Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A year in Review

What can we say about 2008? Many people have nothing good to say about it, you hear this over and over again if you are a TV watcher like I am. Bad stock market, gas prices soared, people losing jobs and houses, sickness, on and on and on.

I'm going to make myself think of each month, and something very good about each month. Hope my memory holds out that long!

January--well, the best thing that happened in January was the birth of Grandchild #6, a darling bouncing baby boy born Jan. 16, 2008. He looked so much like his father, my son, when he was born. It's funny, I remember so clearly from 41 years ago how that kid looked after he popped into this world, and this little boy looked just like his daddy did! Started classes with 3 different groups, we read "Love and Hate in Jamestown", which inspired my summer vacation!

February--C's (new grandson) first smiles for Grandma! How exciting this was to see him smiling at age 3 weeks! I got to break away for a short visit to Iowa, in between snow storms. Thought I was doing great until 250 miles from home when I ran into freezing rain, and had to spend the next 7 hours on the road, scraping my window every 10 minutes! It was a long and memorable trip!

March--birthday #4 of Grandchild #3. He is turning into a real great kid, getting over his temper tantrums, or as he states "having fits". He is a joy in my life for sure. We also traveled back to Iowa for Grandson C's baptism. Found our Wii's at a little store in their small town. Started my career as a senior citizen Wii bowler!

April--costumed "On Golden Pond". This movie had escaped me when it first came out, maybe I saw it a couple of times on late night TV, which means I probably slept through most of it. Staged by my local community theatre group, and two veteran actors played Norman and Ethyl Thayer. My BF lady actress was so convincing, she had just lost her husband the same month I lost mine, and at the end, her acting wasn't acting, it was real angst. She had a hard time doing this part, but she played it so well. It made me cry everytime I saw it, which was quite a number of times. MonkeyGirl and Mr. MonkeyGirl also saw it, she was crying also when it was over. Very powerful. Grandchild #4 turned 3 this month.

May--retirement of my most excellent colleague from the college. Her departure meant that I would take her place as coordinator of the ESL department. We threw her a little party, and I got to know so many more English department teachers as a result of the party. We miss her a lot! Bought a new laptop computer from a former student of mine who works at Sams. Grandchild #2's birthday, now he is 5! Grandchild #1 graduated from High School--congratulations, Skaterboy!

June--Water, water everywhere--basement flooded again 2 times because of torrential rains. Our area got flooded from excess rains in Iowa, but this one was personal. I just gave up and decided to tear out the carpet in the room that keeps getting flooded, so I had ceramic tile put down. Looks good.

July--Costumed "Oklahoma"--it was fun and not that overwhelming, but I was sewing a lot! Turned out nicely, if I do say so myself! Spent a week in Iowa entertaining the grandkids while mom tried to work from home--we had a blast! Grandchild #5 celebrated her 3rd birthday.

August--went on a 2500 mile trip with Bro. We saw a lot in a week, went through Kentucky (Mammoth Cave), Tennesee (Nashville, Country Music Hall of Fame, Knoxville), North Carolina, (Great Smoky Mountains), Virginia (Jamestown, Colonial Williamsburg), West Virginia (Cass Scenic Railroad, New River State Park).
Bought my new bike and a vehicle to carry it in (RAV4).
Started the new job as coordinator of the ESL program, started advising students who want to enter the program, this has been a lot of fun.
Grandchild #1 turned 18.

September--my most dreaded birthday, now I am on Medicare! Made a few costumes for "Beauty and the Beast" for another local theatre group.

October--costumed "Move Over Mrs. Markham" for a new theatre group. Met lots of new people, and reconnected with some from the past. Very funny play!

November--costumed "The Unexpected Guest" for local theatre group. Had some beautiful people to dress, this was a lot of fun. Got started on costuming for "Sound of Music"--still working on that one!

December--the mad rush for Christmas, plus finished up the semester of teaching, plus began planning for next semester, lots of things happening in Spring '09. Enjoyed my family while they were here visiting for Christmas.

Now, we all endured the ups and downs of gas prices, the lessening of our stock portfolio, the insecurity of the job market. But I think of the joys and fun I've had this year, the new people I've met and worked with, the great students I had this year, and the exciting plans we are making for the upcoming year. How can you say a year like that isn't good? You just need to look for the silver lining in every cloud.

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