2014 Word Of The Year

My word of the year for 2013 was “June” mostly because it reminds me of us.

Kevin and Layla

I was born on the 5th, and Kevin came (early) on the 28th. We were so excited to discover that we were both June ’74 babies! We were married on the 25th in 2004, so we’ll be celebrating our 10th anniversary the next time “our month” rolls around. 10th. How did that get here so fast? 

So for the past 360 days, I invited June into my life. I wrote it down where I was sure to see it, and whenever I did, I always thought about us. It triggered trips down memory lane, and daydreams about the journey that lies ahead of us. Braking for June also encouraged me to pray for him more…to give thanks for us more.

It was just one little word that encouraged me to cherish our bond in a completely different way each day this past year.

That’s what choosing a Word Of The Year is all about. You live with it, you let it speak to you…you follow where it leads. There are no rules…it’s just supposed to be a little spark.


I’ve been thinking about my word for 2014 over the past couple of weeks and I’m feeling especially drawn to us-plus lately.

Word of the Year | Haiti Adoption Blog

In my mind, that word means a whole-nother year of intentionally treasuring the unity that is us as we prepare, for the first time, to become an us-plus.

Off to write it down in places I’m sure to see it… :-)

Kids Room Decorating - Let The Fun Begin!
Merry Christmas 2013

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    • Barbara says

      Layla, I love your word for 2014 us-plus.Yesterday I put time and prayer in my word for 2014. My word for 2014 is Hope. I have several areas in my life and church and this is the perfect word for me in 2014.I am so happy that when I saw about a word for the New Year I googled and that is how I found your blog and what a blessing it has been to me to find your blog.
      Happy New Year Layla and Blessings to You and Yours in 2014.

  1. says

    This is beautiful. Becoming a family is the greatest gift I’ve ever received in my life. It’s challenging at times, but in all those giving and sacrificing I do for my kids, I’ve found the greatest gift of love and connection.
    I was just reading your post from last year and thinking what my word of the year for 2014 would be. I think it’s “create,” for I’m really trying to let my creative side blossom.
    Thanks for sharing and a happy new year!

  2. Laurie says

    Love your idea of a word reminder… that word becomes like putting out a stone or marker of God’s faithfulness, like the Bible talks of making an Ebenezer to remind us. Love how you treasure June memories and each other. On a similar note, I also love the idea of choosing a life Bible verse or a yearly verse for you or your child as a reminder and an encouragement. So excited for your growing family!

  3. Dawn says

    Oh, I just love “Us +”! That is so sweet and unique. I have some thinking to do on what my word will be for this up coming year. Thanks for sharing, Layla!

  4. says

    sometimes i get happy chills when i read your posts. i pray extra hard for my invisible internet friends when that happens. reading about your us+ is just another example.

  5. says

    Good idea! I think, before I have had a chance to pray over it, that my 2014 word would be “faith”. My daughter and son in law have been unemployed for most of two years now, having lost the job he really liked when the recession and sequestration happened, loss of awarded but not sent contract monies. They have been with me in our small family home all this time. It is hard to have private time for any of us and we live differently. Yet, we must work together to make this work for all. Faith is what is walking me through this time, working hard to preserve our family for when things return to normal again. Whatever normal is!
    I have just moved to a new position at work, a cubicle. Once I have prayed this through, I will add that word to the wall there and various places here at home.
    What a great idea.
    Thank you and Happiest year for the two, nearly three (!) of you.
    Lord, add your blessings onto this family, Amen

  6. says

    I love this! I think it’s SO important to remember the “us” every moment of every day. I can feel how 2014 is going to change things for my own marriage, so this is definitely something I’ll be thinking about. Thanks for sharing! xoxo

  7. Kathy says

    Love the word. It is perfect for you. You have inspired me to have my own word this year. My word for 2014 is “intentional”. I never realized until talking to you one day that that word has been running through my thoughts so much lately. I hope in the new year to be “intentional” in slowing down to savor every blessing along the way, listening to the still, small voice that can so easily get drowned out by busyness, and intentional in my attempt to be a blessing to those I encounter. Thank you for the inspiration!

  8. Celeste says

    Last year my word was “enough”. It was a reminder that what God had put in my life was enough and I didn’t need to desire more than that. It has reminded me to be content throughout 2013. There was one area, however, that I found to be not enough…a way to express myself through music. So this year my word of the year will be “explore”. I want to explore new ways to grow, develop, and change. I want to thank you for bringing the word of the year concept into my life. It has made me examine areas of my life in a deeper way than a resolution.

  9. Marianne in Mo. says

    I doubt you will have to be reminded to think of us+ this year! It will be there every day for you! So exciting to see what the coming year will bring you both!
    I thought about my word, and chose hope. I hope my daughter and her family will come home to our state to live, as soon as the Air Force decides where they should go. It WAS a given that they would be here, but now it seems they may not, so I will be praying until we hear the final decision. There is a March deadline, and they will be at the new place by July – hectic for them. I also have hope that this year will be the one where I can finally give up smoking – I’ve been trying for many years! And hope that I can get back in to a relatively fit shape, which has been hard with nonstop hot flashes! I hope my other daughter can enjoy her new home more, that she takes time for her and her family and not be too busy. Hope my husband has a better year health-wise above all. He’s our glue! HOPE – a big word for me!

