2018 in Review

*reveled in the newness of being engaged
*spent a lot of hours on the stair climber
*worked as an editor
*took Shakespeare and other really hard classes
*got asked "can i see your ring?" a lot
*found a wedding dress

*more homework
*more work
*lots of evenings spent at Derek's apartment
*booked honeymoon to San Diego
*kept getting the prompting to start taking more pictures and to get serious about journaling

*lots of wedding planning
*discovered our new favorite Thai restaurant
*prayed a lot about what our summer plans should be
*got call from good friends offering to send us on a Mexico cruise for our honeymoon.
*told them we really couldn't accept
*they said we really could
*cancelled flights to San Diego
*mom and grandma came for a surprise visit and came with me to get my wedding dress altered. special moment.
*the night they came is actually a great story. i had started on birth control a few weeks before and for some reason, that night I was feeling the effects of it hardcore. it's been a very mild birth control and i really haven't had a lot of side effects. but that night, I felt physically down and depressed. derek invited me out that night but i was just not up for it and spent a rare night in bed. later that night I found out that mom and grandma would be showing up the next day. talk about amazing timing!

*one more month of long distance
*worked cleaning jobs at home in Oregon before the wedding
*spent time with family and sisters (sister date to Olive Garden)
*painted cupboards in parent's house to earn some $$$
*dad and natalie came to pick me up from school
*attended a beautiful bridal shower thrown for me by my aunt and cousin (complete with a scrumptious food selection that included a popcorn/candy bar, some of my favorite pictures, and some of my favorite people). my sweet mother-in-law drove down to attend the shower while my father-in-law went out to eat with Dad, Derek and my uncle.
*went through the temple for the first time (need to journal about that). had a blast on a rainy photo shoot to take our bride and groom pictures.

*had a pretty decent day on May 12th.
*can't BELIEVE I haven't journaled about it yet (i can actually very much believe it). this has got to be my first new years resolution
*honeymooned in mexico (so many things i need to journal about!)
*ate some delicious food
*came back to live in Washington for the summer in a little trailer

*Brooke worked at an elementary school and fell in love with it
*Derek worked at his dad's shop
*Drove to Oregon for Nicole's wedding and discovered the Cookie Dough Cafe
*Took the fastest showers of our lives all summer (5 minutes of hot water in the trailer)
*learned how to cook with no stove and no oven
*Brooke got a lotttttttt of cabin fever.
*Went to an actual baseball game (bucket list!!!) and saw my beloved red sox play the mariners. dad and kendall drove up to meet us and I drove back with them to go to megan's bridal shower.
*derek and I had lots of good chats with kendall about life and the gospel

*learned how to be married. made some amazing memories. (walks at sunset on the road outside the trailer, worked out together in the mornings or in the evenings, locked ourselves out of the trailer and had to climb in through the window, housesitting for Derek's parents while they were out of town, working in the nursery together at church). also got in some good ole' newlywed arguments and huffed and puffed and learned about how the other person huffs and puffs and about what we can do to help and that sometimes it is just better to listen than to fix.
*we spent a week apart for some reason (i stayed in Oregon for a few days to help with a youth conference and he went back to Washington with his parents) and I will just say this: i don't think I would recommend that to another newlywed couple. I know, pretty rich that I'm giving marriage advice already?! i think the newlywed time is so precious and that as much as possible, it should be spent with each other. it put a weird strain on our relationship being apart so fresh into this big life change that I think could have been avoidable. (this is just our experience and my perspective.)
*i will say this: this was a CHALLENGING summer for me for a lot of reasons (some personal and some random) but it sure taught me a lot. (note: most of those challenges had nothing to do with the trailer.)
*traveled to Utah for Meg's wedding. Derek saved the day by running back and forth to get Kendall water when she fainted during pictures. (it was HOT.)
*drove back to Oregon with Dad from Utah while everyone else flew. (Derek and my dad talked literally the entire way home. The radio wasn't turned on once and I fell asleep several times. Do you think my dad has been excited to now have sons?)
*spent a lot of evenings at Derek's parents' house watching Mariners' baseball.

