Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Looking Back and Looking Forward

Happy New Year!!!  Crazy to think of it already being 2014.  Weren't we just worried about Y2K and ringing in the new millennium.  I always enjoy the New Year holiday because it is a time to look back at the year and also look forward.

Eckleys at the start of 2013
 Eckleys at the start of 2014
I think I can honestly say I am not sad to see 2013 go.  It was a really tough year full of lots of ups and downs.  All that we have been through as a family has been hard.  Not really how we saw 2013 going.  When I look back at what I wrote last January, it is sort of sobering.  It was full great ideas and fun things.  Although it didn't turn out quite like we thought, it was still a great year.  I said last year was going to be a year of obedience and I really do believe we accomplished that.  We were obedient in everything we experienced.  We followed God through the good and bad.  We all learned to lean more on Him just to make it through the day.   

The tough times were evident throughout the year but there were lots of really great times.  I thought I would do a little highlight reel from 2013 with some of the top moments.  

2013 got off to a great start with the birth of Perry!!  What a special little red headed fellow he is.  The kids have taken so well to their roles as the big cousins.  We loved having Perry apart of our 2013.  
Ben turned 6!!  Can't believe how big my little guy is.  We celebrated with a huge pool party in the snow.  It was so much fun.  He also started first grade and is doing amazing.  He is reading everything he can get his hands on and is math wiz!  

We spent Spring Break on the high seas - cruising the Caribbean.  It was such a great trip - relaxing on the beach, swimming with dolphins, playing with monkeys and snorkeling.  So many wonderful memories together.  
In April we went down to Auburn for the final rolling of Toomer's.  The whole weekend was so much fun with all of our Auburn family.  A sad situation that we turned into something fun.   
We completed the Summer List of Fun!!!  It provided us a great way to focus on fun during the summer.  It was awesome!!  We did so many new and exciting things.  
Matt and I celebrated 10 amazing years of marriage!!!  It came at a really tough time but we were still able to head on a fun getaway to Boston.  It was great to be able to think back over the past 10 years and all that God has blessed us with.
Our annual beach trip in July was a great way to end the summer fun.  
Fall was full of more fun stuff from school starting to Auburn football games to pumpkin patch visits to Halloween.  

Our sassy little girl turned 4!!  What a fun and crazy addition she is to our family.  It has been so fun seeing her little personality grow and change over the past year.  

What look back at 2013 would be complete without mentioning the amazing Auburn football season.  Really maybe the biggest surprise of the year.  We enjoyed every minute of the crazy ride including the best Iron Bowl ever!!  So excited to start 2014 with the Tigers playing for the National Championship.  

So although it was tough at times, 2013 was full of some really great memories.  We got to be together as family and experience new things together.  

The journey continues into 2014 for us.  We still don't know exactly what God has in store but we are along for the ride. I usually try the resolution/goal thing but this year I don't know if that is what I want to do.  Last year taught me that goals are great but sometimes things don't go like you planned.  I think this year my one goal is going to be to love Jesus more everyday and share His love with others.  A big task on one hand but also very simple.  As a family we will seek to be intentional about learning more and serving more.  We will seek the joy in everyday and enjoy every moment together.  Also in continuing with last year, we will seek to be obedient in all that we do.  

It will be a year of ups and downs again I am sure.  There will be hard times and really fun times.  We are looking forward to some fun trips and new adventures!!  Bring on 2014!!  The Eckleys are ready!!