reflecting on 2016

“A New Year has tiptoed in.
Let’s go forward to meet it.
Let’s welcome the 365 days it brings.
Let’s live well with love in our hearts towards God and all people.
Let’s walk through its corridors with praise songs on our lips.”

– Anusha Atukorala

I think it’s safe to say 2016 has been a difficult year for most. Our country has dealt with grief from losing loved ones in numerous local shootings, and an election that has been a difficult one to swallow no matter who your vote was for. Other countries suffering from shootings, major attacks, refugees fleeing for safety and families torn apart. And the most recent proposals against Israel… Lord have mercy. It’s been hard.

It’s been a difficult year for our little familia as well. I’ve shared many of our struggles publicly, but have been dealt our fair share of trial after trial after trial this past year. Some things have only been kept between ourselves and close friends and family. I suppose this is a friendly reminder to have some grace and compassion on everyone, because even when their feed may look stunning and their life must be perfect… it likely still has lots of struggle, because the truth is, we all go through trials.

But then, on July 20th the sweetest most perfect gift entered into our life. Nora Jane has been our light and God’s grace for us. She has undoubtedly made me a better woman, a better wife, DJ a better man and husband, and has given us the greatest honor of becoming mother and father. Being her mother has got me losing my brain, but finding my soul, day in and day out.

This past year has been one of pulling and uprooting and shaking, and we’re excited for the soil to be turned; for the sun to shine and the showers that will pour. Showers of love, and grace, and redemption, and peace for the tilling we’ve endured. God is good. He is faithful. And we’re believing for a year of hope and rejuvenation. We’re feeling raw and so very ready; expectant for God to work and use the endurance we’ve been blessed to build. Though it’s been difficult, we know it’s not been in vain. God has a plan for our story.

There's been many great moments of this past year. We moved into an amazing apartment, and I started this blog! We spent our first vacation in San Diego and celebrated one year of marriage. I had two beautiful baby showers, and fainted in a nail salon right before one of them while I was 29 weeks pregnant.  Gaining our daughter was the absolute highlight, and one we will forever be grateful for. I succeeded in delivering my baby in water, naturally, at home. I had the honor of having my very first honeywild booth displaying and selling some of my watercolor lettering with two of my best friends. I have had my monstera, bird of paradise and peace lily for a year and have kept them all alive and thriving. I began a local mama group for Sacramento with one of my dearest friends (@nourishsacramento), and have met some amazing new friends because of it. I've gained some incredible new friendships and strengthened a few others.

I have about a million more memories and photos I could post, but here are just a few favorite moments from 2016:

It’s been bittersweet 2016. I’m ready for ya 2017, and all you’ve got for us.