Adoption / Family / Food / Fun / Life with Jesus

2012: A Year in Review

Well, friends-

Nothing exciting has happened this year. Check back with us in 2013.

Love, Beth and Alex

I’M JUST KIDDING. Gosh, you’re just so gullible.

Yesterday, our pastor made us turn to our neighbor and talk about how we would define this past year. It only took me about .2 seconds to come up with mine. Alex and I have been tossing and turning our entire marriage. We never knew which end was up; what were doing in six months, a week, tomorrow. Family and friends couldn’t keep up with our next big schemes. It was exhausting and frustrating.

God gave us some stability this year. In April, He said, “PLEASE, just shut up already and adopt a kid!” So we announced it and started pursuing it as quickly as we can. We turned in the final paperwork that gets sent off to Thailand before Christmas. We still don’t have a timeline for when our girl will be home, but we are hoping for a year (which might be super-optimistic).

Well, if you give a mouse an adopted child, then it’s going to want a home. We’re still fine-tuning our reputation among the international students at UTD as “That couple that throws awesome shindigs every few weeks and is obsessed with mustaches”. We wanted to be closer to campus and in a school district that can handle our little ESL baby. In April, we contacted Dani Hanna, who’s the woman who saved Alex from dying of a heat stroke on the White Rock bike trail. She was a realtor extraordinaire and the whole house buying process was stress-less. We closed in June and we haven’t looked back. Simply put, we’ve tried to give God free reign of this place and it’s been a total and complete blast. Conspiracy nights, Thanksgiving dinners, church on Sunday mornings, hosting a tall Korean student who sleeps all the time for a few weeks, movie nights; you name it, we’ve about done it. I never thought that owning a home would help me feel more active in service to God’s kingdom (you know, because now we’re all tied down and such) but it has.

I need a pause to be grateful.

Moving on. We knew this adoption was going to be expensive (around $20,000) but we didn’t realize that all the costs would be up front. So…we’ve already paid about $12,000, in a year where we put 25% down on a house. But, never fear, our friends and family have been AWESOME! We sold some really cool adoption t-shirts, we’re still selling some cool coasters, oh, and we ran a half-marathon. All in all, we’ve raised about $10,000 and with the coasters all being sold, it will be closer to $12,000.

I need a  pause to be grateful.

Even though we’ve been in financial lockdown because of the house and the adoption, we have been able to travel a bit. In March, we went to D.C. for a few days. I’d been wanting to take Alex there so we could explore together and it did not disappoint. We even rode our bikes to Mount Vernon, where I got passed by a runner and our fingers almost fell off from the cold. In October, we went to visit my sister (The Leggy Bronze Goddess) and her new hubby in Nashville. It was quite a year for them, what with all the wedding planning and the unsolicited advice from older sisters and new jobs and moving. We got to spend some time with them over Christmas and it was just fabulous. I’m so, so proud of them and I can’t wait to keep making Tyler feel like part of our family by punching him randomly when he least expects it.

I need a pause to be grateful.

In case you’re wondering, we’re still vegetarians. Sorry to those of you that bet I wouldn’t make it a month. How can I describe the benefits of being vegetarian? I feel so much more connected to the earth, to my food, to my body. It’s weird but becoming a vegetarian kind of snapped me out of a funk that I didn’t know I was in. I love finding recipes that are delicious and will fill my daughter’s belly with food that will support her little body and fill it with goodness. Food has become a hobby that Alex and I can share. It has given me a greater appreciation for food and where it comes from and the people that grow it.

I need a  pause to be grateful.

Alex is still over a the world’s largest pharmaceutical distribution company….and he’s rockin’ it, of course. He got a promotion in July and is enjoying his work on the contracts team. There’s talk of another promotion in the next year because he’s just that good. I went part-time at my ESL center in September so that I wouldn’t have to work evenings any more. I thought the transition from full-time would be strange, but it’s actually been a blessing. I’ve been able to take over the bulk of the adoption fundraising and paperwork jamboree, which has made a stressful process a little less stressful.

We found a church that serves together, that understands fellowship, that is willing to walk with us through whatever God calls us to. We’ve been overwhelmed with the blessings we’ve already received from this group of people.

I need a  pause to be grateful.

This year has been so full of surprises and joy.

We’re looking forward to preparing for our daughter in 2013 and continuing to figure out what God’s plan for us as we put down roots in the DFW area.

We hope that your 2012 reflections will give you a pause to be grateful.

Happy New Year!

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