The only thing that could have made the first day of December better would have been waking up to a layer of snow instead of frost. I sat out on my porch swing with my coffee for over an hour just reveling in the cold.
The girls had a Barefoot Race across the yard, in which Kit wore socks because obviously, that's what you do in a barefoot race. Don't question Kit's logic, you'll lose.
Our one day of winter went well. I got some good research and Writing done and committed to a 500 word a day writing challenge for the month. I may come to regret the last one. Kit made me hot chocolate, mainly so she could guarantee she got to make herself some too, but it was fantastic.
Speaking of Kit, she's 9 now. Yeah, four years of not blogging and now she's as old as Zak was when I first started blogging! She's doing amazing. I plan to write an update post for each of the kids, but in the meantime, I'll give you the highlights.
Kit has made so much progress that last year, she decided that Winston the Service Doodle could retire from his official duties and live the life of a regular dog full-time. I cannot put into words how huge that was, how incredibly hard we had all worked, but especially her, to get to the point where she realized she had the tools to face the world without him by her side. Talk about happy tears! He still sleeps with her, but guess who finally moved in with Grace and sleeps in her own bed almost every night? Kitty Not-So-Bitty-Anymore!
Grace is a full-fledged teenager. Fourteen and full of life, this pandemic has, to quote her, "stolen my first year as a real teenager." Apparently, Grace doesn't count thirteen as the first year of teenagehood. Sorry, my love, we don't get do-overs for years lost. She's made the best out of it though and has used a good portion of her plentiful downtime to become a major bookworm (like mother, like daughter), and she has started writing a book. There's a good chance she may get published before me. Only partly kidding.
Zak graduated this past summer. Eighteen and an avid skater, he is my business-minded kid. He's trying to get a pool cleaning business up and running, and has big plans for real estate!
It's weird writing about my kids at these ages. They've been frozen in time on here for four years so now with this post they have instantaneously grown up! Sorry about that guys!
We've had plenty of other changes too.
In 2017, while we were living in Branson, Victor's mom, Lela, got very sick and passed away just a few days later from sepsis. It was a horrible time for us all. We miss her terribly. And I'm starting to cry now just trying to write it. Maybe at some point, I'll be able to write more without my heart breaking all over again.
Things were really difficult after that, and I was still very ill. The kids and Victor missed Louisiana. I really loved living somewhere cooler, but the rest of the family did not enjoy the winters at all. Louisiana is where Victor and the kids feel at home and they were all really struggling. After multiple serious discussions, we decided the best thing overall would be to move back. We arrived at the end of the summer in 2018.
Everyone is happy to be back, closer to family and friends. And I'm happy to once again be able to take an active part in the volunteer symphony I was part of. (Of course, our concert this spring was postponed and we haven't been able to start up rehearsals again due to virus concerns, but someday we'll get back to it.) We have a new house, further out in the country than before, and I enjoy getting to see more stars at night. Much of my focus has been on my mental health and getting to a more stable and functional place, so to be in a place where the rest of my family can thrive is a blessing and allows me to focus even better on getting myself as well as I can be.
One great perk about moving back is we have chickens again! I'll tell you about their hurricane survival skills soon. We also have two guinea pigs.
We had to say goodbye to my sweet dog, Koda. She had been ill for quite a while, and she just looked at me one day, and I could tell she was done fighting. This hit me harder than anyone else in the family, Koda had been more mine than anyone else's. Winston was here for Kit, I could snuggle on him, but his job was to help her. Victor saw how much I missed her and he surprised me with a puppy a few months after Koda died. I cried.
We named her Biscuit, and she has been by my side since day one. She is my special buddy. When the kids ask who my favorite child is, I say, "Biscuit." She's weird and quirky, and awkward, just like me. She snuggles into my legs at night, is my shadow by day, and loves car trips almost as much as Koda did.
I hate it when we have to say goodbye to our fur babies, but I love that we always have room in our hearts for more. I know it might sound silly, but I feel incomplete without a dog in my life. They bring a wonderful warmth to a home, and their presence is reassuring. So I love that we have two sweet puppers that are very happy to have almost all their humans home almost every day!
|Winston and Biscuit being adorable.|
We still homeschool, but I'm down to two now! There have been some rough times, especially with Kit. But she is a trooper, and she's doing fantastic now! I'll elaborate in later posts.
That very briefly brings us up to speed. It's nice to be writing in this space again. I've missed it. Looking forward to catching up with you!