2017 in Review

I hope I’m not the only sucker out there for “in review” posts at the end of the year. Just yesterday I went down the Instagram rabbit hole. I guess I just love hearing how folks have grown, what they’ve learned, mistakes they’ve made and what they hope to accomplish in the new year. Believe it or not, this post marks TEN YEARS of blogging – a whole decade! My very first blog post sure is a chuckle.

So as not to disappoint, this is for your New Year’s Eve reading pleasure (assuming of course you aren’t living the high life at some swanky party, but rather in your pjs on the couch, drinking a beer and watching Ryan Seacrest). Here is a recap of the “best of” in blog posts, Pinterest pins, reader Google searches (that one is worth reading just by itself) and what I hope/plan/pray for in 2018.

Top Posts

These are a mix of WordPress’ top posts, along with a few personal favorites. I hope you enjoyed reading as much as I enjoyed writing (just click on the photo to read the whole post). In no particular order…

Lent is here and it's time to get serious about prayer, fasting and almsgiving. But what the heck does that even mean?

It's National Catholic Schools week and there's just three things I wish every parent of a student knew about a Catholic education.

Taking a family roadtrip this summer for vacation? If you're worried about it being the worst idea ever, I'm here to change your mind. And lend you my earplugs.

Planning a poker birthday party for your teenage son? From game ideas to inexpensive party favors, great appetizers to simple DIY decor, this party has it all! What happens here, stays here, right?!

Favorite Pins

Still, my number one pin is about Disney (shocker). Even though Pinterest has changed over the years, I still find great inspiration there. To date, it’s the number one driver of traffic to the blog, followed closely by Instagram. For me, it’s such a fun place to gather great ideas for holidays and events, gather great recipes and create secret boards for the holidays!

Looking for ways to make your Disney vacation affordable? These 10 ideas include things you can buy, make or borrow for your trip - from water bottles to ponchos, this list has it all.

Reader Google Searches

Every year, I look forward to pulling up this stat. If nothing else, I burn some serious calories laughing.

  • Harry Potter – of course
  • Home birth crowning twins – girl, I am ZERO help there, but good luck?
  • How to break your knee – answer, DON’T, also WHY?!
  • Lent is almost here – you got that right
  • Wish people would stop telling me what to do with my child – girl, I’m putting that on a t-shirt

Instagram Pics

If you haven’t already seen #bestnine2017, then you will soon. I could look at those all day. I pulled one set in mid-December, then promptly forgot and did it again a few days ago. So, here’s my top 18. I’m such a rebel.

So what’s in store for 2018?

  1. More blogging, I pray. And, more speaking! That may have been one of my biggest blessings in 2017. I had the opportunity to speak at some wonderful parishes in the Houston, Dallas and Austin areas, as well as emcee the Blessed is She Austin retreat and the Diocese of Austin Women’s Conference. This spring, I’ll be in Houston, Lake Jackson and Oklahoma City. Thank you, God, for opening that door. It is a tremendous responsibility and I don’t take it lightly.
  2. An intentional heart. With all that activity, I can’t forget that Will starts his senior year next fall and John Paul begins high school. If ever there was a year for me to be present to my family, this is it. That means decisions must come with prayer and intention and I pray I hear God’s voice through it all.
  3. More muscles. Now that my surgery is behind me, I’m looking forward to being back at the (Pure) Barre my usual 5x week. My biceps desperately miss you!
  4. About that book. Honestly, I have no idea if it will ever happen. I’m leaving it to God. If it’s meant to be, He will make the space and the passion present and He will lay it on my heart. We shall see.
  5. A break from renovations. Man, that boys’ bathroom was an unexpected tale of crazy and then a few months later we jumped in, feet first, with a huge master bathroom remodel. It was crazy and tons of fun, and also exhausting. Don’t you worry, I have a blog post all typed and ready for y’all in early January with allll the details and lots of photos. Until then, I’ll be soaking in the tub.

And that’s it. A wrap on 2017. It was beautifully hard, especially the spring. However, God is always beautifully present in the messiness of life.

2018 will be filled with lots of firsts and lasts and many memories. It sure will be fun to live them all, one day at a time. Whatever hill or valley you’re facing in the new year, never forget you can do hard things. Really hard things.

I believe in you! Happy New Year!

1 Comment

  1. Geri on December 31, 2017 at 9:03 am

    It has been such a pleasure to read your blog. I raised six kids and have only my youngest (age 16)G at home now. Enjoy the moments for they do grow and leave. I look forward to reading more stories in 2018.

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