8 January 2016

top 15 of ‘15

an entire week (plus a day!) of two thousand sixteen has already passed, and i’m still registering that two thousand fifteen is over. two thousand fifteen was truly an epic year for us. this morning i took some time to reflect on some of my highlights.

one.
in january, we went on a whirlwind trip to switzerland, sweden and england for job interviews. it was the boy’s first time overseas!
switz

two.
in february, we celebrated our first valentine’s day married (and it was, true to form, not perfect) and, on that sunny san francisco day, made the decision to move to london.
sf

three.
we spent the first three weeks of march planning our around the world trip, selling/storing all our belongings, and finding the best backpacks for our eighty day voyage. on march twenty second, we began our epic adventure.
departing

{we had sooo many incredible experiences in our travels around the world and it’s pretty near impossible to pick just a few as highlights from the year. it’s very possible that i’ll come back to edit this post when i decide i missed an unmissable highlight!}

four.
i was swept up in fascination and inspiration as we walked the pilgrim circuit around the jokhara temple in lhasa, where faith and colour is thick in the air. we were greatly impacted by the devotion to god and struggle for cultural freedom that we witnessed in tibet.
lhasa2 lhasa3

five.
as we hiked over sparkly snow at nearly 18,000 feet in the himalayas of nepal, i felt outlandishly triumphant and exuberant. and, later as we learned more about the earthquake, we felt incredibly grateful to be safe. our perspectives and lives were forever changed by nepal.
thepass

six.
we marveled together as we watched the sun set over the bosphorus from a rooftop terrace cafe in istanbul, as the mosques lit up and the sky turned dark indigo. also, i was a bit wild with glee exploring the grand bazaar (the worldwide king of markets).
galata

seven.
my face hurt from smiling and my heart was heavy with pure, being alive exhilaration as we repelled down waterfalls and swam with penguins in ecuador.
rapelling

eight.
on our plane ride from quito to miami, the boy and i tried to find a way to recap our truly amazing adventures around the world, in six continents and ten countries and eighty days. as we talked we both shared a strong feeling that the greatest thing we gained from our travels was a deeper understanding of what truly matters in life – and it’s not exotic adventures (although we loved and learned a lot from those!). and we both realized and discussed that our adventure together was just starting.
plane

{how i’ve left out new zealand and south africa and china entirely, i do not know! and that mosque in abu dhabi! and la boca in buenos aires! wow, we had some incredible experiences this year traveling. i often earnestly pray to god that he will help us to remember what we saw, learned, experienced – that it will become more and more and more a part of our fibers and thus continue to help us become better human beings in some ways.}

nine.
in june, the boy officially because a doctor of philosophy, gradutating with his phd in economics from stanford. we had such a wonderful celebration in palo alto with both sets of parents (and my fantastic aunt and uncle), and i felt the sweetest glow of pride for all of ian’s hard, hard work, and all the memories we created together (and apart!) in the bay area.
graduation

ten.
in juy, we planned and executed the eyrealm bear lake reunion, saw lots of wright family members, and went ahead and hopped over the pond to our new home.
reunion

eleven.
after a really crazy few weeks adjusting from jetlag and big-life-transition whiplash, enduring a quite grueling search for housing, hosting family and friend visitors, job searching and job starting, and very intense studying for regulatory exams, we at last felt at peace and at home one really magical evening whilst riding the london eye.
eye

twelve.
we spent a week in september cruising the medditerranean and discovering super cool seaside towns with my parents, and then i spent a week in october exploring the engadin valley in switzerland, uber charming bavaria, and salzburg (where there’s constant music in the air) with my mom and sisters. a preeeeetty great introduction to the joys of living in europe.
cruisesisters

thirteen.
we celebrated both thanksgiving and christmas together, just the two of us, and it was very sweet. and we got to be with family in spain after thanksgiving and in england before christmas! {also, our roadtrip to many different christmas markets in switzerland, austria and germany was pretty dreamy and i adored feeling like i was in a magical christmas village fairytale for six days.}
thanksgiving christmas

fourteen.
as we’ve slowly settled into our little central london flat with its bright red door and long windows, we’ve had some splendid, simple moments at home – being in love, learning from each other, growing up. we’ve also loved teaching with the missionaries and our primary children at church, inviting new friends over for dinner, and finding new ways to serve in our new life.

fifteen.
and as we walked home from our nye fireworks viewing spot on lambeth bridge, the bells of westminister abbey tolled so gorgeously through the dark london night. our hearts were so genuinely happy, together and at home.
fireworks

there were some truly challenging things about two thousand fifteen, but looking back it sure does seem like an epic, wonderful, amazing, beautiful, very very very blessed year.

{top 14 from ‘14; highlights from 2013}

3 comments :

  1. Wow! Your year contained more adventures than most people experience in a lifetime! I loved following along and can't wait to see what's in store for you both in the coming new year.

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  2. Love your blog, and love this post... oh, and I simply ADORE that photo from the plane window, looking at the clouds below as though they are dancing on water. Simply divine.

    -Sabrina from Seattle

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  3. What an amazing year you guys have had!

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