2014 Year in Pictures: Part I

--By Thea Breite
A pedestrian struggles to cross a street in blowing and falling snow as the Gateway Arch appears in the distance Sunday, Jan. 5, 2014, in St. Louis. An artic blast of cold winter air affected a good portion of the country for a week. Freezing cold made it all the way to Florida and is blamed for more than 20 deaths nationwide (Jeff Roberson/AP)
A seagull flies past the side of the cruise liner Costa Concordia during the "parbuckling" operation outside Giglio harbor on January 12, 2014. Parbuckling is the righting of a sunken vessel using rotational leverage. The Italian cruise ship capsized and sank after striking an underwater obstruction off Isola del Giglio,Tuscany, on January 13, 2012. 32 people died as a result of the accident. (Max Rossi/Reuters)
Students play in their school yard as Mount Sinabung erupts in Sukandebi, North Sumatra, Indonesia on Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014. (Binsar Bakkara/AP)
The body of boxer Christopher Rivera, who was shot to death, is proppedd up in a fake boxing ring during his wake at the community recreation center within the public housing project where he lived in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Friday, Jan. 31, 2014. Elsie Rodriguez, vice president of the Marin funeral home, explained that Rivera had asked his family that if he died, he wanted his funeral to make reference to his boxing career. (Ricardo Arduengo/AP)
This picture taken on Jan. 31, 2014, and released by the UNRWA, shows residents of the besieged Palestinian camp of Yarmouk, queuing to receive food supplies, in Damascus, Syria. A United Nations official called on warring sides in Syria to allow aid workers to resume distribution of food and medicine in a besieged Palestinian district of Damascus. (UNRWA)
Fatima, 13, weeps as she kisses her injured father, Ahmad al-Messmar, 40, who was wounded when a deadly car bomb blew up near a gas station, in the predominately Shiite town of Hermel, about 10 miles (16 kilometers) from the Syrian border in northeast Lebanon, Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014. A shadowy Lebanese Sunni extremist group claimed responsibility for a suicide car bombing in Hermel, a stronghold of Lebanon's militant Hezbollah group, that killed several people in the latest attack linked to the war in neighboring Syria. (Hussein Malla/AP)
Ultra-orthodox Jewish bride Rivka Hannah Krois watches her groom dance after their traditional wedding ceremony in the Mea Shearim neighbourhood of Jerusalem, on February 19, 2014. (Ronen Zvulun/Reuters)
The body of one of the siblings killed in a bomb blast near an anti-government protest site on Sunday is prepared for a funeral at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, in this February 24, 2014 photo. (Athit Perawongmetha/Reuters)
A priest speaks through a megaphone to riot police and anti-government protesters at the site of recent clashes in Kiev, on February 12, 2014. (Konstantin Chernichkin/Reuters)
Li Yan, pregnant with her second child, lies on a bed as her daughter places her head on her mother's stomach in Hefei, Anhui province February 20, 2014. Li gave birth to a baby boy on February 23, 2014 after Li's family became the first to receive a birth permit to have a second child in the province earlier this month, The Chinese government said late last year it would allow millions of families to have two children, with a relaxation of its one-child policy if one of the parents was an only child. (China Daily)
An Indian man moves out of the way of a leopard in the northern Indian city of Meerut, India Feb. 23, 2014. Forestry officials and police armed with tranquilizer darts searched for a leopard that injured six people in the northern Indian city, creating panic and driving people indoors, police said. (AP)
South Koreans hold their North Korean relative's hands on a bus after the Separated Family Reunion Meeting at Diamond Mountain in North Korea, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014. The first reunions of North and South Koreans in more than three years were held in North Korea. (Lee Ji-eun/AP)
A doctor conducts a thyroid examination on a five-year-old girl as her older brother and a nurse take care of her at a clinic in a temporary housing complex in Nihonmatsu, west of the tsunami-crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, Fukushima prefecture. (Toru Hanai/Reuters)
