Twenty Eleven

He is jealous for me

Loves like a hurricane, I am a tree
Bending beneath the weight of his wind and mercy

Twenty eleven was a great year for me. I’m honestly wondering how 2012 could surpass all of the monumental happenings of the previous year, but I’m sure there are lots of surprises in store. In some ways, I hope this next year is rather uneventful – restful even – and that we can catch our breath. I’m sure things won’t go as we’ve planned, but our greatest strength as a couple is that we’re trusting God every step of the way. Or trying to. But we’re also willing to learn and grow and hopefully gain some wisdom out of the things that don’t go according to plan.

I love this picture from the wedding. It’s one of my favorites.

When all of a sudden
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory
And I realise just how beautiful You are
And how great Your affections are for me

We had such a wonderful Christmas! When we were coming back from Chicago in October from the out-of-state reception Mike’s parents hosted for us, we took vouchers to get bumped to a later flight because we knew that we would probably be flying somewhere within the next year. Our original plan was to stay in Austin and not travel for the holidays, but plans – as plans are wont to do – changed. Friday morning before Christmas we drove to Houston and spent Christmas Adam and Christmas Eve with my family. Christmas Eve dinner was uh-maze-ing. So delicious. My brother and his girlfriend were there for dinner and presents time and we had so much fun hanging out with the family. It would only have been better if Broham and Ellesbells were there.

We are His portion and He is our prize
Drawn to redemption by the grace in His eyes
If grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking

Christmas day Mike and I flew out to Chicago at o’dark thirty. We had a wonderful time at the aunts’ house for Christmas dinner and present time. On Boxing Day we went to the movies with Mike’s parents and sister to see Sherlock Holmes 2. It was about the same as the first Sherlock; lots of action, some violence, and what felt like a disjointed storyline. There was actually one part that I had to close my eyes and try not to cringe. I won’t ruin it too much, but I will way my shoulder was crying watching that scene! The rest of our time in Chicago was really nice: we went to a fancy dinner at the Italian Village and then walked around the Magnificent Mile looking at Christmas lights, Mike worked most days during the week, I went shopping with the girls and read the Hunger Games trilogy. Oh my soul. I could not put those books down! Well, the first book I actually had, but when I finished it I made Mike buy the trilogy on his Kindle right that second and then I read books 2 and 3 on his Kindle. I basically read book one on Wednesday, book two on Thursday and I finished book three on the plane ride home on Friday.

Since we’ve been back home, there has been lots of house cleaning catch up, laundry, chores, cooking and reflection to do. So much has happened and gone on in the last few months that my head is spinning. It’s hard to come to terms with the new year. I guess I’m still trying to figure out where 2011 went. It was a whirlwind for sure. But delightful and exhilarating and I would live it all again.

So Heaven meets earth like an unforeseen kiss
And my heart turns violently inside of my chest
I don’t have time to maintain these regrets
When I think about the way

So here’s to the new year! May the Lord bless you and keep you. May you go forward in truth, love and know lasting joy and peace.

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