Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Normal, everyday, routine.

Happy New Year!!

For Christmas this year,
I did something for myself that I have
been wanting to do for a while now.
I made a book out of my blog.
I built it in and it came out beautifully!
Because of page number restrictions,
I could only include from April 2008 until November 2010
(which strangely indicates that I am a bit wordy).
It begins on the day we left Rhode Island
and chronicles the travels, stories
and photos of our daily lives
from then until now.

Reading through it has brought me to tears and doubled me over with laughter many times. What I love the most is the many entries of nothing special.

Just the recounting of average days.

In recent months, I've been more drawn to writing inspiring or comical stories and anecdotes instead of just telling the happenings of an average day in our house.

I'm going to try to include more of our daily life this year.

When my kids are grown, I want my blog to usher in vivid memories of our family and the love, laughter and tears we shared over the years. Many years from now, I want them to catch a glimpse of us sitting in our living room on a regular day with homework being done, dinner being cooked, and the sights and sounds of our lives filling the air.

And to do that, I need to blend in more normal with the nostalgic, more everyday with the extraordinary and more routine with the refreshing. There will still be stories and my (obviously elaborate)thoughts on life, but they will be nestled in between a regular Tuesday and a regular Wednesday at the Cleary home.

Because of facebook (the blog killer) and my constant posting of life by status updates, there are several events missing in my blog so I feel like I need to fill in the past few months with a few highlights.

First of all, Michael had a very successful season playing for Old Mill High School. We loved watching him play and I especially enjoyed photographing every game and then getting multiple requests from sweaty, heavily padded boys after each game for photographs of them in action.

I started a new job this Fall.
I am a freelance journalist for I write a column called Mommy Made Easy for Broadneck Patch and a Military Monday column for Odenton Patch. I also contribute the photo of the week for Historic Annapolis Patch and then fill in for all three patches when they have events or stories that I can cover. Click here to read my articles.
I am enjoying it immensely!
I was able to get a press pass for some of Michael's games so that I could shoot right from the sideline.
Oh just ask my family, you couldn't touch me that day.
I had a PRESS PASS and I flashed it to everyone who looked my way!
Embarrassing but true.

We had a visit from my brother Jason and his girlfriend Jill in November.
It was such a pleasure to have them here and we can't wait for our next visit!

It was fun to revisit some of our favorite childhood places together.
Here Madison and Jason are standing on the pier of a marina that we spent alot of time at.
I did a recent post about Jason and I revisiting some of the tree forts we built as kids.

For Thanksgiving we had my brother Jeremy, his wife Ashley and their two boys Zane and Easton.
It was so fun to fill the house with the pitter patter of little feet again.

Like all visits with far away family, their's was too short
and we are already wanting to see them again.

Zach also came home for 10 days in November.
He is doing well, growing, learning and working hard in Washington.
It was so good to see him and hug his neck again.
It did my heart good to watch him interact with his brother
and sisters again.
We all miss him so much and
we hope to see him again very soon.

Michael tunred 17 in December and got his first car!
Unfortunately before we could get it titled in Florida,
he wrecked David's car,
so now he has to wait on tags until we get the deductible paid for repairs.
He'll be on the roads soon though.

We got a puppy this Summer!
His name is Journey and he is a blue merle australian shepherd.
We did alot of research on the right breed for us and our lifestyle
and an aussie fits us well.
We got him from a breeder in Pennsylvania and picked him from a litter of 16.
Having tried our hand at dog ownership and failed when the kids were younger,
we are happy to say that he has quickly become a part of the family.
He is so smart and funny and very well behaved for his age.

And to bring you up to the current date,
I took this photo this morning.
We got about 4 inches of snow last night
in our first official storm of the season.
The kids are thrilled!
I'm thankful that we live so close to the firehouse
so that our roads get salted and plowed
almost immediately
because I am a chicken on ice!
My cousin teased me about wanting to put chains
on my tires at the first snow flake....
He's not so far off from the truth.
So, there ya go...
you're caught up on the highlights.
See you soon for some
with a twist, I'm sure!

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