Yesterday I shared what I am saying goodbye to from 2016. When I look back on each year I can always pick out the struggles and the low points and I promise myself ‘never again’. However, recently, I have come to light with how important optimism is (duh, Kara) even with something as mundane as preparing for a new year so I want to make sure and not let this week go by without sharing my 2016 highlight reel.
Let me preface this by saying, I live an extremely simple life. I’m an extremely simple person. Like… extremely simple. And I am somewhat of a homebody. I hope this changes in the near future as I am slowly finding my way back to “me”, but even though I don’t have lavish travel stops to show you or big, glitzy occassions, I hope that this gives you a little peek into my life as a wife, a mother and a creative.
I think the biggest highlight was celebrating 12 years of marriage to this guy. No matter what happens, his support and dedication to our family is such a blessing. After the changes we experienced this year and the big, scary leap we took, I am so grateful to have a partner who is equally as crazy to do these big, stupid things with. So proud of him for taking the leap with his own endeavors and watching him build his own business has been such a thrill.
Evernote, which is one of my all-time favorite apps, featured me and it was pretty awesome. Okay, a lot awesome. If you haven’t yet caught how I used Evernote in 2016 and will continue to do so in 2017, you can catch that here.
Our sweet Tanner turned ten and I was shocked for several weeks leading up to it that we entered the double digits. Watching him grow into the young man that he is has been amazing.
Another year that I traveled to the coast for my clients in Southern California and my Miss Blake was able to travel with me. Such a fun girls trip and I will never forget our time together.
2016 was the year that I knew I needed to find tools to help me invest back into my business in ways of goal creation, ideas, planning and making sure my focus is on what it should be. And while the Powersheets Workbook was something I purchased to plan for the year ahead, it was still one of those moves as a business owner that truly has helped me put my head in the game as I enter a new year. I am excited to see how it helps me cultivate what matters in 2017.
The littlest of the littles, our Miss Blair, turned the big three years old and she just might be the feistiest one we know! So happy that she is a part of our crazy pack because life just wouldn’t be the same without her.
I had past clients contact me asking if I would be willing to have them fly me out to Denver for their family portraits after having moved there. I made sure my security blanket could make it as well and my husband and I then enjoyed a whirlwind 24 hour trip there and back. I wish I would have had more time to see Denver, but that just means that I need to make it back there right? Perhaps adding it to my location list for 2017 would be a good idea – wink! Any takers?
I wanted to find an extremely simple way to snap one photo a week of our family so that we can see the growth over the course of a year. While I was way off the mark of catching every single week, I truly have loved the start of this project. Even the grainy-in-the-car-still-parked-in-the-garage-because-we-are-late-for-church ones. Okay, all of them were pretty much that, but this year I have big goals to do better and you can enjoy the collection on Instagram for yourself under #CFSundaySelfie.
Another year full of wonderful design projects and clients. I am truly blessed to share my photography life with my design life and the two blend beautifully. It is always such an honor that anyone trusts me to do what I do and I have loved seeing the collaborations with fellow artists, creatives and entrepreneurs.
Our beautiful Miss Blake turned eight years old this year and was also baptized. I am so grateful for her sweet soul in our family and love that there is another artist and creative to do life with.
Our kids have always enjoyed camping out on our trampoline in the backyard when the weather is nice, but this year we took it up a notch and let them pitch the tent and carry on with some really great camp out nights. Looking forward to more of these fun and simple memories as well as more weekends away camping up north.
My husband took this on my first day working from home just for myself after walking away from a second job that I had for three years and had outgrown and fell out of love with. Those of you who are regular readers have heard all about this, multiple times at this point, but this was such a huge change in our lives. So happy to see us flourishing and my heart settling back into what I do best and where my joy is. Always grateful for the experience and lessons learned and I am excited to be starting a new year exactly where I belong.
And that weekend, after I was back to being full time for myself, my husband surprised me with a new beach cruiser bike that he had heard me talk about wanting. And it’s rare that a day goes by that I am not out riding it. It is a wonderful feeling to step away from my desk, recharge for a short time, and come back to it all. As I have gotten older, I have learned exactly what my creative heart needs to keep up with it all and this has been such a fun addition.
Our little Owen / Omie / Wolfie turned five years old and has the sweetest heart. He is currently in his last year of preK and will be starting Kindergarten next year. I’m not quite sure what I am going to do with myself. #PassTheTissues
We watched our Miss Blake participate in her first season ever of cross country and she was a natural. Hoping she sticks with it and can’t wait to see her grow even more in this sport.
I continued working hard at building up the shop and am so thankful for all of the orders that were placed for my designs in 2016. I have a LIST of ideas and plans for the new year and I can’t wait to share them with you.
I finally jumped into underwater photography and experimenting in that realm this past year. I absolutely love it and I made sure to share my tips on using your mobile devices under the surface. And if you are in the mood, you can catch one of our home movies here.
After almost two years of constant begging, we finally surprised our kids with their own YouTube channel complete with their own logo! They were shocked and we have had a bit of fun watching them create their own entertainment and record more family films. While I am not yet ready to publicly share where to find them, I will be working with them to create some more content and I will be sharing all about this project a little later this year.
And, of course, we finished out the year with the most beautiful holiday season. It always passes by far too fast, but we are so blessed for all that we have in each other and I hope you also had an amazing holiday and new year!
A big heartfelt thank you to all of my clients – families, individuals, fellow creatives – who have trusted me this past year to create with them. Whether it be telling their story from behind the camera or collaborating on a brand new look for their passion and business. It means the world and the reason I get to do what I do.
Big hugs to each of you who take the time to be here, who leave comments and love on social media and who send me sweet messages of encouragement. I will never be able to truly tell you how incredibly grateful I am for your love and support. I am hope to keep doing this for a long time to come and I hope you will stick with me through the journey.
Love to you all.