It's late night on the 23rd/ early Christmas Eve, and I thought since I last wrote on Thanksgiving, I'd better do a little December update. I'm sure I'll post more after Christmas (with some pictures), but for those of you who care enough about me to be checking my blog, I wanted to make sure there was at least a message wishing you a Merry Christmas!
December so far has been busy and eventful. I've mostly just been working at Midwest and enjoying my time with the boys there. I'm at a place now where I feel like I know what I'm doing and have developed some pretty good relationships with many of the students and staff and hopefully are getting down to some good work in improving their lives. Iowa has been cold and I'm learning the meaning of freezing rain. If you've never experienced your car getting literally covered in a 1/2 inch shell of ice, it's something.....I wouldn't recommend you ever do. But life is good out there.
At the beginning of December I also had the opportunity to spend 5 days in Chicago attending a work-related seminar. You need to understand though that these "seminars" are in NO WAY anything close to what you would expect from a "work-related seminar". They are actually really powerful, life-changing meetings that make you really do some deep introspection into why you are the way you are, and then build a foundation from which transformation can take place. They are designed not just for the students in my school, but their families and anyone else who wants to attend as well. In fact, when parents and family and staff go through, we don't even talk about the students...it's all about YOU, and what you can do to tranform your own life in a way that will make you a better and more effective person and improve your relationship with yourself and others. For those who know what's going on with me, it's probably needless to say that at this point in my life it was a very beneficial seminar and really opened my eyes to some things about myself that I want to change and do differently. So, I was excited for that opportunity and am anxious to start truly living my life in a way that I want to.
I also got lucky enough to take 10 days off to be with family for the holidays. I flew into Albuquerque on Saturday night (with a 3 hour delay in Denver because of the crashed plane there), and got in late for a BYU football game party I planned but never attended (and a game I never watched...not even on DVR...boo Cougars). But it was really fun to see Mom, Dad, Kellie, KC, Isaac and Eliza as well as a friend and his wife and children who came down from Santa Fe to visit. Sunday night I flew up to Salt Lake City for some business I had on Monday, and while there was also able to see Aryn and Quinn during the afternoon and evening, as well as my dear Grandma, before flying back down to Albuquerque early this morning. I'll stay here in Albuquerque until the 26th and then drive back up to Utah to spend a few more days with my kids before heading back to Iowa. It has been and will continue to be a bit of a whirlwind, but it's great to be able to be with loved ones during the Christmas holiday.
Finally...it's probably appropriate to include one last note... the "business" I attended to in Utah yesterday was a mediation date for Sara's and my divorce. It has now officially ended, and although I have a lot of really mixed emotions about it all, it resolved quite reasonably and peaceably and we're both relieved there is finally some closure. We know we need to continue to work together to ensure our wonderful children are well-cared for and that they are very aware that they have two parents who care for and love them deeply. We are committed to that, and so far I think we are doing a pretty good job at it. And hopefully, both Sara and I can also now move forward with our new lives in a positive and productive way. I believe that we will.
Merry Christmas and may the spirit of this wonderful season rest with you all!