January: In early January we were finishing up our holiday trip to Texas. While there, we spent time with our families and with our friends Marc and Christy (a college roomie and dear friend). We also made the decision to become a TV-free family by selling our two TVs and canceling our service (we now only do Netflix or Hulu, which is FREE). It was a really wonderful way to start off our year and realign our priorities.
February: I sorted and gave away several boxes of maternity clothing to Birthright (Pssst...they also take baby items). Brighton took his first steps and I wrote my first letter to the Nebraska Health and Human Services Committee regarding the oppressive birthing laws in our state. This is the month where Brayla really began getting into serious art (thank you to her two uncles who went in on a marvelous beginning art set for her).
March: We drove to Texas in the middle of a BLIZZARD! Lee completed his dissertation defense. We celebrated Brighton’s first birthday. I attended the first couple sessions of the Controversies in Childbirth conference and also met my friends Laureen & Lisa! We received some disturbing news about a few of Brandon’s blood tests which our doctor said raised concerns of possibly Leukemia (which turned out much better than we though). On the upside, we also had a mini-vacation to the Watiki Water Park. Oh and I blogged about sex (just seeing if you’re awake).
April: We had a very shocking snow this month. I finished teaching three sections of Information Literacy courses at the local college (lots of grading and personal comments there…whew!) and began ordering gardening supplies.
May: We drove to Texas (AGAIN!!!). We attended my brother's graduation and Lee’s doctoral graduation (during a very quiet moment in the ceremony, Brayla yelled across the auditorium “I love you, Daddy!” which made everyone laugh). We got to spend an evening with some old high school friends (I hadn’t seen them since the early 90s!) which was SO awesome (great cooking and conversation) and we also spent the night with Kathryn (my old college roomie who’s been a friend since elementary school) & DeWayne while in Texas (why do we do this only every several years?). After arriving home, we spent two nights in a cabin at Chadron State Park for our summer vacation. And finally, Brayla lost her first two teeth (the first while we were at Storybook Island in South Dakota).
June: We planted our first raised Square Foot Garden, took many trips to the swimming pool, and Brayla began dance lessons and art lessons. I sprained my foot while running (which, incidentally, took about 4 months to heal). Brayla and Brandon both started swim lessons. Brandon had his first trip to the dentist. Brayla had her very first bicycle ride without training wheels! And we sadly said goodbye to our dear Chadron friends (who moved to Texas -- :sniff, sniff:).
July: We attended our first homeschoolers get-together. Lee flew to Boston for the SAKAI conference and had to sleep on the airport floor due to a delayed flight. Brayla had her first eye appointment and Brandon had his first dentist appointment.
August: Celebrated our 14th anniversary. WOOHOO! We also celebrated Brandon’s 4th birthday and Brayla's 6th birthday.
September: I took a (much needed) break from blogging. We harvested the remainder of our garden and hung any green tomatoes in our garage while they ripened. We celebrated my birthday and I was invited as a guest speaker to the Mountain Midwives conference in Spearfish (where I met some amazing people). Brayla began taking gymnastics (which she LOVES). We also attended a conference in Kearney and I got to meet my precious online buddy, Lenetta from Nettacow!
October: We celebrated Lee’s birthday and prepared for our fabulous fall weather. I became the new Education Chair for the Nebraska Friends of Midwives and published my first global article as a syndicated Google author (which received numerous hits world-wide and sent thousands of viewers to our website).
November: November was really all about preparing for Thanksgiving. We rented two cabins in the woods for 3 nights and had a rustic Thanksgiving with family from Texas.
December: I finished the last of my coursework for my 2nd master’s degree (specializing in Educational Technology) which I started August of last year. Then we had a fantabulous and quiet, but very white and snuggly, Christmas here in the Nebraska Panhandle. Roads and businesses were closed down for a couple days, but the kids had a great time building snow forts and sledding down huge mountains of shoveled snow!
In a nutshell, we've been blessed this year. Through good days and even the roughest of days we've learned a great deal about love and grace. We appreciate, so much, you having kept up with us through the year and THANK YOU for keeping us in your thoughts and prayers. Now we'll see about posting some New Year's Resolutions (if I'm brave!).
Happy New Year!!!