Life moved into the fast lane - the holidays, school...plus life with this many people living under one roof is just plain busy even if there isn't anything out of the ordinary happening!
I don't have the time or the memory to catch you all up, but know that we enjoyed our holidays, keeping them simple as usual. We enjoyed two relaxing weekend pretty much just hanging out together.
Once the New Year was welcomed in, I set about in earnest to get Rebekah, Rachel, Reuben and Daniel all set up with Switched On Schoolhouse (Alpha Omega). It took some work, and I resurrected 2 desktop computers that had been put in storage when they crashed, dredge through bins and ordered a few spare parts, and now have 2 networked computers for them to do their schoolwork on. This is a huge improvement, although it took and is taking some adjustments for them to get used to the new system, but it is so much more manageable and do-able. They are all 4 taking the same grade in Bible, History and Science (it works for us right now), and starting Monday we can work on them all together (I just got the fourth computer running this week, and then I had to get them all on the same lesson). That should be much more efficient for me instead of going through the same lesson 4 times as they need help.
On top of our mornings of school, we have been inundated with appointments -
Jessica is still having weekly chiropractic and massage therapy from her car accident in Sept,
Jonathan is in the last month of braces,
Rebekah has grown so fast that her muscles are not keeping up, so she is starting physical therapy,
Rachel is getting her braces off in 2 weeks but ended up with a root canal this week PLUS she has had som back problems from the accident that we are finally getting her seen for so she is also starting physical therapy.
Reuben is starting the process of braces, and after several meetings/consultations I am awaiting instructions as to the next step to getting insurance to cover it (his is medically necessary and has been approved by the insurance),
Daniel is just fine,
Dayton is back in speech therapy, and his therapist thinks his improvement over the 6 month break in therapy is next to miraculous - when he started 2 years ago he had only vowels, now he only has trouble with "L" and final "s" and "sh". Dayton has also been seeing a doctor for another problem, but that has been resolved with her help, thankfully.
Elizabeth is in great shape, growing like weed (75% height, 50% in weight) but loves to tag along to appointments.
Esther is doing great over-all, but ended up in ER a week ago due to a choking episode. She has fought off the bad cold that went through our house with only a slightly stuffy nose for a few days whereas most of us were pretty well laid out for a week or more, so her immune system is doing great now! She also saw a new endocrinologist, and he said that if we do quarterly blood draws, he doesn't need to see her again for a year as long as there is no changes. Last June, if you missed it, Esther got a reprieve from cardiology check ups for 2 years, and late last summer she was put on thickened liquids due to two near pneumonia bouts over the summer, and has had all her breathing difficulties vanish - praise the Lord! No more breathing treatments!
When I compare our busy-ness and little trials with those of people we know well, not so well, and have only heard about/prayed about going through life and death struggles every day, losing their little ones suddenly to accidents, mothers getting cancer, fathers killed at work or in accidents...I am so thankful that my God is so big that I can trust Him with my family. I know that no matter what tomorrow holds for us, that we are all in His hand and that NOTHING can touch us unless it has first passed through His loving hand. He orchestrates everything for our good (the process of becoming Christ-like), and His glory. My only responsibility is to live each day serving Him by serving my family, not worrying about the what-ifs or may-bes...because He does not give me the grace for those - He will give me all the grace sufficient for the trials He does send my way, but when I start taking on tomorrow possibly trials, I am on my own....
If you have the time, please pray for the following families that I know who are battling deadly cancer - the Gustafsons (Debby, the mother has stage 4 colon cancer) and the Andersons (6 yo Jenson is spinal cancer), and the Jacksons (Javonn, the mother has cancer). Pray for God's grace and peace for each and everyday. If you are on Facebook you can follow Julie Anderson's updates on Jensen and support them in prayer as they travel this most difficult road - http://www.facebook.com/home.php?sk=group_144400795617455
The camera is missing in action, so I'll share with you a photo slideshow I made last month of our family through the years!
If there's anything you wanted to hear about - just ask me in the comments!