Jan 1, 2015

2014 in review


2014 was an incredible year full of surprises as well as hardships.
It was a year full of joy and giddiness while still a year that had it's share of tears and pain.
It was a year where I accomplished certain goals I set out the first few weeks of the year, but also a year where I left certain goals untouched because they soon were less of a priority than I had originally thought.
It was a year that a handsome mister entered my life and became my best friend and my love.
It was a year that anxiety tried (over and over) to steal my peace and joy, yet God did not let go of me, but rather, walked with me through the valley and brought me closer to Him through it.
Oh, 2014, you were a year I will never forget!

"Come & see what the Lord has done . . ."
[Psalm 46:4-11]

Here is a snapshot of some of the memorable events, moments, blog posts, and books of the year!

>> I was super goal-oriented and documented the process [here] and then started setting goals monthly and documenting them as Making It Happen 2014.
>> Travelled to San Antonio [travel posts: onetwothreefourfive] to visit a close friend and ended up meeting my handsome mister!
>> Reminisced the beautiful Eze-Village ( from my 2013 Europe Trip) during Travel Tuesdays 
>>  blog-coffee date with ladies from The Circle
>> BOOK I READ: Ghost Boy by Martin Pistorius 

>>  Winter wonderland in my city. It took my 4 hours to get home from work due to the snowy conditions on the first day of the snow. I wanted to tear out my eyeballs, but eventually calmed down once I walked around my apartment complex at night.
>>  Travelled to SoCal to visit my BFF & enjoyed quality time + beach time with her! Also got to meet  & have breakfast with the sweet Katie from Hope Engaged!

>> I started a blog series about the background stories behind cherished hymns, Praising Through the Pain
>> Travelled to Seattle for an old roomie's wedding & got to see some of my favorite sites [ Gasworks Park & Fremont Troll ; Green Lake ]

>> Started a new series called Cooking With Elle, where I shared paleo and gluten-free recipes.
>> My handsome mister came to visit me for the first time. We took explored downtown Portland, visited the coast, and learned history at Fort Vancouver.
>> BOOKS I READ: Open Your Eyes by Jake Olson   

>> Studied Nehemiah through the study by She Reads Truth
>> Shared one of my favorite soups for a rainy day, Healing Vegetable Bisque
>> Enjoyed spending my mornings at a new coffee shop on Sundays
>> Explored sunny Saturdays in May on my cruiser and with a book by the river

>> Travelled to San Francisco with 4 siblings and explored the Redwoods, biked from Fisherman's Wharf and over the Golden Gate Bridge to Sausilito, oohed & ahhh'd in Napa Valley, and beach-hopped  from Carmel to Monterey.
>> Travelled to San Antonio to spend my birthday week with my Texan friends and my handsome mister. 

>> Celebrated 4th of July at the beach for a family beach trip! 
>> I shared a 6 month update on the goals I set in January
>> Grieved the passing of my sweet grandma and took comfort that God gives more grace when burdens grow greater. Spent lots of time with extended family and took a short weekend trip to an uncle's beach house with my grandpa, several aunts, several cousins, and parents.

>> Started a new series called All of Nature Declares, where I shared lessons about the Creator from His beautiful creation.
>> Went through She Reads Truth's Justice study. Such a great study of God's desire for justice in every sense of the word
>> My handsome mister visited me. We took a trip to Seattle, went boating with the family, explored the Columbia Gorge, and relaxed at the beach. Such a great trip!!
>> BOOK I READ: Desiring God by John Piper

>> Wrote a guest post for my blogger friend, Natalie [from Heart Stirrings], called God of the Lonely. It was likely my favorite post of summer/fall. 
>> Started working part-time rather than full-time to help me deal with some anxiety that was stealing my peace and joy. I felt so blessed to work in a clinic that encouraged me to take care of myself & supported me in my decision.
>> Travelled to Seattle for a work-related conference on mental health & I visited nearby Mukilteo's beach & lighthouse
>> Had (what I called) an "introvert date night" with G as we both read on FaceTime :)
>> Enjoyed weekend boat rides on the river with the family
>> Studied Hosea with She Reads Truth. It was raw and hard to read at times, but so needed!

>> She Reads Truth's Open Your Bible study was SO good! It helped me see ways to dig deeper in Scripture and challenged me to pray before opening my Bible. 
>> Finished my 1000 Gifts journal (I started writing 3 daily gifts in Oct. 2013) & shared them in the series Delighting in 1000 Gifts (which I will finish in the next few weeks)
>> Visited my handsome mister in Texas. We biked through a historic neighborhood, had a fancy dinner at a steakhouse, kayaked during a day-trip to Austin, and went to our first wedding together.
>> BOOKS I READ: Cold Tangerines by Shauna Niequist and Leota's Garden by Francine Rivers

>> Helped my sister lead our church in Operation Christmas Child. 315 shoeboxes were collected!
>> Surprised my mister with another trip to visit him. The previous trip was great, but so packed with events that I wanted to come again for more extended quality time opportunities. It was such a sweet time of rest & joy for both of us. 
>> BOOK I READ: Bianca's Vineyard by Teresa Neumann

>> Paused through the busyness of the holidays and did She Reads Truth's advent study, O Come Let Us Adore Him.
>> Braved the freezing cold to look at the Christmas lights at our local zoo & got to see my nephew's adorable reactions to all the lights . . . it was worth nearly getting frost-bite :)
>> My mister visited for a week and we got to visit a bavarian town (Leavenworth) that is filled with christmas cheer with most of my family, went to my first NBA game, read and journaled at a cafe by the river, and watched Elf.  
>> BOOK I READ: Domenico's Table by Teresa Neumann (the sequel to Bianca's Vineyard)

What a year! I am so excited to see what 2015 has in store!


  1. Looks like you had an amazing year! I sent you an email btw


  2. i LOVE this post.
    girl, you had such an eventful and joy filled year! <3 i loved re-reading some of these!

  3. Such a fun year!! I loved all the series that you did this year. Wishing you a wonderful 2015!


I love to hear your thoughts!

Elle Alice