Today I’m sharing our latest family photos and links to all of the best recipes from The Vintage Mixer in 2016. Skip to the bottom of the post for the recipes but before you do I must say that I’m grateful that you’re here reading this, through the year we’ve had, the support I’ve gotten online has been encouraging and uplifting in so many ways! Thank you!!
Wow! What a year we’ve had. I must say that I’m glad it’s over but I am also glad for it all, the good and the bad. In 2016 we found a mass on our little boy’s liver and he had to go into a major surgery to get it removed. This year we also had our second child, our sweet Ruthie, who was the light in our dark year. We didn’t travel as much as planned, unless you count trips to the hospital, but we snuggled on the couch a lot. It was a year of contrast, the bitter with the sweet, the blessings with the hardships.
After having our little gal come into the world, we had our friends Renata and Jess come over to photograph our family. We wanted to document this year that we’d knew we would be looking back over for years to come. Here are the photos along with thoughts from our year.
2016 started with a bang, a trip to visit family in Texas then a bad case of pneumonia that landed Everett in the hospital. Having a kid with bad pneumonia was almost unbearable to me, then after a ultra-sound to check fluid in his lungs, they found a mass on his liver that could be cancerous. You can read Everett’s full story here. I was completely and utterly broken at this point; my heart hurt for my little boy and I was barely holding it together. What I learned was to just take it one day or even one moment at a time. I’m sure you’ve heard this saying before but when you’re undergoing a trauma like we did this year, it was the only way to survive. God gave us our daily bread, daily. And we made it through. Some days I only survived by sticking my head deep into scripture then meditating on those words of hope all day. I carried around verses and words of encouragement from friends in little nerdy notecards in my purse so I wouldn’t forget the hope I have. I had moments filled with hope alongside moments of despair but we were all carried through with the necessary help of prayer and love from friends and family.
The long days at the hospital and days recovering at home all had a little flickering light that somedays I could barely see while other days it seemed brighter. This light was the fact that I was pregnant the whole time. I was pregnant while laying beside my boy in his hospital bed and pregnant while standing beside his crib just moments after the surgery. Our little gal even kicked at the bars on Everett’s crib in the hospital, as if she was saying, I’m here and hang in there brother! We were all given hope from her presence.
In August she arrived. I was able to go into labor naturally, praise Jesus, (I had a rough induction with Everett!). Ruth Esther Rosenthal was born in the light (literally and figuratively) with little complications, 6 lbs 13 ounces with chunky cheeks, big blue eyes, and a full head of brunette hair.
Once we held Ruthie in our arms it was like we were at the end of a dark season. We had entered into a newness, something fresh and exciting. When Everett met her for the first time, he simply gasped and said, ‘I love her!’ And this is exactly how we all felt.
Some years are met with tragedy and trials, or joys and celebrations. Our 2016 was one of both and we’ll take it. Phew, I’m sure glad its over though. Thank you Jesus for getting us through moment by moment and for all of your (my friends and family online and off) love, prayers and support AND for the countless meals that nourished our body and souls!
Without further adieu, here are the top recipes from this year. The first set are the recipes from 2016 that got the most views on my blog and the second list are my favorites from the year, ones that if you haven’t tried yet, you must!
Top Recipes from 2016
Butternut Squash Carrot and Orange Soup
Broccoli and Chicken Quinoa Casserole
My favorite Recipes of 2016
Roasted Chicken with Figs and Butternut Squash
Healthy Peanut Butter and Chocolate Bars with Date Caramel
Apricot and Cherry Breakfast Crisp
Butternut Squash and Brussels Sprout Galette with Goat Cheese
Such great pictures of your beautiful family. I hope 2017 brings you all good things.
Thanks so much dear friend! Lets cook together more this year!
Love the photos of the family. And I sincerely hope 2017 will be a bit smoother for you. You deserve a great year!
It has to be smoother!! Happy New Year to you Kalyn!
What a beautiful testimony of God’s faithfulness in our darkest hours. I love that sweet Ruthie was a constant reminder, with her little kicks, of the new life God was brining into your family. So much hope amidst a heartbreaking journey. So grateful that Everett is healed and for a fresh, fun start to 2017!
Phew!! I’m glad it’s over and ready for this new start!! Also, really glad to know you!