Thursday, December 31, 2009

a decade in review (with pics!)

Thanks to Adorkable Thespian, by way of Lynn from Turtlehead, for the idea for this post... a decade in review.

2000: Visited my dad daily in the hospital as he recovered from his liver transplant. GOT MARRIED, celebrated my younger sister's graduation from high school, my older sister's wedding and Peter's older brother's wedding (all in one summer!). Moved out of my parents' house for the first time when Peter and I got our first apartment. Was SO SICK over Christmas that we had two bites of Christmas dinner, dragged ourselves to our car, drove home, and threw up in the parking lot before crawling into our place and collapsing in our beds.

2001: Began planning our trip to Europe and South America. Contemplated putting everything on hold, packing up, and moving to El Salvador to assist in earthquake relief with Samaritans' Purse (it didn't work out). Was forced to quit my job with a Saskatchewan Crown Corporation since they wouldn't allow me a temporary leave for our trip. Left for our trip at the end of August, then returned home two weeks later to bury our sweet nephew, Lachlan. We returned to finish our trip, then spent Christmas and New Years in Ecuador.

2002: Returned home to Regina. Watched round-the-clock winter Olympics coverage while looking for a new job. Was unsuccessful for three months before taking a call center job. Traveled to California for Peter's brother's graduation. Lived through one of the darkest periods of my life (career-wise, but also personally, emotionally and spiritually) that I have yet to write about here and am not sure I ever will. Joyously welcomed my nephew, Xavier. Found out I was pregnant with Liam. Almost separated from Peter. Lost some friends and found out who my real friends were. Welcomed the new year while facing a very uncertain future.

2003: Celebrated my grandmother's 90th birthday. Moved to Calgary. Attended counseling regularly. Had a baby(!) and experienced a whole new, amazing kind of love for this new little person. Enjoyed my in-laws living nearby for most of the year. Became an auntie again with the birth of Tobiah.
03.21 family pic
December 2003

2004: Said goodbye to my in-laws when they moved to Egypt. Moved from our condo to a rental home so I could open a dayhome (to avoid going back to work and having to put Liam in daycare). Decided that three year olds were much more work than one year olds. Turned twenty-five! Joined an amazing women's group at our church. Started my first aquarium. Got my first digital camera.

June 2004

2005: Found out I was pregnant again. Closed my dayhome to return to work (so I could be eligible for maternity leave). Returned to California for Peter's sister's graduation. Found out that our baby was sick and would likely die before birth. Welcomed my nephew, Rowan, to the family. Gave birth to our son, Nathaniel, surrounded by our families, and said goodbye to him two hours later (his video). Began my journey of living with the grief of having lost a child, and was so, so blessed by our family and friends along the way.

September 2005 (sorry about the quality)

2006: Got a tattoo. Found out I was pregnant. Went on some amazing camping trips in the Rocky Mountains and South West Saskatchewan. Loved my gardens. Welcomed (another!) nephew when Asher was born. My younger sister, Lynette, moved in with us for a bit eighteen months. Attended the amazingly beautiful wedding of Peter's sister, Sara, in Vernon, BC. Gave birth to bouncing baby Simon. Got my first babywearing wrap.

             July 2006                                                           October 2006

2007: Began to explore all things natural when Simon's allergies became apparent. Stopped using shampoo and conditioner (eek! now the whole world knows!). Peter wrote the Canadian Foreign Service exams. Babywearing frenzy reached its height. I got a pixie cut and loved it. Got my ears pierced. Did some more camping. Drove to Montana in a 30' RV with my whole family. And survived. Sent Peter off to Sudan for two weeks to set up a water filtration project. Peter was offered a job with the Foreign Service on Christmas Eve. Was given my first DSLR. My dad was hospitalized with pneumonia.

                                      January 2007                                                June 2007

2008:  My dad's hospitalization for pneumonia lead to a black out, CT scan and two  subsequent brain surgeries. Found out I was pregnant again, but was told I was losing the baby. A whirlwind move to Ottawa where we lived in a hotel for five weeks. Traveled to MN for Peter's brother's wedding to the sweet and lovely Kristi. Started blogging (once every three months or so). Bought our first home in Gatineau, QC (across the river from Ottawa). Liam started kindergarten at a French school. Found an AMAZING church where we met AMAZING friends. Bought a minivan. Flew back to Regina twice to be with my dad who had continued to decline due to complications from his brain surgeries and months of being over-medicated, that lead to other major surgeries and, ultimately, his death at the beginning of December. My mom and younger sister -and later my older sister and her family- came for Christmas in Gatineau. Was terribly sick from Christmas to New Years... and terribly pregnant!

2009: Rang in the New Year with a new baby (Jan 3rd), born at a birth center without pain meds. Made my blog public. Threw Peter a surprise party for his 30th birthday. Watched Liam's French language skills explode. Was SUPER EXCITED to finally(!) have a niece. Peter received three E's in his French training. Photographed my first wedding. Celebrated my 30th birthday with my friend, Kim. Baked loads of bread. Decided to do school at home with Liam. Went strawberry and apple picking. Photographed most of our friends' families. Fell in love with Lightroom. Survived the trip from Ottawa to Regina ON MY OWN. Recognized -again- how much I enjoy my family and miss being nearer to them.

                                       June 2009                                                   September 2009

This last decade was definitely one of profound lows and amazing highs, searing loss and blessing-filled gains, intense sorrows and unspeakable joys. A decade of surprises, both good and bad. A decade of growth, both forced and sought out. A decade where, looking back, we can clearly see God's hand in our lives. It has not always been easy (many times it's been heartbreakingly, wretchedly painful), but we have so (incredibly) much to be thankful for.

And I am excited -EXCITED!- to see where the next decade will take us.

Goodbye, 2009! And a warm 'Hello!' to a brand new year!

Happy New Years!


  1. Wow, what a great post. I'm not sure I could remember that much detail about the past ten years.

  2. I wish you a wonderful next decade!

  3. This is a beautifully written post. I can't imagine a more life-changing decade.

    Thanks for sharing and all the best this new year!

  4. Phew! You certainly have had a very full decade! All the best to you and your family for the year ahead. Julie

  5. Great review, Amy, of the last decade. It has had it deep lows and exciting highs...and through it all it is wonderful to see God's presence and guidance. Glad you are a member of the family and have added 4 darling offspring to the "clan". Love, Mora/Mom/Nana

  6. Had to stop back by, because, shampoo?...ever?

  7. Wow! You have an amazing recollection of the past decade! I don't think I can remember as many details as you about my past decade. And what a decade you had! I have a felling this new decade is going to be the decade for me to remember!

  8. Amy, What a great idea and I'm so glad you did this post! What a 10 year ride it has been and you and Peter have done it and your additions to the family are as precious as the 2 of you!!!!! We love you and Happy New Year! 2010!!!!! Love, A. Dianne and U. Duane

  9. Amazing when you see it all written down - you have been through so much in the last ten years! I love this post.

  10. Wow! What a full 10 years you've had! I think I would love to do a post like this... but maybe later (haha).

    I loved reading this post, and thanks for the pics too!

  11. Okay... loved the pixie cut! Laughed out loud about the shampoo/conditioner allergy.
    Great post.


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