The Top 12 of 2012

It feels like it was just a few months ago when I finally quit writing 2011 by accident. Now, here we are, with another impending date change upon us. It feels so terribly old to say this, but time really does fly.

I remember people telling me that when I was younger. I would laugh and nod, but I didn’t get it. That was back in the days of summer vacation. Back when a single day could stretch long with play and book reading and adventures and firefly catching. Back when list making and chores and bills and obligations and that silly thing called work weren’t a part of the picture.

These days the time seems short. Each day is packed with grocery trips and baby showers, doctor’s appointments and church potlucks, laundry and post it notes scrawled with to-dos.

The whole thing makes me feel so very…adult. And I’ve been told time only moves more quickly from here.

Something about the pace of it all, the speed at which the days seem to slip away, makes it feel even more important to stop and remember some of the moments that made this year special. Here’s a few highlights from our year…What made 2012 special for you?

Way back in March we celebrated the Mr.’s birthday with homemade ice cream cake, meat candy, a photo booth, and lots and lots of mustaches. It was loads of fun, and so good to have so many of our friends around to celebrate with us.


In May I taught my first cooking class with an incredibly talented group of teenagers. We kneaded pizza dough, decorated cakes, topped bruschetta, and just had an all around good time together. They brought so much creativity and excitement to the class, it reminded me once again why I love cooking and baking. It brings people together!

My niece graduated in June. She had a chocolate fountain at her graduation party. Just one reason why she’s awesome.

In July, we flew to Lake Tahoe for a vacation with the Mr.’s family which included a hot air balloon ride, swimming in a freezing cold lake, and of course, loads of good food.

My job kept me busy in August preparing for the annual Columbus Children’s Parade. This was the first time I’d ever planned a parade, and it was quite an adventure. Between last minute construction, a downpour the morning of, and a shortage of cops to chaperone, I think I lost a few years of my life. But to see the main street in our neighborhood taken over by brightly colored cars, dancing kids, painted faces, and superheroes made every last bit of stress worth it. Someone please remind me of this next August when I’m about to have a breakdown. If you want to read more of the story about the parade, check out my friend and planning co-chair Cathy’s blog post about it.

Fall was a blur of surgery, girl’s weekends, apple picking, fritter making, and Trick or Trunk, the annual trick or treating event my work throws for our neighborhood.

Then of course there was Christmas. This was our very first year hosting Christmas at our house. We chose to start a few major projects in the house only a month before the big day so we had our hands full. But when the house filled up with people laughing, Christmas music playing, and one dog frantically wagging his excited tail, I knew all the effort was worth it.

2012 also brought us to a new church plant in our neighborhood, The Village. We feel so blessed to have found a community that surrounds and supports us in good times and bad. When I had surgery, meals were brought to our door. When we were stressing about our house, people showed up with tools. The folks there love Jesus, love each other, and love our city. Best of all, they show it with genuine acts of care and encouragement.

Of course, not all of 2012 was rosy. We mourned losses with friends. We worked some crazy long hours. There was seized caramel and There were moments when the whole house was covered with drywall dust and outlet wires hung bare from the wall that I wanted to stop and cry. But overall, we know we are so unbelievably, incredibly blessed.

The one thing that stayed consistent this year? Food. We ate. Usually three meals a day. Mostly good stuff. Occasionally really GREAT stuff.

Here’s a short list of 12 of those really great moments in our kitchen. The first 6 were the most popular on the blog last year. The next 6 are my personal favorites from the year. What made your 2012 special? Did anything great come out of your kitchen? Stop by the comments and let me know! Have a safe and happy New Year! Enjoy!

Most popular on the blog:

Perfect Fluffy Pancakes

Monster Cookies


Frozen Strawberry Fluff

Crockpot Barbacoa Beef

Caprese Pizza


Personal Favorites:

The Best Chocolate Bundt Cake of Your Life

Chocolate Bundt Cake with Chocolate Sour Cream Glaze

Homemade Oatmeal Cream Pies

Meatball Subs with Caramelized Onions and Gruyere

Creamy  Buffalo Mac and Cheese

Spiced and Spiked Double Apple Cake with Brown Sugar Bourbon Drizzle

Beef Burgundy Stew

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