a look back at 2006

well, i said i would be updating here more often, so i need to make good–especially on this the last day of the year, new year’s eve 2006. and what a year it has been.

about this time a year ago, oren decided that he wanted to cry most of the time. up until then he had been a placid baby. so when he started crying, seb cried, and i cried too. there were lots of days that crying-management was the only thing accomplished. we tried to figure out the problem: was it reflux? we gave him zantac and i eliminated all foods that i truly enjoy out of my diet. that helped a bit. was it something worse? was it sleep? we finally got him on a strict regimen of naps which, for a few weeks, he cried through. but one day, he slept for his naptimes. and the next day he did it again. and the next. and the next. and from that point on, oren has been an excellently happy baby–teething aside (you can’t have it good all the time). sleep enabled him to become more social and gave him more time to work on developmental stuff that did not involve his tear ducts. he learned to sit, to crawl, to stand up, to walk around the house holding onto things. he learned to play with his big brother seb who has taught him how to yell and laugh and roll a ball and scream when he’s being sat upon. he can bark like a dog, meow like a cat and roar like lions, tigers and bears. i noticed just the other day how relieved i am that oren has grown up a bit when oren did something at the table that made seb laugh. and that made oren do it again, like making seb laugh was the most important thing in the world that he could do.

the past year for seb has admittedly not been our favorite year. the terrible twos were awesome! we loved them! we want them back! this year of the trying-to-kill-my-parents threes have been challenging. seb’s been challenging us on every single level known to man, and brian and i have been challenged not to stoop to our own three year old mentality in dealing with it. it’s hard not to throw ourselves down on the floor and scream and kick and pound. it really really is. but we have been getting through it. thank goodness the bad, out of control times come in waves, pounding us on the one hand, but then receding into a moment of peacefulness and sunshine. it gives us hope that yes, he will grow out of it. there is a lot going on for him though. this year, seb has become a big brother (and a pretty good one so far), been potty trained, learned how to ride a bike, tackle oren, draw an actual picture, hop on one foot, laugh really, really, REALLY LOUDLY, and drive his parents absolutely batty.

brian and i continue to love being parents. no really, i’m serious. we do. we really, really do. but i think we have learned that we also need to keep some of our other interests alive and well to contribute to our sanity. brian bikes and works, and bikes to work, and keeps his ear to the current political/theological/whatever-else discussions. really, what did we ever do without the internet? he even has had some of his own comments/arguments published online and in print. which makes me green with jealousy. graduate school has not yet gotten me published, but i’m learning how to take rejection well. hopefully soon i will be deciding what my thesis will be. climbing is an ever-constant in my life. the addiction remains. this is the first year, however that we haven’t been climbing outside at least a half a dozen times. “next year, next year,” i murmured to myself when we’re still in the city on all the beautiful days we had this fall.

other than that, we’re just livin’. keepin’ it real, man. it’s been a busy year with lots of changes and upheaval. maybe 2007 will be a little bit more mellow.

so that’s my version of a holiday form letter. if you want, you can print it out, but don’t count on me sending a hard copy.