Looking back at 2014 makes me a little dizzy. It was a big year, a busy year, a good year, a hard year. I was tired every single day of the year, but I’m pretty sure I smiled every single day of the year. Having a baby will do that to a person.
I missed the acceptable window for sending Christmas cards, but I can still share a few of my favorite 2014 family photos here, can’t I?
I’m pretty sure I will never get tired of that pirate picture. Just LOOK at that parrot!!! Anyway. Some of the highlights from my last year were:
- Adrienne Grace was born!
- We put our house back on the market – and then took it off again.
- My first magazine article was published in Parent Life.
- I was selected for the Kansas City production of Listen to Your Mother, and I began speaking at local MOPS meetings.
- We took a road trip to Wisconsin for our niece’s graduation.
- I tried to force myself to like drinking coffee.
- We visited friends in Des Moines and Springfield, we drove to Omaha over the 4th of July, and I took a trip to Northwest Arkansas.
- Annalyn went to summer school and theater camp, started piano lessons, and attended a basketball camp. She also rode a horse and a roller coaster and went down a big, long water slide all by herself!
- We spent 31 days turning lemons into lemonade.
- The Royals went to the World Series (a big deal in this house)!
- I attended the Orange Conference in Atlanta and the Allume Conference in Greenville.
- Annalyn turned 7, and convinced me to dress up as a pirate. (It wasn’t a hard sell.)
- God rewrote my dream to write a book into an amazing project I still can’t believe is mine.
As for this blog, it was a pretty uneven year here, too. The posts you liked most were the ones about books and TV, as well as my nearly monthly What I’m Into recaps. Two of my favorite posts were about life with my favorite people: Enough Moments (about parenting) and When Stubborn is a Good Thing (marriage). And I continued to enjoy writing for (in)courage, Mom Advice, and Mothers of Daughters.
Then there are the posts that the internet liked. (You know, the ones that got shared and pinned a whole lot?) I liked them, too – they were fun to write. I do love my lists (and my brother’s recipes).
- 70+ Amazing Appetizer Recipes to Make Any Party a Hit
- 80+ Delicious Recipes for a Mexican Fiesta
- Family Recipe: Corn Casserole with Bacon
- Family Recipe: Chocolate Chip Fudge Brownies
- 10 Books About Safety for Children
- The Best Time Travel Books of All Time
But since you all like chatting about books and movies and TV shows best, let’s do a little roundup of 2014 in pop culture! A few favorites:
My Favorite Books Read in 2014:
- What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
- Timebound by Rysa Walker
- The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer
- Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge
- Before I Go to Sleep by S.J. Watson
- The GenEx Saga series by Holly Lauren
- All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill
- Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor
I read a lot – A LOT – more than this short list. But these were the ones I most enjoyed or thought about long after finishing the last chapter. I also adored reading My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories over the (you guessed it) holidays. It’s a collection of short stories by popular YA authors, and I loved several of them.
My Favorite Movies Watched in 2014:
- Veronica Mars – This reminds me. I need to watch this again, stat.
- Edge of Tomorrow – Tom Cruise was very Tom Cruise-y, and I liked it.
- Maleficent – So dark and gorgeous and just lovely! Twisted fairy tales for the win!
- Guardians of the Galaxy – Fun. So much fun! Great music, too – plus a talking raccoon and a Groot.
- This is Where I Leave You – I laughed. I cried. And I wondered why there aren’t more movies with Tina Fey and Jason Bateman.
I also saw Monuments Men, one I’d been looking forward to for months. Sadly, it was super boring. And then there was Winter’s Tale. You know, the one with Colin Farrell and the girl from Downton Abbey? It came out quite a while ago, but Smitty and I watched it in December. It was THE funniest thing I’ve seen in a long time . . . but I don’t think it was supposed to be a comedy . . .
My Favorite TV Shows Watched in 2014:
- Friday Night Lights. BEST EVER.
- I also really loved watching American Idol during the many hours I spent feeding a newborn.
- And Playing House was my favorite new show. (Did you watch this? It is SO funny. It’s on Hulu. Go watch it now!)
My Favorite Commercials from 2014:
Tina Fey’s American Express commercials are the best. I love them. This one especially, because seriously – shopping for girls is kind of the worst.
Kristen Bell and Dax Shepherd are trying to sell me Samsung products, but all they’ve really sold me is HOW ADORABLE THEY ARE. I mean, really.
My Favorite Video Parodies from 2014:
Weird Al with Word Crimes, obviously:
Also, this Talk Nerdy to Me cracked me up (though, for the record, I’m NOT quite THIS nerdy!):
It’s hard to pick just one of these funny ladies’ videos, but this Pinterest parody of Shake It Off is my favorite!
It seems weird that such a big year can be wrapped up in such a short (for me) post. Then again, we’re halfway through January, so it’s probably okay this way. But now I want to know about YOUR 2014!
What a year you had, Mary! And now I, too, need to rewatch Veronica Mars.
ME TOO. Maybe this summer, between season finales and summer programming. Oh yes, that’s something to look forward to! :)
OH. MY. WORD. Somehow I’d missed the whole you writing a book thing! Or co-authoring. Or whatever you want to call it, but I am so stinking excited that I’m sitting here just grinning in my chair with tears in my eyes. Her story is such a beautiful one, and I know you will do an incredible job forming her posts into a manuscript. I’m going to set aside a box of tissues now for when I read it. You go girl. Can’t wait to see how God uses your gifting to glorify Him.
Thank you, thank you, thank you!! I am overwhelmed by the whole thing, honestly. Mostly in a “God is amazing” sort of way, but – you know – also in a “how can I possibly do this justice” sort of way. But YES, you will definitely need a box of tissues. And I don’t know exactly what to call it (writing, co-authoring, etc.) either. :)
This post was SUCH a fun read. And now I have a list of books and movies and TV shows to consume. Thank you!
Also. Your girls? THE CUTEST.
Oh, thank you! I think so, too – but I might be biased. ;)