Thursday, December 25, 2008


I'm sitting in my quiet house, with the flicker of the christmas lights on the tree, the soft echo of my grandma's music playing in her room, and the sound of my brother sleeping on the couch. I can't help but think about how great this Christmas was. First, after some difficulties and anxiety, my brother made it home from Colorado Monday night, so he's been able to spend this week with us. Also, after much more anxiety and stress, my brother-in-law was able to make it from North Dakota and made it home through the ice and freezing rain on Tuesday. Adding to the excitement was the fact that we have Baby Karter to share Christmas with. This time last year, we joked about having a baby around for next year's Christmas, and sure enough-- we really did. He's just to the age where he's starting to grin and coo now, so he makes the time he's at the house so enjoyable! His first Christmas is filled with memories we won't forget.

Here's my favorite picture from Christmas morning. I think the expression on his face is just TOO cute!
Our large family got together tonight, as always. Our families always do our own thing on Christmas morning and afternoon and then the aunts, uncles, and cousins get together with grandma in the evening for dinner. This year, many of the family members were able to make it--- we counted 58 that were there. Cam's parents were even able to join us. I hope they didn't think my family is too crazy! haha

The past few weeks have been a challenge for some in my family. The economy's status has become a burden to a few, some are facing large medical situations, and others are facing personal struggles in their own lives. But, tonight was a chance for everyone to get together, talk, laugh, share gifts, and forget about the struggles and hardships that will probably return in the morning.

The gifts I received this year were great. I got a couple of movies that I really wanted, two cookbooks so that I can learn to cook (haha), some clothes that I picked out for student teaching next fall, some other items I put on a list and two framed photos. The two photos meant the world to me. One of them was a picture of my family soon after Karter was born. My sister had edited it, added a design and the year and put it in a pretty frame. It's so cute! When I'm at school during the week, my family is on my mind constantly, so it will be nice to have a framed photo of everyone to keep at my apartment. The second picture brought tears to my eyes. My cousin Megan and I have exchanged gifts between the two of us for years. This year she gave me a picture frame that she had "Aunt" engraved into and then put a picture of me and Karter in it. It was so cute. For anyone that talks to me very often at all knows that Karter is the highlight of my current life! So this picture and frame was a very thoughtful gift because I miss him so badly when I'm at school.

All in the all, for 2008 to be filled with so many hardships, burdens, and struggles throughout my immediate and extended family, this Christmas was probably one of the best ones I remember. I'm finally to that age where the meaning of Christmas is starting to change for me and I look at everything in a whole new light. I'm so grateful for everything I have and I'm starting to realize just exactly how amazing my family is.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Semester Over..

So iI just finished my only real final for the semester and its starting to sink in that I am 9 classes away from graduating! My final was 75 cumilative questions and it took about 10 minutes to complete. For once this semester, I feel pretty confident about my grade on this test. If I did well on this test and kept my grade high for the class, I can hopefully keep my GPA near my 4.0 mark. That would be amazing and worth all the studying and have work I've put into my classes during my college career.

I'm excited becase Cameron is coming down to Evansville in a few hours... We're going to B-Dubs to celebrate the semester being over! Plus, its 50 cent boneless wing night!! whoo! Tomorrow, we're going Christmas shopping for each other, his parents, and our family name draws. I have some of my Christmas shopping done, but I still have some shopping yet to do, as always. I got an early start back before Thanksgiving and ran out of ideas, so the shopping came to a standstill...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

A few words of courage and hope

The past couple of week have been a trying time for my family, on several levels. I found my spirits low and attitude far from positive. I stumbled across this poem and it brightened my day. I hope it does the same for you.

A Brand New Day
When you awaken in the morning
and see the brightness of the morning sun,
Lock the door on yesterday
and throw away the key.
For God has given you a brand new day,
Another day of love and laughter.
Seize each moment before it flies away,
For sweeter than the fragrant flower is each precious golden hour.
Make today your best day,
The power is yours alone.
Make today the happiest
and the best you've ever known.
Yesterday is gone, as in a dream,
Tomorrow is a vision still unseen.
Today is yours to live,
It's treasures you can use.
It can be your best day,
It's up to you to choose!
-Author unknown

Monday, December 15, 2008

It's Official

So I've known for a few weeks that it's a possibility to graduate one semester earlier than planned. After this week of the semester, I'll have 9 classes left to take. One of my classes for my reading minor has previously only been offered as a "fall only" class which meant I was going to have to take 5 classes this spring and then 4 in the fall before I would student teach in the Spring on 2010. With this schedule, I would be graduating in May 2010 and getting married just a short time later. But!!! I was told about a "petition" I could sign a few weeks ago to encourage the university to offer that class in the Spring 2009, and they are! So it's official--- I will graduating in ONE year, in December 2009!!! That means I have 6 classes this spring and 3 this summer. I've never taken summer classes before, but I'm willing to take the chance if it means that I can graduate a semester earlier. So I will be graduating in December of 2009 and getting married on June 12, 2010! That means I have six months to work, save money and apply for teaching positions!! I'm so excited! I couldn't wait to call Cameron as soon as I got out of the Education office last week! Once I move out of my apartment in July, I will be done living in Evansville and can move back home and be closer to Cameron. I'm very nervous to be moving one semester closer to graduating, getting my license and becoming a teacher, but its a journey that I'm ready to persue.