Saturday, January 7, 2012

2011 Review

I have been a bit overwhelmed with the thought of blogging lately because it seems like there is so much I want to write about, but most days after about 6 hours of learning Hindi my brain is fried.  I saw this on a couple different blogs I read and hope that you enjoy my little recap of 2011.  Feel free to answer and repost on your own blog :)
1. What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before?
This could be a long list(here is the short version): moved to Pennsylvania, worked retail, sold almost all of my belongings, lived with both sets of parents after marriage, moved to India, got a pedicure where fish eat your dead skin.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I never officially make resolutions....  I like his view.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Yes, this was the year of pregnancies and new life!!  My friend Carrie found out she was pregnant while we were in PA and it was fun to experience pregnancy with her, but sad that we moved before we could meet little Joshua(this life of moving is draining on relationships at times.)  And one of my best friends since preschool had a little boy named Cannon.  He was born just around the time we were moving back to Texas.  So, so, so thankful to be in Texas as he came into the world.  He is awesome and it was really special for me to be able to see Bess become a mom(oh gosh the tears are about to start coming....)
4. What countries did you visit?
Netherlands(on a long lay-over, but got to see Anne Frank's house!), Greece, and India
5. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
A place to start planting roots.  We have been so nomadic the last year, I am longing to be in a place for awhile and build community there. 

6. What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Not very good at dates...
January- Ryan's family came to Lancaster to do a marriage training and stayed with us.  I loved Ryan's family from day one, but for some reason this visit with them stands out in my mind as the time I really began to understand how deeply I love and appreciate them.  (as in I cried really hard when we dropped them off at the airport...Ryan thought I was a bit dramatic I think)
February- Visited Kanpur for the first time.  We felt an overwhelming sense of peace about moving there.  I think we were surprised at how God seemed to draw us to that city.  
April- Brought new beginnings and freedom.  Thankful to see how awesome my brother is doing. I love seeing him as a dad, I have always admired so many things about him(you know how little sisters are about their big brothers) but seeing him as a dad has brought more joy than I imagined to my heart.
Summer- A crazy summer of living with both sets of parents.  So un-American to move in with your parents after you are married, I loved it!(even amidst the family driving you crazy moments)
November- Moved to India!!!  AHHH!!

7. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

I don't know.  This is a hard question....I don't feel like I achieved anything necessarily, but I learned so much.
8. What was your biggest failure?
This past year living in Lancaster was hard.  I think I was pretty hard to live with.  I realized I had put expectations on Ryan that were not his responsibility(as in curing loneliness I felt).  I won't really call it a failure(it was needed and refining), but I do feel embarrassed about the way I treated him at times.  
9. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Thankfully, no.
10. What was the best thing you bought?
a new iPhone- ummm I am not sure which one I have(embarrassing I know), but I love that it takes awesome pictures.
Wow, I sound like a techie...
11. Where did most of your money go?
Plane tickets, moving to India
12. What did you get really excited about?
Spending time with friends and family this summer, moving to India, and learning Hindi!
13. What song will always remind you of 2011?
"Dancing in the Minefields" by Andrew Peterson.  I love it and it seemed to speak to me in a fresh way every time I listened to it, which was quite often.
14. Compared to this time last year, are you:

– happier or sadder? Hmmm, happier in that I feel like I am exactly where I am supposed to be.  Sadder in that it means I am really far from so many people that I love.
– thinner or fatter? Thinner.  Apparently India has a way of doing that to you....
– richer or poorer? hmmm weird question...I have no idea in the comparison of our bank account from this time last year, BUT we are definitely RICHER!
15. What do you wish you’d done more of?

Wish I would have had a few more coffee/tea dates with a handful of girlfriends before we moved here.  I have awesome friends!
16. What do you wish you’d done less of?

Over analyzing and being high maintenance(as my brother says).
17. How did you spend Christmas?
Gonna blog about this.  At a hotel in Kanpur, India (with Ryan, Jordan and Lauren, Hannah, and Katy.)  Read the Christmas story, sang Christmas songs, ate at KFC, watched all the Home Alone movies, and exchanged gifts.
18. What was your favorite TV program?
American Idol at the Buffi's house.  Liked the show, but really enjoyed watching it with the Buffi fam :)
19. What were your favorite books of the year?
This was a year of SO MANY good favorites:
Jesus through Middle Eastern Eyes!
Secret Daughter
Redemption by Mike Wilkerson
The Help!
The Meaning of Marriage by Tim Keller!!  Still in the middle of reading this, so good.  Go read it now!
20. What was your favorite music from this year?

Ryan Hartsfield wrote some new amazing songs- my favorites "The Demand" and "This is the Song", Adele, Andrew Peterson, Gungor, Mumford & Sons, Sara Groves new CD
21. What were your favorite films of the year?
"The Help" hmm that is all I can remember.  Well there was this other movie that was really good, but I can't remember the name.  It was about these three young Jewish spies who capture a German doctor that used to experiment on Jews in prison camps...and it tells the story from them looking back in time on it...totally blank.."The Debt"(Ryan just told me the name :)
22. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
It was awesome.  Ryan planned a "surprise" party at Chuys (I had an idea it was happening) and invited friends from Whitehouse/Tyler area.  Then everyone came back to my Mom's house for cake.  So fun, it was my last 20's bday...29!!
23. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Can't really think of one thing....more chocolate...
24. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
Ummm, in Lancaster my fashion concept was "stay warm".  In India, I am trying to figure out what it actually means for me to have a personal fashion concept here.
25. What kept you sane?
RYAN!, my mom, exercise, AND there is this song with extremely rich,true lyrics that says, "sweet Jesus Christ my clarity, sweet Jesus Christ my sanity" 
26. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011.

Blogged about a big one for me on my last post.  I am also learning the importance of rest and patience(that could be a very long post in itself).

This year has been filled with HUGE transitions.  I am thankful that God has been so near to us and so real to us through it all.  We are excited to see what 2012 has in store.  We have some big dreams :)


  1. I heart you a ton. I love your answers, especially the more chocolate. It's fun to read over your year in a nutshell. Y'all have experienced so much and even though you are far away, I'm glad you are able to be somewhat "settled" for a time. I'm so proud of you for lots of things. I'm so thankful I got to see you numerous times this year. Love you much!

  2. It's really late here and I should be sleeping instead of reading your blog, but it makes me feel like you aren't so far away so sleep can wait a few more minutes! Loved the year-in-review and can't wait to see what 2012 has in store for you and Ryan. What a sweet thing to know you are right where you are supposed to be-there is such comfort in that. Love and miss you and am keeping track of you always so keep blogging even when your brain is fried! :)