The Last Eighteen Months + Ten Dates for Ten Years

First, an attempt at a life update: Obviously, my blog's purpose isn't to moan and groan about life's difficulties, but it seems a shout out to February is necessary since it was completely unrepresented in a positive, photo-riffic way. And although March is just beginning, it has come in like a lion, giving me reason to re-think my present life goals.

FEBRUARY. I don't even really know what happened. Google Calendar tells me I subbed four times [10 hour days], and otherwise regularly worked my six hour days. We went to Walla Walla one weekend for a wedding, reuniting with friends, bidding our longest family home goodbye, and enjoying spring weather. I got my fingerprints done again in order to sub at Cascade Christian Childcare. Peter and Ezra both got dental checkups. That's all I have record of. The month was a blur.

MARCH. Last week, Ezra was out sick for three days. This week, Peter got sent home from school with pink eye and doctor's orders are to keep his contagious self out of school for at least three days. If Ezra catches it, we'll be working on week three. Working full time works pretty well when you have healthy kids or a strong support system when kids get sick. But we left our support system behind in Walla Walla.

And I was considering working full time again next fall. #presspause #rethink

RETHINKING. Let's go back in time and try to figure this all out.

September 2014. I became a real teacher with my own classroom for the first time, teaching preschool. It was part time, but still took a great deal of energy and time to get used to all the details of classroom management and successful lesson planning. Very intellectually fulfilling, but housework and cooking took a back burner. My baby started Kindergarten with a fabulous teacher in a small school and hit the ground running.

October 2014. I was feeling the tension between appreciating our new season and missing the homeschool life with more time for creativity and adventure. I wanted life to slow down and didn't like the emotional exhaustion I was feeling after work. All part of adjusting to new responsibilities.

And then we moved. And it was my job to paint the old house so we could rent it out. Ugggh.

November 2014. We managed to get a really cute family photo. I think that's the last time we did [yikes].

January thru June 2015. I finally got into a groove at work and we managed to adventure quite a bit more often [frozen pond, sand dunes, zooming downhill on plasma cars, Utah tour, Oregon Coast camping]. I finished the year strong and felt pretty confident about teaching.

July 2015. This is the month I started work on my Master's Degree. And I knew I'd be teaching full time in the fall, so my spare time wasn't really spare at all. #classprep But friends next door and grandparents kept the kids out of trouble while I was super busy.

August thru December 2015. I loved teaching my five Kindergarten students. It stimulated my creative juices and was very rewarding. And I was able to complete the research necessary for my Master's Degree. Life was easy breezy. THEN...sometime in October I think, my husband decided to apply for a new job and all our conversations centered around moving details. Should the kids and I finish the school year and then join him? Should we sell both houses? In those moments, I felt very calm and sure everything would be okay. I really didn't want to quit my job, but eventually I felt good about our decision to keep the family together.

January 2016. We worked on settling into our new rental. I started working my two new jobs. I'm totally still running on adrenaline at this point. We went cross country skiing and tubing and snowshoeing and tried very hard to embrace our new surroundings.

Adrenaline eventually runs out.

February was a blur and March came in like a lion. And now here I am -- seriously looking at what makes our family happy and how much I should work and what we want our priorities to be. Life with kids changes so much every year. Looking back confirms that and makes me determine to make all the moments count even more.

*shifting gears slightly* 

TEN YEAR ANNIVERSARY. In August of this year, my husband and I will hit ten years of married life together. Six years ago, we were at Wallowa Lake with a three year old and a one year old. Wow. Things do change awfully fast.

My hair-brained idea was to have TEN mini-vacations this year. Hah! I do get nutty ideas sometimes. We made a pretty spontaneous trip up to Winthrop last weekend, planning to enjoy the hot air balloon festival paired with some cross country skiing. But then we experienced a massive spring thaw. We managed to ski for the better part of an hour before things slushed up. So we regretfully decided to come home early. We're seriously hoping someone will plan our next trip better and that the weather will cooperate as well. #tendatesfortenyears #crazyideas

More on family and priorities and happiness to come. Still figuring that all out.