Jim, the resident King of the Castle with me as his Queen, continues his work at HP. There are always several projects going to keep him busy, but that's a good thing. Big business, of course, still makes me shake my head, but we are ever so blessed that he is employed and gets to work from home. At home, he is the most awesome dad, with the kids enjoying their nightly "torture" of being tickled until they have completely collapsed on the floor and lack the ability to stand just prior to heading to bed.
Shiori is now a junior in high school. (WHO allowed that one?) She has also started driving and loves her little red mini Cooper convertible. She continues on with her passion for cooking and baking and all things culinary. She is looking forward to 2013 when her Spring semester will include Advanced Food Prep classes and her probationary period of always needing to drive with an adult in the car will end. Shiori is becoming quite the beautiful young woman and all of her siblings look up to her.
Sabrina, now 9, is in the fourth grade at a newly built school. She is thoroughly enjoying her time there and the new friends she is making as kids from a few different schools have now been re-districted to come to the new school. In the spring she played softball, and I'm pretty sure she is looking forward to that again this coming spring 2013. Sabrina takes every opportunity to try to emulate her older sister, Shiori, when she can.
Sophia, now 7, is currently in second grade and loving school-life at Delaware School for the Deaf. This school year marks her fourth year at our state's deaf school. The class sizes are much smaller than other public, or even private, schools and this allows for greater attention and focus. Her reading skills are crazy. At the beginning of the year she had a sight-word vocabulary comprehension at a sixth grade-level and she currently reads on a third grade level. She excels in many areas and wants to be a scientist when she grows up. She also played softball this year on the same team as her sister and looks forward to Spring 2013. Sophia is quite the unique individual with her own sense of timing and humor.
Xander, also 7, began first grade this Fall as his birthday falls later in the year. He is excelling in school, is incredibly smart and challenges his teachers (in a good way). He continues his love of soccer and has moved up to the older league where they actually now keep score. He is quite comical and keeps us all laughing. Soccer for him comes twice a year in Spring and Fall. Xander truly enjoys being the oldest of the three boys and having two younger brothers to look up to him.
Calvin, just now 6 as of December, is currently in Kindergarten, also at a newly built school. He is loving school, is very respectful and is currently ahead of reading goals. His teacher informs us that he is very bright and works very hard. I can honestly say I was concerned just because he can be a rough and tumble kind of kid and incredibly stubborn, but his teacher has said he is nothing short of an absolute delight to have in class. In fact, he is apparently quite the comic relief, but does his work when assigned.
Anthony, who turned 2 this year, amazed us all. Prior to turning two years old, he decided to potty-train himself completely and all at once. His was definitely the easiest, and most-enjoyable potty-training experience of all. If only all children were that easy and determined. Anthony continues to grow in leaps and bounds and, while he relishes his time at home with his mama, gets excited just thinking about going to school like his siblings. He wants so very much to do the same things that they are doing. Being the youngest of six has its advantages as Anthony has learned so much from his older siblings.
As for me, I am still loving my role as a stay-at-home mom. Some days are hectic, others relaxed. It's never dull though. I started writing for the Pagan Children's e-zine, The Pooka Pages. I consider it a great honor to have been asked to contribute. I continue broadcasting on Cauldron FM, and love my two shows. I get much enjoyment from both and relish in the fact that both of my radio shows are quite different from each other. While one allows me to take on my role as teacher, the other gets to bring out my more opinionated side. In August, I performed my first wedding as a legally ordained minister. Becoming ordained was something I was called to back when I was a child, just as the Pagan path and the Goddess had called to me back then. I take my role as a clergy-woman seriously and push myself to never stop learning, reading, and applying knowledge. Within this role, I have also felt the call to become a Sacred Pregnancy Instructor. This will allow me to continue my ministry and to attend to women and their babies in a different way in which I can walk them through a course during their pregnancy that centers around them and the sacred nature of their pregnancy. My initial training course is coming up in February and I am incredibly excited for this opportunity.
As a family, we have a love of going to the bowling alley. Three of the children have their own bowling balls, and even little Anthony finds it to be great fun. The library, especially in the Summer, is another enjoyable adventure for us. the kids love the Summer Reading Program and challenge themselves to read as much as humanly possible.
We are looking forward to 2013. There is no looking back, right? So, onward we go. Despite any troubles or stumbling blocks from 2012, we are all here in one piece and standing strong. We wish all of you a most wonderful and prosperous New Year.
BRING ON 2013!