As I sit at my laptop, next to my children playing a game they received for Christmas, I am reminded how fortunate I am to have them in my life (and also reminded how long it takes to write when they are close and asking questions). The year was full of adventure with them, and full of adventure for me as well. I know it's so cliche to say how quickly the years seem to go by, but I really feel like 2011 was the fastest year ever for me. I'm afraid this is how my life will be for the next several years (or the rest of my life?), trying not to blink and miss all the precious moments in every year.
One year ago this week, on Monday, I started work again (after being a SAHM for 4 years). It was something that seemed necessary at the time, and it was actually really hard for me. Any time we take on a new title in life, whether professionally or personally (going from not employed to employed or from single to married, etc) it can be scary. I did the best work I knew how, applied my perky personality and work ethic to the position, and met lots of great people. Not only co-workers, but patients that I saw on a daily basis often taught me something. Like this man.
Caleb started school that same week (after a semester of homeschooling), and Sarah and Gabriel began staying with a sweet woman during the day. This all worked out to be a great experience for the kids, and I am thankful for that.
In January Caleb also started Upward basketball at our church, and then in March he began Taekwondo. Both have been great experiences. He continues with Taekwondo (now with his green belt) and will begin another round of Upward beginning this week.
Sarah completed her first year of preschool in April, and I simply adore the people and atmosphere of her preschool. It's always good to send your kids where you feel confident in the workers and in the content of what they're teaching. Thank you to them.
Gabriel started potty training in the spring, and Lord help us, we are still working on it almost ten months later. I know he'll get it eventually, I'm just not sure what the hold up is. He is only wearing underwear, no pull-ups to deter progress, but he still has accidents and will not tell me when he has to go. As long as I keep track of time and take him, it's an accident-free day (not counting poopy accidents).
In June, the kids welcomed their first cousin, Sylvia!
In July, Josh and I celebrated 10 years of marriage. We sort of weren't sure if we would take a big trip or not, but we got the hair-brained idea to go on a cruise around May or so! One of my co-workers at the time was crazy about cruises, so we asked her lots of questions and started planning. It was a trip full of fun and relaxation, that's for sure!
In August, Josh's grandpa passed away. It was a sudden thing, very difficult for us because he fell at our house walking out our front door, and the surgery that followed would turn out not to go so well.
I am thankful for the picture above, taken the day grandpa was at our house. I know he enjoyed seeing Caleb's birthday party that day. We know he is rejoicing in heaven, reunited with his wife, and singing praises to the Lord. :)
Also in August, Josh began teaching at the East Central College campus in Rolla. It is an adjunct position, and I think he really enjoyed this new experience as an educator.
We decided to announce that we were expecting our 4th baby in September. I was about 10 weeks when the news broke, and I was hoping to hold out longer, but I figured all the puking gave it away! I also resigned from my job in September, and the day after my last day of work, I was admitted to the hospital with pancreatitis and gall stones! Aren't I too young for that?!
The fall brought a student of the month award for Caleb and some cute, super heroes around October 31st.
And let's not forget, the St. Louis Cardinals won the World Series in October!
My 20-week ultrasound was scheduled for November 29th, and on that day we found out our baby is a girl. I was so excited. So, so excited. We do have a girl name picked out, but it's top secret, so I can't tell until the baby is born! But don't worry, I can give you a clue. Her first name is in the Bible. ;)
We really enjoyed Christmas break, with Josh being off for two weeks! We did some traveling this year for Christmas, and I went to my first pro-football game on Christmas Eve!
With a new baby on the way, we have a lot in store for us in 2012! I hope I can take in every moment. I hope I can enjoy these days, and when I reflect this time next year, I can have a flood of wonderful memories to share with you.
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