Throw Back: Top 9 of 2018
**Decided it was time to revisit my blog and found this DRAFT post that I never submitted. It's the ultimate throw back, especially in 2020. Its good for me to think about what our Top 9 will look like this year. Perspective.
Randy and I have an annual NYE tradition to share our highs and lows from the previous year. So it's no surprise that I love this #top9of2018 celebrating the same in photo format. Looking back its easy to highlight the good moments, but who stops to take a picture when things take a turn for the worst? Since we already shared our highs and lows at home, I knew what I was looking for and tried to find a few photos that hit on some of the challenges that we faced this year too.
#1 The Kitchen
I have written on this previously so I won't get into the details, but it was a low. I AM grateful for a new kitchen and all the little upgrades that come with it, but it was not something that I needed. There was a lot of worry (and $$) that went into the process. Despite the cost, it's not perfect, which is a little annoying. I find myself obsessing over the imperfections in a way I never did in my dated kitchen. I can turn it off, and I do, but the worry is an ugly reminder of how privileged I am. My positive spin: we are blessed to have overcome a major disaster in our home and not be homeless, hungry or divorced. We have a lot of support, resources and WAY more space than we need to live.
#2, 3 and 4 Travel
This stage of life is REALLY fun. Our boys are old enough to travel and enjoy adventures in the same way that we do. Gone are the days that we plan activities for our kids and sacrifice our own enjoyment. Seeing the kids happy while they play on a playground is rewarding, BUT enjoying a beautiful view, adventurous hike or day at the beach TOGETHER is something special.
#5 Boys Biker Gang
For me this photo feels like a parenting WIN. It also reminds me of my girls who rode bikes around town with me throughout my childhood. As much as it pains me to see my boys grow, each day a little closer to leaving the nest, it makes me so happy that we have a community where my kids can ride.
#6 My Little Avatar
I love Halloween. And costumes. A lot. Bailey (my oldest) has never really been into dressing up. It might be his personality, but it might also be because I convinced him to wear his pajamas to school for a spirit day...on the wrong day. Oops. Tucker on the other hand REALLY enjoys it. This year he wanted to be Jake Sully from Avatar. We spent weeks brainstorming different ideas and made several trips to Goodwill to find just the right pieces and accessories. We both felt super accomplished when he won a prize at the neighborhood costume contest - which Bailey was certain wasn't possible. This made the victory that much sweeter for Tucker. Brothers!
#7 My New Neighbors
I shared the full story in a previous post (Thanks John), but in case you were wondering, it's still awesome.
#8 Olive had Puppies
When we brought Olive into our family, this was part of the deal. We share ownership with our fabulous breeder, Elite Blend Labradoodles, until she's done with their breeding program. We didn't know exactly what being a Guardian home (despite the long contract) would entail or how she would respond to pregnancy and motherhood. Turns out, it is a really cool process and Olive is an amazing mamma. She will breed a couple more times, so feel free to ask if you are curious about being a Guardian family or owning a labradoodle. She is the BEST dog!
#9 The Lows
We all need a good mantra to get us through the ups and downs. This is mine. I hope to find a sign for our house at some point, but for now I only have this to share. I chose this to represent the struggles I faced this year, mostly internal and not pictured on social media. My kids are older and I have more time for myself then I have had since I became a mamma. I am more vigilant about how I spend it than I ever was before. Being my own boss can also make me a little crazy. Sometimes it's hard to turn it all off.
On NYE Randy shared that 2018 was hands down the BEST year of his life. I don't know that it was for me, but the fact that my partner is so happy really means a lot. It also puts my own worries and lows in perspective. Sometimes my lows enable my partners highs. We are definitely moving in the right direction together.
I am looking forward to 2019. Not sure what our vacations will be quite yet, but we are hoping to hit the mountains, the beach, Disneyland (Star Wars Land - EEK) and possibly Maui. We are committed to traveling as a family. With 40 just around the corner, I am also really focusing on my health too (both mental and physical), which means setting new boundaries and staying focused on what makes me feel good. So cheers to 2019 and curating the next Top 9!