Saturday, January 1, 2011

Welcome 2011

I am so happy to be starting a new year! Not that 2010 was a bad year. I just get excited for something new! Like starting a new school year and getting to buy all those new pencils and clean fresh notebooks!

They represent new possibilities, a fresh start, unlimited beginnings!

But first we need to put 2010 to bed officially, so here is my Year in Review!


We continued to have lots of snow, Tax Season was underway and Ava Marie went back to Kids R Kids so Mommy could get down to work. Imagine trying to concentrate on taxes with this cute little face staring at you and imploring..."Come play with me!" That is the door to my office and I don't even try to get rid of the fingerprints!

Valentines Day was so much fun with the girls! We also attended our first Frog Princess Dance. This is supposed to be like a Daddy/Daughter Dance but they encourage any F.R.O.G.(Father, Relative or Godmother) to bring your special girl. I was one of only 2 Moms to be there, but everyone was very nice to us and Katy and Mackenzie had such a great time getting dressed up. We will definitely do this again!

MARCH 2010:
Still cold and very icy! One Sunday it snowed so much we couldn't even make it down the driveway to get to church. The girls decided to set up a special picnic up in one of their rooms. They dressed up and invited me to attend, with handwritten invitations and everything. I was crowned upon entering the room!

APRIL 2010:
Easter was nice and warm and we had a fun time at our church having an Easter Egg Hunt. The count down to the end of Tax Season was in full swing! And the girls were rehearsing day and night for Cinderella and also for their dance recital Genesis. Everything went off without a hitch.
This was Madyson Claire's first show and I was so proud of her. She really had a great time performing with her sisters. And when I saw Katy all dressed up in her ballgown for the Ball scene...I had tears in my eyes. What a beautiful young woman she is becoming.
The very next weekend was Genesis. Such a whirlwind of activity! But the girls all did wonderfully and Genesis was a great success! Thank goodness it was limited to only one performance!

MAY 2010:
On the 5th we were called by Admissions with a little boy! Aidan was a wonderful addition to our family! He was so cute and I was so ready to fill my arms with a little snuggle bunny! The girls were excited to finally have a boy in our midst and I had fun actually getting to buy new baby clothes! (I still think there are way more cute girls clothes!)
School ended and Katy bid farewell to Arbor Creek Elementary School forever. We would soon embark on our new adventure of homeschooling! And even though May was a bit chilly, we all knew that summer was just around the corner!
JUNE 2010:
Katy and Mackenzie had a full summer schedule with their Showtime Performance Group and that started with a big bang at the Jiggle Fest at Crown Center! We all had fun and in between performances the girls ran through the big childrens fountain.

We also had many campouts in the living room and the basement. Even Aidan participated! Our days were filled with play and a little learning. We stayed at home and rode bikes, ran through the sprinklers and walked up to our pool everyday. The girls also each had swimming lessons and they progressed really well. Katy and Mackenzie already swim like fish, but Madyson was still wearing a life vest and holding onto the side. After her lessons this year I am happy to report that she is swimming throughout the pool and keeping up with her older sisters. She still wears the life vest, but only on occasions.
June was also Madyson Claire's 6th birthday! We had a family party for her as she had requested we all go to MacDonalds for lunch and then we went to the movies to see Toy Story 3. I asked her if she wanted to invite anyone along and she said yes...she wanted Randy to come with her! He was honored!

JULY 2010:
We had a fun and patriotic 4th of July at home in our backyard! We made it an old fashioned 4th of July with hot dogs, watermelon, potato salad and then went to a park to watch the fireworks.

Katy turned 11 years old on July 23rd! We had a fun family party for her and she invited her best friend Alexa for a sleep over.

AUGUST 2010:
This month is my favorite because it is my birthday month! It started out wonderful and not too hot, but it turned into a very dry month and all of that beautiful green grass was gone in a matter of days!

Madyson Claire and Mackenzie started back to school at Arbor Creek in 1st and 2nd grade.

Katy and I started our homeschool adventure!! It was made extra wonderful by the cooler weather and we were able to do most of our school days in August outside on the patio!

Aidan was thriving and starting to crawl. He smiled all the time and made lots of noises, calling out "Hey!" to the kids when they would walk into the room. I started to get really used to the idea of having a boy in the family!

School was keeping us very busy, along with all of the extracurricular activities the girls have.

It was a really warm Fall, as you can see by the shorts the girls are wearing in the picture below. We went to Deanna Rose Farmstead several times, riding the wagon to the Pumpkin Patch. Aidan continued to spend more time with his birth family, we prepared ourselves for his return to them in the near future.

Mackenzie turned 8 years old on the 29th. We had a fun family lunch a few days before her birthday at Cheddars Restaurant and then we went over to the new American Girl Place so she could pick out her first American Girl Doll. She choose Kit. On her actual birthday, the Friday before Halloween, we had a party for her and 5 of her friends. Katy spent that day decorating and it was awesome!

Again it is unseasonably warm for this time of year.I took advantage of the beautiful weather to get these great pictures of the girls. My Mom flew in for Thanksgiving and we had a great week leading up to turkey day...until we got the news that Aidan would be leaving us for good on Thanksgiving Day. It was truly a sad day for us all...I have yet to recover fully.

I miss his little face, I miss his laugh and his hugs. I look for him everywhere, even knowing that I will probably never see him again. There will always be a place in my heart for our Aidan, I pray for his health and happiness. I pray that he will be a man of God.

We spent December trying to pack as much fun into our vacation from school as possible. Mackenzie is lobbying to be homeschooled along with Katy next year, so I told her we would continue to do school during vacation and include her so we could see how she would do. And actually it has worked out great! Katy loves to have someone to work with besides me, and Mackenzie kept up with her really well.

We decided to take a short term placement for December. The agency told me the children would be here only until a few days before Christmas. Unfortunately that was not correct, so we had an extra 2 year old girl and a 2 month old boy. They were really adorable, but quite the handful. The little girl has Sickle Cell Anemia and ended up having a crisis only 4 days after arriving. She had to be hospitalized for 7 days and then came back home with us for another week. During that time, besides getting ready for Christmas, we all ended up getting sick, even Randy. So it was a very stressful time for all of us.

The kids ended up being moved to a relatives home about an hour before my Mom arrived for a ten day stay. I was ready to collapse, and it was so nice to have my Mom here to help me. Unfortunately, she ended up getting sick, but at least it only lasted a day and then she was back to her happy and energetic self.

We spent a quiet New Year's Eve at home snacking on or'derves and my Mom taught the girls to knit.

Today, New Year's Day, we watched the Rose Parade and then went to Crown Center to skate at the ice terrace, an outdoor skating rink. We stayed until 5:30pm and then walked over to Panera Bread for coffee, hot cocoa, soup and sandwiches. It was so pretty, we sat by the windows and admired the bright white lights on all of the trees.

Well, that is it for 2010! I am grateful for all of my blessings, and hopeful for another great year! I hope you are having a great start to your year also!