Tuesday, December 31, 2013

the year in review // grace weekly, 10


It’s been a rather remarkable year. There have been a lot of firsts and a lot of lasts, a lot of beginnings and a lot of ends. There have been a lot of hardships and a lot of joys. Sometimes I just wonder what happened to the uneventful years, when days just passed by with a steady sameness, in which I was perfectly content. But I’m looking forward to the next, whether eventful or otherwise. :)


I love, love, love my Bible.


I love you.

Marrying this guy on February 22… goshhh I cannot wait.


Still laughing…

This picture is one of my favorites from my trip to Israel in May. Hannah was certain that the other camel was about to bite her in the butt (<<<sorry Suze).


Winter wonderland

It’s been kind of a disappointing winter in terms of snow. This skiff is all we’ve gotten… still waiting for a good flurry, which is typical since we got so much snow last year.



This is one of my favorite people in the whole world. I have innumerable hilarious, ridiculous, difficult, frustrating, sad, and epic memories with her over our brief (so far) friendship. :)



I find a huge percentage of my inspiration in the Word of God, and lately, particularly in the character of Mary—the sister of Martha and Lazarus.



This is what my spring looked like this year—deep in the woods of central Florida, there are scatterings of orange and grapefruit trees. The best grapefruit I ever tasted came from one of them.



My first (non-Canada) international adventure was to the beautiful country of Israel. We flew into Tel Aviv on May 16, and traveled from there to Golan, through Galilee, down to the Negev, and then to Jerusalem; finally we flew back out of Tel Aviv to the States on May 28. What an incredible trip it was… I would so love to go back!



When I got home to Washington on July 22, this was one of my favorite sights.


A day in my life

Days in my life have little common thread anymore—this “in between”/wilderness stage has been somewhat difficult in that regard. So I’m going for something a little bit obvious; these two beautiful creatures daily greet me for breakfast, dinner, or rides, depending on the day. I love them. :)



This picture makes me smile. Especially thinking of my little sister’s hilarious quips and comments about my husband-to-be—the latest being, “Sam, I don’t think I’ll ever like any of my boyfriends as much as I like you.”



I got to fulfill a bucket list item this fall and spend a couple of weeks in the Northeast—visiting my dear Pennsylvania family in Martinsburg. Its colors did not disappoint!



Not just one, but two—and I’m so blessed to be getting in-laws I love just as much as my blood family. :)



One of my dearest accomplishments of 2013 was my graduation from Great Commission Bible Institute in Sebring, Florida. It was incredible to watch God work over the course of a year that was sometimes incredibly difficult, and to find my heart changing and reshaping under the precise tool of the Word. (And my oldest brother is awesome—he was thinking of me that day while climbing to the top of 11,250-foot Mt. Hood in Oregon!)

grad11Tim Mt Hood 008

Let’s do it again

One day in February, one of my favorite Floridian families took myself and some classmates to Old Town, an amusement park near Orlando. After a lot of persuasion, I was prevailed upon to ride the Slingshot—which is exactly what it sounds like: a machine that vaults you hundreds of feet up into the air on cables. It was terrifyingly incredible, and I’d like to try it again. :)


I miss you

My GCBI family… I miss them so much. Pastor Aaron, I miss your wise and often hilarious (but painful) counsel. Gabe, I miss your ridiculous voice impressions. Luis, I miss your consistent passion for the Word. Riley, I miss you riling up Hannah. David, I do NOT miss your creepy facial expressions. Cody, I miss your teasing. Kirsten, I miss your kindness. Ethan, I miss hearing, “Hello, British!” Morgan, I miss your encouragement. Clinton, I miss harassing you to do your homework. Ashley, I miss your hugs. Scott, I miss your weirdness. Colin, I miss your fun and silliness. Tori, I miss your insights. Aaron, I miss your obnoxiousness. Larissa, I miss your smile. And Hannah, I miss “Hello? Hello…” :)



I love this place.


Dress up

I got to be the primary photographer at a wedding for the first time!



I’ve discovered a new interest in macro photography since I got a 70mm 1:1 macro lens for my Sony A700. With the use of an external flash I’ve been able to do some fun things with the wedding rings!


On holiday

I spent my spring break visiting Martinsburg, Pennsylvania for the first time—and liked it so much, I lived there for six weeks and visited again for two more!


Favorite memory

Getting baptized in the Sea of Galilee was an amazing experience, and even better because it was done by my teacher Pastor Randy with almost my whole GCBI class as witnesses. :)


Don’t ever change

Teaching my little sister how to ride under the watchful eye of Mt. Adams… I hate to think that time has to pass and this season can’t last forever.


Just because

I can’t do an accurate record of 2013 without giving some attention to three significant summer events: counseling at Camp Mantowagan for five weeks, visiting the West Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia, and seeing the 150th reenactment of Gettysburg and the Gettysburg battlefield itself.

Mantowagan38Sad Day 4_ppReenactment26

Hopes and dreams

It’s funny, because I never gave a ton of thought to weddings and marriage until the very day that I got engaged. I wasn’t one of those girls who had chosen colors and styles and catering when she was twelve. Even now, wedding planning hasn’t been my favorite thing—eloping seems like a better idea, in retrospect—but I do appreciate the anticipation, the wonder of stepping out into something new, gaining a new name, a new family, and a new life. :)



  1. I always like your end-of-year posts :)

  2. I second Hannah's comment. This is great!

  3. BEAUTIFUL MESSAGES and PHOTOGRAPHS to BOOT! Congrats on your impending marriage....sounds like 2013 was GOOD to YOU! GOD BLess your 2014

  4. Gorgeous photos! Congratulations on your impending marriage and Happy New Year!

  5. Lovely images, and congrats on your engagement!

  6. These are awesome! So exciting about your wedding. Looks like 2014 is going to be awesome. Happy New Year!

  7. Bum, Halz, it's a bum....

    Oh never mind; you're marrying Sam, so there's no hope of reform.

    I love you anyway,

  8. This is my absolute favorite of all the memes! It is definitely worth of waiting the whole year ;) All these posts are just amazing!
    Your photography is amazing! I enjoyed so much reading this post. Thanks so much for sharing and getting to know you ♡ I even got a little emotional since before having children I spent a year in Israel... miss it.

  9. What beautiful photos, and how nice it was getting to know you and your family a bit through them. Your "still laughing" had me laughing too! It sounds like 2013 was an eventful year and 2014 will perhaps be even more so. I wish you and your soon-to-be husband many years of joy together!

  10. Congrats to you! May God bless you in 2014bbb



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