Rachel Jenae

The 2011 Year in Review

It started with change on the horizon. I’d just moved into a new house a few months before the end of the year and was about to embark on a new job. My heart was still full and overflowing from much needed time with family and friends over the holidays, but the new year was about to get jump started! I jumped into my new position as the Marketing and Communications Coordinator where no one had been for 2 years at a healthcare staffing company and the challenge of learning, managing, and juggling began!

January was a month full of transition, but if there was a theme for that month it was GRATEFUL. Overwhelmingly grateful! The end of January marked my 29th birthday and this post reminding me to continue to believe for all of God’s promises. I had a good friend throw me a surprise party and was incredibly blessed to enjoy the love of so many dear friends!

A few weeks later I had to say goodbye to my younger brother as he decided to move across the country to Spokane, Washington. I wasn’t thrilled to be so far apart, but watching him follow the Lord into the unknown was inspiring! Now, only a year later to see where he is and all that God has done is astounding! The game has definitely been changed!

A few spring photo shoots…

Into March and April I was head deep into my new job and, while still very much enjoying it, I had very little time for anything else. Writing was at a standstill for the most part as I felt like God was doing something I couldn’t see or understand.  I would start a million blogs and couldn’t finish them. Words just didn’t come. Something was stirring that made me uncomfortable. In a “I want to jump up and run the other way” type of feeling. Some of it was wrestling with life and simply where I was. I never would have imagined I would be working in the corporate healthcare arena and yet… I loved it. I loved what I was doing at least. I loved the people I worked with and that every day my job was about helping them increase their platform and that I loved!

Hit up a Rangers game with some good friends, then went to a Hillsong Live concert! 

May came and with it a fun Memorial weekend with the family at my parents. Time with them is never long enough.

Then into June I had my yearly JBU girls weekend retreat. I look forward to this weekend every year and getting together with some of my closest girlfriends from college days!  We always have an amazing fun-filled time and this one did not disappoint!

June 15th marked my much anticipated new WEBSITE launch! I’d been working on it for months with a good designer friend and I was beyond ready for the launch. The preparation was grueling, but I love how it all turned out! HUGE thanks to my friend Ish for all his hard work!

With summer time came lots of Texas heat in the triple digits, hanging out with great friends, one of my favorite holidays (the 4th of July) and time on the lake/river in the sun!  

July marked some hard questions in life. I was 6 months to my 30th birthday and the reality of life and if I was being faithful with all that God had given me hit home quite sternly.  Later that month I flew up to Spokane, Washington to meet my parents and visit my younger brother. It’s a beautiful area of the country and our short 4 days there were enough to tell me I need to go back for another visit.

Into August some major things shifted. Writing seemed to come easier than ever before and I felt God giving me vision for some new creative ventures. I began shooting a lot more and if you haven’t checked out some of the Tuesday Ties & Tutus series you’ll for sure want to read the stories of some of these beautiful individuals!  Monday Madness, Tuesday Ties & Tutus, Wednesday Weaknesses or Wishes, Thursday Thoughts, and Friday Follows… 2011 wasn’t going down easy. Even now looking back through so many of these I feel such a surge of rejuvenation and inspiration. The stories, the reminders, the things I learned over the fleeting days in the past year!

A few summer shoots… 

I made a quick trip to see these little faces!

Mid September I went to my parents to celebrate their 35th wedding anniversary as well as both of their birthdays. My dad turned the big 6-0!

The next month marked new transitions. I moved on from my job with the healthcare staffing company. It was somewhat expected, but happened abruptly. I’m not sure I’ve ever felt so much peace during transition as I did through that. Then quickly, without warning, God completely set me up to work with an organization in the non-profit world where I’ve gained so much insight over the last 3 months. God’s timing was incredibly evident!

Then as fall set in, there came the parties, lots of road trips, softball championship, and a quick trip to San Antonio!

I felt God whispering several things during September, October; take risks again, make strategic choices, do what you CAN do and don’t worrying about the rest. And probably the most impacting was His word to me on preparing and expecting and to that degree He is always faithful to fill! It was a new season of watching God completely take care off of me so He could take care of me. All I was suppose to do was prepare, expect and learn to receive. October flew by, mainly since I was gone almost every weekend. But I did get to see my entire family since my younger brother was in Arkansas for a friend’s wedding. First time we were all together all year!

A few more fall shoots…

Then December came and I felt the Lord starting to dig. Dig in my heart asking hard questions; to reveal hidden motives, to awaken things I’d forgotten and almost starting to prompt me for the new year ahead. The next decade of life entering my 30’s… eeek!  I’ve prayed for years that God wouldn’t let me forget things. That He’d remind me when I was wondering off from the one thing. That He’d never let me grow complacent and content with just living a good life, never let me waste time, but would continually confront my idea of normality. That amidst everything else in life, all my hearts desires, my dreams, my goals, my relationships, they would be rooted in desiring Him most of all. That’s what the last month has been about. A confrontation with reality. A check point.

I ended the year spending Christmas with my parents and my dad’s side of the family, then meeting up with a few friends to go to Kansas City to attend the Onething Conference held by the International House of Prayer there. It was by far the best New Year’s Eve I’ve ever had!

So that is a wrap for 2011 and where does that leave me now…starting 2012? EXPECTANT. I feel like I’m sitting on the edge of so many possibilities this next year! I continue to do contract photography, social media and web design work, but am praying about several other opportunities in the near future. I’d appreciate your prayers as I move forward in wherever that may be this next year!

Happy New Year to you all! Thanks for coming along for the ride and all of your encouragement throughout the year! I’m believing 2012 is the year of open doors for all of us!  So now we just go walk through them!  The best is yet to come!

Much love,

J

 

 

 

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