Dave/Mike: Nothing exciting happenin' with him right now. Still working swing shift as a local cop and getting his kicks out of it. We love the dinnertime stories about suicide, drug abuse, runaways, and domestic violence. When he's home, our house is full of laughter and fun. I must be the boring parent, because when he's not around, it's pretty dull around here.
Audra: FINALLY (and this is why I haven't written much lately) sent in my final edits to my book to the publisher whose response was very positive. She said she'll send it to her editor the first of the year, so it should be out, hopefully, in a few months. I'm pretty proud of it. It was a LOT of work, this one. Lots of research and organizational changes and all that. Little crazy and stressful, but I'm very happy it's done. Work is going great. I have great staff, a nice office space, and such wonderful families I get to work with. I really enjoy what I do. On my off time, I mostly hang out with the fam or friends. No exciting hobbies to speak of!
Isaak: Doing really well right now. He has been taken off his special education plan at school and is "flying solo" and doing fine so far. He is also off all medication, and any lingering "issues" that the meds used to help with, he's learning to navigate on his own. He's getting straight A's which include AP Calculus II and Physics at the high school. He's also in chess club and competes with the high school math club, plays piano, and is signing up to play basketball at school next.
Lil' Audra/Maggie: Turned 12 today! Can't believe my "baby" is 12. It was really fun to go get her out of Primary today, with the Young Women, and escort her into Young Women's with us! She was so excited and ready to be out of the "kids" class. Maggie still loves to read and eat sunflower seeds more than anything. She is in two drama clubs, one community and one for school. She saved her moo-lah and contributed half to get a new puppy a couple months ago who has proven to be the CUTEST DOG EVER!
Lil' Audra with all her birthday "loot"
Katie: Was a little unsure of the puppy when she came home, but she has turned into quite the adopted mother. She lets Ellie climb all over her, bite her ankles, jowls, and stomach, and eat her food with hardly a growl. Our little anxiety scaredy-cat shepherd has become quite the guard dog (finally!). Oh, she still runs away if someone challenges her, but I think she would actually scare off a would-be thief if they tried to break in now!
Ellie's favorite hideout. Katie only tolerates it for a few minutes.
Ellie: Is half Pomeranian, half Chihuahua (Pomchi) and is now about 6 months old. She is one funny ball of energy! Puppies are hilarious, anyway, but to see her wrestle around with this huge shepherd is quite the thing to witness. She's a good, obedient dog who has been easy to train so far. And yes, she is dang cute!
All in all, it's been a good year for us. I'll try to keep everyone posted on any new antics in the near future!