“And days of auld lang syne”

Greetings loved ones,

The start of the new year brings about a renewal in one’s spirit, a sense of a fresh start. Last year our first New Year on island was a perpetuation of the fresh start we embarked on just 6 months prior. We were very much still figuring out what island life would be for us. This year we find ourselves much more established than last year and able to clearly set goals for our lives in 2015. While we’ve added some resolutions and new traditions to the Carp New Year, one tradition has remained constant through the years, and that my friends is New Year’s fondue. Every year we break out the Melting Pot cookbook and whip up some Wisconsin Trio fondue while we watch the ball drop. While we now stream from a +1 hour time zone rather than watching MTV at 11c time, this was the picture of our New Year in Louisiana and again on island. It especially worked out this year as I (Meg) worked until 10:30pm on New Year’s Eve. We had just enough time to make fondue and settle in to watch live from Times Square. If you aren’t familiar with Robert Burns’ “Auld Lang Syne”, it’s a poem that reflects and celebrates the days past which has now become the anthem for New Years in America (the song sung after the ball drops). I love that the traditions for the start of a new year are to sing and celebrate the days past while making a promise to improve and better the days to come.

A new tradition that we tried to start last year, but procrastination got in the way as it so classically does with resolutions, was to write letters of resolution to each other. We simply feel that improvements on ourselves are ultimately improvements on us, the Carps, and we want to keep that the focus of our constant strive to be better as individuals. While I won’t share our letters, I will share the gist of our resolutions:

  • To become greater reflections of Christ as individuals and as a couple
  • To make healthier choices together
  • To spend more time exploring paradise
  • And last, but not least, we made a resolution to open an Etsy shop for our photography and to sell a print by the end of the year!

Writing a letter to my husband resolving to be a better version of myself, and therefore a better wife, has made me accountable for my resolutions and causes me to reflect deeper anytime I want to fall into old habits. DJ’s letter touched me so much, and this is a tradition I recommend to all couples!

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Two weeks ago we attended a holiday party for work. It was a black and white party, super fancy! We participated in the photo booth, won a 2 night stay at a resort in St. John, a spa gift card, and $50, and had a fabulously glamorous night!

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In recent events:

We’ve also began some improvements to our apartment. We’ve had a very successful DIY project of filling in our open pantry. We stacked the two shelves, screwed them together and secured them with brackets, and put furniture movers on the bottom so the shelves can be slid when necessary.

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Our next projects: we’re in the process of working on a photo collage wall in the living room and waiting for crates to come in to build an entertainment center. Pics to come!

With our church, we are currently doing a Life on Mission study, a book that I highly recommend for all Christians. We’ve also officially begun young adult study at a coffee shop in Cruz Bay, St. John, and we ask for your prayers surrounding that.

My wonderful mother shipped us some king cakes via priority mail which of course were delivered several days late, so we were left to stare at and smell the king cake that was now melted and stale and the Bavarian cream soured 😦 I am not ashamed to admit that I ate a few pieces of the praline cake. It was still delicious!

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For Christmas DJ bought us a trip to the fish spa which I was very nervous about because I was worried it would be icky. It ended up being such a great experience, my feet felt amazing, and we will definitely go back!

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For your delight, my nephew, Thomas, is as perfect as ever!

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And one of my dear, dear island friends, Kelli, had her baby, Elora, the day after my birthday, and we are already the best of friends 🙂

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Looking forward, mom is visiting March 6-16, and we are already planning the festivities! We’re looking to come home for a visit towards the end of May, and as always, we are open to visitors to share paradise with! Posts to come: our day playing tourist and the cruise (finally, maybe, I hope so)

And a Happy New Year,

Megs

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