I won't apologize for not posting the past month (two months?), although I probably should. It's been a horrible time, and I didn't think it would help anyone if I whined about everything that was going on. Especially since it really wasn't that bad, in the grand scheme of things.
And we did have some really wonderful things happen. Becka went to the Homecoming Dance in October. She ran for Homecoming Queen, which made me very proud. She didn't make it, but she handled it with such grace and maturity that I was even prouder.
Also in October, my cousin Renee came down for a visit. This was Renee's first vacation in almost 20 years, and she chose to spend it with us. I was very excited to see her again. Renee and I had grown up together, as close as sisters. Our family (which to me includes aunts, uncles, cousins, second cousins, and basically anyone with any ties at all to each other) was always very close. Possibly too close, but it was really a wonderful way to grow up. After I married and moved away, I missed being a part of it. For a few years we were able to keep in touch by letters and cards. I credit Renee with getting me through my firstborn's infancy (Renee's advice kept me sane). She also gets the credit for keeping me alive after my divorce; I would never have been able to handle being a single parent without her example to follow. Anyway, it had been way too long since we had seen each other, and I'm so glad that she was able to spend a week down here in Florida, along with her oldest son and her mother (my Aunt Robin). We took them to Orlando for a few days (I love the timeshare!), and we also had a family picnic. I really hope that she meant it when she said that she would be back for another visit soon.
This past week we celebrated Thanksgiving. I don't have any pictures to share, but it was a wonderful dinner. My cousin David and his wife originally planned to join us from Tallahassee, but had to cancel at the last minute because their doctor felt the baby was going to arrive sooner than expected. (I'm waiting anxiously for the announcement!) Danny was able to make it (for a little while, anyway; he had to leave early to go to work), and he brought his fiancee Susan for us to meet. (She's a very sweet girl, and will fit into the family quite nicely.) Naturally Mom was there, with friends Charity and Jasmine. Even Chey and Amy stopped in. I cooked about twice as much food as we needed, but that's part of the Thanksgiving tradition. I wish my daughter could have come down, but at least we all got to talk with her on the phone.
And that's really about all you missed during my absence from this blog. There probably would have been some complaints about work (we had our annual state audit, which is always a big to-do even though we always pass with flying colors), and maybe some about the weather (which got chilly for a few days, although it was nice enough to swim today -- if I hadn't torn my bathing suit). Now that we're all caught up, I'll try to keep on track.