{A Year-End Review} The Best of 2015

Thursday, December 31, 2015


2015 was one of our hardest and most adventurous years, making it one of our favorite years yet!
Thank you for all of your support and sweet comments as you've watched our family
grow, travel, and live imperfect, messy lives marked by grace and forgiveness.
Can't wait to see what is in store for 2016!

This Year's Highlights:

1. Celebrating New Years With Black Eyed Peas
2. Seeing Ben Howard Play at the Ryman
3. Catching this Fish
4. Surviving Snowmageddon
5. Visiting the Big Red Lighthouse in Holland, MI
6. Watching Brave Take Her First Steps
7. Throwing My First Set of Flasks on the Pottery Wheel
8. Drinking Tim's Home Brewed IPA
9. Watching my Papa Catch his first Trout
10. Meeting the Patagonia Worn Wear Crew
11. Catching Trout on the South Holston with Patrick & Tim
12. Teaming up with Orvis for Our Girl's Trip to MT & WY
13. Landing a 22" Rainbow in Brookville, IN
14. Seeing Wild Buffalo in Yellowstone
15. Hiking to Avalanche Lake in Glacier National Park
16. Catching My First Cutthroat in Missoula
17. Watching Moll's Receive Her White Coat for PA School
18. Going to my First Horse Race at Churchill Downs
19. Seeing Twinner's Coffee Being Served at Gralehaus
20. Playing Corn Hole with My Childhood Best Friend
21. Camping Overnight in Myrtle the Turtle
22. Growing Our First Pumpkins
23. Watching Salmon Spawn on the Rogue with my Loon Buddies
24. Making Leaf Angels with Brave
25. Visiting the Uncles and Surviving Disney World with a Toddler

Favorite Songs (in no particular order):
1. Above the Cloud's of Pompeii - Bear's Den
2. Record Time - Quiet Life
3. American Beauty - Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors
4. Tell Me There's A Garden - Joseph
5. Always Be - Josh Garrels
6. Promised Land - John Lucas
7. Earned It - The Weekend
  8. Fool for Love - Lord Huron
9. Please - Sawyer Fredericks
10. Work Song - Hozier
11. I Got Loaded - The Wood Brothers
12. Like Real People Do - Hozier
13. You There - Aquilo
14. The Truth Is A Cave - The Oh Hellos
15. Blank Space (cover) - Ryan Adams
16. Sons & Daughters - Allman Brown
17. Hotlinebling (cover) - Amy Vachal
18. Every Age - Jose Gonzalez

Best Albums of the Year:

1. Carrie & Lowell - Sufjan Stevens
2. Strange Trails - Lord Huron
3. Home - Josh Garrels

Favorite Concerts / Live Events:

1. Ben Howard (Nashville, TN)

Favorite Books:
1. In Sheep's Clothing by George Simon
2. Closer to the Ground by Dylan Tomine
3. The Orvis Guide to the Essential American Flies by Tom Rosenbauer

Favorite Videos:

1. People's Reactions to Being Called Beautiful
2. Dotty

Favorite Eats (in no particular order):
1. Jeni's: Toasted Brioche with Butter & Jam Ice Cream (Nashville, TN)
2. Husk: Pickled Onion & Cucumber Pork Belly Sliders (Nashville, TN)
3. Feast: Fried Pickles (Louisville, KY)
4. Rye: Kimchi Stew & A Light In the Attic Cocktail (Louisville, KY)
5. Gralehaus: French Toast (Louisville, KY) 
6. Marie Catrib's: Sweet & Sassy sandwich with potatoes & garlic mayo (Grand Rapids, MI)
7. Milktooth: Sweet Potato Doughnut Holes (Indianapolis, IN)
8. Morsels: Ninja Turtle & Something to Wine About Morsels
9. Amical:  Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie (Traverse City, MI)
10. Ivanhoe's: #58 Sundae (Upland, IN)
11. French Broad Chocolate Lounge: Toasted Coconut Ice Cream (Asheville, NC)
12. Vortex Donuts: Strawberry Vegan & Apple Streusel Donuts (Asheville, NC)
13. Big Dipper: Huckleberry Ice Cream (Missoula, MT)
14. Lotus Pad: Pad Thai (Big Sky, MT)
15. Granny's: Strawberry Donut (Bozeman, MT)
16. Wild Crumb: Coconut Cream Pie (Bozeman, MT)
17. Joy Luck: Pad Thai & Chicken Fried Rice (Louisville, KY)
18. The Brickroom: Chocolate Flourless Cake (Ashland, OR)
19. Monnik: Fried Kale Salad & War Fries (Louisville, KY)
20. Decca: Butternut Squash Ravioli & Crispy Sweet Potatoes (Louisville, KY)

