As a blogger, I may be compensated in some way (either pay, product, or experience) for sharing the post below All opinions are my own. ~Heidi
As this year draws to a close, I thought I’d take a look back at our year – – –
We started the month of January by having our Christmas get-together with the Strawser family. We also had two exciting events to celebrate that month – the 40th anniversary of our pastor & his wife serving at our church, and the 25th anniversary of my brother’s adoption (affectionately referred to as “Airplane Day”).
(our family at the Strawser Christmas Party – Jan. 2nd)
One of the most memorable February events, for me, was spending time with my friend Sue and taking her to her chemo treatments. Little did I know at the time how special those moments would one day become for me. We celebrated a good friend’s birthday while watching the Super Bowl at their house. And, at the end of the month, Ashley and I enjoyed a Casting Crowns concert – we got to meet the members of the band, along with the members of Kutless and Caleb and Will Franklin Chapman. We took a friend from church and had a great time (so much so that we’re going to another concert together in March of 2011!)
Sue lost her battle with ovarian cancer on March 5th, and life, as I knew it, will never be the same. We’re all learning to adjust to a “new normal” – but not a day goes by that I don’t think about her and miss her. Brenda and I spent time in March starting to select a new team for the Homeschool Crew, and my mom took me to Lancaster for my 40th birthday. I think a surprise party was considered, but I’m not a fan of surprises and this really wasn’t the year. We stayed at the Steamboat Inn and saw Joseph at Sight & Sound. Of course, we also shopped. It was nice to get away. Unfortunately, we both forgot to pack our cameras.
April was an eventful month. On the 2nd, we had a lovely Good Friday service at our church. The following weekend, our family journeyed to the Midwest Convention in Cincinnati, OH to represent The Old Schoolhouse Magazine. I had opportunity to meet several of my Crew Mates there – including my assistant and friend, Brenda. The girls had their homeschool evaluations on the 13th, and on the 23rd we attended the annual Spring Concert at my alma mater.
In May, Ashley and I helped with the CHAP convention – our own convention right here in PA. Gracie went to the beach with my parents from the 13th to the 16th. Ashley and I attended a Stellar Kart concert (in a church that really was not a good concert venue, but she enjoyed it). We left home on the 21st, Florida-bound, and stopped in GA on the way to visit my friend Renee. We spent the night with her, then continued on to FL where we vacationed at a lovely resort (compliments of the Suarez family), met some new friends, visited our favorite place – Disney World, and served at the FPEA convention (which was a bit fancier than the other convention venues we had been to this year).
Gracie had her piano recital on June 6th. We celebrated Brian’s sister & brother-in-law’s 25th anniversary at a nice party hosted by their girls. We were also able to meet up with a Crew Mate, Amy (who we had met up with in FL the previous month) – when she and her family passed through our area on their way to NY. I also got to meet up with Sheri, from the Crew. All these new friends – God knows how to pour out the blessings!
We celebrated the 4th of July at my Aunt & Uncle’s house (it’s become a bit of a tradition). On the 5th, I started the Bible in 90 Days reading program – LOVED IT! Ashley spent a week with her friend in NY – while she was gone, we had some fun of our own! The following week was our church’s Bible School, which Gracie & Ian participated in and Ashley and I helped with. We also had two reunions this month – one with Brian’s family and one with mine.
The girls and I braved the heat at the PA Renaissance Faire in August. Our town celebrated its 200th Anniversary with lots of fun events, including bus tours of local attractions and historical sites. The girls, my mom, and I went to Sight & Sound to see Psalms of David (thanks to the $10 ticket price for homeschoolers), and we met with my friend Jodi and her kids in Lancaster and spent a great day with them.
In September, we had another family picnic (Labor Day) at my grandma’s homestead. The kids, my mom, and I went to Williamsburg from the 12th through the 17th – the goal was to write an upcoming article about their Homeschool Days for TOS, but it was definitely fun too (well, except for the fact that Ian broke his leg while we were down there!) Brian’s work picnic was held at a local amusement park on the 25th. We also enjoyed a Brad Stine concert on the 26th.
(Gracie and my mom at the family picnic)
The kids and I went to the National Civil War Museum in Harrisburg on the 6th of October. We had a Harvest Party with our church family on the 9th. On the 22nd, the kids and I met up with my friend Jodi and her kids at a corn maze in Lancaster – it was COLD but we had lots of fun together. Gracie’s 10th anniversary was also celebrated in October – it’s so hard to believe it’s been 10 years since we first held her in our arms. I had a jewelry party on the 29th and earned lots of free jewelry!
(me and the kids at the National Civil War Museum)
Ashley left on November 6th – flying out of BWI – to spend the week in Colorado with a friend. We had friends fly in on that same date to spend the week with us. Our church suffered the loss of two very dear members during the month of November. Ashley celebrated her 17th birthday. And, of course, we had Thanksgiving.
And December has been a month filled with Christmas festivities. Gracie played her violin at 2 nursing homes (with her ensemble group) on the 4th; they also played at a fancy-schmancy store on the 7th – then she played again for our church Christmas program on the 19th. We’ve had fun celebrating the holidays with friends and family.
Truthfully, when Sue passed away in March, I thought the whole year would be horrible and unbearable, but God had other plans. We’ve had opportunities that I never expected us to have, we’ve met people that I never thought it would be possible for us to meet, and we’ve experienced blessings overflowing. I’m glad He sees fit to mix the good in with the bad.
Looking forward to seeing what God has in store for us for 2011 . . .