2011 – A Year in Review

What a year! We started out the year in Alabama for a few weeks while Sam completed ASBC, an AF training course.

Sam’s Flight at ASBC

And,  as luck would have it, our car transmission went right before we were supposed to leave, so we hurriedly rented a car to get down there, which meant that we spent our time there pretty much stuck on base with no car. When we arrived, we learned that despite the fact that our paperwork was all filled out correctly, they didn’t expect me to be there and didn’t have a room for us. Then, when we finally got a room, we shared it with about half a dozen mice, until we finally caught them all (more on that here). 
Much of my time in our little hotel room was spent editing my pictures from Bryan & Earon’s wedding, and, being stuck on base with no vehicle, I was desperately thankful I had a project to do. They had gotten married in December, and theirs was my first time shooting a wedding – what a blast!
Towards the end of our trip, while Sam was gone for the combative portion of the training, his sister, Becky came to rescue me and she and I went to Pensacola for a few days to spend some time in the sun, on the beach, and away from the mice… 
Pensacola Beach
March and April were filled with morning sickness and the excitement of telling family and friends that we were going to have a baby!! Our first! Due October 23, 2011. Not that he came in October, but, more on that later… 🙂 I also attended my first-ever Air Force Dining Out (fancy-shmancy dinner with a special speaker, a lot of applauding, and a disgusting tradition known as the grog. Blech).
All dressed up for the Dining Out
Sam and I celebrated our 1-year anniversary in May and stayed in Cincinnati for the weekend in a trendy bed & breakfast in a remodeled 1800’s city building with a gourmet chef who wore blue and white striped pants. Ahh…and his breakfasts were out of this world. Because the B&B was right next to the music hall where the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra plays, all of the rooms were named after composers. I don’t remember who our composer was, I just was glad we didn’t get the creepy room with a ceramic mold of the composer’s head mounted at the end of the bed staring at you. Oh, and while we were in the city we even got last-minute tickets to see a concert while we were there (seriously, they were so last-minute that we had to sit in different rows. Definitely an interesting way to enjoy a concert – your date in the row behind you. But, the music was so worth it, and we were able to switch seats to sit together after the intermission so it was all good).
Our room at the B&B

While we were in Cincinnati, we also got to go to an aquarium, something I’ve wanted to do for a long time.
The summer months I spent growing larger and larger, trying desperately to stay cool, and completing an Airplane-themed nursery for our little boy. 
And trying to get photos of this hawk, that decided that a hide-out near our neighbor’s bird feeder was a prime location to spot fat, lazy prey.
Lets see…I was also introduced to the wonder that is IKEA (Oh Happy Day!), Sam got his eyes lasered, we got plugged in at a local church, and we had a couple of baby showers. Oh, and remember the growing I mentioned? Yea…I wasn’t kidding. 
Pregnancy Collage
By that last photo, I was overdue and very, very ready to meet our little boy. He was due October 23 and boy, oh boy were we excited! But, he wasn’t in any hurry to get here, and on October 31, a week and a day overdue, I was induced. To make a very long story short, I spent 30 hours in Pitocin-induced labor, followed by three hours of pushing…to no avail. He was coming via c-section. Seriously, I don’t remember much of those moments. I vaguely remember Sam being instructed to put on scrubs and a hair-net. I kind of remember them giving me an explanation of what would happen. I remember someone cutting my wedding rings off my very swollen fingers, and I remember getting wheeled to the operating room. So much happened so fast then…and I remember holding my breath after they told me they made the incision, waiting to hear that tell-tale baby wail. And let me tell you, when I heard it, and when I saw our little boy for the first time, everything was worth it. Everything. 
Oliver Samuel Miller. Isn’t he just perfect?
Getting ready to leave the hospital

Finally Home…

Which about brings us to now. 2012. The year of the massive piles of laundry. Just kidding. I do, however, really wonder how one little boy can go through so much laundry and how I will ever survive if we have more than one child. Seriously. I am going to need a super-sized washer and dryer. Or to own a laundromat.  Other than that, I am back to my pre-pregnancy weight and thankful that #1: I no longer have to wear maternity clothes and #2: people in front of me do not part like the Red Sea when they see me waddling my way through. I had forgotten how easy it was to get in and out of the car when your belly doesn’t stick into next week, or how nice it was to lay on the floor, propped up on my elbows & reading a book. Not that I have time to read, mind you, but I like knowing I could if I did.
But, most importantly, I spend my days hanging out with this guy:
And I just LOVE watching him grow, and change, and learn. Despite the craziness of some days, I love being a mom, I love my awesome husband and our precious little boy, and I am so excited to see what God has in store for us in 2012.

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