This Thursday night, we had a special girls night that was as fun and creative as always! Our friend, Tracie was turning 30. Since turning 30 is a big milestone in a woman's life, they tend to bring in their 30's with a flare! I am the "old" one of the group- one of the first to turn 30 (4+ yeas ago....) and it never occurred to me to do anything special, so I am so glad I get to celebrate their big day with them! For Tracie's 30th, she rented a private Karaoke room and we rocked it out 80s style! I am not much of a dress up kind of person, but I did put together a basic costume- a side pony-tail with crimped hair (or I tried anyway- the crimps fell by the time we got there), pegged pants and then an off the shoulder torn sweat shirt, courtesy of Abbey. It was crazy awesome how much some of these ladies got into it! We rocked it out to many of the 80's most popular songs. Here are some pictures! (again, stolen from Facebook- from Abbey's page)
This is Katie and Tracie (birthday girl)
Me and Katie- singing "Total Eclipse of the Heart"
Me and Autumn- can't remember what we were singing, but I remember it was cracking us up (obviously!)
Autumn and Abbey
Autumn and Katie in a perfect "Thriller" Pose- Love it!!
Breezi- isn't she adorable? She was upset over not finding what she was looking for for her costume in the thrift stores, so she "improvised" and I think her costume is just perfect!!! I wish I could "improvise" and come up with something like that!
And here is our whole group! Front- Katie; 2nd Row- Kelli and Me; 3rd Row, Jane and Andrea (I had never met them before, but they were hilarious- so much fun!); Back- Tracie, Breezi, Autumn and Abbey. The girls who took the picture was Alicia- another of Tracie's friends I had not met. She volunteered to take the picture because she did not dress up. I told her not to feel bad- normally I am the one who doesn't dress up, like I mentioned before- not exactly my thing. In September, when Katie turned 30, she did a 1920's style party that was so much fun, and I did not dress up. I think she has forgiven me. ha ha.
A Year- End Review-
Okay, so this is kind of two posts in one- but I since it is New Years Eve, I want to wrap things up so I can have the blog posts from this year printed. This section will be brief though.
What a year 2011 has been! It had its ups and downs, but overall, was not our best year. It has certainly been a year of trials and challenges. Some of our trials included:
-a difficult pregnancy that ended in a painful miscarriage
-trouble at Aaron's work that caused many of his co-workers to leave- he tried to leave too but was unable to due to office politics. He watched as his team disintegrated as people jumped ship, leaving him with a pathetic supervisor and with Aaron doing work several pay grades above his pay (and frustration from years without a good raise)
-illnesses and trials in our extended family
-Jacob's constipation issues causing continuous frustration and doctors appointments, trying to resolve this issue that has been going on for 4 years with no real sign of ending.
- Kenny's ADHD causing a few trials for him- including a really rough start to his 5th grade year- leaving him and me in frequent tears.
-weight gain. Again.
-financial strain- these last few months have been very difficult. Starting in September when some big expenses hit and we just could never quite rise above it- every penny gone before we get it. We felt like we were treading water using all of our energy just to keep our mouths above water.
-car troubles with our own cars- needing repairs we just didn't really have money for but had to find.
-client trouble for Aaron in his car work- he had a couple of customers that, though Aaron did nothing wrong, decided they didn't want to pay him. I guess that is one dis-advantage of working on your own at home on the side- people like to try to take advantage of you.
This isn't necessarily a comprehensive list, but the big things anyway. So, I am not disappointed to see 2011 leave. I am optimistic and hopeful as we go into 2012. Things are already looking up. Here are some of the blessings as we enter the new year:
-We paid off both of our vehicles so we are entering the new year with NO car payment- this has not happened in our entire marriage.
- Just last week, Aaron finally got the notification that he is receiving a very large raise and promotion, effective January 1. He is still working for the same idiot supervisor doing the same work, but finally getting paid more as deserved. Between this and the cars paid off, I am hoping will can actually breathe a little and get more things paid off.
-Kenny is doing much better as we settle into a routine with school- his first report card was actually very good despite the beginning of the year struggles. I also feel I have been able to get some of the help I need in helping him succeed. I have actually started the process of getting a 504-plan to help with some things he needs. He has a doctor that cares about him and 3 really good teachers. We still have a lot of unanswered questions, but I don't feel quite as lost as I did a few months ago.
-Our family is healthy and strong. I have 4 children that are healthy and well, active and happy. Aaron and I are also very healthy. Despite two pulmonary embolisms over the years, Aaron's health is stable.
-We have such a loving family and (as mentioned above) the best friends ever. In fact, we get to ring in the new year with many of these women pictured above! We have a support group that continually lifts us up.
-I complain of financial trials, yet we have a warm home, plenty of food, clothes to wear, cars to drive. I think we are okay.
Sure, we have faced trials, but we have also been so deeply blessed. I am sure there will be more trials either in our near or distant future, but I know we will be given the strength to face whatever comes. I am a very happy person and feel very thankful.
Happy 2012 Everyone!!!!