Happy New Year to all my readers!
I hope you all shared a great holiday with family and/or friends, and that you spent the last days of 2013 full of sweet things and so smiley your cheeks hurt.
It’s a true and happy state, I tell you. I have achieved it on only a few occasions.
This small bunch spent our last few days of 2013 visiting my side of the family in the great state of New Jersey. We ate, we cooked, we drank homemade wine, and we kissed cousins on both cheeks. It was glorious.
And despite one of my aunt’s unfortunate accident earlier this year, there were still amazing Christmas cookies.
After the festivities, and a few of us catching one nasty cold, we headed home on New Years Day.
Each year that my husband and I have celebrated Christmas in New Jersey, our favorite day to travel home is New Years Day. The first year we simply were thinking in terms of traffic. The majority of the country is sleeping in (or possibly hungover) on New Years Day, and is certainly not traveling along major highways.
Our prediction was correct. That first year we drove down the infamous I-95 through Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington D.C. without having to go below the speed limit once.
These days we don’t really take that chance. We take our usually roundabout way back home through the mountains, but we still see no traffic.
But the effect remains the same.
We drive home on the first day of the year. We get in, bring in our luggage, new toys and clothes, tired bodies, and lots of leftovers, and we begin to start a new year.
Whether we spend Christmas in New Jersey or at home, New Years Day is always a reset for me.
2013 was a difficult year for our family. We saw my mother-in-law grow sicker and sicker until finally in August she went to be with the Lord.
Our little Clara Bean continued to nurse a few times in the night until almost October, causing everyone in the household to be on little sleep.
Through August, and even the rest of the year, we helped our girls grieve their grandmother in a way only babies know how.
So for 2014, I was looking forward to a reset.
I am, of course, not naive enough to think that all of the pain and sorrow from 2013 won’t follow us through this next year, but a part of me knows that God is going to give us the chance to rest. The DP family needs some renewal in 2014; a re-centering of our priorities, our focus, our lives.
My husband and I need to focus more on the Lord’s plan in our lives, individually and as a couple. We need to focus on our goals as a family and our child rearing, especially with two little ones being disciplined in the house now.
How is your 2014 going to look?