As the calendar changed over from 2011 to 2012 Vivi was nothing more than a chubby lump of baby who could really only sit there and be cute.

jammie vivi.

Addie was a freshly minted seven year old who still had most of her baby teeth in place.

Addie

As the calendar gets ready to change over from 2012 to 2013 Vivi is now a full blown toddler who can walk, run, dance, talk and cause 18 different kinds of trouble.

This one is more about Cody being a giant sucker for that little face.

Addie is now 8 with a mouth full of grown up teeth, a face full of freckles and more than half of her body is taken up by long and nimble legs.

Addie models the latest Tea Collection (collection) for back to school.

It’s hard to believe that when I started my blog back in 2006 Addie was the same age Vivi is now.

best curl day ever.

I was pretty sure 2010 was the best year ever. Then 2011 happened and I figured life couldn’t get much better until 2012 came around and really showed me what a good year is. I honestly can’t see things getting much better than they are now, then again I said that in 2010. Half of my heart is scared, waiting for the other shoe to drop. Waiting for that phone call that will change everything. Waiting for something, although I don’t know what. The other half of my heart makes sure that I am present in these moments of  blessed abundance. When I look back at 2012 I don’t see things or places, I see moments and milestones. Many take place in different parts of the country, some even in different parts of the world, but they all have one thing in common, my family.

This is the first year I have ever made it from beginning to end without a major depressive episode, for me that is HUGE. I could talk about all the opportunities and places I’ve been this year but what is most important is that I was present and able to enjoy each and every one of them. I still haven’t turned on the news or read anything about last Friday, there are reasons why I don’t watch the news and I wish more people realized what sensationalized media can do to our hearts and minds. Cody explained it all to me in a way I could handle and told me I was most likely away from all forms of technology last week for a reason.

2013 is going to be about amplifying the simple and good things anyone can do to help someone else. I want my girls to witness so much kindness and gratitude that they grow up convinced it is the only way to behave. I can’t keep them safe forever, but I can always give them a safe place to come home to.  Thank you 2012, you were good to me, I promise to show 2013 the same kindness in return.

playing piano.

babywearing cody

family-6616

Addie and Tayden

a little waffle between friends

..

And then I became Hallmark's (Dancing) Mascot

playing in the rain

my ladies and me

I was crying. In case you were wondering what was wrong with me.

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I’m so grateful to partner with Hallmark in 2012 on their “Life is a Special Occasion” campaign again and I thank them tremendously for their patience with me, supporting me in all that I do and for sponsoring this post. Life with my family is the most special occasion of all.

Comments

  1. I hope that 2013 is better than spectacular for your family (and I’m sneaking in a wish for a happy year for my family too)! Here’s to many many wonderful years to come!

  2. I am so happy for you! Here’s to a superly awesome 2013!! :)

  3. I loved this!! Here’s to an even more enjoyable 2013!!

  4. I so love the spirit of these words and photos. Sometimes learning to see the good is half the battle, right?

    Casey Reply:

    @Shannon, Yes, but once you can see the good it fights the other half of the battle for you.

  5. beautiful post

  6. lovely post.

    also..addie looks like a younger dakota fanning. such beautiful girls you have

    xoxo

  7. “what is most important is that I was present and able to enjoy each and every one of them.”

    All of this post made me happy, but this part ESPECIALLY did. I’m glad that you were able to feel so present and vibrantly alive in those moments, and not ghosting-through-life-like. So happy for you, Casey, and for your adorable family. I hope 2013 is nothing but good to you and yours. &hearts

  8. Casey I have to tell you that you are my favorite blogger lately… I get to work, check my email, get my coffee, and check to see if you have anything up! Your girls are precious, I can’t get enough of your humor and realness, and quite frankly, think we’d be fantastic real life friends :) (hope that is flattering and not creepy!)

    I am also trying to soak in every second of this crazy ride, while my baby takes my breath away daily. And I’m also scared sh*tless that the other shoe is going to drop…

    Maybe we (I) should lay off the caffeine?

    Hope 2013 is EVERYTHING you deserve it to be!

    Casey Reply:

    @Kristin, Thank you so much Kristin! *clinks coffee cups* (Although mine is filled with hot chocolate and an embarrassing amount of whipped cream.)

  9. I like this. I’m really happy for you. I think I’m beginning to understand and be able to see what depressive episodes look like, and, if I’m right, then I can’t imagine what my life would look like if I went a whole year without one. I am so glad you are finding freedom.

  10. This was SO beautiful and I hope that 2013 is filled with even more beauty, milestones, smiles and blessings for you, your family and the lives that you touch.

  11. I love this. And I love reading about your journey–I admire you for where you are. That last picture is absolutely beautiful. It made me cry. I’m so happy for you.

  12. This is beautiful. May your 2013 and beyond be everything you want and need.

    And the photo of Vivi with the waffle? Perfect for a L’eggo My Eggo caption.

  13. So incredibly beautiful in so many ways. Thank you for sharing your joy.

    And I must add that your reflections on your girls is really putting into perspective what 2013 will bring for me, as I now have a seven-year-old and an almost-one-year-old. I’m torn between trying to place myself at the end of 2013 and imagine what they’ll look like, to trying to place myself squarely here in 2012 and savor every moment I have when them right now, just as they are.

    Casey Reply:

    @Kristen, It’s a magical age difference, I may be biased but I’m convinced it’s the best.

  14. Aw, love. I’m so glad your year was so wonderful. You deserve the joy and beauty and wonder of all the world has to offer.

    2012 has been the hardest year of my life and I am holding on to the hope that my struggle means that 2013 is waiting to show me what all that tough stuff was about. I welcome it.

  15. Do you know that Carrie Newcomer song? “Sometimes there’s only one shoe.” Hoping that for you this year!

  16. What a great post! And what a fabulous year! I had a wonderful year, though not without one major depression episode, but one thing I’ve learned from those is that they don’t last forever and my feelings of gratitude and hope, coming out of one of those, is overwhelming.

    Missed reading you, while I took a couple of years off blogging. You are still as fantastic as ever!

  17. Yay for a good year! Love the pics! Love the words! Love you!

  18. Are you there?

  19. THIS “but I can always give them a safe place to come home to.” was awesome. SO well said.

  20. I love that you have so much happiness.

    I have to say I usually can’t pick a favorite photo in your posts… but for whatever reason the rainy umbrella photo just captures my heart. I keep going back to it. Love it.

    Casey Reply:

    @Colleen – @amadisonmom, That one gets me too, and I’m not sure why. Maybe because Addie looks so big and responsible?

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Here we are 2013, you and me. I have to admit, I’ve been slightly pessimistic about you, being superstitious and all. But just maybe you could be even better than 2012 (which I doubt, but then again I said things couldn’t get better after 2010 so maybe I should just quit saying BEST YEAR EVER because things do indeed keep getting better.) Like Amy said, maybe there really is only one shoe. [...]