Wednesday, January 11, 2012

"A Long December."

So it's a new year.  Twenty-twelve.  It's hard to even fathom that at times.

In retrospect, 2011 was better by leaps and bounds than it's prior few years and I'm so thankful for that.  The tides had finally changed, thus making way for some light to shine in my life.

The year as a whole was better, however, I do admit the holidays were tough, as usual, considering my strained relationship with my family.  Though, I am fortunate to have both former and present in-laws to spend time with and that made the holiday season a whole lot more bearable.  -I suppose family is family, right, no matter what the lines of legality say?  -This was the first year since my ex-husband and I split that we had to do a separate Christmas.  -That was a foreign concept to all of us, I think, after all, our situation isn't typical, and I guess it naturally comes with the territory of getting remarried.

Anyway, we had a successful Christmas...  about 5 to be precise.  Emily made out like a spoiled rotten bandit.  -No big surprise there.

About two weeks prior to Christmas, we decided to foster a little Yorkie-Pom mix that stole our hearts immediately.  We named her "Anya" - after a sassy character in the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series.  -Yes, I realize we are dorks.  -But that's beside the point, our Lab pup, Chloe was happy to have a spunky little friend to horse around with and Emily instantly took to having a perfectly purse-sized dog around.  However, on the Tuesday after Christmas, she got hit by a car and died.  Poor little Emmy, she saw the whole thing happen and she still to this day asks questions about it.  It's so strange how children process death.  Initially, she handled it better than Alan and I did.  But I guess little ones just don't quite understand how to grieve, so her questions are the only way for her to achieve closure on the matter.    

Since Emily was having such a hard time dealing, Alan decided to find us a new furry, four-legged family member on Craigslist the following weekend.  We scored a 4 month old, American bulldog mix.  Though her situation wasn't a typical "rescue" situation, after the first night of having her here, we realized she wasn't well taken care of by her previous owner and have taken on the responsibility of rehabilitating her.  We named her "Carly".  She is CRAZY-hyper and is driving me absolutely bananas, but aside from that, she is a very sweet girl - I think she just needs an extensive amount of attention (and dog training).  She is definitely my husband's dog...  and I have no problem reminding him of that every day.  We're still on the fence about whether or not we're going to keep her for good or not.  All in all, even if we don't keep her for good, it was still a good distraction from Anya's passing for all of us. 

New Year's Eve came and went without any spectacular happenings.  I sometimes feel so old now that I'm married again.  We are quite content in our little, ongoing-renovation-project of a house with our small personal zoo of pets.

I flew out to L.A. on the evening of New Year's Day and spent a week there working at IMTA with a fabulous group from Kentucky.

I didn't opt to visit with any friends while out there this time, however, I did call my sister - who I haven't seen in 12 years.  I was able to have dinner with her family and finally meet my 2 nieces on Monday night.  On Friday, I had lunch with my sister and one of my aunts.  It's strange and sad all at the same time to be blatantly reminded of how disconnected and dysfunctional my family really is.  My aunt wasn't even aware that I had a child.  Oh and my mother does know I got married as she's the one that told my sister.  So even though it was good to see my sister and my aunt, I still left lunch on Friday feeling sad and disconnected and almost like I've somehow become the rebellious black sheep of the family, though I know that title still belongs to my brother.

I feel like I'm being such a downer tonight...  I guess it's because I'm still feeling a bit under the weather.

The home renovations are coming along.  We're almost finished with the back room...  so once we get our living area set up back there, the renovations can really start on the front part of the house.

Alan is still working with his dad...  and it looks like school isn't going to happen for now.

I'm still part-time at The Market and freelancing, freelancing, freelancing.  I already have several brides on the books for the year - it seems everyone I know is getting married this year which is exciting.

I've been tossing around the idea of going back to school for nursing...  or Cosmetology...  I know, two completely different things.  I just haven't convinced myself that I really and truly want to do either of them.  So I guess I'll pray about it for a few months and hopefully by the time next semester starts, I'll have a clear answer.

Emily will turn SEVEN this month!  Crazy.  I can't believe it.  I thank God for her everyday...  even when she's driving me absolutely bonkers.  I know I wouldn't be where I am today if I didn't have her.  She is my saving grace.

Well, that's it in a nutshell.

No specific new year's resolutions this year really.

Well, okay, maybe just a few:

- To take more non-work related vacations with my family.  :)

- To continue chasing my dreams and making them happen.

- To continue to be a positive, infectious force - nothing new here on this one, really.  ;)

  - Here's to a happy & prosperous 2012!