A lot has happened since my last post. A quick run-down?
February 22, 2011 - Dave and I celebrated 25 years of marriage! I read a quote that was floating around on the internet at Valentine's Day that said "A happy marriage is the union of two good forgivers." Can I just say, "Ain't that the truth?!" :)
March 2011 - my first fundraising banquet since taking the role of Director with Turlock Pregnancy Center. I felt that it went well, but must say, I was nervous having to get up in front to speak. Some great people shared with us that evening; Eli and Cindi Arrigotti shared about their open adoptions, a client and her boyfriend shared (via video) what the Center had meant to them, and Holly shared about her abortion and why she wished Turlock Pregnancy Center would have existed at that time. We met our fundraising goal for that event - Thank you, Jesus! :)
May 2011 - Servolution #4! Watch this video of a past Servolution and contact me to let me know that you would be willing to lead a team for this year's Servolution (which is now called "Love Turlock" to join other valley cities all serving together on one day, showing love in action).
June 2011 - We headed back to Washington DC for vacation. Eric had to work, but the rest of us had a wonderful time at our nation's capitol. Our favorites? The Library of Congress; the Supreme Court building (very, very interesting; I'd have never thunk it!); the White House; and the Federal Bureau of Engraving. We also visited Williamsburg VA, and Philadelphia PA (loved the National Constitution Center) and the Franklin Institute was phenomenal! The trip was a wonderful time for us all!
June also held a missions trip to Portland, OR for Hannah, Peter, and Dave. Kari was able to go and stay with her Aunt Nancy and Uncle Todd who live there and spend time loving on her cousins Hugo, Augie, and Pearl. She loves the babies, that girl!
In July, I was able to go to the Uppercase Living convention in Las Vegas. Hate Vegas, but had a fun time at the convention, and Dave was able to join me.
August 2011 brought a leadership trip to Costa Rica for Dave. He had a great time suffering for the Lord - white water rafting, zip-lining, hiking, etc... Poor guy!
Also in August, Kari started 8th grade and Peter started his sophomore year. Hannah started her senior year at CSU Stanislaus (unbelievable!). And.....Dave, Eric, Hannah, and I ran The Giant Race half-maration in San Francisco (Peter ran the 5K).
The fall was a rough time for me as I struggled with a herniated disc. My world became a narrow path of pain that kept me from many, many things. After a long road, I ended up having surgery on December 23rd. I had never experienced pain like that ever in my life, and I pretty much only had relief if I was down on my back. I thank God that there was finally an answer to my pain, and I have been great since the surgery. I am back to walking, but I am afraid to try running again as that was when I first noticed the pain. I am hoping that at some point I am at least able to get back to running three - four miles, but that will be a bit down the road.
During those dark and painful times this fall, God allowed me to see that I fill so much of my time with meaningless running and busyness of my own making. Without being able to go-go-go, I had to let many things go, and take it a day at a time. And you know what? The world went on. I had one of the most peaceful Christmases I've ever had with not being able to run hither and yon looking for gifts. I didn't bake all the goodies I usually do. I ordered all my gifts online. And it was all fine! Why, oh why, do I make my life more difficult than it needs to be? I have always said that I have the uncanny ability to make anything more complicated than it has to be, and I want to stop that! O Lord, I ask you to continue to help me sift my life and activities down to what really matters.
So, how was that for a quick rundown of the last year? We're now a month and a half into 2012, and in a couple of days, Dave and I will celebrate our 26th anniversary! I'm so excited that we are able to get away for a couple of nights - those times are necessary for us to reconnect with who we are outside of our jobs, children, and responsibilities. We really are those same two kids who fell in love all those years ago! :) And I'd do it all again in a heartbeat!