Some of the goals I'd set for myself:
1. Weight loss- well I'd been doing real well until we hit the summer season and thus lots of travelling. Yeah, completely fell off the wagon there. But the kids are all heading to school next week- yes- ALL three of them! KT, MD, and AC will all be in the same school for one year. I know everyone keeps telling me to enjoy it, as soon they'll be gone. I keep wondering though if I'm just getting old or the visual loss is really starting to get to me. I find myself worn out more and more these days when I've not done nearly as much with people. Not liking that one bit. :P
2. Spending more time with God- This is one area that I did succeed in. I began reading more and more, not entirely with my Bible, but with other books that I'd been wanting to read. I've given up the notion that I have to start one and can't start another one until I finish it. I'm finding that I'm reading one on my Ipod touch, one on the puter, and one a hard copy and then my Bible. So I'm actually making progress in all of them, just not all 4 of them at the same time. :)
3. Spending more time with my hubby- trying to make time for us. We've taken several times to go out and have a dinner and so forth. It's really been good to do so and thinking we may have a set up with a friend here that we might be able to try to do something like this once a month. We'll see.
The course of our year- it's been a pretty busy one this year. KT took part in travel basketball and we were all over central IN last winter and early spring.
(photo of KT bringing the ball down the court, dribbling the basketball with her hair pulled back in a ponytail and focusing on where she's about to head)
Of course Rei was faithfully at my side and watched in on all the action too. :)
(photo of Rei watching the game, laying in the bleachers with chin on the bleacher in front of her, intently watching what is going on)
We started the year off in February with a HUGE snow storm bringing us nearly several feet of snow and 5 inches of ice. Mike and I did what we could to help friends and neighbors chip themselves out of their homes and to be able to safely get out of down their driveways. February was also MD's birthday- which she is totally into horses right now, so we were creative with a horse theme for her party.
(photo of the island decorated and with the cake that has horses on it, a brown horse pinata with a black mane, and a vase of flowers)
(MD about to blow out the candles of her cake)
At the end of February, both girls chopped off their very long hair that they'd been growing out to donate to Locks for Love. Both of them went with really cute bob cuts! :)
(close up head shot of KT with hair short just longer than the ears.)
(close up head shot of MD with her bob cut- just below the ears)
With the warm up of the weather in March, the sillies began to set in and AC had fun with a roll of toilet paper- in fact he decided to be a mummy. Here he is wrapped up and having a blast!
We also saw several 4 legged friends in March too. First Honey came to visit and we loved seeing her again. Of course she remembered me and had fun playing with Rei too. She was cute too, watching the gerbils running around in their tank too.
(A really good picture of Honey and Dan together- Honey sitting in front of him gazing up at him.)
(Photo of Katie looking into the gerbil tank and Honey to her right side, nose to the glass looking in with intense curiosity)
Laney and Pippa also came by for a visit too. It was good to see the girls and see how much they've grown. Unfortunately we haven't been able to get together this summer at all, so we'll see if we get to visit some during the school year for some training sessions and play dates too. Here are all three dogs in front of Mike/
In April-MD and AC took swim lessons to work on teaching them how to swim. MD learned to swim so that she can float and not sink if she finds herself in deep water. AC is unable to swim on his own yet, but knows what to do now if he gets into trouble to help himself.
(MD looks into the water as she's about to dive for the plastic ring that her instructor threw into the water.)
(AC holds the pool wall with a smile on his face and ready for the next thing)
May saw us busy, busy, busy with Pup Putt (www.pupputt.org) as we worked with the school in setting up the mini golf course and Mike built another poker table for the silent auction.
(photo of dark colored oak wood with topper on the game table)
We even had Ice Road Truckers terminal manager, Lane Keater here for for the first few days of the week too. It was an amazing week with the kids and event raising approximately $16,000 over the course of the week.
Aunt Nancy and Uncle Mike came out one evening too and had fun with the kids and putted through the course as well.
The month of May in Indiana also means racing here in the Indianapolis area. We took the kids to the Motor sports open house, where we met and got to see inside several of the NHRA team garages. The kids enjoyed seeing all of the funny cars and drag racing cars as well as meeting several of the drivers.
(a photo of all three kids kneeling in front of a stack of tires)
(one of John Force's trailers and cars)
(a photo of John Force and his younger daughter signing autographs)
We also went to Schumacher Racing's garage and there was a body of a car hung on the wall:
Mike also took KT to the Indy 500 this year for the first time. She's been excited to go for several years now. KT has always LOVED Indy car racing and so the excitement for her was almost unbearable for her! The weather was great and they got to see the amazing finish and crash in the homestretch on the final lap of the race.
On Memorial Day, we took the kids to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum as they had a once in a lifetime exhibit of 75 of the 100 years of the Indy 500. They actually took several of the early 1900 cars out and drove them around the track before the race and while we were there, we got to see them bring several back in into the museum itself.
(a photo of a line of cars from the early 1900's)
(a line of cars from the 1980's and foward)
June began our crazy summer of travels and running. KT started the first week of June by a weekend of going to Space Camp in Huntsville, AL. She went with a group from school and also good friend Ms. N from basketball too as they were roomies all weekend. She came back having enjoyed the entire weekend.
(a photo of one of the simulator rides that spins you around but not in the same direction more than once)
(a space shuttle made completely out of kinect pieces)
We ended June with Mike serving on the first Indy West Awakening team, which is an amazing spiritual weekend for teens, age 15 to 18. Learn more about that here:
The kids, Rei, and I spent the Saturday of Father's Day weekend with Grandma and Grandpa and Dan as Mike was particpating in the Awakening weekend and I was soon to leave for Ft. Mitchell, KY for my first AADB (American Association of the Deaf Blind) conference.
The weather was good and thus the kids donned their swimsuits and the kiddie pool was brought over along with all squirt guns in possession for a massive water gun fight.
(photo of the kids and grandpa dipping water guns into buckets and the kiddie pool to "load up" with water)
Rei joins in by getting in the pool and splashiing on her own too!
(Rei standing in the kiddie pool and looking out at everyone playing- water dripping from her belly.)
All three kids- water guns in hand and aiming for Grandpa:
After several hours of water play, we ate a hearty dinner and the kids all crashed on the couch to watch some tv together. All slept well that night! :)
The next morning, on Father's Day, I took off with two Support Service Providers to the AADB conference for a week. We arrived that afternoon and Clara and Kim both went to the SSP training as I hung out for a bit and got some stuff unpacked.
We had the opening Ceremony that first night. On Monday night, Clara and I got to talk to the Teen Program group about guide dogs and we both felt that this was the highlight of our week, to see the kids reactions and amazement of what these dogs do for us. Since we both have some vision, we took the harnesses off the dogs and Clara led the kids around in the hallway that was cleared out for us to give the kids a feel of what it was like to hold the harness handle. I held the dogs as the we opened it up to the kids to ask any questions they had.
(a photo of Kacie and Rei on the left- Kacie in a blue shirt and khaki pants, Clara and her yellow lab/golden cross from leader dogs on the right. Clara is wearing a dark shirt and a floral skirt. Both dogs are laying at their feet.)
The kids enjoyed the dogs so much that they asked for a group picture and all of them pulled out their cameras! Here's the group shot of all of us!