2014 Highlight Reel – As if Facebook isn’t enough of one Already….

Here we are – another year, another million memories we have made, smiles we have given, blessings we are thankful for, losses we still haven’t come to terms with and insurmountable joys we have experienced. Another Holiday season – a time to spend with family, to cheers with friends and remember what is really important.

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This year has been a growing and learning year for our family as well as for myself individually.

We came to the final decision that we are 100% done having babies – so our family is really really complete now and Jeremy got TWO promotions at work… yes TWO which has created so many new opportunities for us – we’re even thinking of (more-so determined at this point) to sell our fist home within the next 6 or so months and moving!

Many exciting possibilities on the horizon for the Tipton’s ahead.

Gavin has learned to ride a bike, spell his name and he knows his home address. He can count to 50, identify all his letters and amazes us daily with the stuff that comes out of his mouth – he really is a joy to be around! Makenna has evolved into the sassy little diva Princess we always knew she would be and is obsessed with any fashion accessory available – hats, bows, headbands, shoes and jackets (girl after my own heart) – I am honestly scared to see what the teenage years will bring with this one. She is definitely a feisty little cherub and we have our hands full with her sparky nature and electric personality.

Jeremy and I celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary and we have faced many joys, challenges, frustrations, road blocks, and new found love and happiness in our relationship this year. It’s definitely been a whirlwind and exciting but trying year for us.

We’ve lost friends and celebrated in the saving grace of others. There have been many happy times, and there have been hard times, there have been sad times and there have been great times….. this has been a year of really living and one of changing and evolving.

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Through it all there are ALWAYS things to be thankful for…. this past year has given us quite a few. Here are a couple of our BIG Highlights from 2014!!

Our Highest Highs!

1) Jeremy’s double Promotion!

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2) Gavin turns 3. Makenna turns 1.

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3) My Best Friend gets married to the love of her life and our whole family gets to take part in the amazing and beautiful festivities!!

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4) We were Blessed BLESSED Blessed with our first God Daughter – Brooklyn Joy!
(Uncle Jeremy needs to get in on the pictures in 2015!!)

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5) Buying our Ford Explorer in August – my DREAM car!

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6) Gavin starts and finishes his first season of Soccer!

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7) Makenna gets her ears pierced!

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8) Mama nurses Makenna until 14 months old – and we NEVER once had to buy formula!! SCORE!

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9) I reached the lowest weight I have been since our wedding in 2009! (Now just gotta get back on that workout train!)

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10) We celebrated our 5 year Wedding Anniversary!

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Songs of the Year!

If you know me, you know I have always been able to tell a story through a song…..

“Words make you think. Music makes you feel. A song makes you feel a thought.” – “I think there is a song out there to describe just about any situation”

There must have been some part of me that wanted to make my mark. But there was never a defining moment – only songs…

My 2014 Jam…. I am not afraid to admit-  I had this sucker on repeat for months. (I cannot say it “spoke to me” per se, but I really just loved jamming out to this constantly).

Another one I listen to over and over and never get sick of.

And we cannot forget…

I also had a love affair with the Taylor Swift 1989 Album this fall.

#wildestdreams
#blankspace
#shakeitoff
#iknowplaces

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Eat Drink and Be Merry!

Cause hey, who doesn’t love a good drink and good food???

The Best Meal we made in 2014 – Had to come from Blue Apron (Thanks Eric and Jen for the free meals)!!! Basted Flank Steak with Beet-Freekeh Salad and Gorgonzola – DELICIOUS!

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Jeremy also gets a big kick out of my homemade Chicken and Shrimp Fried Rice (not pictured or posted) and my Bacon Wrapped Chicken and Spicy Avocado Cilantro Dipping Sauce (below).

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The Worst Meal of 2014 – Jeremy’s “Cajun Shrimp” concoction…. I don’t even have a picture of it, it was that bad. We literally had to “wash off” the shrimp before we ate it and the rice went into the trash. Not his best work in the kitchen.

Some other good eats and drinks from 2014…

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Favorite TV Show of 2014

THE WALKING DEAD!
No Competition. Whatsoever.

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Things to be THANKFUL for 2014!!!

~Not everyday is good, but there is good in everyday~

I am so so so thankful for our families health… and for AAMC’s Pediatric Unit and everything they did to make our “stay” that much easier when Makenna needed it most. I cannot say more good things about their Peds unit.

In January 2014 Makenna was taken to the ER twice for RSV and was admitted on the second go around for 2 days and 2 nights. A situation I would rather have not dealt with and terrified us turned out A-Okay as the Doctors and Nurses took the BEST care of our baby girl and got her all better super fast!! What a scary experience though!

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I am thankful for a truly AMAZING daycare provider. She single-handedly makes being a “working mom” that much easier for me. It’s so hard in this day in age to find someone you’re so comfortable leaving your children with whom they also love and adore.

