2006 a year in Review

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to our family and friends! 

In this day and age of technology I had thought I would get to holiday cards and didn’t so guess what if you are reading our blog you are getting your personalized holiday card now.

2006 was a year of many changes, but then again what year isn’t?  The year started off with Lisa and I in our same jobs… now that is amazing J.  I am still the After Hours Supervisor for Western Washington.  So when the office closes, I take the calls of kids in need of protection.  Lisa continued as a Para educator in a Special Ed classroom at Woodland a local elementary. 

So the first change was that Lisa decided to take the plunge and apply to Graduate school to get her teaching certificate.  Yes she could have returned to work as a full time social worker with the state but just doesn’t find that as fulfilling as the classroom work she has done as a stay at home goddess.  After some waiting and anxiety of test taking she was accepted to a 2 year weekend program to the Master’s in Teaching program at City University – beginning in September 06.

In late January and early February we began to not be satisfied with David’s progress at our local elementary, he complained about being pulled out for special ed classes which in the past he enjoyed.  So we entertained the idea that he join Katie at Waldorf.  We met with his teacher (at Waldorf they have the same teacher first through – eight grade).  Mr. Morrissey was hesitant but reviewed all of David’s files, met with David and had him sit in on class, obviously David would be behind in flute and strings right off the bat and not have been exposed to German and Spanish all mainstays in the Waldorf curriculum.  However, after much consideration we moved David mid-year to Waldorf, got him his viola and off he went.  He now smiles, has many friends and thoroughly enjoys his teacher, it’s a wonderful fit.  Katie continued in third grade with Mr. Lee at Waldorf and we offered Waldorf to Danielle but she being in sixth grade had no interest in leaving her friend base and Michael attended the local high school in a life skills program.

Spring break was upon us before we knew and Lisa’s parents instead of visiting paid for us all to travel to San Diego a city our family has never been to.  We went to Sea World and I completed something on my life list thanks to Mom and Dad – I played with the dolphins.  We paid for Danielle and Katie to join me in the pool with the dolphins.. what an amazing experience to touch them and give them commands.  Katie has now decided on her calling in life is to become a Shamu (the whale incase you don’t know) trainer.  So we got to ask the dolphin trainers what she needs to study in school and how to get into the field.

School came to a close with Michael finishing his freshman year, Danielle graduating from elementary school (oh how we are feeling old!) and Katie and David moving up in their Waldorf grades.  On the day after school let out for the summer, I got devastating news that my father had passed away completely unexpectedly.  On 6/9/06, he went to work as usual came home and sat down in his chair and died.  He had held the position as Chief Deputy Coroner in Spokane
County for years and was at the time of his death back as licensed funeral director which he had done since 1966.  The next week was planning a trip to
Spokane, meeting up with my siblings, step-siblings and dealing with the grief.  My father’s funeral with military honors for severing in the Navy during Korea was on 6/17/06.  My family is still adjusting to loosing our father so suddenly as any family would.

Shortly after the 4th Lisa and K, D and D took off for the Cape as usual leaving me to fend for myself which is never a good site, good thing I had Michael to keep me company!  Michael and I then flew to the Cape at the end of Lisa’s stay and flew home with the family.  We got to our car after flying all day and the battery was dead because an inside light had been left on… never fun after flying cross country.  Our long term parking came to the rescue and offered to jump the car for free – and we were on our way home.

The rest of the summer was spent with Lisa getting nervous about starting school, Danielle starting middle school and the kids attending overnight and day camps.  Michael started his 4th year with specialized recreation day camp, Danielle and Katie went to overnight Girl Scout camp and David for the first time went away to a overnight Y camp.  All had wonderful experiences.

School started September 6, 2006 with Danielle beginning 7th grade, David in 5th and Katie in 4th.  Michael was accepted for a month of “respite” at an institution and it was a time for medication update for him, things were just not going well.  I took him over to Yakima for his month of respite and then in just a few short weeks our local case manager for his services along with Lisa and I agreed an extended stay was warranted to get his medication updated.  After severe behaviors there (that we were so used to by this time) the institution recommended permanent placement to his case manager that he was just “too dangerous”.  The believed not only was his brain so affected from the anoxia at birth but suffered from Severe Attachment Disorder and his IQ was just too low for an Attachment clinic to effectively treat his disorder.  He remains in Yakima but we are working hard to get him moved to the institution on this side of the state near Seattle.

Lisa began school in September, Janice celebrated birthday number 38 and then Lisa’s turned 39 in October.  We celebrated the 15th anniversary of our Holy Union on 10/12/06.  We also traveled to Yakima to visit Michael and take him to the pumpkin patch and hayride and yearly tradition with the family.  The remainder of the fall just flew by with the kids busy with strings lessons, sports, Katie swimming again and Lisa in school (as well as working, doing Girl Scouts and holding the family together, she’s amazing!).  For once I had the boring life (no school, no job changes, no real anything).

Now it’s December, and thanks to our power company I am able to post this after we had hurricane force winds hit Western Washington on 12/14/06 our power went out that night and stayed out through the weekend.  I told Lisa if it wasn’t on by Monday, we were heading to a hotel, me without electronics was just too much!  Oh yeah everyone was cold without heat.  In December we celebrated Danielle becoming a teenager (12/1/06)! She turned 13 – give us strength.  My sister Marilyn – sorry sis, turned 50 on 12/16, I can’t believe it. I would say how old my brother is because he gets sensitive about those sorts of things.. but if you read the blog you will see he’s only a year younger than Marilyn. .  I am having surgery again on my Trigeminal Nerve tomorrow 12/21 so say a small prayer for me – I’ve had the procedure done 2 other times and they say it may take up to 10x to have it done because the MS just continues to attack the nerve in different places.

So as the year comes to a close, we look back at the changes good and not so good with my father’s passing and Michael being institutionalized to David full of life again in school and Danielle getting straight A’s in middle school and we have to be thankful for everyone and everything around us.  Peace to you and your family.

Love,

The Langbehn-Pond’s

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