1. Our visit to Disney World. When I asked my hubby what one of his favorite events of this past year was, this was his top event. It is probably mine as well. There is something magical about seeing things through your children's eyes. My sister in-law was kind enough to watch Andrew for the day, so we had a great time with just the girls.
2. Andrew's successful surgery. When Andrew was born, we were told that he would soon need minor surgery. For the first 10 months of his life I was very nervous of how it would go, but he did so well, and recovered very quickly. I am thankful God watched over him and the surgeon and gave me peace.
3. Our many trips to the beach. I was a little nervous taking all three of my kids by myself to the beach, but was determined to not let nap times tie me down the whole summer. And although it was a little hairy at times taking all of our beach gear by myself, we had a great time. And it was great to see how much Andrew enjoyed the sand and water, and how much the girls grew as swimmers.
4. The Hub's job. At the end of the summer, we were told that there was not a lot of work for my husband in the foreseeable future. He had a few weeks where he was laid off, but in the end his company was able to find little jobs here and there to keep him busy. At a time where the ecomomy is still very much struggling, I am very thankful for the work he's been able to secure, and pray for so many who continue look for work.
5. Homeschooling Katie. Over the summer, I had thought a lot about giving homeschooling a try, and asked a few homeschooling moms about their personal experience. After doing a little more research and deciding on a curriculum, I gave it a go. And I am so glad I did. Katie is doing very well. The first week I was ready to throw in the towel, but soon after we figured what things had to be thrown out of the curriculum, and which things she thrived upon. I am enjoying the bonding time with my daughter, as well as loving to learn from her as well. We've done lots of outdoor discoveries, projects, sang lots of new songs, and read some really great books. I look forward to our new year of revelations.
6. Watching Kyra play soccer. I never would have pictured Kyra wanting to play soccer, but after one summer night of goofing around with a ball, she was determined to play. Even the first day of a game, where the rain POURED the whole entire game...she had a great time. And I couldn't believe how competitive I became as a viewing parent! It's like my inner beast was coming out!
7. Running a 5K. At the beginning of the school year, I vowed I was going to become healthier with some sort of exercise. So I decided to start running. Let me tell you, I didn't enjoy it very much. In fact every time I ran, I said that I wasn't going to keep up with it because I hated it so much. But I would get up the next day and determine to do better than the day before. So, when our family decided to do their own race at Thanksgiving time, I was pumped and ready to go. Although I didn't run the whole entire 5K, I did better than I have ever done in my whole entire life, and was very proud of my accomplishment. I am hoping to try and enter another 5K in the spring.
8. Losing weight. Of course, along with running, I had wanted to lose weight this past year. And although I didn't reach my goal, I still lost 22lbs. I hope to lose another 20lbs this next year, but am happy going at it slow and steady. It feels great just to fit into some old clothes that haven't fit in years...and buy some new of course!
9. Seeing Kyra read. It's funny how a lightbulb seems to go on with some milestones. Kyra had been sounding out words for quite some time, and reading too, but she struggled with a lot of words as well. Then just in the past couple of months, she took off. She reads without hesitation and began reading chapter books! I loved waking up during this Christmas break, finding her curled up on the chair, reading by the light of the Christmas tree.
10. Our Christmas together as a family. For some reason this year, Christmas seemed to take on so much more meaning. Maybe it was the daily devotions we did together as a family, or the fact that for some random reason I was more relaxed. But we had a great Christmas. Even the girls seemed more thankful for the gifts they received. But it was especially wonderful to see the look on their faces when they opened their bedroom door to find a surprise. Their dad had put their bunk beds together while they were playing in the basement. They said it was the best Christmas present EVER! And they have been having fun playing on it every day since then.