*drove to Utah with Derek's parents to pick up our new car
*drove car back to Rexburg. Ate some peanut butter sandwiches and almonds on the way.
*Moved into our sub-lease (where we would live for two weeks before our apartment became available)
*made some delicious recipes in our REAL KITCHEN
*slept on an air mattress for two weeks (thanks for the mattress, grandma!)
*went to the gym together
*started our weekly temple date tradition (derek's idea)
*mom swung through town on a visit to Utah for a work conference and Derek made his delicious olive garden soup for her!
*Derek bought me flowers and wrote me a love note
*started my internship
*truly loved that little two week sliver of time in that apartment on everett. <3
*had lots of meaningful conversations with Megan over the phone


*work work work
*job hunt job hunt
*school school school
*dad comes to help us move in to our apartment (we got to finally use all of our wedding presents! It was like opening them for the first time. we had to leave most of them behind because of our lack of storage over the summer.)
*spent the week with dad going out to eat, playing basketball, going to see the new Jurassic World movie, and talking. my dad and derek are best friends.
*lived for evenings spent together cooking, reading, watching movies, and talking
*moved in to our new ward
*got a cute gray couch
*Derek put up my gallery wall in the living room
*discovered intuitive eating. (life-changing.)
*Derek surprises me with new perfume


*grandma sent us flowers in a sweet pumpkin vase
*celebrated Halloween with cookie dough, Supernatural, and dancing to a spooky Halloween playlist (my favorite Halloween to date)
*celebrated Derek's birthday with waffles for breakfast, a bowl of goodies for him, and gave him a professional massage as his big gift. (funny story about that too. that goes on my new years resolution "need to journal about" list.) the night of his birthday he watched a basketball game with Makai, so he was pretty much living his perfect day. ;)
*spent time and had dinner with Derek's parents to celebrate Derek's birthday
*took a 10 day social media fast. started the blog (and finally followed that prompting.)
*came home to a huge SURPRISE: derek got a little piano keyboard so I can play. derek says, "i want music in my house." and i say, "me too."
*library dates, frozen yogurt dates, late night cuddles, staying up late talking together, making baby name lists. (note: not an announcement.)


*realized how comfortable and capable I felt in my new job and noticed the contrast to how terrified I was so start in august. it's amazing how we grow!
*traveled to Mattawa for a relaxing, non-traditional Thanksgiving.
*Derek waited patiently for his shoulder to heal up so he could play basketball again. lots of Icy Hot massages and hours on the bike.
*Attended a fancy Christmas social through the place I'm doing my internship at
*traveled to Utah for a BYU game with the family! it was freezing, but I had the best hot chocolate of my life that night.

*Derek got cleared for basketball again! Played that night, their team lost, and now they are out of the tournament. :(
*Honored Holly Hirai on December 4th. <3
*Derek worked hard on his Independent Research Project  for his last real class for his major!!
*Made Christmas cookies, had dance parties in the living room, and listened as Derek listened to several different versions of O, Holy Night until he found his favorite one.
*made good use of that sweet little keyboard
*traveled to Oregon and soaked up every second of family and home
*celebrated my favorite youngest sister's birthday. i love natalie and her sparkly, passionate, and driven heart! she is a gem.

Things I hope I remember about this last little sliver of the year: Derek stops by my work pretty consistently with little surprises or treats for me. my co-workers think he is an angel and i do have to say I feel pretty lucky.
I regained my testimony that life is better when I am living the Gospel daily (reading scriptures, praying, etc.) Also, our weekly temple dates have done wonders for us.
We recently implemented a new thing where we try to put our phones away at 8 o clock each night. We haven't been perfect, and Derek wasn't thrilled when I suggested we try it out, but I can already notice such a powerful difference in our relationship when we do this.

I notice when I look back at this list that life becomes richer, more complicated, and more beautiful as time goes on. As thrilling, challenging, flat-out fun, exhilarating, frustrating, and sweet as 2018 was, I can only imagine what 2019 will hold for us. Something tells me this will be the craziest and best year yet. We're holdin' on tight to each other and jumping in, eyes closed and cannon-ball style!