station. ‘Twas a memory.
Seeing that The Man had to work, his captain, said that I was welcome to join them for the evening. The fire department is ALL about family. And Caleb is especially close to this group of guys, so I know them pretty well.
You hear about firehouse food. Yeah, it was pretty much that good. I didn’t know the smells of freshly made buffalo wings and freshly baked brownies could mingle so well, but, ooooohhhh, do they EVERY mingle well. And My Man’s guacamole and my Starbucks drink topped it all off. Strange combination, but goooooood.
They only got one call during the game, which was nice because I get to go along with them. And seeing The Man in his fire fightin’ gear being all sexy and stuff (yes, mom, I said that word; but, boy, is it ever appropriate!). Anyway, it was a short medical call, so no biggie.
We sat around and ate and watched the most awesome finish to a Superbowl game I’ve ever seen! Yes, the game at the firehouse was one to remember, for sure.