Tuesday, December 29, 2015

A Year + 2 months in Review

It's Christmas 2015! Remember me?

This year when I created our Christmas cards -that only made it to half of our list- I instinctively put my blog address on them, as I have the last 7 or 8 years. Only to later realize that I haven't blogged in 14 months!!! I figured a year-in-review or life lately post was in order. What do you think?

Any who lets start with the boys...

Sambo is now THIRTEEN and a sev-enth gra-der! It's completely unreal. In the last year he has taken up golf and seems to really enjoy it. He and Shan spend some good QT together as they get in some swings. He continues to rock out on the guitar and gave me one of my proudest mom moments back in the spring when he did his first guitar showcase. I have to say he's got some pretty good taste in music. Take a listen to his song choice...

Sam was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease this past summer. As some of you know, it is a chronic condition with which I'm very familiar. Two of my 3 bros have it, but it stinks really bad to see my baby boy have to deal with it, especially at this age. But it is being well-managed! It has given me the opportunity to dip my toes into awareness and advocacy for Crohn's and Colitis and I hope to become more involved with it in the near future.
Sam with some of his best buddies on his 13th Birthday trip to Deceased Farms. Such super cool guys! They weren't scared a bit. ;-)

He's still my quiet, compassionate boy, with a HUGE heart and great sense of humor. He loves a good prank and getting a chuckle outta folks. So far, so good in teenage wasteland with Sam!

Fu-bird is cruising through the 4th grade with flying colors. He turned the big double digits in September! Yee-haw!! Year-round swimming is his jam right now and he has recently taken up playing the drums (and I'm loving every second of it! Hello! #stagemom).
Fulton surprised all of us with his amazing stage presence and pretty darn good singing ability as he performed the roll of Cat in the Hat from Seussical in his class play. Another proud momma moment! Check him out...

Fu-man-choo gave us a good scare when we mixed a peanut butter cracker, an expired Epipen, and bumper to bumper traffic at the beginning of the summer. Holy moly!!! Not a good situation and thank the Lord for the ER. And just FYI...Doctor's Care does NOT stock Epinephrine. True story. He got his first and hopefully last ambulance ride. Fulton's plan is to be a doctor. And not just any doctor, but a "famous Neurosurgeon". So maybe somewhere along the medical way he'll discover a cure for food allergies!

Fulton still has his signature wit and he can sure charm the pants off the ladies! He is really growing into such a cool young man. 

Ver-man is the life of the party! There is never a dull moment with this goofball. He is our big 1st grader now! He loves school and is an excellent reader and thankfully did not get my terribly distorted math gene. Oliver loves to sing, play soccer, and just asked Santa to bring him his own golf clubs. Looks like Shan and Sam may have some competition on the green now! 

Oliver got his second set of stitches -actually staples- the week before school started...in his head! So much blood. Eeeeeek!!! He was a trooper! He and his brothers were "cage fighting" on the trampoline. Sweet Baby Jesus, help me!

Oliver's personality lights up a room and he has NEVER met a stranger. He's such a fun little guy to be bringing up the rear of this crazy family.

Shan is thriving in his career with AgFirst as an IT Project Manager. He's been there a little over a year now and loves it! Well, we both love it and I probably love it even more because he doesn't have to travel any more. Praise!!! Shan is the Super Dad of all dads. He is always at games, practices, meets, performances, etc. and probably handles keeping up with their schedules better than I do!
Shan enjoys playing golf, coaching the boys' basketball teams, and officiating for SCISA sports. He constantly has a project going on in our "mature" home...which he's very good at! He takes such good care of all of us and continues to be my best friend and a giant blessing in our lives. I am grateful to have celebrated 16 years with him back in June. Shan is my voice of reason and my rock. He's keeps me sane and balanced. He makes me proud in so many ways. I am very thankful that he's the yin to my out of control yang!

And then there's me!
I last left you in October 2015, on the eve of my 40th birthday. I survived it like a boss and even managed to rock my 41st bday as well. Whoot!

This past March I got a call from my JLC friend, Carla, with a proposition I couldn't refuse. She asked if I'd like to come back to my college alma matter,  Columbia College, to work as an Alumnae Event Coordinator. What?!?! Of course the stars had to align to suit our family, and they did! It's been a great! 

The Junior League of Columbia is still a big part of my volunteer life, as we just wrapped up the 30th Anniversary of the Holiday Market. This past April I chaired the 90th Anniversary Celebration Luncheon with the most amazing committee! The day was PERFECT and I am so very proud of all of us...even 8 months later.
Annnnnd...I'm still on a mission to promote better and safer beauty with BEAUTYCOUNTER and I'm looking very forward to our 2016 Leadership Summit in February! The socials are so much fun that it doesn't even feel like work. You should host one! ;0)
Last October (2014), Shan planned a trip to San Fran and Napa to celebrate 95 years...2- 40th birthdays and our 15th anniversary. It was amazing!!! I'm forever grateful for Kathleen, one of my best friends, who helped coordinate, host, and entertain us on our visit. We've been wanting to go back since we boarded the plane home. Such a great memory! 

Speaking of making memories as we celebrate life... Last April, Shannon, along with our friends Helen and John, pulled off the most fun surprise HALF birthday party a girl could want! Almost all of my favorite people in the world were there. We had barbecue, cake, my favorite wine, and most of all...KARAOKE...(a.k.a. CLAUDIOKE). It was definitely one of the most fun nights of my life!

I'm sad that the only family pic we got turned out blurry, but it's still a sweet memory!
This year went by faster than any other. There were many events and family time for which I am grateful and we also had a few that had us loving our family members and neighbors a little harder.
Last December my mom suffered a stroke. It shook our family pretty hard. But I am always pleased to report that she has recovered beautifully!

And in October we watched flood waters consume our precious city. The rapid-like water destroyed everything in it's path. We were very fortunate to escape with only minor damage from prolonged rain. Shan, the boys, and I joined the thousands of people helping with relief efforts. It was hands down the most humbling experience for our family. God is truly in control and God is so very good.  


 This is next door to my house. It's a truck that had floated out of someone's driveway and down the road. And this is my next door neighbor's backyard. There is about an 8-10ft drop from our yard to theirs. The water was level with our backyard. Unbelievable! And we are beyond grateful to be at the top of the hill!
Long story short...
Over the last 14 months, if I wasn't wrangling my wild boys or hangin' with my tribe,
Then you may have seen me... 

Trying to catch a predator on the news or

Doing some crazy ex-cheerleader moves at a gala or 

 Being crowned Miss South Carolina in the Holiday Market office or
 Forcing my husband to dress like a toddler again! or 
 Stealing clothes from a department store or

 Telling someone about the greatest, life-changing, most gorgeous red lipstick or
On a super fun date with my handsome hubby or
Getting my car jumped because I left it on all day at work or
 On stage pretending I'm Adele or the lead singer for Journey or

Riding around The Acres with my back hatch open, delivering supplies to flood victims.
I need a keeper!
Any who, I love my family time with Shan and the boys and there never seems to be enough time for that. Life gets hectic and sometimes it's tough to manage it all...hence, my 14 month blogging hiatus. But I try to remember that this time is flying by faster than I ever imagined. The days are long, but the years are short!

Thanks for hanging with this post until the end. Hopefully 2016 will bring me more opportunity to visit this little space. I've missed it! I'm hoping all of you had a joyous Christmas Day and that you receive many blessings in the New Year!

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