This time of year is fast becoming my favourite – the empty space between Christmas and New Year when you get to breathe (the chaos of Christmas is over!), reflect and regather your thoughts ready for the New Year. So, in my first in a series of a few reflective posts I want to share with you all my praise points from 2018.
It is so great to look back and see what God has been doing over the last year, and this has been a biggie for me and my family.
- MOVING HOUSE!!! Have I mentioned this at all? Maybe not, but the big milestone event of 2018 (which finally happened in May) was moving house. That means that HS2 and all the stress that it caused is now behind us, we are settling in to our new home and community and have a fresh start as a family. At the end of 2017 I asked for prayers of wisdom about where/when we should move, and as we stepped in 2018 I felt God saying it was time. So we found a house that I fell in love with in January, and then commenced the 4 month saga with HS2. But its over now, and we have so much space and quirkiness in our new home (even if it is a DIY to-do list!).
- Launch of the Mummy Meditations Shop. September saw a brand new look for Mummy Meditations, and with it a huge step in faith as I launched the Mummy Meditations Shop with a selection of resources for those taking part. It is a slow start, but hopefully one that will benefit all the amazing mums who take part in Mummy Meditations each week.
- Hubby starting a PHD. This has been a dream of Rob’s for a while now, and this year the government launched loans for PhD students which has meant he can take a day a week off to start on this (possibly 8 year long) endeavour. I know this is pretty scary for him, but its so great to see him step out and start it.
- 10th Wedding Anniversary. Yes, we made it! 10 whole years without killing each other!! We had a night away in a lovely hotel in the Peak District to celebrate, as unfortunately our Rome trip had to be postponed again. I can’t imagine my life without this man by my side – he is my champion, my comforter and my best friend. Words cannot explain how thankful I am for having found him all those years ago.
- New school. A real stress for me over the last year was finding a new school for my eldest son and whether or not he would settle in it. He loved his old school, as did I, and had a small class of close friends. I also had many mums I knew, so this was a big step into the unknown. But it has really paid off, and his new school is lovely. Sam is flourishing, on the pupil parliament, getting Star of the Week and making friends. Has it happened instantly? No! But I am gradually making friends at the school gate, and love the atmosphere around the school with many extra things taking place for the kids and parents. It is a still a church school, so I know that Sam is getting spiritual input too.
- Launch of Bible Journaling on my Bed. Another thing I wanted to take forward into 2018 was my bible journaling passion. This started with a new Instagram and Facebook account dedicated to my journaling, and has expanded into hosting my first two “Introduction to Bible Journaling” Workshops in my own home. I felt so spiritually alive hosting these – the kind of feeling you get when you KNOW you are doing what God meant for you to do!
- Fitness, friends and fun. This past year I have been leading a parents lifegroup at our church, and I am so thankful for the growing and deepening relationships I have with those women. They have been my strength and joy this year. I have also taken up Airfit and tried to take back my fitness with a couple of friends which isn’t going quite as well (my pelvic floor is not quite trampolining ready!) but is a good laugh.
- Family time. I am always thankful for the times we get to spend together as a family. This year my boys have started playing together nicely, sharing a bedroom, and life as a parent is becoming a little bit easier. We had an amazing few days in the Lake District camping (cut short due to moving house that week!), a trip up to Scotland and many more days out. I may moan about them sometimes, but I really do thank God and praise him for my family.
Things I didn’t get to do
Once again, our Rome trip was postponed for various reasons, but as I type this the flights and hotel are already booked for us to go in June 2019!!!! We are combining it with a friend’s wedding in Italy – it was the push we needed to actually book the trip! Quite chuffed that this was the only plan from my 2018 list that I didn’t get round to doing.
My verse of the year
Last year’s verse was Isaiah 35:1-4 (check out last years post for a reminder!), and I can truly say that many things in our lives have come into bloom this year, although still much more to look forward to (life never works out perfectly like you expect it to!), but I have clung onto the final part of the verse for dear life through the tough times. There have been times when I have given up praying as it seemed nothing could change the situations we were in. There have been times when I have been so angry with things that I could have punched someone. But my God is faithful, and He has strengthened my feeble hands and calmed my fearful heart. I come to the end of this year with new dreams and plans that God has put into my heart, letting go of the perfect vision I had of our life. Life is messy but beautiful. What a 2018!