Oh hi, 2014.

looking in

2013 was by far the biggest year of my life. We didn’t really set out to, but we ended up cramming about as many Life Events as we could in one calendar year. It was a huge, unforgettable year, full of changes big and little, and in a way, I’m a little sad that it’s over. Just because it was the year we did so many awesome things.

4.52 :: the forest for the trees

Obviously, marrying Dan was 2013’s high point. Because so many other big things have happened since then, it seems like a million years ago already. People love to ask how married life is, and to be honest? It isn’t all that different, except for this undeniable sense of contentment. It was one of the best days either of us can ever remember, and sometimes I wish I could go back and live it again because it was just so happy. I’ve even gotten mostly used to the new last name; I thought it would take longer, for sure.

cider and Indiana Pale Ale

I finally started feeling settled in my new-old job, and Dan moved into a new position at his company. He’d been searching for a good fit for a long time, and while I know as well as anybody that switching jobs is never easy, I’m awfully proud of him.

at last, greenness

We finally took our first real vacation together in June, which was something we both needed SO badly. With Dan’s job-switching stress, and the absurdly intense stress of our house hunt, it was so amazing to get on a plane with my favorite person and just escape everything and everyone for a week. I don’t know if I’d recommend to others to delay their honeymoon as long as we did; it was so hard to have to wait so long. But the one unexpected benefit (other than the obvious one: being in freaking paradise) was that it felt like the wedding phase of our lives got stretched out just a liiiiittle bit longer.

Antiguan beach

Buying a house was not fun. We did not enjoy the process even a little. We did get some hearty laughs at some of the places we saw, don’t get me wrong … but holy hell did it suck. Even after we fell in love with the house we ended up buying, the inspection/negotiation/closing process made it hard to relax and believe it was really going to happen up until we had the keys in our hands.

house hunting adventures

Getting settled felt like it took a long time, but now that we ARE settled, we both love our house so much. We feel really at home here, and we have so much space. We took some time and got some furniture that fits really well where we needed it, and other than getting some decorations and curtains hung, it feels like we actually LIVE here. Like we’re going to stay a while, or something. And that feeling? Is so, so good.

what can I say, he's an artist

And as if getting married and buying a house weren’t big enough deals, we ALSO found out I’m pregnant on the first day of fall. And even when it’s something you’re hoping for, it’s hard not to be blown away seeing that plus sign. The rest of the year was a blur of tiredness, disbelief, awe, and hope.

snowy pines

So if you’ve been following along, in 2013, I acquired a husband, a house, a pregnancy, and a kitten. I don’t know how I got so stinkin’ lucky. The roads to each of those things were a little bumpy at times, which means I feel even luckier to be here, with so much goodness at the start of the new year.

Yep, she climbed the tree.

It’s hard to think of anything but our impending baby when I look forward to 2014. It’s finally hitting us that yes, we are actually going to have an actual baby in May, and that yeah, maybe we should start… preparing, or something. Having wanted to have a baby for most of my life, I am finding it basically impossible to comprehend that in a few short months, it’ll be really real. But it will be. 2014 will be a year of challenges and impossibly huge love and wonder and learning and forever changes. I’m going to need to be brave and resilient and flexible. But most of all, in 2014, I’ll become a mother. Watch Dan become a father. Finally get to meet this little baby of ours. Even though I still can’t quite believe it, I can’t wait. It’s gonna be so awesome.

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