2018 has been a year to remember for sure. Like every year it has had its ups and downs, lessons learned, failures, and successes. The best thing that happened this year is I got to marry the man of my dreams. I have always said he surpasses every dream I have ever had in a man, and for that I am forever grateful.
January- Nathan (my husband at the time fiance) & I rang in the new year with Hannah (my best friend) and Dustin (her boyfriend). I fell asleep before the ball ever dropped. We turned 80 when we turned 20 practically.
February- I got my wedding dress sized by the most precious lady. She has been a true blessing in my life since I was a child. I use to spend countless hours and days at her house with her granddaughter. She took me in as her own. And now, many years later she hemmed and altered my wedding dress. There seems to be something so sentimental about that. It’s something nice about having a small hometown. February of 2018 is also the first time Nathan and I ever celebrated Valentine’s day on the actual day!
March- My baby cousin Benjamin decided that he would finally like me! My family threw Nathan and I a bridal shower and we were incredibly blessed by everyone who showed up and loved on us. Who knew a bridal shower is literally how you prepare a couple for their future home?!?
April- Nathan & I went to our first marriage encounter at church. It was a great way to prepare for our future marriage and super personal as my aunt and uncle led the whole shendig. I also had bridal portraits done this month and realized how awkward I can be in front of the camera by myself, haha!
May- WE GOT MARRIED!!!! We also got our first apartment the first week of May. Which is a total God thing. I had to stay in Pembroke to work while waiting for our wedding week to arrive and Nathan went home to work on wedding stuff, get suits with his guys, etc. My current apartment lease had ended. I was suppose to be subleasing an apartment from another couple and there were some complications which left me looking at having no where to live in Pembroke which essentially also meant no way to work which meant no way to pay the bills and all two weeks before my wedding. You can imagine how frayed my nerves were. But y’all, God is SO good. He swooped in at the very last moment, right before I was about to have to head back home, right before I was going to have to tell work I had no where to stay so there was no way I could work my shifts that week, He swooped in and gave me a place to live. One of the managers at the apartment complex called me and told me he had good news. He said that one apartment literally just opened up and asked me how soon I could be there! I obviously told him like now, “I can be there now!” because my car was already packed up due to the thought of I had to go back home. I signed the papers, he handed me the keys, and Nathan and I celebrated with Chinese food. God is good. He shows us how to be faithful. He teaches us to trust Him and His timing. And it all worked out. I stayed in Pembroke. Nathan went home. I ended up going home early because I couldn’t handle waiting for the wedding any longer, and I married my man! ❤ Through it all He is good!
June- Nathan received his very first invitation to Duke University. He was accepted into the Summer program Duke offers students who are interested in their PT program. He was gone for five days. I missed him like crazy. He would go sit in the car in the carport at night just to talk to me for a few minutes before he had to be back in the dorm room. He is so good to me, even on my ugly days, he treats me with love and care. Sometimes I think it is easy to lose sight of love and respect, so as spouses (husbands and wives) we must keep our eyes focused on Christ and one another. We must always try to love one another with our whole hearts and we must always try to respect one another above all. And most importantly we never need to lose sight of Christ’s position in our marriage. We want our marriage to show Christ’s relationship with the church. This is a lesson we are still learning and something I think we will always work on improving until the day we die because perfection can never be achieved. Thankful for my loving guy.
July- July is the month of my Nana’s birthday. She probably has the coolest birthday of all times because it is on July 4th. She gets it all. She gets the hot dogs, the Dairy Queen ice cream cake, all her kids and grandkids, and whatever she wants. We celebrate her all day long alongside America’s freedom. Nathan and I went on our first big road trip together in July as well. We went to New York to visit some of my family. It was an incredible trip. We loved being with our family, seeing their way of life in the North because I mean c’mon, us southerners don’t know too much more than sweet tea and a temperature no lower than 50 degrees in November, right?? Any who, they moved to New York as God called them there. The Lord prepared them to plant a church in upstate New York and that is exactly what has taken place. It has been amazing to watch it all come together, to see the Lord touch people’s lives through this movement, to see how they are so faithful to God’s calling. River Valley Church is a place where all are welcome and where the Lord meets people right where they are.. It is a place in the community that is reaching the unreached. It has been absolutely incredible. Jimmy & Laura have been an inspiration to myself & Nathan. They have taught us, been friends to us, and we are proud to call them family. Maybe one day we will beat them in the child to parent ratio and pop out a seventh kid.
August- Nathan & I decided that we needed to learn how to treat ourselves every so often to keep ourselves sane (we are the worlds biggest penny pinchers or I guess you call it financial wisdom, haha!!). So, we took a day trip to the beach. It sounds simple, but really we live close to the beach and never go so it was kind of a big deal. We even treated ourselves to burgers at Fudruckers. It was Nathan’s first time trying their burgers!
September- This is Nathan’s birthday month and in 3 years of being together I have never been able to pull off a surprise. This birthday was no different. Our best friend here in Pembroke is Michael. Michael and I had been going back and forth for weeks maybe even a couple months planning a big birthday weekend for Nathan. We had it all planned out, a huge birthday weekend at the beach, his birthday presents, everything. Well, my iMessage is linked to an old iPad I have that Nathan uses. Needless to say, Nathan knew all the surprises. He so kindly told me he would just sit on the couch and watch as Michael and I texted back and forth about his surprise weekend. LAST BUT NOT LEAST, MY HUSBAND GOT ACCEPTED TO THE DUKE UNIVERSITY DOCTORATE OF PHYSICAL THERAPY PROGRAM!!!!
October- Nathan , Michael, and I had our annual pumpkin carving night. I carved Olaf and broke his arms. Nathan carved a Duke “D” because he is incredibly hyped about his new upcoming adventure there. And Michael carved an actual Jack-o-lantern because he is the stable one of us all, haha!!
November- Thanksgiving is our favorite holiday because our whole family comes home! On my moms side, my family lives everywhere. Part of us are in New York, another part in Virginia, and then the rest of us are all over North Carolina. It is so nice having everyone under the same roof for a few days! Plus we get to see my Dad’s side of the family and my in-laws too! The worst thing about this month is that I forgot to eat pie at Thanksgiving because I got so full on mashed potatoes and mac n cheese. Hand to face. Oh and this is the month of mine and Nathan’s 3rd dating anniversary, those still count right??
December- And here we are the next to last day of the year and I sit here wondering where all the time went.. It amazes me how fast time flies. The Lord is teaching me how to make every moment count, how to control my words and even my thoughts to make them all pleasing to Him. This Christmas I experienced an entire new feeling. I feel like I really understood the reason for the season. I felt the glory of God sending His own son to the world to be born in a manger, a feeding trough for animals.
The Lord has been so good to Nathan and I. In every single moment, good and bad, glorious and tough, triumphs and weaknesses, we see the Lords hand patting us on our backs and cheering us on. He is truly a good good Father. So here is to the upcoming year of 2019! Here’s to our upcoming graduation, moving to a CITY (I am a small town gal), and my Nathan starting Duke University. Here it to trusting the Lord in His plans for us, choosing joy, and learning so many more lessons on how to be more like Christ.