Tuesday, December 31, 2013

What A Year!!

When I reflect back on 2013, I have to start at the very beginning.  I wrote the following in a post on January 3rd:

Looking back on 2012, I realize I have a lot of reasons to be thankful and a lot of reasons to look forward to 2013. I believe that 2013 will be a great year. I am praying everyday that it is the year Chris and I are able to stop being long distance. We have every reason to believe that God will say yes this year and make it a reality! It is also the year I turn 30. It is the year I get a new niece or nephew. It is the year that I hope to get promoted at work. It is the year I run a marathon...barring any late fall tropical storms, of course! It is a year of lots of other exciting things that I don't even know about yet! I look forward to seeing how it all turns out!

I am in awe that all of these dreams were realized and that SO many others came true as well!!

For now, I want to take you on a stroll down memory lane...

In January, I got promoted at my job and worked AFC Championship in chilly New England.

In February, I spent some time in New Orleans working SuperBowl XLVII and celebrated Valentine's Day on a fun day trip with my love.

In March, we had some fun dates and I went to see Annie with a friend!

In April, I met Tom Hanks after we saw him on broadway in Lucky Guy and celebrated 3 years with Christopher.

In May, my niece turned one and I participated in a fun book swap.

In July, I became an aunt again when my little nephew Landon was born and turned 30 in style!

In October, I threw a surprise party for Christopher and we had a lot of fall fun!


I look forward to sharing more about my hopes and dreams for 2014 soon! 
Hope you all have a very Happy New Year!!!

Andrea :)

Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas in Kentucky

Spending Christmas in Kentucky is one of the highlights of my year!  And this year was one of the best ever!  It was SO much fun to experience the holiday with my little niece and nephew. 

I began the Christmas week adventures in western Kentucky where I grew up.  Dad had ordered some cupcakes from Sophia's Bake Shop for me to try.  Sophia's is owned and operated by one of my high school classmates so it was nice to briefly visit with her before we devoured her super tasty treats!

I was also able to spend some time with family in Owensboro at my favorite BBQ spot - Old Hickory!  Nothing else even comes close in my BBQ book :)

All my other spare moments in western KY were spent either at church or watching Seasons 1, 2, and 3 of Downton Abbey.  I am officially ready for Season 4 to begin next week!!

Our first stop in Lexington was Southern Lights.  It was fun to watch Brinley oooh and ahhh at the lights this year.  We also got to take a train ride, visit Santa, and see some animals in the petting zoo.


Next, we did some cookie making and decorating!  Everyone had fun with this task.

We went to see a couple movies during the week as well.  Frozen was a cute animated film that we all enjoyed together.  And then the adults (minus Jordan and Jen) ventured out on Christmas Day to see The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.  It was not exactly what I was expecting, but I did like it overall.

Brinley loves popcorn!!

And then it was Christmas morning!!


We had fun exchanging gifts and watching the kids unwrap their presents!


And then we sent mom and dad on a little scavenger hunt for their final BIG present from us!

We also took lots of pictures with the Christmas tree at Jordan's house and in downtown Lexington.  It's not easy to get everyone posing at the same time, but we gave it our best shot!

I had a wonderful Christmas this year.  I hope yours was wonderful as well!

Andrea :)

Thursday, December 26, 2013

700 Sundays

My dad was actually the first to mention to me that Billy Crystal was going to be on Broadway this winter.  I remember my dad and I watching him perform his wonderful little song and dance routines time and again as host of the Oscars.  I also randomly picked up his book titled 700 Sundays a few years ago and gave it a quick read.  I laughed, I cried, and I knew it wouldn't be a show I'd want to miss.

Fortunately, the show opened the week I ran the NYC Marathon so mom and dad were in town.  Chris and I joined them to watch Billy's one-man show on opening night!  That was something none of us had ever experienced before...and so was the show!  We all loved it!  The show is hard to describe because it's serious, but it's funny...it's sad, but it makes you smile...it's about youth and it's about aging.  It's truly a little bit of everything.  And Billy Crystal is phenomenal. 

He's also one of the nicest celebrities out there.  On a random November night, I happened to pass by the back entrance to the theater just as a crowd was gathering to get autographs.  I was on my way home from the laundromat, but the security guard said he'd be another 30 minutes so I ran home and grabbed my playbill.  He not only signed it, but graciously posed for a picture with me.  I wasn't quite dressed for the occasion, but it was fun to meet him.  He was a very genuine man.  After this initial meeting, my wheels began to turn regarding a great Christmas gift for my parents.  I managed to keep quiet mentioning that I had met him which was by far the most difficult of the tasks at hand.  I also ordered a copy of his book and plotted a time to return to collect his autograph on it for my parents.  It was a much colder December night when I ventured over this time, but he was more than willing to sign for me.  After a brief conversation with me, he actually offered to personalized the autograph for them.  He's definitely one of a kind...and I hope to see him back as host of the Oscars soon!!

Andrea :)