The year began with snow the first weekend of the year! It hardly ever snows in this area but any amount brings me so much joy!
In February, I got into antiquing with my Mom! One weekend we explored downtown Gastonia, which I’d never really done – surprising, since I came here a lot as a kid. I just loved the remnants of the “old” mixed in with the new.
April was definitely a highlight of 2017 for us as a family! For most of my life my family talked and dreamed about one day taking a family vacation to the Grand Canyon and this year was the year those dreams finally came to fruition! It was a week full of joy and love and beautiful sights that left me in complete awe of the God who created it all. We saw Celine Dion in concert for the second time as a family on our first night in Las Vegas and walked down memory lane in Williams, Arizona where we stayed most of the week. My Dad remembers stopping in this town on the train as a kid when his family would journey from California back to New Mexico to visit family and my great-grandfather worked as a dishwasher here in the 1930s. We even made the much anticipated roadtrip to New Mexico to visit the town where my Dad was born and visit with his cousin who shared so many photos and family stories!
In June, my family and I got to see Toto in concert! I have such fond memories of my Dad playing their music for me as a kid so to be able to see them in concert with both my parents was so fun. It was an awesome show! The following weekend, we hosted two of my Dad’s closest friends from college for dinner. They live in Vancouver, Washington but were back in town visiting friends and family and it was such a good time!
In August, my mom and I got to take in a pre-season Panthers game! I love this team and love being able to come to at least one game a year if I can.
Towards the end of the month, my mom’s side of the family got together in Mebane, North Carolina to celebrate my Uncle Kenneth’s birthday. I love any chance to visit with them!
In September we had a “Family History Day” out in Caswell County! It’s kind of become a thing for my family to get together the weekend of my grandmother and aunt’s passings and just spend some quality time together. This year, a cousin offered to host us at the home on his property where my great-grandparents lived 110 years ago (literally) when they were first married! My great-grandfather actually built this house himself! Family history is such a love of mine so the whole day was just a dream.
October began with my return to my home of four years – Boone, NC! My best friend and college roommate Ashley and I went to Appalachian’s homecoming game together. It was so much fun to reconnect with her and to spend some precious moments in one of my absolute favorite places.
The following weekend I drove up to Raleigh to see a sweet friend who I hadn’t seen in two years! Wendy and her husband were visiting from Wisconsin where they’ve lived since getting married just over two years ago. It was so so special to visit with her and made me miss her even more! Sitting with her over brunch at our favorite Durham spot, Parker & Otis, was such a treat.
The last month of 2017 began with a sister trip to Charleston, SC! This city is one of my absolute favorite places to be. The weekend began with an acoustic Needtobreathe concert (not enough words or emojis for this amazing-ness). And the rest of the trip was spent eating (I’m still craving the country ham biscuits from Callie’s in downtown) and walking our way through the city!
And, as always, we celebrated Christmas on December 26 with my extended family – a lifelong tradition that was set in place by my grandmother. I come from a large family with a lot of cousins and it’s almost more fun to be adults with my cousins than it was to be kids with them!
Here’s to 2018!