Monday, December 31, 2018

The Year In Review

I've never done this before, but I think I will because it gives you a chance to know me. I also wanted you to know that regardless of how your year went - whether it was the best or worst year of your life, that you are never alone. God is with you each step of the way. Lean on Him for wisdom, understanding, and direction because he cares about every aspect of your life. As I answered these questions, I know with assurance that God is with me in the ordinary moments of life. It is He who is molding me into the person I'm becoming even at this stage of the game.

What did you do in 2018 that you’d never done before?
I published my first book. It was scary and exhilarating because I wrote about marriage using my marriage as an example. Click on the link on the right-hand side of the blog and purchase a copy. I’m currently working on my second book inspired by Jesus’ Last Discourse.

Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don’t make resolutions, but for the first time, I created a vision board. I wasn’t speaking things into existence just visualizing what was in my head. I hung this board in my office, and the visual reminder gave me the needed spark to pursue certain things. I appreciated this visual reminder.

Did anyone close to you give birth?
Not yet, but in 2019 they will! I’m so excited.

Did anyone close to you die?
Yes. Two extended family members.

What countries did you visit?

What dates from 2018 will remain etched upon your memory, and why? 
The day my third child received a job offer. It was not an easy road to get to this point and when she told us about the offer we whooped and screamed, perhaps cried and did a happy dance. In August, I flew with her to NY to help her get settled. I remember the look of joy on her face when we found her apartment, and I remember the day she started her new job – 9/10/18.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?
The spiritual growth of my family, which made us a more cohesive unit. We share freely regarding spiritual concepts and their practical applications in our lives. We all learn from each other. This shifting dynamic feels like a monumental achievement.

What was your biggest failure? 
My biggest failure is hard to quantify. Life is not perfect and I've made mistakes, but I can't point to one particular thing as my biggest failure.

Did you suffer illness or injury? 
Yes. I tore my rotator cuff in the fall of 2017, tried to live with the pain but eventually had surgery in April. I learned that the body is fragile yet resilient and God is the great mastermind of the body.

Where did most of your money go? 
Giving to others in need, our children, and our place of worship.

What did you get really excited about? 
Seeing all the children at Christmas. I feel like we are starting something new now that we have mostly adults and a son-in-law.

Compared to this time last year, are you:
Happier or sadder? Happier! This time last year I was melancholy.
Thinner or fatter? I remain the same size – thin!
Richer or poorer? We have what we need.

What do you wish you’d done more of?
Hang out with close friends, spontaneously.

What do you wish you’d done less of?
Harass my husband!

How did you spend Christmas? 
We traveled to Atlanta to be with my daughter and her family.

What was your favorite TV program?
Black Love on OWN

What were your favorite books of the year? 
Well, this year I (finally) started a book club which has only increased my appetite for reading. My favorites are usually those that stay with me long after I've completed them, so here goes: The Bible Jesus Read by Philip Yancy, Educated by Tara Westover, Five Smooth Stones by Ann Fairbairn, Augustown by Kei Miller, and Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman.

What was your favorite music from this year?
My favorite genres of music are Gospel and reggae (I don’t think this will ever change).

What were your favorite films of the year? 
I'm not a movie buff, but the movies that stood out for me were: Black Panther, Crazy Rich Asians, Blackkklansman, and Book Club.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? 
My birthday is three days before Christmas, and I turned 52. My children always try to make my birthday special though these days I don’t have any particular desires. I was treated by my husband and children throughout the day, and in the evening we went out to dinner. I was happy!

What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? 
I have wanted to change my professional environment for some time. But knowing that God is in control, I think a change in my professional environment would have made this past year more satisfying.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2018?
I’ve become California casual so now I always looked relaxed yet chic.

What kept you sane? 
Good conversations with my husband and good friends, Marco Polo with my best friends, reading, writing and working out. I’ve curtailed my running due to a bum knee, but I’m hoping and praying that I can start to log more miles in the new year.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2018.
I gained a new appreciation for the inseparable quality of God's love. In Romans 8:38,39  Paul was adamant in his declaration that nothing could separate him from God’s love. This year I felt this fervency in my life, especially the phrase "nor any living creature." Nothing can separate me from God's love, but I didn't fully grasp the depth of "nothing" until this year. His love reaches and surrounds me, and like some force, I have no choice but to abide in Him. I am my best when I abide in Him. He is first in my life. This revelation has removed angst while continuing to build my confidence. It provides the assurance that His love is a life-giving force. I hope that you too can lay claim to God's great love as you start the New Year.

This blog has weathered some storms this year, but it is still here. I am grateful for every reader, every like, every share, every comment, and every email. You, dear reader, encourage me by taking the time to read what God has laid on my heart. Be encouraged.

PS - these questions are a subset of what I saw as I read another blog's annual recap.


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  1. Happy New Year, Everett WA🙏

  2. I enjoyed reading this and getting to you know better. I haven't done a vision board (ever) so I'm thinking that I would like to do one this year.

    I still haven't watched Crazy Rich Asians or Blackkklansman so I'll try to get that done too.

    I hope that 2019 is the best year yet for you! Happy New Year!

  3. P.S. BIG congrats on publishing your first book!

  4. Congratulations on your book and may this year be just as productive!

  5. Oh I love a good year in review post ... and yours was unique and compelling, Nylse! I'm so glad our paths have crossed over at Sue's this morning.

    So very good to meet you there ...

    New Year's blessings to you, to yours.

  6. What a fun post for the New Year! We had a NYE party and went over some questions to ponder last year and to dream into the new one ahead, but these are great specific questions that do help your readers get to know you better! Great job and Happy New Year!

  7. Thank you for this inspiring review of 2018. Congratulations on your first book. I pray that the Lord will be more real to me in 2019.

  8. I just read your "10 Ways to Respond to the Unkind Person in Your Life." It was very helpful to me. TY. Bless you!

  9. Love your recap of last year—such a great idea! All my kids came home for Christmas, too— I can relate to that. And congratulations on your book! Stopping by from #tuneinthursday


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