It’s difficult to believe 2013 has come to a close. It’s been a chaotic year for my family, and we have a lot to celebrate. A Hopeful Heart, the first book in my Hearts of the Lancaster Grand series, debuted in June. My mother and I stuck to our exercise program and successfully made it back to our goal weights. In June, my family and I celebrated the two-year anniversary of my husband’s second kidney transplant. We’re so very thankful for his good health—it’s truly a blessing.
My family and I will have a lot to celebrate in 2014. My next young adult book, Destination Unknown, will hit bookshelves in February, followed by my memoir, A Gift of Love, in March and A Mother’s Secret, my second book in my new Amish series, in June.
While I’m not one to traditionally make a list of New Year’s resolutions, I do have a few things I want to keep close to my heart in 2014:
1. Don’t Stress Too Much. Working a full-time job, writing books, and being a mom is a not an easy balance for me. I’m thankful that my mother lives with my family and helps me keep it all together. I find I tend to get caught up in the stress of working full time and also writing, and I worry that I’m not focused enough on my most important job—being a good mother. In 2014, I will work hard to keep a healthy balance with all of my jobs.
2. Make Time for Fun. In 2014, my husband I hope to take our children on a special family vacation. This is has been something I’ve dreamed of doing for a long time, but we’ve not been able to due to my husband’s fragile health. Now that my husband is dialysis-free, we plan to celebrate with a special trip in the spring.
3. Enjoy my Children. My older son will officially be a teenager this month. Soon he’ll be too busy with his friends to want to spend time with our family. In 2014, I pledge to do something fun with my boys at least once a week. They’re growing up too fast, and I want to enjoy them as much as I can while they’re still living at home.
4. Remember to be Thankful. It was only three short years ago that we were praying for a matching kidney donor for my husband, Joe. With God all things are possible, and I see that daily as I enjoy my husband’s health. In 2014, I will keep my blessings close to my heart and remember to thank God daily for my family and for our good health.
I pray you and your family have a happy and healthy New Year. What are your 2013 reflections and what will you plan for 2014?