-After our WA vacation in July, we took it upon ourselves to paint the exterior of our house...by ourselves. We planned on this being a weekend project. Well, it ended up taking us at least a month. We spent hours and hour and hours (did I say hours???) scraping every square inch due to the previous owners using cheap paint. Then we had to caulk, patch, replace, prime, paint, and do the trim. I will NEVER paint this house again (or any house for that matter). I told Ryan we should have had a bonfire to burn the brushes. Ugh. At least it's done, looks great, and our neighbors got quite the entertainment watching us for days on end. Our yard was definitely the social place around 5:30 every day.
-During this painting fiasco, I was going through a major decision. The school that Kiera attends was searching frantically for a part time music teacher. After much prayer I went in to see if they would be interested in me helping out temporarily or to just test the waters. They ended up being very willing to work with me and around the first week of August I was hired! This meant I had 2 weeks to prepare 6 preps, get my classroom ready, and figure out how life was going to change! It was a bit hectic to say the least, but I survived and am loving it! It has been such an incredible blessing to have another income, a wonderful work environment, a different challenge that has every day a little different, and the perks of being at the same school as your kids. I am now working on getting my credits up to date so that I meet the 2 year requirement for a ongoing certificate. The boys took a little bit to adjust to the daycare, but now they love it. Every morning they ask numerous times if it's time for school yet. They would be happy to go all the time. We still enjoy preschool together at home some mornings and they get the social interaction afternoons which has been good for their twin development. The first week they both ended up with hurt arms. Caleb fractured his left wrist and Joel broke his left wrist...same bone...same place...same piece of equipment. I am pretty sure we have been flagged at the orthopedist office! Ah, the joys of twins!
-Throughout all this my dad's health has been failing. In October I flew out to WA to be with my family and say my good-bye's to him. This was extremely difficult, but such a blessing to see him. He is now on hospice and his health continues to decline daily. We are very thankful that he is still with us and we love seeing his smile on Skype! We are looking forward to spending Christmas together but definitely covet your prayers as we walk through this valley together as a family. What a blessing it is to know, though, that my dad loves the Lord and is ready to meet his Savior!
-We continue to do life together; Kiera started 2nd grade, practicing piano, giving piano lessons (I now have 4 students), homework, wrestling matches with daddy, meetings, church activities (Kiera is now in GEMS which she LOVES), and spending time with my sister and her family over Thanksgiving. Today we celebrated Caleb & Joel's 5th birthday! It's hard to believe how fast they have grown. I would definitely say they had a Super Hero birthday. Batman and Superman are the theme around here. They wanted to go bowling tonight which was a lot of fun. Unfortunately I couldn't beat Ryan this time, so I guess we better get the Wii bowl out again where I am guaranteed a win! :)
Hopefully these pictures will give you a snapshot of the past 5 months. Thanks for sticking with this long post! I promise to try to be more faithful in my updates!