2015 in Review, The Good, The Bad, The Ugly, and What I Learned

Last week I shared with you the top viewed posts on TNTL in 2015. This week I am going to review the whole year for not only TNTL but our family and finances too.

I am a big believer in reflecting on yourself and learning from the past.

"Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results" - Albert Einstein
I have no interest in being labeled as insane. Different. Odd. Weird, those do not bother me. Knowing that I can learn from my mistakes, failures, and past experiences means that I get a lot of FREE self development!

2015 has been a rough year. If you have ever heard of picking one word to define your year mine would be REFINING.

I normally don't pick the one word at the beginning of the year because I really don't think you know what the good Lord has up his sleeve for you and if you focus too much on what you want then you are shutting out the possibilities he has for you.

I could tell this year was going to be a year of learning and humbling myself more when my grams passed late in 2014. I carried and still carry that pain of loss with me to this day. It has very much broken me in ways I never thought I could be broke. I have always pride myself on understanding that death is part of life. As a Christian I know that this earth is not our home. I have never lost anyone I loved more than my Grams. As I sit here and type this tears are steaming down my face. I know that this pain will help me one day and it has made we realize that I have so many emotions I have not even tapped into at the age of 29. We also experienced the loss of one of me and husband best friends. This is a whole other level of lose because he was so young and we had not seen him is quite a while. We miss him terribly and the sting of live being so short awakeness us almost nightly.

I can not label this experience as good, bad, or ugly. I am just calling it a learning experience.

For 2016 I am taking a slightly different approach to how I view my one word. I am giving myself a call to action instead of a word. I think if I set out how I want to act in 2016 I can still follow the path laid out before me. For 2016 I want to take on each day with "No Excuses". I do not think I make many excuses and am pretty determined by nature but I feel like I have a new prospective from the refining this year and want to take advantage of this.

Do you do one word for each year? I would love to hear them!

I know this is not my typical type of content. I didn't even thing I would share about my grams. Sometimes I just have to let my fingers lead me.

Let's get into the review!!

Beach Trip 15

Jeff's First Pole Barn Design, Built By Highland Building Services
The Good

  • TNTL has seen some considerable growth this year. More than that we have seen an amazing community develop! I have to thank all of you for that and for trusting me to help you with your finances.
  • I have finally found my groove with how often to post, what to post, and how to make this blogging thing work!
  • TNTL has guest posted for WC Parents, The Hippie Juice Mama, and The Frugal Homeschooling Mom. This was a goal of mine in 2015!
  • I joined Periscope and love it. I will be back in action on Periscope come January so if you would like to join in on this live platform you can find me.
  • TNTL family has been doing some good things this year too, Our oldest son completed his first year of competitive soccer. He ended up with 3 goals and learned a lot about how to be a team plyer. 
  • My Husband saw one of his first designs built in real life. It was so amazing to see the progression of his design take life. He has since designed another build and it was just recently completed! 
  • Our little man has made leaps and bounds in learning this year. He is counting to 12, knows all of his colors, and is starting to work on his alphabet. 
  • We also went on our very first family vacation to the beach!!

The Bad
The Little Guy with Stitches
The Oldest!
  • I learned that committing to too much is not good. It is not only draining but it takes precious time away from family, friends, and other commitments. This means that I have scaled back on my posts,and my extra curricular activities so I could concentrate on things I will never get back. This was a hard choice when you are trying to grow a business and feed your passion but it was the right choice.
  • Our family experienced staples for the first time! Our little man, who is a monkey by nature, crashed is head into our end table and required 8 staples!
  • My Husband who I will from here on out just refer to as Jeff also experienced a first with an emergency surgery having his appendix out and then taking a tumble down our stairs and breaking his elbow within 48 hours. Darn Compression stockings and wood stairs!
  • I did not do a good job with couponing this year. This year we increased our grocery buget and concentrated on eating balanced. I found that I stopped couponing for food as much but I also had a great stockpile for personal and home supplies. So I didn't need to coupon for those items either.  I have depleted most of this so I will be starting again in 2016
The Ugly
  • My little Jetta has had another terrible year. This car has been so draining financially but we do not feel it is wise to have two car payments because we could not afford it. Not having a working vehicle for a majority of the year has been frustrating. I am hoping the recent repairs fix the issue but, lets just say I am not holding my breath.
  • Jeff's job has been very demanding in 2015. This is the first year I felt this way. He has had a total of 3.5 week off this year and work most weekends. While he is the sole provider for our family he has a salaried position so this extra work has not blessed us financially and has left him feeling very tired. I pray that 2016 is a better year for this, I know that boys and I miss him!
We built a Tree house
That about sum's up the this year it was a rough year, it was a refining year, it was a year of firsts.

I am ready to move on to 2016 which I am visualizing as a year or improvement and joy.

Thank you all for taking this journey with us!


Moments captured 

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