Monday, December 31, 2007

2007 is OVER!

I can sum up 2007 in one word...rollercoaster!! Or is that two? We started off the year finding out that David was going to be out of a job *again*. He was working for Accenture on the state Medicaid project, and the state was ending their contract early. He could stay with Accenture and relocate, or he could get a job somewhere else. As many of you know, tech jobs can be hard to come by around here, at least ones that pay the bills. So we started looking at options for staying with Accenture. They had several job openings in Australia, Ireland, UK, Singapore, Italy, and Greece, so we really started contemplating the possibility of moving overseas. At times I was all for it, I would love to live somewhere other than the US and let the kids have that experience, but then at other times, the thought of leaving everything familiar behind, I just wasn't sure if I could handle that again. The prospect of selling or leasing the house, selling my truck, storing furniture, it all just seemed so daunting. He did have a few phone interviews in Australia and we were looking at rental properties online, but thankfully, in the end, David managed to stay on the exact same job he was doing, but working for the state instead, and a small raise to boot. So it all worked out well, but the first half of the year was kind of a blur dealing with all that.

We started the year with Regan in pre-school and being 4 years old, and loving school so much that I thought when she started kindergarten she would just take right to it. Was I ever wrong. She turned 5 just a month before school started, so maybe that has something to do with it, her being one of the youngest, smallest kids in her class, but she has no interest in learning. She does like to go to school, but it's to play in the centers. She would get mad at us for the longest time for correcting her ABC song (contrary to what she thinks, it does NOT go A-B-C-D-F-I-G). She is doing a lot better now, 6 months in, she has learned all of her sounds and letters and is starting to sound out words and can read simple words like cat and dog. I think the Leapster she got at Christmas is really helping, it's learning in disguise!! She never ceases to entertain us though, she has so much sass, and can talk the horns off a brass bull (which we firmly believe she inherited that skill from her Nana Mona). She is so rough and tumble, and can keep up with her brother and his friends all the time, and she just keeps us laughing all the time. I am amazed that someone so young can have such a sense of humor.

Riley is now in 3rd grade, which at his school is the highest grade this year, so he's one of the oldest kids on campus. After being diagnosed with ADHD and working with a child psychologist, he's really come to understand how to deal with his behavioral issues and is becoming a little man. He is learning responsibility and sometimes, rarely, watching him take care of his sister, I can see that one day he will make an awesome father. Of course his adventurous streak has no end, he still rides his dirt bike, and recently upgraded to a 65cc, which from what I understand, is bigger and has a clutch. He is so smart and enjoys reading, his books of choice lately have been Calvin and Hobbes, which brings back a lot of memories for mom and dad!!

We had a real up and down year with Kenzie, with her deciding to move out this summer, and anyone who has or has been a teenager, can relate to our situation. It was rough for a while, but now I know she is in a good place, and finishing school and getting the help that she needs to grow and mature into a young woman that our mom can be proud of.

We opened our home first to my brother Pete while he looked for a new place to live, then to David's sister Tiffany, and her dogs and cat. So we do officially have a zoo in our house now.

For me, it was an interesting year. I really thought that when Regan started school, my life would be on easy street. Boy was I wrong. I had a bad case of empty nest, I can't imagine how bad it's going to be when the kids actually go off to college, I will probably be a basket case. I did enjoy having some time to myself, for the first time in a long time. We've never paid a babysitter, and since Riley was born, we've only used family to watch the kids, and with not having a whole lot of family in the area, our options in the child care department have always been limited. So to have an hour or two in the day to do something just for myself was quite nice. I still work for David's parents two days a week, and I volunteer at the kids school as often as possible. I'm hoping to use some of that "me" time to get some projects done around the house.

We adopted a kitty in January, Ricky-Bobby, Riley wanted him to be called Ricky, Regan added the Bobby herself, and so it stuck. We still have Bailey, our sweet little Border Collie that we got as a stray, and he had to have been abused, he's got the meekest spirit ever. But since Tiffany moved in with her Great Pyrenees Kenya, they've been playing a lot and are new best friends.

We made several trips this year, to New Orleans in August for Papa Leo's 60th surprise party, to Ohio in October to see my dad and Linda, and many trips to Sea World and San Antonio, and several camping trips with my BFF Tammy and her family.

So overall, a good year, we are all healthy, happy, we have food to eat and clothes to wear. I am reminded of the saying "I felt sorry that I had no shoes, until I met a man who had no feet". I want us all to remember how good we truly have it, and that God has blessed us, and to pass those blessings on to others!

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