Local women watch armed men, believed to be Russian soldiers, assemble near a Ukrainian military base in Perevalnoe on March 5, 2014. (Thomas Peter/Reuters)
The mother of Roula Yacoub, whom her family said was killed by the daughter's husband last year, carries a picture of her daughter and grandchildren while taking part in a rally marking International Woman's Day demanding that parliament approve a law that protects women from domestic violence in Beirut, Lebanon, Saturday, March 8, 2014. Although Lebanon appears very progressive on women rights compared to other countries in the Middle East, domestic violence remains an unspoken problem and the nation'’s parliament has yet to vote on a bill protecting women’s rights nearly three years after it was approved by the Cabinet. (Bilal Hussein/AP)
Children push a cart with water containers along a damaged street in old Aleppo March 11, 2014. The number of children affected by the civil war in Syria has more than doubled over the past year, with hundreds of thousands of young Syrians trapped in besieged parts of the country, the United Nations Children's Fund said. (Mahmoud Hebbo/Reuters)
A relative of Chinese passengers aboard Malaysia Airlines MH370 grieves after being told of the latest news in Beijing, China, Monday, March 24, (Ng Han Guan/AP)
A flag, put up by volunteers helping search the area, stands in the ruins of a home left at the end of a deadly mudslide from the now-barren hillside seen about a mile behind, Tuesday, March 25, 2014, in Oso, Wash. At least 14 people were killed in the 1-square-mile slide that hit in a rural area about 55 miles northeast of Seattle. Several people also were critically injured, and homes were destroyed. (Elaine Thompson/AP)
Most Reverend Gerald F. Kicanas, Bishop of Tucson, offers communion to people on the Mexican side of the international border, Tuesday, April 1, 2014, in Nogales, Ariz. Kicanas and Boston Archdiocese Cardinal Sean O'Malley, along with several Bishops who serve along the U.S./Mexico border, were visiting the border town to bring awareness to immigration reform and to remember those who have died trying to cross the border in years past. (Matt York/AP)
General Motors CEO Mary Barra arrives to testify about the deadly recalls at the House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, in this April 1, 2014 file photo. (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)
A sub-Saharan migrant is helped by a Spanish Guardia Civil officer after he fainted on top of a metallic fence that divides Morocco and the Spanish enclave of Melilla, Thursday, April 3, 2014. Spanish and Moroccan police have thwarted a fresh attempt by dozens of African migrants to try to scale border fences to enter the Spanish enclave of Melilla. Thousands of sub-Saharan migrants seeking a better life in Europe are living illegally in Morocco and regularly try to enter Melilla in the hope of later making it to mainland Spain. (Santi Palacios/AP)
Men rescue a boy from under the rubble after what activists said were explosive barrels were dropped by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar Al-Assad in the Al-Shaar neighbourhood of Aleppo, on April 6, 2014. (Hosam Katan/Reuters)
Visitors of the Holi Festival of Colours throw special colored powders in the air in Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, April 6, 2014. The festival is fashioned after the Hindu spring festival Holi, which is mainly celebrated in the north and east of India. (Manu Fernandez/AP)
Maritime police search for missing passengers as lighting flares are released for a night search, following the sinking of South Korean ferry "Sewol" at the sea off Jindo April 16, 2014. Almost 300 people were missing after a ferry capsized off South Korea on Wednesday, despite frantic rescue efforts involving coastguard vessels, fishing boats and helicopters, in what could be the country's biggest maritime disaster in over 20 years. (Kim Hong-Ji/Reuters)
Prospectors work at the open-pit Djoubissi gold mine, north of Bambari, on April 24, 2014. (/Emmanue Braun/Reuters)
Michael Phelps warms up prior to a 50-meter freestyle preliminary heat at the Arena Grand Prix swim event, Friday, April 25, 2014, in Mesa, Ariz. It is Phelps' second competitive event after a nearly two-year retirement. (Matt York/AP)
In this blog: Big Picture