Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the Zickels! It’s been a crazy year for us here in the DC area, full of adventures and testaments to God’s faithfulness. Brian and I started out the year with a few curveballs as we both lost our jobs within two months of each other. Thankfully, I was able to pick up “new” employment back with an old company that was in need of some direction. March was full of excitement with several friends coming to visit and the ever busy week of CPAC. We had a great time catching up with folks and playing tourists for a few days.
We also had the fantastic opportunity to go to Disneyworld with my side of the family and see my sister, Hannah, show off her mad cheerleading skills. Brian and I spent each day exploring a different park and riding every rollercoaster available.
Not long after our return from Florida, Brian and I packed up our little apartment and moved out to Reston to be with Brian’s mom, Bobbie. It’s been a blessing to have a home with a normal sized kitchen and free washing machines for the last eight months and Bobbie has been a great encouragement to both of us since we arrived.
The arrival of summer allowed us to hit the road just before my return to Voice of Russia. Brian and I took a week to visit friends in North Carolina then head over to St. Louis, Nashville, and Chicago just because we could. We rode our bikes down music row in Nashville and made our way to the top of the gateway arch. I’ve attached a few photos here, but you check out the rest on Facebook.
I was able to hit up New York for a conference before we took our second road trip down to New Orleans for a friend’s wedding. Brian has never been to The Big Easy, and I had always wanted to take him there. We spent three days in total and discovered some new favorite venues to add to the list of timeless classics before heading over to Kentucky to spend a rainy Fourth of July with my Dad and his family out in Lexington. We had a great time dodging the rain and squeezing in a few bonfires. We finished off the trip with a stop in Memphis for the best blues and ribs we’ve ever had.
In August, we welcomed the first niece on the Brewster side to the family. Alex and his wife, Marley, delivered a little girl named Lucy. It seemed like the perfect gift in time for our second wedding anniversary. Brian and I spent a glorious weekend at the beach, reading and checking out our favorite restaurants before I flew down over to Seattle to check out the latest addition to the Brewster brood. We even took a few extra vacation days just because we could! (gasp) It may not have been exactly what we planned, but I’m not sure we could have planned it better anyway.
Two weeks later, Brian’s birthday was spent fighting dragons and rescuing damsels at the Maryland Renaissance Festival and dinner at Medieval Times.
The real highlight of the year for me, came in an unexpected business trip to Morocco. I spent a week traveling and trying new foods. While I had been there before, the extra days gave me an opportunity to really explore.
Brian and I are wrapping up the year spending the holiday with visiting family. In just three days, Brian will start his new job as an office manager with Fairlington Presbyterian Church which will allow us to ride into work together (permanently, we hope). We will also be spending the New Year’s week with a new adventure of caring for a friend’s horse farm. We are hoping it’s a sign of exciting beginnings yet come.
Happy New Year and God’s Blessings in 2014!
Brian and Kate