1: a word or phrase used as a sign of recognition among members of the same society, class, or group

2a : a word or motto that embodies a principle or guide to action of an individual or group

2b : a guiding principle

I’ve been doing this “one little word” dealio for a few years now.

In 2012, our word was joy. After all we had been through in the past two years—losing two babies, a twin pregnancy, Chip leaving his call of 10 years, adjusting to life with twins, recovering from peripartium cardioyopathy—I definitely needed to find my joy again. And you know, even though I wasn’t very purposeful about it, I still feel like it was a success. Here we are in a new home in an awesome new town. I’ve reconnected with old friends and made new ones. And while we miss what we’ve left behind, we’re slowly finding our place in this new space. I definitely feel like I found my joy again—joy in my family, my home, my health, and my Savior.


The year before that my word was hope. After my diagnosis of PPCM, I felt so desperately afraid. And while what came ahead was so, so difficult, looking back I can definitely see God’s hand in it all. And even in my darkest moments in 2011, I could see the hope that was always set before me. And how incredibly blessed was I that I had such a tangible reminder of that hope in the two little babies God gave me?

I’ve been struggling in choosing this year’s word. I had it narrowed down to two. I meditated on it. I prayed about it. I asked the children what they thought. I even considered tossing them both in a hat and drawing one.

The choices? “Deeper” and “home”.

Deeper because I’ve been feeling such a pull lately to get to the bottom of things. OK, that’s a bit of a fib. I’ve been asking why since I could talk. But I’ve really been drawn to the idea of exploring why we do what we do, breaking it down to the most basic elements, extracting the core and examining it, and leaving the rest.

Home because I want to learn to love mine. I want to make it beautiful. I want to get rid of my habit of escaping it every chance I get. I want to build a family culture that makes this a place my children want to be.

In the end, I’ve decided to go with home because it’s the one that I know will be difficult for me. I’ll always ask why. It’s part of who I am. Painting a wall? Following through on a family night? Loving my space? That’s the difficult thing.


So, how about you? Do you have a watchword this year?


  1. Hey Annette,
    My mother’s word this year is “home” too. For Christmas, I gave her a little cardboard house to collage and focus her intentions. I would love to send you one, if that speaks to you at all. You can see one that I made here

    Just let me know – no pressure! no guilt! LOL If yes, email me your address

    Wishing you a wonderful year in a home that holds all your wishes and more.

    Love to you.

    1. Author

      This is incredibly sweet of you. Thank you so much, and I’ll email you!

Comments are closed.