Friday, December 17, 2010

2010, A Year in Review

I decided to include an image of "My Year in Status" from the facebook application that goes through different posts that were made through out the year (: It's a nice summary of snippets of the year.

Now see, this is a public forum, so there aren't going to be many names and few details, but this year, I have had to face the fact that I just can't get stamps right now for my yearly Christmas cards.

Every year, since I was 18, I have sent out Christmas cards to my friends and family. And in each one, I've added a letter that covers my year in review. This year, I'm having to accept that it's just not going to happen. But that doesn't mean I can't do my year in review-- I just can't mail them.

So here it is: The Wise Family, 2010, a Year in Review (: The upshot of doing it on the web is that I can add photos!

Dear Friends and Family,

I hope that you have had a wonderful year full of the small daily adventures we all take for granted, and that you've taken the time to appreciate some of these moments (: I also hope that everyone is doing well and I'm sorry for any of the misfortunes that have happened in your lives. You are in our thoughts and I love you all! My life would not be the same without any of you!

As for us, Mark is getting ready to start school for his Bachelor's degree. He got his associates' degrees this spring and we are all very proud of him! We are also thankful for his job and the benefits it has provided us. They've certainly come in use this year! In April, our oldest accidentally stabbed himself in the leg with his pocket knife trying to cut cardboard to make himself robot hands and feet. A quick trip to the emergency room for medical grade super glue, and he's doing fine. We insisted that he continue to cut out his patterns, this time with adult supervision and guidance so that he would not be afraid of using his knife in the future and reminded him that everyone gets cut eventually-- but that by following the safety guidelines, it doesn't have to be severe. We also spent a good portion of the summer taking my youngest to various eye doctors for a stye on each eye. One needed surgery to remove. The other, we took care of at home with many applications of hot compresses. Both of his eyes are healing up nicely and are hardly noticeable any more.

Mark is still working night shift-- which actually works out well, since he's still a night owl (; It just means we make the most of enjoying the time we have with him on the weekends. To be honest, we guard our weekend time together very jealously, even if all it means is that we're at home being couch potatoes together for a while. There are still bursts of tickle fights and giggling and shrieking through the house, and those are my favorites (:

My oldest is in third grade this year, and we're all of us thankful that he has such a wonderful teacher! She's nice, patient and understands that my boy is a helper and a talker. He also started going to the gifted and talented classes once a week, and loves these special creative times. And I appreciate that he gets the break away from the rote memorization that the current school system has set in the place for the majority of their learning. He also has many friends at school that make him feel completely welcome and accepted. There are no words to express how relieved that makes me feel for my little boy (: As expected, he has been getting really good grades at school-- straight A's again (:

He recently got to go on his first REAL school field trip, up to Montgomery to see the play "Peter Pan." He enjoyed it so much, he asked if we could watch our Disney movie when he came home, so he could recount the play for me.

I can hardly believe how responsible and grown up my eight year old has gotten!

My youngest is in kindergarten this year. If I needed proof of how different my two boys are-- this would do it. (lol) He's quiet, doesn't volunteer to answer any questions and has been having some difficulty with listening at school. To be honest, he's been sent to the Principle's office three times since August, and every week, his notebook is full of notes from the teacher. We're working on it. Mark and I and his teacher realize that part of it is that he's bored-- he's exceptionally smart, but the activities are not always engaging to him. It's also that he's used to a certain amount of autonomy at home-- I encourage and expect my children to practice a lot of independence...which doesn't necessarily work well in school. So it's been a struggle, but we're finally starting to get across to him that he needs to ask permission before doing things and that he has to listen to his teacher.

We've also gotten him signed up for speech help. Just like his brother and myself before him, he needs some guidance in how to use his mouth for the proper sounding of words. Today, he gets to wear his pajamas to school for their school party. It's a celebration of getting 'green' in his notebook for an entire -week-, so he gets to participate in the special school activities (:

Both of my boys are looking forward to Christmas break. We have several activities planned, including making cookies tonight to kick off the vacation (: They're both hoping we'll have another snow day like we did in February.







It hasn't been all homebody activities at the Wise household this year though! We went to our local Shire's first event, Baba Marta in March and had a wonderful time. There was archery, heavy fighting, a slew of wonderful period classes, games both inside and out, dancing, great food and company and just a whole lot of fun!

Over the summer, we went to the Air Force museum in Florida for a day and had fun exploring all the different aircraft.

We also went to the Ft. Rucker 4th of July celebration and my boys got to climb in a variety of helicopters and planes. They were also the first and only children who figured out how to get the siren working on the old time fire engine (lol). Much appreciated by the other children-- not nearly as appreciated by the adults (; We wrapped up the day with festival food, patriotic music and a great fireworks display.

In October, we went to the Texas Renaissance festival and got to visit my friends Cat, Cline and their family and had a wonderful, if brief time with them (:

In November, we went to our first Troy University football came, courtesy of Mark's work. We had a wonderful time at family day and enjoyed the first half of the game before it started to get too cold to stay.

As for myself, I've just finished my third semester at Troy. Enjoying my classes and all the wonderful things I'm getting to learn, but I would be remiss if I didn't mention how much I'm looking forward to being DONE (;

All in all, it's been a very busy year for us, with plenty of ups and downs.

Here's hoping that 2011 has more ups than downs for all of us!

Much love to you all,

Janin

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