As I sit and look back on the past year of this blog, it is funny the thoughts that come to mind. I can literally remember every post and the purpose behind each writing....which, in itself, brings both joy and pain. 2010 has been one the best and most difficult years that I have ever walked through. Rereading my posts, however, I see a clear picture of "me" in them. Each one is spun with a happy ending, an encouraging thought, maybe even an insightful epiphany. It makes me wonder why I do that, why I write that way. And that is when it hit me....it isn't that IT IS always happy, encouraging, or insightful, but I write with hope...hope that it can be.
So it is with hope that I say goodbye to 2010 and look forward to 2011. Hope that I will take the lessons God has given me this year and make me stronger, better, and brighter for the years to come.
Just a few things I've learned this year (in no particular order):
*I am a social person. I love people. I love to laugh, have fun, play, dance, do for others, etc. And staying at home has been one of the most difficult jobs I have ever done. This is the first full year I have had not working.....well, not working an "official" job. Just like any job....it takes experience, and I discovered....that I have A LOT to learn. I am still learning to juggle my daily responsibilities, spend quality time with my kids and, you know, maybe teach them something while I'm home, be resourceful, live with a limited budget, not lose my "cool", and still find time for me and the things that make me Laura. I have without a doubt gotten a big fat "F" in this category this year......but when I think back to my first year of teaching, I probably got a big fat "F" then too. It takes patience, practice, and learning from my own successes and failures. Bring it on 2011!!!!*I have learned that friendships can come into your life in the most unusual ways......like finding that person to rock a serious air guitar with! Never underestimate God's sense of humor.*I've learned that building a house....STINKS! Flat out...not fun...would not do it again! I don't care if I lived in a castle by the end of the whole process. Be prepared to allow it to take over your life throughout the entire process......marriage, kids, friendships, everything.*I've learned that complicated means complicated. No win situations really are....no win situations. And no matter how many you wish upon, you can't line up the stars.*I've learned that I enjoy running, if nothing else, for this reason.....NO MATTER HOW SLOW YOU ARE, THERE IS ALWAYS SOMEONE SLOWER THAN YOU!!! I also love Zumba for that reason....no matter how silly, non-cordinated you look....someone always looks worse.*I've learned that your heart is never too experienced, mature, or confident....to be completely broken.*I've learned that Panama City Beach looks a little bit different as a 29 year old than it did as an 18 year old.*I've been reminded both how hard and how fun living with people are! Invading anyone's lives as a family of 4 means life is going to look at little crazy from everyone's point of view. But tv nights, movie dates, dinners together, walks, game nights, popcorn and Dr. Pepper days, and everything in between were worth every bit of the not as pretty moments! I've also been shown true selflessness and true friendship and for that I will be forever grateful and forever changed!!!*I've experienced what true grace and forgiveness looks like....and what being loved unconditionally feels like.*I've learned that I can apply an Office quote to just about any situation! And I bond instantly to those people that can share in that same depth of appreciation!!!*I've learned that some of my best days are the days I do absolutely nothing but play with my kids....build forts, make brownies, build towers and then destroy them, have dance parties. I have two boys with the most contagious laughs.....and taking the time to truly take in those moments is all the joy I could ever need!*I've learned that I love reading, and I would LOVE more time for reading! A Mother's Hope and A Daughter's Dream literally changed my outlook on so many things in life! Definitely my favorite books of the year!*I've learned that I can fly on a plane by myself with my two children and handle it with complete sanity!*I've learned that true friends....are life long friends. They love you at your best, and even more so at your worst. And I have some pretty amazing friends.
So this year I am not making any new years resolutions. Instead I will just keep writing, keep seeking, keep learning lessons so that that "hope" will never diminish from my life......so that my heart will in fact keep "Beatin" on!