2016 in Review

Saturday, December 31, 2016

We started and are ending 2016 on a sick note....seems to be my exact words (change the date) from the last few years.  But thankfully, knock on wood, fingers crossed, we are on the tail end.  

I've been flued on, puked on, pooped on, pink eyed on, and streped on.  December has been a doozie.  I'd love to have a do-over, but I am afraid history would just repeat itself, so it's probably best to just move on.

Anna Claire still loves to dance, but wanted to explore other things this year.  She's diving deep into volleyball (did a rec team in the fall and will do a club team this coming January).   She loves musical theater and is wanting to start voice lessons, but there are only so many hours in a day.  She is still my bookworm and you can almost always find her with her button nose in a book. 

Ava is still the bomb diggity.  That shell has cracked and the rest of the world gets to see what we've always seen at home.  She loves dancing.  Like really loves and you can usually find her leaping down the aisles at Target with me when she's not at dance or school.

Alli had a year of seizures, pneumonia, and hospitalizations.   Developmentally she is making huge strides.  Slow and steady wins the race still today, y'all.  Kindergarten has been so, so good to her.  She has the best laugh and gives the best hugs.

John and I have a lot of projects in the works and are praying to see them come to fruition this year.  One of the projects involves the whole family and it's so very close to my heart.  It is definitely becoming a passion project for us all.

I usually have a word for the upcoming year by now, but it hasn't been given to me.  Part of me thinks I keep hearing restoration, but then I think..."Hey God, that's been done already, let's do something else."  

But let's get serious, there is always room for restoration.  2015 saw the restoration of our marriage and 2016 was preparing for our future so maybe, just maybe we can claim restoration in 2017.  God continuing to restore all that has been lost, stolen.  

Redeeming everything.  

I'll take that.  

And I'm not superstitious, but I'm actually a fan of odd years. Big things have always happened in odd years for us.

Regardless of what He has waiting and the word He has for my year ahead,  new beginnings offer us so much hope.  I'm always excited and open for a new year!  

Before we look ahead, here's a look back at 2016.

My top 3 most read posts from 2016 were (in no particular order):
January brought Ava asking Jesus into her heart forever
And Alli spent her 5th birthday in an ambulance in an ice storm after having seziures.  #cantmakethislifeup

February brought the Father/Daughter Valentine's Dance!

Valentine's Parties

And a rare date day, with kids of course.


March brought the Kindergarten circus (cutest thing ever)

and Easter egg hunts 


Sunday Funday

The best response to common core math.  ever.

And Alli's first time to skate!
My mom had major back surgery so I spent a week in Pocahontas nursing her.  The next week my Daddy retired from Wal-Mart after 35 years.


May brought competitions, dance recitals, the end of 3rd grade, the end of kindergarten, and the last day I'll ever have a kiddo in preschool.


June was busy finishing recital, dance intensives, and nationals.  

 We celebrated our 12th anniversary, Father's Day, John's birthday, and mine! 🙈

Alli finished the month in the hospital with pneumonia.


July brought K-Kountry for Anna Claire and Kampout for Ava.

We celebrated the 4th of July and Ava's 7th Birthday.

We also had our annual cousins trip to Florida the last two weeks of July!


We left Florida and spent the first week of August in Texas with the Houston cousins.  Alli had her final visit with the clinical trial.

She always did love the happy juice!

We got home from Houston and hit the ground running with back to school shenanigans.

Alli started her first dance class, named after her (I'm due a post on this amazingness).
And we ended August with the incredible blessing of the baptism of our big girls.


September brought the beginning of soccer season for Ava (her third) and volleyball season for Anna Claire (her first).

Ava was also cast in a movie!  She played the lead character in the flashback sequence in, The Town in the Middle of Nowhere.
Big Laura and little Laura

It was a horror movie, but the only blood she saw was this cut off finger.  😱

October brought hayrides, corn fields, more hayrides, Alli's first lost teeth, celebrating Anna Claire's 10th Birthday, and Halloween!



Did November even happen?!  I don't have many pictures and all I can remember is the election, spending the week in New Orleans, and then Thanksgiving!

The 4th grades annual performance of Mark Twain.  Anna Claire was a soloist.

Alli had her first official Thanksgiving meal as an eater!  She LOVED the sweet potatoes.

The Little Rock cousins came to town so we played tourist and went to see Maxine's Christmas Carol.

 And we took a little family ride on the new mountain coaster.

We spent Thanksgiving weekend with the fam in Arkansas.

December meant parades, concerts, class parties, and preparing for Christmas.


2016, you certainly weren't the best of years, but you weren't the worst of years either.  I could sit and sulk about all the bad...the set backs, the hurdle after hurdle, health scare (for John), an autoimmune diagnosis for me, the hospital stays, all the ambulances we now own 😲 but in reality it's just another day in the life.  

And I sort of wouldn't have it any other way.  I'm so, so thankful for another year.
Blessed to call this family mine and look forward with great expectations to the breakthroughs coming in 2017.  
I pray 2017 brings you the hope, joy, and peace that only comes from the Lord.  May we all love and live more freely and pray more boldly.  


To see reviews from the years past, you can find them here:


  1. Love your reviews, Jackie! Always great to look back, isn't it!

    1. Thanks, Jamie! Yes, it's always so good to look back. Thanks for stopping by! :)


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