Well, here we are again, at the beginning of a brand new year. As we look forward to what this new year could bring, we have to look back on last year and what it brought.

We saw ups and downs in 2018. We had losses, gains, and everything in between, as we do every year. Looking back on it, I think we can agree that 2018 was pretty rough, but no more rough than previous years. We've made it through tough years before, and we did it again this year.

Whether you agreed with them or not, we saw court cases that will shape the way decisions are made from here on out. We saw sports teams that shouldn't have even been on the same field as their opponents come out on top. We saw politics get more brutal than we've ever seen before. We saw new advances in technology that we would have never thought possible before.

Closer to home we saw huge things, too. We saw a local high school football team bring home a state title for the second year in a row. Right as 2018 was coming to a close, we saw the passing of a local university president. We saw thousands of fans pack arenas to see huge concerts. We saw a little league team from our community go to the World Series for a second year in a row.

Personally, I experienced the loss of close family members. I saw the addition of new family members, both through birth and through marriage. I saw my home of East Texas grow, right along with the people in it, myself included.

We saw all of this in 2018, and that was just the beginning.

Now, it's time for 2019. The ups, the downs, and everything else. I say we embrace the excitement that new experiences bring, and make 2019 even better than last year.

So, Happy New Year, and bring it on, 2019!