What a year, everyone! Wow!

I don't know about you, but I love reading year-in-review posts. There's power in stopping to look back before zeroing in on what's ahead.

My "one word" for 2018: Trust

I've chosen a "word" for each year since 2006. Usually around November or December, I'll hear a phrase or single word in a song, sermon or conversation and feel a jolt in my heart.

That word will often appear a few more times, with the same sensation following it.

In 2018, I discerned "trust" to be my one word.

I knew going into the calendar year that I would leave Fight CRC as a full-time staff member and begin freelancing again as a content writer - something taking a lot of trust.

But I didn't know, and I couldn't foresee, the other events happening this year that would make "trust" the perfect word for 2018.

They just happen to be some of my favorite stories from this year!

Favorite stories from 2018


1. 17 reasons God meant colon cancer for my good

Last January, I became a 17-year colon cancer survivor and God put it on my heart to find 17 "positives" in such a negative experience.




2. Mama, why was I adopted?

On Mae's adoption day, a perfect opportunity opened up for us to explain why she was adopted - I detailed our breakfast conversation on the blog!




3. Black people at the suburban restaurant

I love writing about race and the perspective of a white mama raising a mixed-race little girl. Here's a story about noticing differences at a restaurant earlier this year.




4. 45 Days of No Sugar

Last spring, for lent, I cut out sugar for my first-ever sugar fast. And for 45 days (ish) I blogged daily about what it was like. My favorite day was Day 15 where I realized I am a champion while ringing the opening bell at NASDAQ from a PGA championship golf course in Arizona!



5. Not the News I Wanted

Might sound strange that the post following my colonoscopy in October made my "top 10," but I added it because of the amazing amount of support and love I received because I made this news public. More to come on surgery decisions and what 2019 may bring for me.


6. Professor B

In an unexpected twist, this fall I was asked to step in and teach a Campaigns class to public relations students at the University of Central Missouri. The way God ordered the steps to this open door was crazy cool! (As a follow-up, I had a blast teaching the class and met four amazing young professionals!)



7. The Holiday Girls

I'll forever cherish the opportunity Mae and I took to turn her imagination into a reality and create The Holiday Girls! We co-wrote five fictional stories about a character named Chrissy Miss and her three best friends. The stories are still available on the Bedtime Stories app (which just launched a new storytelling school and new subscription model!).



8. Season of Sunflowers

This is one of my more poetic posts of the year, but it helped me process a change of seasons. My friend left for YWAM, my job changed, and our family dynamics shifted. In the midst of it all, the sunflowers taught me a great lesson.



9. Epic Midwest Road trip

I had a blast traveling the Midwest with Mae this past summer and blogging all about it. (And then, I came home to fun opportunities to guest blog for Mayo Clinic and get published in the Upper Room devotional!)



danielle-ripley-burgess-author-unexpected 10. Unexpected - 25 Daily Advent Devotionals

And of course, launching my first published book for advent 2018 was an experience I'll never forget and forever cherish. (P.S. It's not specific to the year, so tuck it away and break it out next Christmas season! It will stay available on Amazon!)


What's next for 2019?

Stay tuned, there's a lot coming in 2019! I'm working on launching a new website! I've got blogs lined up in the queue and more devotional ideas.

As you saw this year, I'm working on my memoir and part 1 is done. In the new year, I'll be diving into part 2 and praying for open doors so I can get this book off a screen and into your hands.

And then - we'll see! I've got a good feeling about the upcoming year.