Wow, well, I didn't expect it to be 11 months between blog posts. This last year has been I-N-S-A-N-E. When I left off, we were days away from becoming parents, and I was completely oblivious to what the rest of 2016 would bring for us. Let's see if I can bring us up to speed here...
On February 15th (yes, I said February 15th, NOT 16th as was shared in my previous post), we welcomed our little “be-ritto,” Bennett Alexander. He was born at 8:28 a.m., and weighed in at 8 pounds 11 ounces. We all rested up just fine and returned home a few days later to begin our life as a family of three.
The adjustment to parenthood (re: HELLacious nursing experience, to hopefully be discussed here on the blog in a future post...) continued as the days warmed with the season. I returned to work in May and Bennett began his (short-lived) adventure at daycare. Meanwhile, Alex traded in a long season of travel with ULM Baseball for Daddy duties and home-games only.
In June, Alex vacated his position with ULM. Subsequently, I accepted a position with the V. (edited for privacy) Parish School Board, and thus began the process of relocating to south Louisiana. Our home was promptly prepared for market and officially listed with an agent around mid-June. My last day at work was July 8th. We packed essentials and established a temporary residence at my parents' home. Bennett enjoyed swimming in Gam and Pop’s pool, and spent many hours wearing his daddy out!
I began my new position as an Early Interventionist/Kindergarten Special Education teacher at the end of July. I participated in several staff development workshops in preparation for work within a Kindergarten “combo” (inclusion) class, featuring 17 students, six of which have developmental delays or other disabilities. There are two teachers and two paraeducators serving within the classroom, and oh does it make for loads of fun!
Bennett experienced his first airplane trip when he and Alex traveled to North Carolina to visit family and attend a friend’s wedding in September. The boys had quite the adventure, which included sprints through the Dallas airport and a much-needed nap on the airplane afterwards. Bennett even returned with a very special souvenir – his first tooth (at 7 months old)!
With the start of football season this fall, Alex began freelance work with a local newspaper and nearby university. He covered local high school games on Friday nights and spent Saturdays working for TV crews doing stats during home games for college games. His favorite part of this new gig was experiencing the excitement that is high school football rivalries in the south.
In October, our home in Monroe went under contract (exactly 4 months after) on the very same day an offer was made for their new home in south Louisiana. Despite some last minute hiccups (re: very angry moments), we moved into our new home just before Thanksgiving.
Bennett received exactly what he wanted for Christmas, his two front teeth (ha!), and we enjoyed celebrating in our very own space. We hosted extended family for a game of Dirty Santa on New Year's Eve and spent New Year's Day at my aunt's. Needless to say, we are (mostly) loving being near family and friends again and Bennett is a huge fan of his new stomping grounds, as he continues to master his crawling and climbing (but not sleeping) skills.
Looking ahead to 2017, we hope for a more peaceful and stable year. We are excited to start planning Bennett's first birthday party, and my 30th is right around the corner, as well. No doubt, Bennett will be walking, running, and jumping soon enough, and that’s plenty of activity to keep everyone busy!
As far as blogging goes, I am hoping that I will be getting back in the saddle again now that things are sort of starting to settle down. We still have zero decorations on the walls, as well as a patio and fence to build, all while working, taking classes, searching for jobs (Alex), and caring for Bennett...in other words, I'm not making any promises. However, I did just realize that I have two or three drafted posts that never published, so I'll try to share those before too long.
And you...friends...I have missed you SO much. That's one of the saddest parts about not writing for a year...missing all of you! Please, share an update on how things are going with your family...I haven't been able to keep up with reading posts either, so I am totally in the dark here.