2009 was SO FULL.
The year started out with some oral surgery for me....thankfully all of my trips to the dentist and surgeon are done for awhile! Yaay!
February brought a new first for Scraps 'N Ribbons- an adoption conference! Our church is hosting it this year and we are getting ready to start sewing and gluing all of the products for that one.
March brought my 3rd trip to Guatemala, this time with Caleb. It was a stretching trip but God had so much for me to learn. He confirmed my love for Spanish even more that week after I helped with the dental clinic, and He gave us the awesome opportunity to go to Maria's home to purchase jewelry in order to buy her medicine.
That same spring, the Semlows brought their 3 home from Ethiopia. I haven't spent nearly as much time with them as I wanted and I miss this sweet family so much. It has been so incredible to watch their adjustment to a family of 8 and to see them cling to Christ through every twist and turn.
Lots of fun trips to my aunt and uncle's house were to be had in the spring, summer, and fall. Go-karting, eating, playing games, and laughing at the farm :)
A dress-up Luau at my old school, youth group activities, and game nights were some definite highlights out of the year.
In June I went on my 4th trip to Guatemala. This was the hardest trip I've had yet, since I had to say good bye to Claudia. Now it looks like the Lord just might give me another hello with this girl but at the time things looked pretty bleak. I came home devastated, sorrowful, emotional, and deeply grieving the loss of this sweet girl in my life. It was a trying time in my spiritual walk. After months of wrestling with the Lord He has really rekindled my heart, my passion, and my fire for Guatemala. And I feel ready to go back whenever He leads. Even with the challenges of this trip, I know that it was a crucial part of my walk with Jesus. And I see even more how faithful, gracious, and loving He is towards His children.
14?! Did someone say 14?! My sweet (hmm...they wouldn't appreciate sweet). My awesome (that's more like it) twin brothers turned 14 in June. This summer was HUGE for the 3 of us kids. God matured both of these boys so much and they are turning into protective, loving, Godly young men. I couldn't be more proud of them.
I got to babysit the same 5 kiddos this summer which was a blast!
The Lord was so good in growing some incredible friends during the Guatemala trip. All 4 of these girls are at least 7 years older than I am, yet they have continued to seek me out and include me even after all of these months. I feel so priveleged to be able to spend time with them and watch them walk with the Lord.
July was a quick weekend trip to the Dells in Wisconsin.
On our second day there, we got a call from our friend saying that some strong winds had taken a tree down in our back yard, knocking off the electrical box and causing a fire. This friend had come to check on our basement to make sure it hadn't flooded, and when she saw the fire (which had just started as she pulled up- go figure!) she called the police, who had a fire extinguisher and beat the firemen to the house to extinguish the fire. God was so good in saving our home and our family. We are so thankful!
August was a family reunion with my Dad's fam! We went to my aunt and uncle's farm and it was a great week of family, fun, annual family olympics, and laughter.
In August I also started my new babysitting job. It has been so much fun and such a blessing.
September was my brothers' first homecoming! I felt so old driving Noah to pick up his date and delivering them to dinner. Wow. I feel like I know a little bit about how mommies feel when their babies grow up! My little baby brothers aren't babies anymore!
In October I turned 18!!! The same weekend also happened to be when my mom's sister and brother were flying in so we celebrated my birthday while we were there. I got my makeup done, we all had dinner, and rented a movie back in the hotel room.
After my birthday, I flew out East with my aunt to take care of my cousins' 2 little girls! It was SO MUCH FUN. I came back and just wanted to get married and be a mommy! :)
Thanksgiving quickly rolled around again and we found so many things to be thankful for! :)
December brought the rush of Christmas celebrations, but also a fabulous 3 weeks of Christmas break. It has been so wonderful.
What a year. So many lessons, tears, and laughter. Learning to trust in God's plan for my life above all else and seeing His faithfulness in the end.