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November & December highlights via iPhone pictures

It's interesting to log in to catch up on some of my favorite blogs (on the sidebar) and see how long it's been since I last posted.  These days are full, busy, and without much down time.  Christmas cards will not get done this year.  Pictures I had wanted to order and gifts I wanted to make. . .yea, those aren't going to happen either (it's December 20th!).  I think this is the first year I've been "ok" with that. . .that it's just been a busy year full of change -- this is the third address we've lived at in 2015 (the fourth for Tom & Thomas) -- and staying simple and lean is the way it is.

We made the trip north for Thanksgiving this year so I got an annual Cousins picture!!  AVJ and Susan have other cousins too, but these are the Foster cousins.  We have every grade from 11th - 6th represented here. . .I can't imagine life slowing down in the next 10-15 years when I think about graduations, weddings, and babies!!  These are some really great kids.

At the end of my last post, the afternoon after I hit "publish", this happened to put life into perspective:
That was Thomas.  He had gone mountain biking with a Cookeville friend here in Knoxville and texted us a picture of a hill he was going to go down.

An hour or so later, when we were out-and-about running errands, Tom gets a text from Thomas saying, "I think I broke my collarbone".  Hmmmm. . .he and his friend had hiked out of the park and Thomas had driven home before he said anything. 

Well. . .you saw the x-ray. . .we got that at the Urgent Care, who then sent us to the emergency room (where, incidentally, 3 of the 4 medical professionals we saw said, "I've done that") and then referred us to a local surgeon.

I mentioned that "life was put into perspective" because we are all so thankful that he was smart enough to be wearing his helmet.  That was smashed up -- and that would have been his head otherwise. 

So. . .Friday of that week I took my first-ever day off from school to spend the day with him getting outpatient surgery. (And really enjoyed being "just a mom" again.)

He has some super, good friends who were praying for him throughout the day and wanted updates, which gave me the power to take a couple of pictures :)

All went well (notice that they even wrote the word "correct" on his right arm so the operated on the correct shoulder!) and we left mid-afternoon. 

He was at home, relaxing, by that evening.  He had to sleep in a recliner for his first two nights so Tom and I had a roommate. . .

His recovery was very quick. . .Tom took him back to see the surgeon the following week and everything looked great.  He stayed in the immobilizer for two weeks and a sling for 3-4 weeks.  He began physical therapy two weeks ago and should be back to full-range of motion in a couple of weeks.

Sitting by the fire on his phone and being waited on by his family for the weekend wasn't too bad either ;)

Thomas also had his 17th birthday in October.  Really, I can't believe it -- 17 years I've been a mom!!!  What a blessing this life is.

Annual "chair picture" - gift from Aunt Susie at my baby shower for Amy Robert and still in use!!

Sibling birthday pic +1

Robert chose to have a friend over for the weekend to celebrate.  Connor is really one of the *best* kids we have ever known!  And look. . .true friends cut food for one another. . .right?

Soccer also filled the month of November. . .Frederick's team came in second in their Club's tournament -- last one of the season.

The first weekend of December we all headed to Atlanta for Marie to play soccer. . .but it was *freezing* until the last morning and I didn't get any good pics. . .
For some reason I have been lazy about pictures lately. . .I'd really like to change that in 2016 and commit to going back to recording our family's story in pictures.  I miss that part of my life.
Although the weather was less-than-perfect the Friday and Saturday of the tournament, this Sunday morning it was beautiful.  I did get a picture of her brother and dad enjoying the game :)

Frederick likes to go out and warm up the goalie and field balls for the girls.  He's a good little manager for that team in his off-season :)

Here is a great picture of Marie post-tournament. . .we got back in town just in time to celebrate one of her bestest friend's birthdays:

 And here is our favorite cheerleader. . .!!!  Although the schedule is very busy, Margaret is extremely dedicated to the sport and her team. 

See what I mean?!?  Love having the convenience of taking a picture on my phone, but. . .at least the memories are there :)

This is enough for one post, although I have 100 other pictures from the month ;)  I still do keep up with Picture of the Day on Facebook -- most days! -- and try to record the important, as well as "every day" life, as much as possible.  I might have to cross over into Instagram in 2016 though. . .AVJ is heading to Australia (!!!) after Christmas and I want to keep up with her adventures there.

I'll leave with the one and only picture of my love and I that was taken before his holiday party last weekend. 

This will be our 27th Christmas together.  Gotta dig up that picture someone took of us after he got back from a family vacation to Cancun that first Christmas we celebrated together in high school!!  That year he bought me a wool sweater from the Dayton Mall (I ran into him while he was shopping for it -- oops).  His parents bought me a pair of earrings that I had continued to wear until I lost one just this past year.  This year they (his parents and he) bought me a storm door for our new home!!!  He was a keeper then and still is :)

Well, o.k., a few more pictures because this really is/was a super, great, gift (and I didn't have to wait until Christmas to have it installed either -- we'll probably be using it since it's supposed to be 70 degrees!!)

(Guess it's time to start learning how to use some collage options now too)

Enjoying these last days leading up to the Birth of our Savior.  What a privilege is is to know the LORD that would send his son as a baby to save us all.  And that we get to share in that celebration and everlasting life every day!!!

~ Jenni

My mom finally moved into her new house the week before Thanksgiving!  It is beautiful.


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