Happy New Year (to those of you who have adopted the Gregorian Calendar). I hope 2007 was a fantastic year for you and that 2008 will be even better.
For our family 2007 began in the same place it had for the ten previous years: Wichita, Kansas. We didn’t like that. In fact, we had been planning to leave Kansas for longer than we had actually lived there. I had graduated from WSU in 2006 and Kirsten had recovered from her pituitary surgery. All that was left was to sell the house. Trying to sell it ourselves was getting us nowhere. So, we hired a real estate agent. After a few months of neither shows nor offers we hired a new agent. And waited. Nothing.
In February Skye was invited (as a first grader) to participate in Griffith Elementary’s spelling bee. She was very excited and studied the provided word list. Her first and second grade classes attended the bee to cheer her on. She lasted through five rounds. Skye was disappointed with her performance, but we were all very proud of her.
Having finally had enough of Wichita I quit my job on May 1. We would move to Maine without a job and without having sold our home. It was an exciting and busy time for our family as we packed and prepared to go. We got a post office box in Portland, changed our address on our subscriptions, and began to pack our things. In mid-June we finally pulled out of our driveway for the last time in our rented 22 foot moving truck. And we haven’t looked back. Maine has been more than we ever imagined it could be. We love it here! I feel like we’re finally home and can begin to put down some roots.
We spent most of the summer exploring our new home state. We camped at Acadia National Park, Quoddy Head State Park, and Cobscook Bay State Park. We went on lighthouse tours and a covered bridge tour. We also kayaked and took the girls hiking on peat bogs and rocky shores. We live in Saco (sock-o), about four miles from a seven-mile white sand beach. So, we spent a lot of time watching the waves and seagulls while the girls dig in the sand. It was, to put it mildly, a dream summer.
After a bit of a fight, we were permitted to enroll Skye in third grade at C. K. Burns School. She is in a third/fourth grade multi-age class. She LOVES it and so do Kirsten and I. Jenna is in a first/second grade multi-age class at Fairfield Elementary. She is also doing very well and working almost entirely on second grade assignments. We are proud of them both.
In September we attended a sidewalk chalk festival in our neighboring town, Biddeford (it’s across the Saco River). A local television station taped a promo of our family while Kirsten read a cue card. Since then people we know and some we’ve never met tell us they saw our family on t.v. We’re famous! We’ve also been recognized around because of our Flickr photostreams (Brent’s | Kirsten’s ). It’s kinda cool.
In November we finally sold our home in Wichita. It was on the market for more than a year. The negotiations broke down at least twice but finally we had a contract and made it through to closing. Whew! Good riddance.
Kirsten is working at the Maine Medical Center in Portland. She is a secretary on the cardiology floor. The twelve hour shifts are long but she enjoys working and interacting with adults and having new responsibilities.
I spend my time taking pictures, looking for work, and playing with Hayley as much as possible.
In December we celebrated Festibond, our new family holiday tradition. It was a lot of fun. On the 27th Kirsten’s parents, Sondra and Clarke, visited for a week. It was very nice to have them here with us. We took them to L.L. Bean; Peaks Island; Portsmouth, New Hampshire; Babbs Bridge; and on several lighthouse tours.
We’re happy and glad to finally be exactly where we want to live and grow old. I feel like I was born to be a Mainer and am excited every day to be living in this wonderful place.
Take care. Have a wonderful 2008.
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