Sunday, January 04, 2015

2014...a year in review...

For the last few years (200820092010201120122013), I have been doing a blog post with a recap of our the past year - mostly for us to remember what all we have been up to, but it's also our "family letter" of sorts for anyone else who wants to keep up with us and read about our life. I am doing it this year because I do like looking back on the year....even though I haven't really blogged at all. Again, just not too into it and not a lot that I felt like blogging about. We will see how it goes with the blog this year - no idea at this point if I will end up getting back into it or not. 


January 1st was our one year mark of living in our townhouse - we have really enjoyed our rental home, its been a good fit for us and we have a great landlord. Andy celebrated his 31 birthday with a date night with me (dinner out and a movie he wanted to see, but we both ended up not liking). I got back into watercolors a little and took an online watercolor course to motivate me to paint more. I spent the end of the month traveling to Las Vegas for work (it was a long trip...9 days). It was my first time to Vegas....and I can't say I really loved it since I like keeping my money more than gambling and partying. I was crazy busy out there doing our Vegas Furniture Market - I didn't have time for much else. I did enjoy going out to some fun restaurants, like the one night I went to Mon Ami Gabi and sat outside (even though it was January - loved the warmer weather!) to watch the Bellagio fountains across the street. And I blogged a few times that month (here).

February brought a big snow storm - well big for NC anyway! We got 6 inches or so by the time it was all done and Andy and our dog, Maggie, enjoyed taking a few snowy walks. I didn't even mind the snow too much since I got to work from home and didn't have to try and venture out. I was working on re-decorating the room in our house that we have designated as the office and found a few old cabinets at an antique store. I painted them and have been able to use them for storage for our printer and other things. The office was a work in progress for a few months after this. 

In the beginning of March, we had an ice storm that knocked out our power for a day....thankfully it came back on before we went to sleep (and we were thankful that we had family that we could have stayed with who still had power if we had really needed it). I was busy getting ready for a women's retreat with our church. I was helping out with it a little and I enjoyed going on it and getting to know the women better as well as we had fun and worshipped God together. March was a tough month though, as we got a call that Andy's grandmother had a very sudden stroke and was rushed to the hospital. Andy drove down to Georgia to be with his family and help out with anything he could. His grandmother declined and was moved to hospice. All of his family was able to be down there to see her and be together. I wanted to be there, but because I was in the middle of the preparations for the big High Point Furniture market, I stayed in NC. Andy's grandmother died on March 30, 2014. He wrote a post here, celebrating her life. The below photo is one of Andy with his sister and two cousins and Grandmother a few years ago. The second photo is the cousins together after the funeral re-creating an old family photo that hung in their Grandmother's house. 

April brought the busy-ness of High Point Furniture market for me, and Andy came back from Georgia. We enjoyed our first Easter at our church - they have a fun tradition of having a pot-luck breakfast before the Easter service. In April, I also had the opportunity to take newborn photos of my friend's baby. 

In May, I found an antique door to paint and re-purposed it into a headboard. I loved how it turned out! My dad and brother came to visit on the way home from his first year of college at the Citadel. We had a good time visiting with them and it was nice that they could stay for the whole weekend. For Memorial day, we went down to visit Andy's mom in Georgia and help her pack up and get the house ready to sell. She decided that she wanted to move up to NC to be close to Andy and his sister. Andy's sister rode down to GA with us and we all had a great time together. We had fun going to a Braves game - Andy found us good seats at a great price online. 

June was a pretty low key month. We enjoyed some time at the lake with Andy's family. We were excited to get a new storm door on our rental house (thanks to our nice landlord agreeing to buy and install it). Another fun new thing was a new car for us! Andy's stepmom decided to get a new car and sold us her SUV. We sold our SUV that had been having a lot of small problems that were adding up to a lot money that we were going to have to spend soon. (below is the photo of our old SUV right before we went to go sell it). 

In the beginning of July, Andy and I took a little vacation time to go up and visit my family and friends in Baltimore. We hadn't been up there since Christmas and it was good to see everyone again. I had to travel again for the last two weeks of July out to Las Vegas for Furniture Market. I did get to see a random show for free while I was there this time so that was fun. While I was in Vegas, Andy's mom moved up to NC and Andy was busy helping her move in and get her house set up. 

August was a busy month for me at work, so at home we were pretty low key. We had fun babysitting our nephew one evening. And we enjoyed having Andy's mother living near us and started having dinner with her once a week or so. We also took her to her first NC minor league baseball game - to see the Greensboro Grasshoppers. We had great weather that evening and all really enjoyed it. 

For our September 1st anniversary, we celebrated six years by taking a long weekend to go down to the Wilmington beach area. I had never been there before and Andy hadn't been in a long time - so it was fun to explore the area and several of the beaches. Later in the month we went to an adoption seminar in Charlotte just to get some info. While in Charlotte, we stopped in a a big mall there and Andy ended up getting an iPhone 6 through a crazy trade-in deal. 

In October, my parents came through again to visit. I got to make a fun, flourless, chocolate cake for my mom's birthday. A week later, we went down and met them in South Carolina and we all went to family weekend at the Citadel to see my brother. We enjoyed spending time with him and touring the Citadel and wandering around Charleston. Later in the month, I was busy at work with the October High Point Furniture Market. 

November was a fun, busy month! I celebrated my birthday a day early with Andy and we went out to a steakhouse dinner. On my birthday, my mother-in-law took me and my sisters-in-law to Biltmore. We spent the night at the hotel on site and had such a fun girls weekend! The Biltmore Mansion was decorated for Christmas and was absolutely beautiful. It was my first time to Biltmore and was such a fun treat - thanks so much, Rae! I came back and had to fly out the next day to Vegas again for work. This time I was heading out there for a training class that I was helping to lead for our sales team. We stayed on the strip instead of where we usually stay downtown, so it was fun to be able to walk around and see the different resorts. For Thanksgiving, we stayed in town and had a nice, low-key time with Andy's mom and his sister. Andy's mom took us to see the Trans-Siberian Orchestra as an early Christmas present.

December was another busy month. I had fun doing a Christmas cookie exchange with some women at church and Andy and I enjoyed going to a Christmas party with our small group. In the middle of the month, we drove to Orlando to go to my cousin's wedding. We stayed with my parents at their timeshare place and had fun going to a dinner theater together. The wedding was really nice and they had a fun reception with really good barbecue. We came home and I worked for a few days. Then we celebrated an early Christmas with Andy's family and got back in the car and drove up to Baltimore. I got to have dinner with my sisters and got to spend time with my little brother and his girlfriend who spent Christmas with us. I had fun babysitting my niece for a full day while her parents went to NYC. I played a lot games with my niece, took her to get ice cream, to play with one of my friend's kids, and we got and painted Christmas presents for her parents. She is a lot of fun and I am glad I got to hang out with her since I don't get to see her often. We had a good Christmas day and went to see the movie "Unbroken". We had a great time visiting with friends and at our extended family open house party. 

We drove home and I had to work for the last two days of 2014. And that was our year. On to 2015....

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