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2018: Year in Review

 2018 was a year of changes for our little family of four.  I can not believe how much we accomplished and survived together.  There have been plenty of happy times, as well as sadness, loss, and frustration.  I love looking back on all the growth we have seen this year.

1.  We moved into our new house in June.  Since then we have been working to make it a home: new carpet, new paint, some new appliances, and a whole lot of cleaning and decorating.  We have a few more projects ahead of us this year, but it has been wonderful having our own place again.  I don't really have a lot of pictures yet.  The first time we actually took a family picture in front of the house is above, at Christmas.  You win some, you lose some.

2.  We braved traveling a few times in 2018. 

In February, we went with Brandon to California to attend the World Ag Expo.  It was a lot of driving, but we had fun getting away for a few days together. Lizzie slept so much during our time there that I don't really have a lot of pictures of her.  Brecken was in tractor heaven!

In August, we spent a week together at the beach. The kids and I had an additional week before Brandon got there.  We were surrounded by family, friends, the ocean, and had amazing weather.

We also spent Thanksgiving at the beach.  It was a lot of traveling, but fun to spend an actual holiday with my family out there.  My brother and sister both had babies in September, so I FINALLY got to hold my adorable niece and nephew for the first time. 

All the holidays were so fun with two kids!  It wasn't always easy, as you can see from our Easter pictures.  We focused on traditions and I think we found a great way to celebrate as a family of four.

Valentine's Dinner 

Easter Sunday. This is reality.

Like Father Like Son.

My favorite picture of Lizzie and me this year.

4th of July Parade

24th of July in Trenton

Night out roasting s'mores

I had to turn 31 this year, so we had cheesecake

Pumpkin Walk

Snow White & The Hulk

Cookies for Santa

Christmas Morning

3.  We celebrated Lizzie's first birthday!  I have a whole post on her big day here, but it was such a sweet time for our little girl.  She has gone from barely sitting up in January to running around and talking up a storm in December.

4.  We celebrated Brecken's third birthday!  Our boy official entered the stage of Threenager.  He has continued to entertain us and test us throughout 2018.  He tackled potty training and traded in his crib for a twin bed.  He loves Cars, Monster Jam, Avengers, and makes the best vehicle sounds out there.

5.  Brandon has kept super busy working on the farm.  He filled his small moments of free time with a lot of play time with the kids, football, and running.  He and I ran a 10K right before Thanksgiving.  He placed 2nd in his age group, and didn't really train.  We hit the jackpot with this guy! So grateful he has put up with me for 6 years!

As for me, I met a lot of my 2018 goals.  I started a healthier lifestyle with eating and exercising (see more here).  I found myself being at peace with things that I had really struggled with, like accepting the fact that I will always live far away from where I grew up and my family.  I also was able to take social media breaks and read The Book of Mormon twice.  I found a better balance and a lot more happiness.

I remember January 2018: a five month old who was barely getting a handle on sleep training and a 2 year old wild child.  I was struggling to balance having two kids.  I was not in a good place mentally and emotionally.  I am so grateful I set goals for myself and worked hard to transform my mind, body, and soul.  I cherish 2018 for all the growth we experienced as a family and look forward to what lies ahead in 2019!

Can you believe how different they look?! The pictures on the left are from January and the right are from December (except the one of the two of them hugging.  It was just cute).