Thank you for everything you do for our kids is not even close to enough to describe how much we treasure you.

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I am beyond thankful for my babies. They save and recreate my life – when I am not even looking. They give my life more meaning than I ever knew could possibly exist.

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I am thankful for my girlfriends – I have 10-20 year friendships. How lucky can a girl get? The same friends for 20 years? I also have brand new best friendships that have formed in the past few years I am forever thankful for as well.

Some old and some new pictures of my “loves”.

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I am thankful for hard work. My husband is the epitome of this. I give him a LOT of crap and a very hard time 90% of the work week but he makes it worth it. (most of the time 😉 ) In all honesty, I have never met someone with a better worth ethic and drive to succeed like he has.

I am also so thankful for Jeremy – just him – and everything he does for me and our children day in and day out.

This year reality really seemed to set in for Jer and I. After 9.5 years, a wedding, buying a house and all of the issues that come along with being homeowners, 2 kids, 2 jobs, unbelievably lonnnnng work hours, finances and a tight budget, and all else that comes from being a young family finding our own way I think we finally hit our first road block (REALITY!) and had to figure out where we went from there.

As we enter a new year I am just so thankful for our commitment to be in this together for the long haul – to make it work… and that we are growing, learning, loving and working together every.single.day to make us and the family we created as happy as we all can be.

“They never said it would be easy – only worth it.”

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I am thankful for this girl and for prayers. I am also so very thankful for her family and that they have become some of our very best friends (practically family)…. They make everyday life a little more fun and exciting.

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I am thankful for Angels in heaven that are watching over us…. I am thankful to have gotten the chance to know this one for as long as I did and to call her my best friend. #imissyousami

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I am thankful for the ability to live a summer SALTLIFE and to be able to give our kids these amazing experiences as often as we can.

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I am so thankful for girl time, I am thankful for my sister in law. I have never met someone like her. I have never met someone I could spend SO much time with and still be the best of friends with yet so completely polar opposite of. If girls were soul mates… she would be mine.

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I am thankful for my future sister in law to be. You helped to make my brother a better person and man in a single moment…. you have a special place in my heart. Always.

You open my eyes to new perspectives and for that I owe ya one – its not always easy to see and accept things in a new light. You’ve allowed me to do that.

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I ❤ These girls. #sissys

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I am thankful for our families…. our roots and wings. Our stability.

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“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”

A Few of my Favorite Trending Stories from 2014 that made me laugh, cry, or just made me stop for a moment to realize I am truly not alone in this world – that we’re all on a similar journey (mostly Mom related stuff!).

If there is a Competition over who’s Busiest…. I lose.

Sometimes I Cry

To my Husband Now that I am Mommy

Getting up in the Night is your Wife’s Job

To the Mom with a Toddler and a Baby

I wasn’t Prepared for Motherhood

How to be a Perfect Mother

No You are Not Running Late – You are Rude and Selfish!

A Letter to my Pre-Mom Self

Dear Mom on the iPhone

When You’re Lost in the Baby Fog – The Hardest thing to Find is Eachother

The Deep End of Love

Favorite Quotes from 2004.

“And that’s the thing about people who mean everything they say. They think everyone else does too.”

“Most of what I say is complete truth. My edit button is broken.”

“They say the grass is always greener on the other side. Try watering your own lawn instead of admiring someone else’s grass.”

“When you stop expecting people to be perfect, you can like them for who they are.”

“A first child is your own best foot forward, and how you do cheer those little feet as they strike out. You examine every turn of flesh for precocity, and crow it to the world. But the last one: the baby who trails her scent like a flag of surrender through your life when there will be no more coming after–oh, that’ s love by a different name.”

“I don’t care about whose DNA has recombined with whose. When everything goes to hell, the people who stand by you without flinching–they are your family.”

“(24/7) once you sign on to be a mother, that’s the only shift they offer.”

“Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.”

  “You don’t have favourites among your children, but you do have allies.”

“Happiness is not a goal…it’s a by-product of a life well lived.”

“Sometimes in life, you do things you don’t want to. Sometimes you sacrifice, sometimes you compromise. Sometimes you let go and sometimes you fight. It’s all about deciding what’s worth losing and what’s worth keeping.”

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What is in Store for 2015 – Plans and Ideas – not Resolutions.

1) Buy a New House – Sell our first home!
2) Whole30 (at least twice) and Back to the Gym more Frequently – 10 pounds has got to go and stay away!
3) A little Lemonade and not so many beers…
4) 4th and 2nd Birthday Parties!!
5) Bikini for Summer – hold me to it people!
6) Tattoo??
7) DISNEY
8) Big changes and big opportunities…. only time will tell.

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Although there are days I simply feel …. that this e-card could not explain my life more at the moment….

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It’s been one amazing year!

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Happy 2015!!!

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