Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 In Review

It's that time of year again, to look back and reflect. To prepare yourself to look forward. To end one year and begin the next. 2012 was a pretty decent year. I say decent because, well, we had some hard times, but we also had some amazing, wonderful times too. Here's my attempt to sum it all up:

At the beginning of 2012, we found ourselves in a rough spot. Chris's contract job with the visual effects company had come to an end and he was now unemployed. He had gone through all the necessary steps to receive benefits and we were hopeful that this wouldn't last long.

In January, we headed to Vegas for my sister's wedding. She was beautiful and we all had a great time. I loved spending that week with my family and getting to see Las Vegas for the first time. A few weeks later, I gathered my courage and started riding my bike to work each day. I've been doing it ever since and really enjoy it most of the time. You've read about my embarrassing fall and recent quote in the paper about double parked cars. Other than that, it is a huge improvement to riding the bus or driving everywhere.

February was a good month to get my do-it-yourself bum in gear. I focused a little more on healthy cooking and homemade goods. There was also the 1st Annual Oscar Party which I had a blast getting ready for and participating in. I'm already getting ready for the next one! (Hope you all can make it.)

I started getting a little crazy with my coupon shopping in March. I don't know how much I've saved so far, but I can tell you my stockpile of razors, shampoo, and toothbrushes should last through 2013. I've had fun doing it, but realize that since my living space is a little limited, I may have to slow down a little. By March, Chris had been getting really tired of looking, applying, and not hearing anything from anybody in his job search and realized it was time for a change. He took up writing as has long been a desire of his. He woke up when I did and began his 8-hour-a-day writing career.

In April, I joined a gym. It started as a one-month pass which has continued now for nearly nine. It's not as thrilling as it once was and I don't go nearly often enough anymore. But it does still offer me a space (and motivation) to do my physical therapy and a bit of cardio two to three times a week. Biking as become my other daily workout.

We took a little road trip to Sonoma in May and toured Jack London's home as well as had a picnic at Cline's winery.

In June, I gave myself a 30-day sugar free challenge. Looking back it was definitely a good move, something I probably need to do again. Although it didn't take away the pain of inflammation I was hoping it would, it did help my overall feeling more healthy.

July was a big month. We celebrated our 3rd wedding anniversary by seeing Les Miserables and going on a camping trip in the Redwood National Park. We had such a great time together. I also hit my 200th blog post in July and did my first giveaway! A very exciting event for this little blogger. I also took a bigger plunge into my passion for photography and had my first real "session" (okay it was a practice session -- but it was with real people!). My friends let me take their maternity photos which was a blast, and I think they turned out pretty good, if I may say so.

In August, I turned 29. Chris gave me a tripod and camera remote for my birthday . . . guess I am more invested in this photography stuff now! (love it!) Chris finished the first draft of his novel in August and sent it off to a few trusted friends for a first review. He also was hired to do editing for a sports equipment company working with their online videos. This had a bit of a commute, but we were thankful for it anyway! The unemployment had ended!

September was the month we were all waiting for . . . it was finally time for Chris and I to go to Europe. We had been saving up for months . . . maybe even a year or more, it's hard to say. All I know is that every month when we did our budget we were so grateful (and in awe) that we could tuck away a few hundred dollars into our savings account. You can read more about our trip here. It was an amazing adventure, something I will cherish for a long time!

I started to cut gluten out of my diet in October. It was a 45-day diet prescribed by my acupuncturist. I wasn't excited at all, but it turned out to be a good thing. I do believe my inflammation is triggered by gluten, at least to some extent. The acupuncture has also been helping tremendously. I will be continuing these two things in 2013 for sure!

In November, Chris's parents came to visit. We had a great weekend in Napa and then mom stayed with us a few extra days. It was wonderful to have them visit and see our apartment in the city for the first time. We celebrated Thanksgiving with our extended family up north near Mount Lassen, and although it was a little chilly, it was beautiful and very relaxing.

In December, Chris made a decision to quit his editing job that had been morphing into less-editing, more-mundane tasks and accepted another job that was in the city. Although perhaps not a move in the film-career direction we were hoping for, it saves us a lot on gas money and his life is better not spending hours commuting back and forth each week . . . do I need to mention the traffic and the bridge tolls? We celebrated Christmas with my sister and her husband in Las Vegas. It was a wonderful time together. We cooked and baked, watched movies, and played games. We're making plans to visit them again next year when their little baby enters the world! Congratulations Sister and Brother-in-Law!

This is another year we can look back on and see just how amazing God's provision is. We will continue to trust Him with this next year (and beyond) for all the good things He has in store.

May 2013 be filled with joy, peace and faith -- and exciting adventures!

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