Favorite Coffee & Tea:

1. Barista Parlor Golden Sound: Whiskey Caramel Latte (Nashville, TN)
2. Sunergos: Hazelnut Cortado (Louisville, KY)
3. BLK/MRKT: Maple Cortado (Traverse City, MI)
4. Morsels: Cortado (Traverse City, MI)
5. Madcap: Cortado (Grand Rapids, MI)
6. Lantern: Chai Latte (Grand Rapids, MI)
7. Wild Joe's: Agave Cortado (Bozeman, MT)
8. Case Coffee Roasters: Maple Cortado (Ashland, OR)

Favorite Waters Fished:

1. South Holston (TN)
2. Madison River (MT)
3. Jenny Lake (WY)
4. Fire Hole (MT)
5. Avalanche Lake (MT}
6. Fish Creek (MT)
7. Brookville Tailwaters (IN)
8. Rogue River (OR)
9. Sacramento River (CA)
10. Curtis Creek (NC)
11. Davidson River (NC}
12. Manistee River (MI)
13. Otter Creek (KY)

Favorite New Insta Accounts:
1. @westernrise
2. @flylords
3. @tylersharpphoto
4. @hawkeyehuey

Looking forward to 2016 because ...


1. Going sledding with Brave
2. Celebrating our 7th Annual MLK Day Feastgiving
3. Visiting Zambia in March
4. Fly Fishing on the Zambezi River
5. Taking Brave to MDO twice a week {can I get an Amen from all the mama's?}
6. Going on another girl's trip with these awesome women
7. Speaking at Taylor University in April
8. Celebrating 11 years of marriage
9. Watching the Synchronous Fireflies in the Smokies
10. Harvesting Honey from our Flowhive 
11. Growing new things in our garden
12. Visiting Hickory Nut Gap Farm with the Aunties
13. Going on more family road trips & adventures! 

 Come out and show yourself, 2016. We're ready!
Em, Tim, Brave & River

8 comments:

Kristina said...

Happy new year, Loerkes! I always love your year-end reviews...so much fun to see what the year was all about. Wishing you all the best for 2016 and all the adventures that await you in the new year. xo Kristina

Josh and Haley said...

The fireflies in the smokies!!! I've been reading about them for years and hoping to take the littles! Do you know anything about it?? I've read that you either need to camp or you have to take a shuttle In and that it's super crowded. It sounds unreal though!! Happy new year to you and your family!

Katie Falkenberg said...

You are such an inspiration! Thank you for taking the time to share all of these. Here's to more discovery and adventure in 2016!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for taking the time to put all this together! It must be a lot of work - but for me it is time to discover some new music, movies and places from your review.
And I always love to come back to your blog and watch photos of you and read the wise words. Being hardbroken again with 39 is hard on me being without kids - but I love watching your family grow and your positive outlook on live!

Kyle said...

love following along with your sweet family! best wishes for 2016!

Laci said...

My daughter is in Kindergarten with @hawkeyehuey. Small world :)
Happy New Year!

Ashley said...

love you em. reading this just makes me love your face. and want to sit on your kitchen floor with bubba and watch videos that make me wanna pee my pants. and that #20? it made my 2015 list as well. best weekend ever. xoxox

Sheyenne Hampton Wilson said...

2016 Sounds like its shaping up to be awesome! My parents recently went on a fly fishing trip in Zambia and said it was amazing. Their pictures were incredible! Definitely bucket list stuff for sure. Can't wait to hear of your adventure there!

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