In what seems like a blink of an eye, 2018 has come and gone! This was a special year for me because it was my first full year as a full time stay at home mama which means so many memories made with my girls, and my first full year blogging. I feel like I’m finally doing what I’m supposed to be doing and I feel so grateful for the opportunity. It’s been the best year of my life, by far. We also took some great vacations, remodeled our kitchen, celebrated some milestone birthdays, and so much more.
Here is a recap of our year with some of the highlights.
This month is always a special one. New year and new goals always gets the momentum rolling! I kicked it off big and completed my first Whole 30 with my husband. For those of you who are familiar with Whole 30 and think I’m crazy, I promise you it’s totally doable. Especially if this cookie, wine, and cheese loving freak of a person can do it—YOU CAN TOO. We started another Whole 30 a few weeks ago and admittedly, have already thrown in the towel. 🙁 I seriously went off the deep end with my eating habits this holiday season, cleansing and a reset was necessary, so even the seven days I lasted were better than none. BUT, I’ve just decided that going back to basics is what’s going to be best for me right now. Clean eating with some Whole 30 and Paleo mixed in, regular exercise, a clear mindset, with the occasional treat or eat whatever the heck I want meal. My overall goal is to just be healthier.
We celebrated my sweet Isla Belle’s 1st Birthday on the 2nd and it was a magical day! It’s crazy to think that in just a couple weeks we’ll be celebrating #2!! So bittersweet watching that girl grow! Mother nature was good to us in February and gave us some nice warm days. I love it when that happens in dead of Winter! We also had a parents day out with some of our best friends full of wine, food, and good company! I gave my laundry room a much needed makeover and we hosted a “galentines day” party for some of Josie’s Pre-K pals. It was a great month full of love.
March was a busy month with all things Easter (yummy desserts and a fun and easy craft) and a “welcome spring” last minute snow storm! I also hosted a 6 week series on my blog called Motivation Monday—so if you are looking for some motivation in the diet and fitness department, check it out! (Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Week 4, Week 5, Week 6) March was also the month I finally got to see Blake Shelton in concert—and loved every second of it! The icing on the cake was an adults only trip we took to Florida with a few of our friends. It was a great time to unwind and relax in the beautiful Florida sun. And unbeknownst to us at the time, it wouldn’t be our only trip for Florida for the year.
April began the month of home improvement projects, starting with a DIY faux shipwall wall in our front sitting room. We also completed our first 5K of the year and had a pretty kick ass date night which is always much deserved. Also got to celebrate my sweet sister in law and her baby girl!
This is the month when our life went from a little crazy to full blow crazy town. We celebrated Josie’s 5th birthday Superhero style, and it was so much fun! Along with that, Isla turned 15 months old. I shared the inspiration board for our sitting room, now that the shiplap wall was complete, and a gift guide for Mother’s Day. Also added a couple new recipes to the blog! If you are ever looking for a new recipe, be sure to check out the Eats & Sips tab–they are all tried and true and super good! I also shared our Summer Bucket List which was a blast to check off!
All aboard the train to crazytown!!!!!!!!! June was a busy busy month for this crew! I literally wrote ONE blog post the entire month, but while I wasn’t active on my blog, I was active in my real life so that’s all that matters. We took a long trip down to Florida and surprised the girls with a day trip to Disney World! We also celebrated my hubs 35th birthday with a trip to a local brewery with some of our out of town friends.
We kicked off July with a trip to my dad’s house in North Carolina. We love making the trip down there at least once a year and always have the best time! He lives close to Lake Lure so renting a boat and getting out on the water is at the top of the list. I swear the lake life is something we could totally get down with. One day….one day. Since I was a lazy blogger over the summer months, I recapped all our Summer Favorites in one post. I had promised a “part 2”, but that never happened! Something I’ve learned over this first year of blogging is that I have GOT to get better at following through. And its one of my 2019 goals to work on! July is my birthday month and I joined my hubs in the 35 club on the 31st. I also thought it would be fun to share 35 things about me in honor of officially hitting my “mid- 30’s”. (insert crying emoji here) Just kidding…it’s been one of the best years of my life!
I got back my blogging grove back in August and started a new series called Seven on Sunday. You can read them all by searching for “seven on sunday”. 🙂 In the blink of an eye summer was coming to an end and it was time for school! Josie started Kindergarten on the 15th and has done so well so far! We had a few bumps in the road over the first month or so, but it really is a hard transition for the little ones, and luckily we were able to work through them. It was an adjustment for me too. I had to figure out a schedule for us since we really didn’t have one in place in the 8 months I had been home with the girls, which included a pretty tight morning routine. Meal planning was a part of that, so I shared a day of kid friendly meals that would be helpful for any busy mama.
