We’re Back in 3, 2, 1… HAPPY NEW YEAR!

So… is it too late to wish you a merry Christmas? How about a happy new year? How about just a good afternoon? Yeah we’ll go with that. As usual, the amount of potential content we generate has an inverse relationship to the amount of time we have to actually write it out. We had an awesome holiday season, even if we straggled into January trying to catch our breath, and we’re genuinely excited about 2012.

But 2012 is also a bit puzzling to us. Not in a bad way. We’ve been talking lately about how the last few years have been very clearly laid out — I like to say that we saw plenty of closed doors, so we just walked through the only ones that were open. Now, that’s changing. Our paths aren’t so linear and clearly marked with “This you shall do next” signs. The shift started back in July 2011, when I left my old job for a better opportunity. That move helped us develop our sea legs, because this year is just wide open with even more possibility. That’s both exhilarating and a bit startling. But we have our Ebenezer stones to look back on, marking little and big moments of faithfulness. It’s comforting to look over our shoulders and see the evidence.

And we really did have a wonderful holiday season to finish out 2011. We got to attend a beautifully stunning Christmas concert thanks to David’s musician parents and their connections, and my old coworkers even invited me to the annual Christmas party (they still like me!). We saw so many friends at wonderful parties here and in northern Virginia, and the avenging unicorn left our arms for another good home at a white elephant exchange. Oh, and the youth group delighted in greeting us with a “Merry Christ-OUR-LORD-AND-SAVIOR-mas!” every time. Apparently the week we talked about going overboard with our defense of Christmas amused them if nothing else. David hid the pickle ornament on our tree so well that I never found it until we took down all our Christmas tree decorations on Epiphany. And of course, we celebrated other birthdays last month — it just figures that out of our immediate family (and I’m not even counting nieces and nephews here), we have four birthdays plus an anniversary. Good heavens.

We closed out the year with what’s become an annual NYE party filled with goofiness, a good DJ, mixed (and not so mixed) drinks and the traditional singing of Auld Lang Syne during which everyone pretends to remember the words. I made an effort to learn the verses beforehand, but for some reason David kept trying to shush me. Guess he wanted his NYE kiss… yeah, we’ll go with that. I can’t imagine a more apt sign-off to 2011 hanging out with this crowd, who let us hang out with them while they got married, bought houses, and started grand adventures this year. What a joy.

And 2012 is off to a rolicking start. So far we’ve enjoyed the biggest bonfire I’ve ever seen on the Pate Estate, I got to reunite with college friends I hadn’t seen in years for a whole weekend, and David demonstrated that his new shotgun does indeed work against clay pigeons. We’re still pursuing plans for Europe too, though we’re waiting (rather impatiently on my end) to see if the timeframe works for David. And I have another post to write on our athletic (or not so much) pursuits. Bring it on.

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