Dear 2015,

Every year I write a letter reflecting the past year.
I usually write it on December 31, but this year I had the stomach flu over New Year's, hence the delay.
To read the other yearly letters, click HERE.

Dear 2015,
You have been a great year. There have been highlights & low lights, good times and bad times, but overall, I will look back at this year and smile.

2015 has been a year of being stretched, a year of growth, a year of ups and downs. 
A year of learning to trust God more and a year that I am even more thankful for having good health.
A year that holds a lot of wonderful memories.
Let's take a look back!
My highlight of January is always Kate's Birthday! 
We had a Pizzeria Party for her & it was so much fun!
This was one of my  all time favorite cakes that my mother in law made....it looked like an actual pizza but it was really cake & candies!!!! AMAZING.
 Check out the entire party post {HERE}
My highlight in February was Valentine's Day weekend. Valentine's Day fell on the Saturday of Presidents Day weekend & the weather was in the 70s. We had a fun Valentine's Day with the kids & celebrated all day long. Every meal that day had a heart theme :)
Then on the 15th, we took a family hike to the place where Kevin proposed 13 years earlier & then Kevin and I had a date night. Awesome weekend!
More on that weekend {HERE}


The highlight in March was going to Seascape for my Mother in Law's birthday with Kevin's family.
Seascape is a hidden gem here in the Bay Area..it is near Santa Cruz. 
 We are spoiled here in California!
It was an AMAZING weekend. I can't wait to go back!!
 More photos from that weekend {HERE}

April was another fun month filled with Easter and then the dreaded.....potty training!!!
It rained on Easter which was ironic because we are in the middle of a HUGE drought & it hadn't rained since January & then of course it rained on Easter. I won't complain...we need any rain we can get!
We spent Easter with Kevin's side of the family and then the next day was Spring Break and I spent that week potty training Luke. I use the 3 day potty training method, you can read about it {HERE}
We went to 2 weddings in April. One of our former youth group kids & then my cousin Katie's wedding! I love weddings :)
Also in April, Shay & Sheaffer and I started our new link up...What's Up Wednesday!

I love this link up! It's the last Wednesday of each month!
May was busy & fun!
Mother's Day was one of my favorites yet...we were tourists in San Francisco!

I earned a free trip to Lake Tahoe with my Rodan + Fields team.
It was for all the Level 5 leaders & I was excited become a Level V.
Kevin turned the big 4-0 in May & I threw him a Surprise 40th Party with a Taco Truck!
See the party post {HERE}
One of my other cousins got married Memorial Day weekend, so that was our 3rd wedding in 5 weeks!
At the end of May I turned 36 & spent my birthday at a swim meet, then a baby shower in Napa & then an end of school year swim party! It was a busy birthday :) 

 June meant it was the end of the school year & summer arrived!!!!
The girls did swim team for the 2nd year in a row, so it was swim team everyday.

 The Warriors won the NBA championship in June so that was SO fun!

At the end of June Kevin and I had a weekend away in Sonoma Wine Country as a belated 40th birthday present. We had a blast.

You can read more about Sonoma {HERE}

July was an interesting month.
Luke stopped napping the 1st week of summer, so by July he was a hot mess...so tired.
And, he decided to stop letting me buckle him in his car seat.
Everytime we tried to go somewhere it took me 20 minutes to get him in his carseat.
He is so strong that I had to basically use all my body weight to get him buckled in.
It was AWFUL.
We had swim team 2 times a day for the girls, so getting everyone loaded up to go there & back took forever & was a battle with Luke. He hit the terrible 2's a month before he turned 3.
It was ROUGH.

We had the 4th of July...one of my favorite days of the year.
We went to Lake Tahoe for a week.
In July I found out I got into the Nike Women's Half Marathon in San Francisco! So after a 10 year hiatus in running, I started training for it!

At the end of the July our sweet Kate got baptized, so that was a highlight of the year.

Swim team ended & the girls declared they weren't doing it ever again. Ha!

 The last week of July Kevin started working on his Demo for work (which is basically like his Masters Thesis) He worked 12+ hours a day & on the weekends from the end of July to the beginning of October. It was so incredibly stressful & crazy having him working so much.