Isla turned 18 months in August and boy was she giving this mama a run for her money! With her prime source of entertainment (big sis!) being at school, mama had to make some changes around the house so I could keep her busy. We’ve since figured it out and have a pretty nice flow most days. 🙂 One of the highlights of this month was attending a promotion ceremony for my husband. He was promoted to Master Sergeant in the Air National Guard. And we are SO proud of him! I also shared a super yummy pasta dish and some tips on adding some curb appeal on a budget on the blog this month. I told ya, mama got her bloggin’ grove back y’all!
September was a goal hitting month for us! We completed our first round of LIIFT 4 and it felt SO GOOD! We also ran a 5K in the rain…and the mud…and it was the worst ever time for me—but hey, we showed up and did it so that’s worth something! This is the first year, maybe in my entire life, that I was consistently active and working towards a healthier me. That theme will be continuing for me in 2019–100%! There is also something about September that forces me into full blown Fall mode, even if it’s technically still summer until the end of the month. Another nephew was born in September which made the baby fever come in some kind of hot! So instead of getting pregnant, I decided to share my top 20 must have baby items! Makes total sense, right?! Haha.
This month was all things fall! The food, the activities, the weather. It’s my favorite time of year so we took full advantage. Added a few new recipes under Eats & Sips including a delish chili and a chicken tortilla soup, a few fall cocktails, and pumpkin snickerdoodles–a family favorite! I recapped our Fall Days and a trip to the local pumpkin patches and Josie’s first field trip. Also, in an attempt to get my self more organized, created a cleaning checklist.
October also brought all things Halloween with Trick or Treating fun and a HUGE annoucement from me! The same announcement that has since brought so many positive things into my life. 1- a new gang of gals that are some of the best people I’ve ever met. 2- some money in my pocket + paying off my full investment into this business and 3- the best hair I’ve ever had. It’s not a gimmick or a pyramid scheme you guys. Its a legitimate business selling quality products and now at almost 4 months in, I can truly and honestly say are 100% worth the investment! Take a look for yourself!
November brought our very first Snow Day of the season along with all the planning for Thanksgiving and Christmas. I made my first pumpkin pie and had another successful Thanksgiving hosted at our home. And also attended our first Friendsgiving! So fun! Isla turned 21 months and you can read all about her most recent milestones here. I also wrote a tribute to my Veteran and little did I know at the time how I would need to relive some of those same feelings sooner than I had anticipated. 2019 will be one of most challenging years yet, to say the least. While the future is sometimes hard to think about, I have to look at this beautiful family of mine and try to remember how the hardest sacrifices are sometimes the most rewarding. They are the most prized possessions in my life. Everything we do is for them and there is no hard time we can’t get through. Love is truly everything and all you need. Annnnnnd…..que Beatles song….now. 😉
If you’ve made it to December, you get the gold star!! Thank you so much for reading! This year has been the fastest, by far. Nothing ever seems to slow down with crazy being the new norm. I guess it’s just time to get used to it, huh?
December started off on a sad note as we said a final goodbye to my sweet Grandma Mary. She battled with Alzheimer’s disease for a few years now, but took a turn for the worse in 2018. As tough as it was to say goodbye, she was surrounded by family in her passing moments, and I’m just so grateful for the time that the girls and I had with her.
We went out with a bang in December with a birthday celebration for my dad’s 60th at Snowshoe Resort. Several cookies parties, time spent with new friends and old friends, our annual Christmas light walk, daily visits from our elf, Sophie, and literally FOUR Christmas celebrations!
We FINALLY finished up our kitchen reno and I shared all the details here. I also took my first stab at holiday gift guides and you guys seemed to really like them. Which leads me to this…..
Thank you SO MUCH to everyone who has supported me on this blogging journey so far! This year has been a learning experience for me. Really just getting the hang of being a “blogger” and everything that goes along with it–time commitment, balancing content that I want to write and what will keep my readers coming back, as well as growing at the same time and keeping up with all the changes in social media and how people choose to get their information. It’s more than just writing, I can promise you that! But as I mentioned before, I am doing something that I love, all while spending more time with my family and that alone makes everything worth it!
I appreciate you all and look forward to another year of sharing our world with you!! XO, Jamie