Remembering 2011

2011 was an interesting year for me.

The most important item on my year in review is that of Leah (my daughter) and her discovery and battle with breast cancer.  The following three links are my online stories about my amazing girl and her determined fight.  She has made all of us proud.

In a similar vein (no pun intended), my wife and I both spent time in a hospital bed this year.  Reflecting on my medical emergency, I am thrilled to have made it to the end of the year.  I had a series of 4 heart attacks over a period of about 4 days.  The final one finally got me to the hospital.

2011 was a very good year for family.  As I pass through the years, my familial relations become more meaningful.

  • I met my granddaughter, Emma for the first time in March.  Frequent video chats with her and the 2 grandsons (Heath & Caleb) keep me going.
  • My parents visited us from Texas after I was released from the hospital.
  • Leah joined them from Kentucky.
  • I travelled to Louisville for Leah’s surgery and was able to spend time with the crew up there.
  • My son, Cameron treated me to some father-son time in Jacksonville and Tallahassee.  He flew in from Dallas.  We experienced wrestling with a shark, a sting ray and other fish during a fishing day in the ocean.  We capped the time off with great seats for the Oklahoma Sooners defeat of the Florida State Seminoles.
  • Suzie and I enjoyed some away time together at Disney World and on South Beach.  Those times with her are priceless.
  • Suzie and I celebrated 7 years of marriage.

Geographically, this year was again a year of change.  I really hope that I won’t have to write that again any time soon.  We began the year living in western Palm Beach County in Wellington (suburban West Palm Beach).  In August we purchased a home in southern Palm Beach County in Boynton Beach.  We love it.  A decade of apartment living was behind me.

Professionally, this past year was a year of ending and beginning.  I ended years of managing in the hotel industry and began my career as a self-employed online magnate :).  I used to love being in the hospitality industry.  Running hotels had been a joy.  I loved interacting with staff, my bosses and with guests.  But in 2011 I felt like a violinist on The Titanic.  It was time to get out.  So we began an online business called Fruzie’s Collectibles.  Suzie and I get to shop for interesting items that we resell on eBay and Amazon.

I also get to minister and earn a little bit with this blog.  I rebranded the blog earlier this month and am looking forward to what the next year has in store for this outlet of thought and reflection.

When we moved to Boynton Beach, we began a new church relationship with First Baptist Church of Boynton Beach.  I love being a part of this body.  Our pastor, Dr. Buz McNutt is becoming a dear friend and pastor.  I am prayerful and hopeful for what this year will bring in this church and our life in the church.

Spiritually, this year has been one of a deepening of my faith and my relationship with an amazing God.  I am finding great delight on reading and chewing on his word.  Probably the most consistent meditation of the year centered on The Lord’s Prayer.  I have found these words on my heart, on my lips and in my mind throughout the year:

Pray then like this:
“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
(Matthew 6:9 ESV)

I began chewing on these words when reading The Prayer of the Lord by R.C. Sproul.  My thinking was further enhanced when I listed to a sermon by John Piper on this passage.

Finally, I have enjoyed some good friendships.

  • Suzie’s relative, Kitty has become a genuine part of our family.
  • I met some wonderful people at my last hotel who I hope will be friends for life.
  • When in Louisville for Leah’s surgery, I had 2 coffee chats at Panera with old friends Brian and Sam.
  • Through social media, I had reconnected with long lost friends in a very meaningful way – especially with my former classmates from our days in Aviano, Italy.

Here’s looking back on 2011 and anticipating great things in 2012.

What is something significant you experienced or learned this year?


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