The kids were involved in different activities again this year. Dance, music lessons, soccer, swimming, skating club and others that I’m sure I’m forgetting. We camped for a week in a town close by this July with friends while our kids took swimming lessons. This was our first year doing lessons in this town and we plan on going back, it was very convenient camping right beside the pool the kids lessons were at! It also allowed the husbands to work during the day and enjoy the camping life in the evening. All three kids attended Camp this summer, during three different weeks! Nathan and Larissa enjoyed their third summer there and Bethany wants to go for her second summer next year. They camped for a few days with Grandma & Grandpa V and grew a garden with Grandma K and cousins for a fundraising farmer’s market and bake sale where they raised over $3,000!
Bethany is 6 and started grade 1 this fall. She loves going to school and is eager to please her teachers. I love watching the learning that happens at this age, it amazes me even still! She is in dance again this year and started piano lessons after Thanksgiving. She loves music and thankfully it isn’t hard to get her to practise! Bethany learned how to ride a bike without training wheels this summer so we have enjoyed many family bike rides, even if most of them are just down our gravel road!
Larissa will be 9 in January and is in grade 3. Every week she has to write in her school journal and bring it home for us to read and every week she writes about how fun her teacher is! She decided she wanted to return to dance this year and is taking a Jazz class and is constantly dancing around the house! One of her friends started attending a different school this fall so they have spent many hours arranging playdates so they don't lose touch.
Nathan is 11 and in grade 6, the last year at the elementary school! He earned the highest marks in his class last year, the first year this accomplishment is recognized, and has made it his goal to do it again this year. He says he has some stiff competition but he’s determined enough we know he’ll do his best. A youth group started in town this fall and Nathan has really enjoyed attending the bible studies and numerous activities. We had our last regular appointment with the ENT this fall and we also met with an orthodontist in Brandon. Nathan’s teeth aren’t far enough along to correct right now so as far as we know we don’t have any appointments until February 2015!My parents celebrated their 40th anniversary this summer! We celebrated by doing grandkid centred activities and taking family pictures. We asked Mom & Dad how they wanted to celebrate and they said it didn’t really matter, they just wanted to be with their family.
Ron’s parents bought a boat this summer! This has given us many hours of enjoyment and we hope next summer is warmer so we can be on the lake even more. Living only a few miles from the lake it’s a wonder it’s taken us this long to appreciate it!
I continue to stay at home and am a substitute EA at the local schools. The kids continue to keep me busy and the housework is never quite caught up. I have now finished my volunteer position on the board of the local Arts Festival. I couldn’t remember how many years I had been on the board so I thought it was time I stepped down! I have also experienced some health issues that are still to be determined but I'm trying to not let that get in the way of enjoying life and trying new things. One new thing I have tried this year is quilting! A friend of mine somehow convinced me this would be a good idea so we signed up for a workshop this November. It's still unfinished but I have started another project, a John Deere duvet cover for Nathan. I'm pretty sure I've bitten off more than I can chew!
Ron continues to be the chairperson of our local Foodgrains Bank project. It was a successful growing season, despite the late start and cool July, which means more people in developing countries will have a chance to learn sustainable food growing practises. Ron hopes that with all the kids in school full time this year he and I can spend a few hours on the snowmobiles this winter. That's right, we now have two. He’s determined to make me a sledneck yet!
Ron & I are both involved in our church teaching Sunday School, leading the worship service, occasionally doing music and being leaders of a "small" group that consists of 7 couples and 14 kids!
We took a family trip to San Diego/Anaheim in January. Ron had been invited by a chemical company to do a presentation at their national convention so we extended our time there and turned it into a family holiday. Ron was busy for only 1 ½ days so it was a great time being together as a family. Ron & Nathan took surfing lessons at our hotel, now they’re hooked! We also went to the San Diego Zoo, SeaWorld and drove up to Anaheim to Disneyland for two days. The kids loved playing in the waves of the ocean and can’t wait to visit it again.
We don't have any major travel plans for this coming year but hope to get more camping in this summer, which means we need to coordinate the kids summer camp experiences a little more efficiently!