JANUARY. It was so exciting to start our final semester of school. I read a lot of fiction during the first few weeks, before things got crazy. I had 2 on-campus classes and 1 independent study course, which seemed much easier after two full-time semesters. I started a one-line-a-day journal that will last me until approximately 2024. Evan was briefly interested in potty training, but went back to diapers after a few days. I finalized the design for our graduation announcements and sent them to the printer. When our handyman had to come do repairs on the kitchen sink, I hid piles of dirty dishes in the laundry room.
FEBRUARY. A friend commissioned me to do some custom name artwork, and it was so fun that I decided to open an Etsy shop after graduation. (Still more or less in the works.) I got into midterms, Evan turned 3 and had a Totoro-themed birthday party, and Jarom started interviewing for jobs after graduation. I took Evan to class with me a few times because I had to show him off. June started saying real words like “Totoro.” Adorable.
MARCH. The kids dumped a big tub of donut holes into a diaper box. I struggled with whether I wanted to do law school sooner or later or not at all. Jarom had his final paper to work on, as well as job interviews and the stress of classes. I might have used the kids as a (not entirely legitimate) excuse for turning things in late and not going to class. We got an ant infestation in the laundry room. One morning, June woke up at 3am, I had a paper due, and when I ran into a friend on campus, I offered to babysit her son for 4 hours that night. I began to think there was something seriously wrong with me. We went to the midnight showing of Hunger Games, I was a jury member for Jarom’s mock trial, I wrote an editorial for the BYU paper, and we drove to Las Vegas and back in one day.
APRIL. Krista took my kids overnight so I could work on school stuff – what a lifesaver! I finished all my papers, took finals, and…DONE with college! Jena & Bryan and my parents came out for graduation, and we had a biiiiiiiig party to celebrate finally being done. I drove Jarom’s cousin down to California and came back the next day. The biggest news: Jarom accepted a job offer in Orem! A job! In Orem! It started as soon as he finished his internship with the city, so we ended up without any jobless days. What a blessing!
MAY. Without the busyness of school, I started reading again with a vengeance. I made orange chocolate chip cookies and they are to die for. We had a congratulatory dinner with Jarom’s parents for our Mad Skillz of Graduating. June started going to nursery at church, which was beautifully amazing. I fell in love with an old house in Provo and talked Jarom into going to see it with me – fortunately, it didn’t work out, but it did get us thinking about buying a house. We made our first offer on a house toward the end of the month (it was turned down) and went on a weekend vacation with Jarom’s family. I went to see the house we now live in and adored it so much, I almost made an offer without Jarom. Fortunately he loved it too!
JUNE. Most of the month was lost to house-related stuff, like packing and cleaning. Jarom was studying for the bar in the evenings, so I did a lot on my own. Krista took the kids the night before we moved, which meant Jarom and I could go out to dinner to celebrate our big year: graduation, 5 years of marriage, buying our first house, knowing each other for half our lives. And then – moving day! Apparently I planned well, because loading and unloading the truck was done in under 3 hours. Good, right?
JULY. Making cookies in MY REAL OVEN for the first time in years was wonderful. We went to a barbecue with Jarom’s coworkers, and I started becoming friends with some of the other wives. I’d tried going without internet in the house but quickly gave up. Jarom’s parents bought us a fabulous washer and dryer. Evan really truly switched out of diapers. I got a piano for my birthday (and Jarom and Quentin moved it by themselves!). Jarom took the bar!
AUGUST. I got a big bookcase and a nice long desk for a studio-type setup. Jarom ended up in the ER with gallstones and had surgery a few days later. I did Part 1 of the Great Chocolate Chip Cookie Experiment (and sometime I’ll get around to Part 2). Jarom and Evan went camping; June painted the floor with poop while they were gone. In a period of 3 days I found out that our homeowner’s insurance AND our health insurance were being cancelled. (Both were resolved, but it was a stressful time!) June flushed pajamas and toys down the toilet, so Jarom’s dad came and fixed it. We went to the Founders Day dinner and got to hear Elder Oaks speak. Our housewarming party was a huge success – if only the clean house had lasted! I drove out to California to visit friends and family.
SEPTEMBER. A few days after we got to my parents’ house, the kids both got croup. High fevers and nasty coughs and late nights…thankfully my mom entertained the kids during the day so I could sneak in some naps. We made it down to see Alicia and headed over to Jena’s, but by then the kids and I were worn out and homesick and beyond grouchy. I changed my plans and came home 5 days early. I’m glad I did, because that Saturday we found out that JAROM PASSED THE BAR!!! We made Liège waffles with Nutella, strawberries, and whipped cream (you must eat them). I started a book club. Kimberlee had her baby girl. We found a cheap cabinet at a garage sale and refinished it to match our other furniture. The broken tile in our bathroom finally got repaired – it was supposed to be fixed before we moved in!
OCTOBER. I got called to be the second counselor in Young Women’s. Jarom went to Albuquerque on business. I was able to listen to all of General Conference! I really, really started working seriously on stuff for my Etsy shop. One day I cleaned 5 rooms in 4 hours and was rewarded with Indian food. The next day I took the kids to the zoo. The next day I helped Krista clean for 5 hours. Jarom and I spoke in church about love at home (a topic I am vastly unqualified to talk about). Jarom got sworn in as a lawyer!! I got a sewing machine as a graduation gift from Jarom’s parents. I spent hours picking up horse chestnuts in our yard and decided the tree is less awesome in the fall. June turned 2! Halloween was lame! (But the kids were super cute.)
NOVEMBER. We got a dog. Jarom’s car started having trouble. There was a windstorm that knocked most of the leaves off our big tree, followed by a snowstorm that covered up all the leaves. I stayed up all night cleaning the house before vacation – and it was really spotless. Then I slept through all of Thanksgiving. It was nice to see family, and nice to have a tv in our room…but nicest of all to have Jarom take the kids so I could be left alone in the king-size bed. When we got back, I spent a week being embarrassed by the yard before finally raking and mowing (with a lot of help from my visiting teacher and father-in-law!).
DECEMBER. Jarom had a bunch of friends over to help with his car, but we were still down to one car for most of the month. Nevertheless, I’m extremely grateful for all the people who were out there in the freezing cold with Jarom, taking apart engines and putting them back together. I’ve heard that guys enjoy working on cars, so maybe it wasn’t such a horrible ordeal for them. We went for the biggest Christmas tree we could get, struggled to make it stand up straight, and finally put lights on – but no ornaments ever made it up. Our power went out in the middle of the day after a big, big snowstorm. It was a great experience to have our first Christmas in our new house, and watching the kids open their stockings and presents was really fun. We also loved having all of Jarom’s family together for the holidays – but it’s too bad it came at the price of a nasty bug spreading throughout the family. At the close of the year, it’s amazing to think of all that’s happened since January. But believe it or not, we anticipate more big changes in 2013!