It's no shock to me that 2015 was huge and amazing for us McKinleys. It seems that every year brings a little more excitement and challenges to the table for us. I've been blessed with two guys that are able to both roll with the punches and push me harder at the same time. Our personal and professional lives are pretty much one and the same, so we excel and struggle with both at the very same time. It can be exhausting, emotionally and physically. But we somehow always manage to find our way to the top, together.
It's been a big year, to say the least. (But I think I say this every year.)
We watched our businesses grow.
Bennett finalized Meet Me in the Alley, a community project that spent over a year and a half in the limelight (and would totally be still going if his mean wife didn't suggest we put an end date on it). I received some accolades in our state newspaper, The State Journal, for Handmade Escapade. I even got my own radio interview about my business...but I never got around to actually sharing the recording of it, whoops!
We celebrated milestones.
Louis turned a whopping FIVE years old and we had a super awesome Lego-themed birthday party for him. I turned an even more whopping THIRTY this year. And Bennett and I rang in another year as Mr. and Mrs., making it our SIXTH anniversary. Whoop whoop! Bennett turned 29 (but I was totally in St. Lucia, watching Billy and Meaghan get married so I missed out on giving him a proper celebration, sorry babe)!
Louis started another year of school, this time being in JK4 (junior kindergarten 4), and he is attending 5 days a week. ::sob:: My baby! He has been rocking out in school and loves every second of learning and growing with his fellow classmates.
I sewed all the fabric.
This gets it's own day, to showcase everything I've been able to make in a year's time. If you want a sneak peek, you can check out my special hashtag on Instagram: #katymade15 I also was lucky enough to be hired on by Patterns for Pirates as her new employee! So obsessively sewing does really pay off!
I started my year in Saint Lucia with the Boltzes. Right after that, Bennett and I left Louis home with Grandma and we flew out for a long weekend in Minneapolis, MN to watch our besties get married (as well as photograph their wedding). We headed into Washington DC to explore the city and attend the White House Easter Egg Roll. Bennett drove my Momma from Idaho to Pennsylvania, to help her move close to us. Woot!
We went to Indiana to celebrate Delilah's 2nd birthday. We headed north to Michigan to spend time with the Boltze side of our family. We got to meet the newest member of the family and welcomed baby Lincoln into the world in Indiana. And we spent an entire week in North Carolina, drinking all the beers and eating all the foods for Thanksgiving.
We spent a lot of time in our own city, being a part of it's growth and development.
Oh boy, did we ever? We helped make decorations for (and then decorated) old buildings in Wheeling that needed a little love. We helped fund startup businesses in Downtown Wheeling. We "raised the roof" in funds for The Blue Church. We went to the Celtic Festival, the annual auction and fundraiser for Louis' school, another round of Show of Hands, and a preliminary chili cookoff for Wheeling Young Preservationists.
We attended the actual Wheeling Chili Cookoff. We hit up the Wheeling Arts Festival. Bennett, Louis and I walked around Wheeling and took pictures of anything that inspired us within the walls of our own city. The Good Zoo Brew did not disappoint for the fourth year that we've attended now. We camped in our own front yard.
We said goodbye to "the alley". We went pumpkin picking at our favorite local farm. We dressed up in costumes and went to Boo at the Zoo...as well as trick or treating as Star Wars Rebels. We dressed an elephant in a tutu. We cut down our own Christmas tree (and got to be on the local news while doing it). And my favorite, we experienced first-hand the true meaning of Christmas, through all of the generous gifts and donations for our 'adopted family' this year.
It's been a big, amazing, busy, fantastic year. Bring it, 2016.