I thought about cramming 2008 into 30 seconds, but brevity never was my strong suit. So, I bring you 2008 in 2 minutes and 30 seconds. I hope you enjoy watching it as much as I enjoyed making it. I cry every time I watch it, which is to be expected I suppose. (The song was chosen not for its lyrics, but for its popularity in our house.)
We built a backyard, went to Pasadena, went to the East Coast, enjoyed our backyard, went to the aquarium, put our house up for sale, sold our house, said goodbye to Rebekah the World's Best Nanny, moved into an apartment, moved out of that apartment, moved into a new apartment, finalized house plans, perfected our commute along I-5, became property owners once again, welcomed a new member into our extended family, and at 7:51 this morning Jason, Sydney, my grandma and I are flying to Orlando where we will spend the week at Disney World.
It's been quite a year.
Stressful at times--many times--but so often with the hope of the joys 2009 will bring us: a new house, new jobs, closer to family, a certain someone who gets to be a flowergirl in June and a kindergartner in September. Wow.
So much of what many of you have shared this year has resonated with me. Oh, you make me laugh. And you make me cry. And sometimes, the stories I read change the way I see life. Here are some of the stories--from blogs and from newspapers--that have caught the deepest parts of my heart this year.
- Logan and Jack--whose lives are nothing short of miraculous.
- Matt Logelin, who tragically lost his wife the day after his daughter was born. For seven months I have been reading his blog, and it always reminds of how life doesn't always turn out the way we hope.
- Longtime blog friend London Southern Belle had a successful IVF treatment, and she is now expecting twins. Such joy!
- Such sorrow comes in the form of reading of Emilie's passing. She wrote shortly before she died; and then her husband wrote on Christmas Eve. I only knew her from her blog, but I wept at the loss for her husband and two little boys.
- Closer to home: a graduate from the college where I teach was killed in a helicopter crash last summer, along with eight other men. Another graduate was seriously injured in this month's bank bombing. Tragic reminders that small schools are not immune to great sorrows.
- I don't suspect I will soon forget the thrill of seeing Michael Phelps win eight gold medals at the Olympics, but the Oregonian got it right when it named last spring's memorable softball game between Western Oregon and Central Washington as the best sports story of the year. It happened months ago, and I still get all weepy with joy when I read about it.
And in the midst of such sorrows and joys there is just the regular day to day living that happens every day. Reading other people's life experiences teaches me to be thankful, to be humble, to trust God. I am sure that 2009 will teach me many of the same lessons, and it will also be one amazing year.
Happy New Year to you all. Thanks for being part of my 2008, and here's to 2009.
BTW, I'm kicking off the New Year at the happiest place on earth. I think it's a good sign, you know, dreams coming true and all that.