Embrace your calling, and invest in it.

That is my take away from 2017. In many ways it was a whirlwind year. I shared many of our adventures here on the blog, and I thought it would be fun for me to take a look back at the year. I often find it’s easy to see goals I didn’t quite meet, or the work that is still ahead… but I wanted to take some time to look at this last year as it was a big one for our little family.

It began with the release of Matt’s film She Has a Name. Something we had been towards for over 3 years- especially Matt’s studio that he has with his 2 brothers. To put it into the world felt scary and exhilarating… my own words. The hope behind that project has always been to help to set the captives free- those that find themselves in the horrible reality of human slavery. Especially children. I am so proud of my husband for his continued faithfulness to this project. He is always working on getting it in front of more eyes- and looking for creative ways to see it utilized as a resource and educational tool. (you can find it available here in Canada and here in the US)

We also began the renovation of Maker House Studio. A community maker studio created to help propel creatives, entrepreneurs and individuals toward their dreams and goals. It was a ton of work- and now we are into the day in/day out side of building it as a business. We are slowly building our member base, and are navigating how to best see that part of the vision realized, but we have been encouraged by the response to the space, the tools available, and the workshops we have held. We are looking forward to seeing it grow in 2018. I wish something like this was available to us 10 years ago when we worked out of our basement!

We filmed a web series about the reno process- and that was a lot of fun! My childhood years of pretending I was Martha Stewart weren’t completely in vain. ūüėČ I have to say I really enjoyed creating this series (even if we still haven’t put our all the episodes)- and I am so looking forward to producing more content in the video realm.

One of the biggest choices we made this year was to invest in our family. We realized a long time dream of ours- which was to buy a little piece of property in the rocky mountains. We had more “R&R” this year than the last 5 years combined. It was amazing to go on hiking and ski trips- take our kids swimming and savour God’s creation. When we went to the mountains on our honey moon almost 12 years ago, we talked about how amazing it would be to have a place in the mountains. I am totally humbled that we saw that come to fruition this year. It has been such a gift.

I spent many days puttering in the garden with my sweet kiddos, we grew abundant blooms and I planted my first dahlia tubers. We also grew the most ridiculous zucchinis, and had more than we possibly knew what to do with! I feel like my kiddos grew up so much this year, and it was one of the first years that being a mother felt more familiar than not…They challenge me, and bless me, and just make me grow in ways I never could have imagined.

My blog saw some ebb and flow, with the news that I was expecting a new baby! I spent the first part of the year pretty sick and with very little energy. So the energy that I did have went into homeschooling, starting a new business, running a family, and teaching dance. But, I continued to post as regularly as I could- and enjoyed my role as a contributor for Remodelaholic.

Things felt a little less personal in this space, and a little more home and diy focused- as we worked on some more projects around the house. I missed sharing some parts of our lives, but I also felt the need to nest and quiet myself.

Welcoming our new baby boy in November took much of my attention. We had a big push to finish projects around the house, and to get a good jump start on homeschooling- which left things a little quieter around here. Just getting this entire post out has taken longer than I would like to admit- as I gathered my thoughts. I always like to reflect on the year either around my birthday or in the new year. Since I had a 2 day old on my birthday, that didn’t quite happen!

It is hard to believe a whole month of 2018 has already flown by… but I have a feeling this is gonna be a good one! I can’t wait to share little bits of our journey along the way, and of course more adventures in DIY, decor and mothering. Thank you so, so much for stopping by this little old blog. It means so much to me,

-Miss Ash


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