  10. Brenda says

    Wow, your message awoke fond memories…graduated HS in June ’74!
    Thank you for sharing.

    Will pray for my 2014 word.

  11. Lynn says

    Did you start this based on the My One Word concept of Mike Ashcraft and Rachel Wilson?

    • Layla says

      Hi, Lynn! I didn’t hear about it from either of those folks, but I will have to Google them! 😀

  12. April says

    I do this too! My word for 2013 was “love.” It seems so simple but it was amazing how much I learned about this simple word. Sometimes in situations all you can do is love.

  13. says

    They say a picture is worth a thousand words and the picture you shared here of you two with the globe and the heart…oh my, it speaks volumes. Happy you are well on your way to being a us-plus!

  14. ConnieMcGhee says

    Blessings to you & the “plus” as you continue to be a blessing to others as an “US”

  15. says

    We share the same birth month and day…but not the year….I’m old enough to be your Mother =)
    From what I’ve read here on your blog I can tell that love abounds in your home…what a wonderful place to bring a child..
    Blessings to you and your family .
    Happy Day

  16. Diana says

    My husband and I were married in September of 1974… I had graduated in June with an Associates and he was still in college…but we were very young and ready for the adventure!… now it will be our 40th anniversary and I cannot believe how fast time flies.. people tell you that, but it just is sooo true! I am mulling my word for the year..thankful keeps coming to mind and I think that is what it must be.. for I have so much to be thankful for. Bless you in the coming year and may it be all you have hoped, prayed, and wished for and more!!

  17. Lynette says

    Thank you for sharing your word for the year! I have been thinking about this since I read your post and then today I was reading something that tweaked what I thought would be a great word or theme for the year, T3. Reading the following devotional from harvest.org will help make sense of the T3 theme.
    Thanks for your wonderfully inspiring blog!

  18. Jeannie Brizendine says

    How special – thank you for sharing your us-plus spark! What a great way to focus on something positive! Blessings in 2014 and always!

  19. says

    That’s so neat! You have such a gift for sharing joy with others. I pray for a blessed 2014 for you and your (growing) family!

  20. Ter'e Crow Lindsay says

    What a lovely post. Every time I read a new post, I get all goosey. I am so excited for you, Kev and your whole family. Your “us-plus” includes all of us too. We are giddy, with excitement, over the changes happening in your family. God Bless You, Layla!!!!!! So thankful for your spark of life!!!!!!

    My word for 2014 is Finish. As I age, I think more and more about the things I have left unfinished. I want to leave my children with lots of finished items….be it photos, rugs, special stitching, words of love………whatever, It’s time to finish what I have started. I love thinking of all the accomplishments I will do this next year. It’s a good time to wrap them all up and then be able to coast for awhile.

    Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!! Xoxoxoxoxo

  21. says

    This made me smile :) and it inspires me to find my own word for 2014, too! Wishing you joy and blessings for this new year!

  22. Sunny says

    Thanks for the spark Layla…I loved this blog and am, like others, asking the Lord for a word of my own. Seeing as He is the living Word, He can breathe this into my world and everyone else.

  23. Janelle says

    June is also a special month for me and hubby as we celebrate our 10-year anniversary on the 12th. Wishing you God’s blessings and your heart’s desires in 2014

  24. Jaime says

    Us Plus is an awesome place to be. Excited for the upcoming year.

    Need to think of a word for us… we will start fostering this year….how about “Adventure!” 😉

  25. says

    I can completely relate to June being so meaningful in yours and Kevin’s relationship…it is in mine and my husband’s too! My birthday is the 18th and my husband’s is the 22nd. Our anniversary is the 19th (ours will also be 10 this year!). Father’s Day is also sandwiched in there too so it is a whole lot of celebrating us;)! I love how God even cares about the little details!!
    I love “Us plus” and can’t wait to see what God has in store for your sweet family. God bless!

  26. Maryjane says

    What an amazing concept; word of the year. It ties in to some other inner work I’m exploring right now as well as other ideas I’m enjoying trying out. Thank you for sharing. I will have to meditate for a word…

    This is so neat. I feel truly blessed to have discovered your blog this year. I’m filled with so much gratitude right now.

    And I love the photos in this post. wow.

    Wishing you & Kevin (and us+) every peace and blessing for 2014,
    from Manitoba, Canada

  27. says

    I love this word idea for the year. Today, being New Year’s Day, I’ve decided to join in. My word is SUMMER for many different reasons, personal and just playful… thanks for this great idea !

  28. says

    I totally love your word us-plus for 2014! May it be as magical as last year!! I took over your word choosing for every year and this year I came up with “dare”. To dare more, to dare to follow my dreams and follow my gut, to be daring enough to be different and stress less about what others think about my blogging and my life. Just be happier and take on more chances. Anyway, I hope this year is filled with magic and daring adventures for you and everyone!! Hugs, Inge x