I took the kids to Tahoe for a week because Kevin was working so much & it was nice to have a change of scenery.
The highlight in August was Luke turning 3!
Since he is obsessed with firetrucks, we had a firetruck birthday!
 You can see the rest of his party post {HERE}

School started at the end of August & this was one of the first times I was actually looking forward to school starting...it was a fun summer, but it was challenging with Kevin being gone so much and battling Luke to get in his car seat every time we tried to go somewhere.

Both girls were playing soccer, so it was in full swing in September.
Claire turned 7 years old & we had a Tea Party Birthday!
 See the party post {HERE}

The rest of September was a blur....Kevin working tons, I was busy with all the back to school craziness, both girls were playing soccer & had 2 practices each a week and Kate started dance. 
Oh yeah, and I was training for my first 1/2 marathon.
It was NUTS.

I could finally exhale in October.
The month started off with Kevin being out of town for his Demo (Masters Thesis). It was due October 4th & he was in class in Sacramento that entire week finishing it up.

Then on October 18, I had my 1/2 marathon.
It was an amazing experience.
You can read my race recap {HERE}

The week before Halloween we spent 4 days at Disneyland. It was much needed family time after the craziness of the past few months!

On our way to Disneyland, we visited Grammy because it was her 104th Birthday!

In November, my older sister encouraged me to run another 1/2 marathon in December, this time with Team World Vision.
So, I started up my training....again!

November is when Fall finally starts to arrive in California. 
My sisters and I celebrated my mom's birthday in Sonoma:

My highlight of November was all the kids activities being done and Kevin done with his Demo.
We found out right before Thanksgiving that he PASSED!!!!
SO happy!!!

This December was one of the best we've ever had.
Relief that Kevin passed.
A magical age for our kids at Christmas.
Savoring the season & celebrating the birth of Christ.
I actually got teary eyed taking down our Christmas decorations.
I was sad to see the season end.

On December 12th, I ran my 2nd 1/2 marathon in 2 months and ran for Team World Vision.
It was another awesome experience....I can't wait to do another 1/2 martahon!

The rest of December we enjoyed the twinkling lights

And, I watched more Hallmark Christmas movies than I would like to admit ;)

We had a wonderful Christmas & then spent 5 days in Lake Tahoe playing in all the snow!!!
It was a great way to end 2015 (expect for the fact that I got the stomach flu over New Year's!)

2015.....you were one for the books.

If you told me a year ago, that I wold run TWO 1/2 marathons,  a 10k & a 5k in 2015 I would have LAUGHED in your face. I am so happy my love of running has been re-ignited.
2015 was the year Kevin passed his demo after working on it for 7+ years.

Also, in 2015 I added 26 new recipes & 8 new free printables to the blog!
You can check those out in the Recipe Box tab and the Free Printables tab.
 2015, you have memorable.
There was good, there was bad, there was ugly.
There were tears & laughter.
Thanks for all the memories.

I am thankful to God for the ways he worked in our family this year and for the ways that He will continue to work in us and through us.

Happy New Year, friends.
Thanks for reading my blog!
I appreciate all of you!
May your 2016 be filled with joy & hope no matter your circumstances!


  1. Happy new year!! What a wonderful year you had!!! COngrats on running again!!

  2. I love how you set this up writing back to the year before!! What a fabulous year it's been!

  3. That pizza party idea is the cutest!!! And the tea party- perfect for a little girl!!!! It looks like you had a fabulous year!

  4. Love this post, Melissa! I think this one is my favorite next to Grammy. And I know you will shudder just a little bit, but you can come next door and see Christmas at my house right now. :) Don't judge, the Feast of the Epihany is tomorrow so I'm still within the time limit. Ha! Thanks for being my next door court neighbor, team leader and friend! xoxo Cheers to 2016!

  5. What an amazing year friend! I can't wait to see what 2016 has in store for you!

  6. Happy New Year! I loved your recap! Can't wait to see what 2016 brings :)



Blog Widget by LinkWithin