Happy New Year!

I cannot believe it is already January 1st of 2012! Where has this year gone?!? I feel like we spent the first half of the year in anticipation of the boys’ arrival and the last half of the year in a joyous sleep-deprived haze.

As I look on this past year I cannot even remember my new year’s resolutions from last year and to be honest I am not much for resolutions.  I always try to keep them and after about March they are out the window.

I do love to take time to look back at the past year and all the exciting and amazing things that happened.

We started February by taking the trip of a lifetime to Italy.  My hubby and I had our baby-moon before the babies arrived and loved every minute of it.

We stayed in Rome, but we were able to travel to Florence, Venice, Naples and Pompeii.  Our hotel was located right outside of the Vatican which was the perfect location to see all the sites.  We got to see the Vatican, St. Peter’s Basilica, the Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon, the Spanish steps, Pompeii, the Roman Forum and the Colosseum.  It was truly an amazing trip!

We fell in love with Italy! I think if we had to choose a place to live other than Oklahoma we would pick Rome.  It is amazingly beautiful and I think we would be in awe of the city every day we lived there.

In April my Hubby ran his first 1/2 marathon along with my Father-in-law.  My dad and brother Tono ran the full marathon.  It was an awful day for a run.  It was raining, cold, hailing and the wind was blowing like crazy!

I went out to support my Hubby as he ran and was praising the Lord that it wasn’t me running in that awful weather! My mom, sister, mother-in-law and I drove around and tried to catch the guys at various locations on their run.

(My sister and I huddled together trying to stay warm while attempting to jump-start my car)

We would sit in the nice warm car until we saw them, run out and cheer them on and jump right back in the car.  One one occasion we jumped back into the car only to discover it would not start! We found a very nice gentleman who helped me jump start my car and were on our way again!

In May my baby sister graduated from college! I am so proud of her for completing what she started and I know God has amazingly big plans for her!

In July (just a few weeks before the boys were born) my parents moved back to Oklahoma from Monterrey, Mexico where they have been living for the past 5 years.

My parents worked with Back2Back ministries who focus on children’s home in Monterrey, Mexico.  Often times once the children in the children’s homes reach high school the home cannot afford to pay the school tuition for each child so the kids end up on the streets.

Back2Back takes these kids and places them in a home setting with about 8 boys or girls per home.  These homes have parents who care for the boys like a family would.  My parents where house parents to 8 boys and were able to see several of their boys complete high school and graduate from college.

After much prayer my parents felt that it was time to move home.  I am so grateful they made this decision.  It has been such a blessing having them here to help with and enjoy the babies! I am immensely excited that the boys will grow up knowing all of their grandparents.

On July 31st our entire world changed when our boys, Noah Riley and Ian Timothy, were born. This is the year that Jeremy and I became parents for the first time!

The birth of the boys was by far the most exciting thing that happened all year.  Becoming a mom changes you in so many amazing ways.  I cannot remember what life was like before our boys joined our family and I feel blessed every day that I get to snuggle them and kiss their precious little cheeks.

Having twins has been an experience unlike any I have ever had.  We have had our joys, frustrations and many sleepless nights.  We have been blessed with double the smiles, coos, giggles and snuggles.  Our boys are so different and I could not imagine our life without one of them here.

I feel so blessed every day to have been given the gift of twins.  I get to experience something not many people get the pleasure of experiencing.  I get to watch my boys interact with each other, comfort each other and snuggle each other.  As I watch them together I dream about the friendship they will have, the adventures they will go on and how amazing it must be to have someone who has truly been with you since the beginning.

Twins have not come without challenges, but with great challenges comes great reward and as soon as we start to get frustrated they both look at you and smile, melting your heart and making you forget why you were frustrated to begin with.

(Christmas Eve opening presents with my family.  I think the boys were a little tired…)

The last major event of 2011 happened on December 23rd.  My little sister started dating a really great guy about a year and a half ago.  They actually met in Mexico! They had always had a long distance relationship so in August Kenzi moved to Kentucky to live closer to Mark.

On December 23rd Mark surprised Kenzi by flying to Oklahoma and proposing to her! He had a whole day planned, and she spent the entire day feeling special and anticipating what would happen next.  She was shocked when 4pm rolled around and she opened my front door to find Mark standing on our porch (he was suppose to be spending Christmas in Iowa with his family).

We are so excited for both of them.  I know God has huge plans for their marriage and I cannot wait to see how He uses them as a couple!

This year I do not want to set resolutions, but I do have a few goals I would like to work towards.

I want to continue on my weight loss journey and lose the last 11lbs of my baby weight.  I would really love to lose more, but I am going to set weight loss goals throughout the year and celebrate each one as I accomplish it.

I am excited about this journey because it means so much more to me than losing weight.  It is about maintaining a healthy lifestyle and getting to know the new me.  The me who recently had twin boys and who is now a mom.

As a mom I want to take time each day to spend quality time with my boys.  I know this may sound funny since I am home most of the week with them.  I have discovered that when you have twins you spend a lot of your time just trying to accomplish the tasks of caring for two babies.

I find myself checking things off my mental list. Both babies fed (check), both babies burped (check), both babies changed (check), both babies napping (check), and repeat (check).  Throw in some laundry, house cleaning and cooking and I look up and the day is over.

I want to take time throughout the day to really sit down and play with my boys, even when they are very little and even if that means I don’t get the laundry done until later.  At 5 months I am finally starting to feel like I have a little time in my day and I really want to spend that time making my boys feel special and loved.

As a wife I really want to focus on making my Hubby feel special.  For Christmas I gave Jeremy pre-planned paid for monthly date nights for the entire year.  Now I know that there will be no excuses for us to at least go on one date a month.

I know once a month may not sound like much time together, but it is more about using the time you have, having something to look forward to together, and guaranteeing we will at least set aside this time each month.  This is what we can do right now so I want to treasure and make the most of every moment.

I know my goals are not true resolutions, but they are what work for me! I am so excited about this upcoming year! 2011 was a year of excitement, adventure and many firsts, I don’t know everything 2012 holds, but I know whatever it is it will be great!

I’m excited to see all the firsts my boys will experience and the opportunity to watch them grow a little more each day.  I’m excited to watch my Hubby run his first marathon and see my Dad cross the finish line accomplishing his 5th marathon on his 50th birthday. I cannot wait to see my little sister walk down to isle as a beautiful bride meeting her best friend at the alter and becoming a wife.

As we begin 2012 I look forward to the year and all the experiences it holds.  I know each one of them will be a treasured memory and I am excited to see what adventures we may go on.

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