Joyful Year in Review

This year has been VERY big for me personally, professionally and spiritually! I love looking backwards in life, not to dwell or in regret, but seeing how God worked in my life and how certain moments in my life ended up being connected! I love to call them God-winks! Come along with me and see what all  He has been up to in my life!

Mentor Group

I was a part of an awesome Mentor Group this year. My Mentor Sheri McHugh is an amazing example of a Christian single woman! The other four women in our group (Stephanie, Lindsay, Emily, and Rachael) were a joy to meet and grow with and we became fast friends! Through our studies and memory verses I have grown even closer to the Lord. A cool God-wink occurred when a Bible study I had completed with a long-distance friend prompted me to look into writing more. I spoke with Sheri, she had a connection with an author friend, and I was able to meet with his wife and learn some wonderful tips and info on writing! I even emailed Margaret Feinberg and was given some awesome tips as well! I know God has a plan to use my talents as He chooses, but what a neat connection to make!

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Exercise!

I love working out but over the past few years have stuck to my regular gym, stationary bike and/or walking routine. This year I decided to try some new things and challenge myself! I completed my very first 5k, began mountain biking, and yoga! I found that switching up my routines challenged my body and it was a lot of fun too!

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Mission trip to Haiti

I had the pleasure of being accepted on a trip through 410 Bridge to Bohoc, Haiti this summer! We  created and implemented a children’s camp. I was a part of the Arts & Crafts team as well as helped with leading Worship! The children in Bohoc were precious and, even though we spoke different languages, their smiles and love was contagious! So many awesome events took place and God’s hand of protection was over us the whole time, especially when we were stopped on the 4 hour van ride to Bohoc by Haitian police 🙁 . I knew after we got through that God was up to something VERY important and would work it all out for His good!

Another awesome God-wink was getting to meet a very precious Haitian child that was also deaf. They are still developing support for children with disabilities in Haiti so his resources were slim. Being a Speech Pathologist, I know some sign language and work with children with disabilities. I was able to help him with signs and pay extra attention to him. He had the BEST smile and I will never forget him!

For more info on the trip, and to see what all we were up to, feel free to click here and watch the movie I made!

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My 30th Birthday!!

I had an awesome time turning 30 this year! It was a fun-filled MONTH with karaoke, fun with family, and a day full of good food, shopping and a massage. There can be a negative connotation associated to 30, especially if the timeline we had in our minds doesn’t match up with reality. How selfish can we be, right? I am so blessed and I know that God has a plan for everything in my life especially the times they occur! All I have to do is live for Him and see His glory unfold! If the past 30 years are any indication, LIFE is going to rock past 30 😉

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Disney World with Family!

I had the blessing of going to Disney World with my parents, brother, sister, bro and sis in-laws and nieces and nephews! We stayed at the Fort Wilderness Cabins and were able to visit the Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios! It is truly a MAGICAL place and a great way to forget about the “real world” for a while. Such a great time getting to spend with family and create some lasting memories. Did I mention the food?!? Wowza…I wanna go back!

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Presented at ASHA!

Our national convention for Speech Pathologists is called ASHA (American Speech-Language-Hearing Association) and it was held in Atlanta this year! I have been the Chair for 2+ years of the NOMS committee (National Outcomes Measurement System) through my job at CHOA. I had the opportunity to present with two other co-workers in front of around 50+ SLPs at ASHA and discuss our plan and progress with NOMS! It was an awesome opportunity to stretch myself professionally and an experience I definitely never thought would happen. God was sooo good to me and calmed my nerves! 🙂

A really cool God-wink with this starts back around 7 years ago when I was in Graduate school at UGA. I had attended a conference and heard  an awesome presentation from an SLP, Heidi Liefer. She is also an SLP that works for CHOA! I remember telling her how much I gained from her presentation and it left an impact on me.

Flash forward to 2012 and I am asked to present at ASHA. Heidi and I had worked together on the NOMS committee and had become friends! For my presentation they had asked someone to introduce us beforehand and guess who ASHA asked?! Yes, Heidi introduced little ol’ me before I presented! I had to tell her the impact she had on me and how awesome God was to orchestrate this all out! This pic was taken the morning of my presentation after she found me and my friends in a group of over a 1,000 people!

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Wowza!

Overall, this year has been very eventful and fulfilling adventure!! God has given me some awesome opportunities and promotion professionally, made some sweet memories with my family, have made some awesome new friends and strengthened the old, celebrated weddings of dear friends, continued leading worship with UpStreet for the fourth year now, and most importantly have grown closer in my relationship with the Lord. I have also grown in my trust of His plan for my future. Of course, there have been some heart hurts and disappointments too. I have learned some valuable lessons through it all that will hopefully help me to help others as well, as God allows. I know God has a plan in EVERYTHING! As it says in Romans 8:28: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

I can’t wait to see what 2013 has in store for me! I live expectantly knowing that God has my life in motion for His glory! I am so grateful for my health and life! I pray that you have a safe and fulfilling New Year as well!

Joyfully yours,

Mandy

 

2 Comment

  1. Loved reading your 2012 highlights, Mandy. It made me look forward to turning 30 this year and going to Disney World 🙂 I hope that 2013 includes even more blogging for you…I like hearing what you’re up to.

  2. Thanks Andrea! You were one of my inspirations to creating a blog to start with… so thank you! I am so so glad it has made you look forward to those awesome events! Happy New Year! I am def gonna blog more so stay tuned 🙂

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