2011 in a Jar

Today we mark the last day of the year.  What an incredible year it has been?!  Josh and I have had such a wonderful year and I am glad to commemorate all that our year has been.

Since it has been such an eventful and exciting year, I wanted to create a little token of remembrance as we end the year well.  God has given us such a great year and I want to be mindful of that every time I look at this memory jar.  I collected a little something that represents each significant part of 2011.  Each of the items I selected are connected in a way to something we seek to remember.  These items are not valuable in and of themselves, but when put together they hold great value for our family this year.

Let me share the meaning behind all of these items!

(1.) 'Yash' Bracelet- This "Yash" bracelet represents our new relationship with our sister church in Mexico.  This year we have gone down to Mexicalli on several occasions to serve, visit, and catch up with our friends.  The bracelet was given to Josh on our Mexicalli Outreach trip this past spring by a few of our students.  It serves as a wonderful reminder of the mission trip with our high school students as well as our sister church Templo Ebenezer. 
(2.) Standing Stones- These stacked rocks are a reminder of standing stones in our lives.  This year in my bible study we have been looking a lot at the concept of standing stones and how in the Old Testament they were set up to commemorate what God had done.  This year has been a year in which Josh and I have set up many standing stones.  God has done great things in our life and we have "set up" many standing stones along the way to give God the glory that is due Him.  The standing stones are a reminder that we live our lives as a testament to God's faithfulness to us.  
(3.) Viva Elvis Keychain- This keychain is a marker of Josh's Price is Right journey!  This was such an exciting and fun part of our year!  The showcase that Josh won was all Elvis themed and so this keychain is a great reminder of all of the Elvis we have experienced so far (in Vegas) and going to experience on the Elvis Cruise next month.  Additionally a keychain is the perfect symbol for a car!  The Cadillac that Josh won will forever be a great memory for us and one of the craziest parts of his showcase winnings.  We got to share the TPIR experience with so many of our friends which made it even more exciting.  What a fun part of our year to remember! 
(4.) The Sun- The sun momento is a symbol of our Houseboat trip that we took this year with our High School youth group.  It was so hot, but so much fun.  It was the first trip that Josh had ever run independently from an organization and it was a success!  Since then he has planned and is planning other independent events that have been so much fun.  It is such a great opportunity to grow as a group on these trips and forever this houseboating trip will be a reminder of the great group we had with us that week.

(5.) Crayons- These crayons are a reminder of my time at Woodbury Elementary school where I worked as an instructional aid to some struggling students, both educationally and behaviorally.  I gained some great experience and knowledge in my time working with the rowdy first graders, but it was a growing experience. 
(6.) Shells- The summer and the beach are two of my favorites!  These shells remind us of all of the time we spent this year at the beach or the pool soaking in the summer rays.  My friend Jenna and I hit up our pool several days this past summer and even fall.  We created some great memories in the sun.
(7.) Dice- The dice are a token which symbolizes the game night that we started with a few other couples from church.  Every month we get together with a few other married, young couples to share a meal, some games, and lots of laughs.  We all are pretty involved in our church and ministry and it is so much fun to hang out together and be filled.  Josh and I have cherished those times!
(8.) Heart- The heart calls to mind Heart Christian Academy which is the school that Josh and I started working at this past school year.  Josh teaches two hours a week at the school and I teach full days twice a week.  For me it has been so great to have my own classroom and finally get to use the degree and credential I worked so hard to obtain.  God has been so gracious to us in providing an additional income and a compassionate community to be a part of.  I am loving my time there with my students and Josh loves the few hours he spends there as well.
(9.) Foothills Church, Josh's Business Card- Last January Josh and I transitioned to a new church where he is on staff as a youth pastor.  We absolutely adore our church!  When I talked about the standing stones of God's faithfulness to us back in number 2, this was at the forefront of my mind.  God was so faithful in providing a job for Josh when we felt called away from our last church.  Not only was God faithful in providing a job, but he gave abundantly as we are now a part of an incredible church family.  Ministry with the youth students is incredible.  We feel so blessed to be part of a community where God is the focus and people are seeking to grow in their faith and in Christ's likeness.  I praise God every time I walk through the doors of Foothills and I remember his gracious faithfulness to us.

(10.) Starbucks Cup- This Starbucks cup is representative of my blog and the most successful post I have ever written.  Last September I shared my Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes with the blog world and you all really liked it!  I was thrilled.  This past April I started this little blog and had no clue what it would bring or if anyone besides me would ever read it.  Man have I been so pleasantly surprised!  My blog has been so much fun for me over the past few months as I've had an outlet to share all of my "creative" spurts and projects I've slowly worked on.  I love this blog and I am so thankful to all of you who keep coming back to read more!
(11.) Wine Cork- This wine cork stands for all of the trips Josh and I made down to Cardiff by the Sea this past year.  This little spot has become a getaway for the two of us, a place to reconnect and escape for a night.  One of our favorite parts of the B&B we stay at is the rooftop patio.  Each time we visited, we picked out a bottle of wine to share and watch the sunset.  We would just chat and catch up without talking about ministry or blogs or anything that would take away for our rare time alone.
(12.) Snowflake-  This snowflake reminds us of the two trips to winter camp we made in our first few months at Foothills.  Josh and took both the Jr. High and High School group up to Forest Home on two separate weekends.  Both of the trips were at the start of our time in our new ministry and so were exciting times to start to build relationships with our students.  We had a blast and started the basis for many relationships at camp.  We also both got sick after each trip, but let's focus on the good!
(13.) Blackjack- The King and the Ace are a winning blackjack hand!  These two evoke memories of the Las Vegas trip we won with The Price is Right. I had never gambled before and so we decided to try out a slot machine, but the only game I had the slightest clue as to how to play was blackjack-so blackjack it was.  It started out well, but ended poorly.  I think I only lost a few bucks, but I also got that gambling bug out of my system (I think we got off easy).  Only a few moments of our week long trip were spent playing blackjack-smoky casinos give me a headache!  The entirety of our trip was essentially spent poolside and wearing poolry.  While we laid by the pool Josh and I connected with one another, read marriage books, and talked about our commitment to working on our relationship before it needs fixing (so far this plan is working out marvelously)!  It was a trip I never thought I'd take, but the memories and the health that came out of the trip for our marriage was priceless (take that Price is Right)!

When you put all of those items together, you get a lovely jar full of a year of delightful memories and growth for Josh and I as a couple!  Here's to you 2011!

 Happy New Year!


  1. What a fabulous idea! I can't wait to share this with my family. I just know they are going to want to do this too. Thanks for the wonderful idea.

  2. i love this idea! thanks for sharing what each of these things mean to you and your husband. plus...super cool about the price is right! holy buckets. thanks for following! i'm following you back. :) -- Hilary


  3. Kaitlin that is so great! I love reading all of your stuff, you are so creative!

  4. Such a great idea and so meaningful! Years from now you will cherish even more the times you've spent together! Drop by for a visit real soon...gift-giveaway going on!!


Post a Comment

Thank you for your thoughtful comments! I always look forward to hearing from you!