Happy Valentine's Day, everyone! Time for my yearly-when-I-think-of-it 9 years past D-day update. And really, February 12 has come more to symbolize a reminder to update, rather than the actual D-day itself.

Even 7 years ago I'd never have believed this possible, but sometimes the whole day and more goes by, and I don't even remember. If I don't see the date to remind me, it doesn't cross my mind. In fact, the only reason I managed to remember this year was because I rented Cool Runnings after the kids asked why it was such a big deal to have a Jamaican bobsled team. The rental expired on the 12th, and the kids were counting the days down, trying to watch their new favorite movie as many times as possible before it went away.

Now, here we are, up in the middle of the northland winter, with little pasty children running around, "Ya mon!" "Dervish, you dead?" "Ya mon!"

I don't have time for a long update. Having just finished the taxes, there are few clean clothes in the house and even fewer clean dishes. The Dervish is home sick from school, (and will be sick still on his 13th birthday tomorrow, poor guy) and Mr. C is recovering from a long bout with some Oklahoma plague. The same plague he passed on to his little brother, oh joy.

Much of the year has been awful. We've been under some pretty heavy-duty testing and trials. AJ and I have been blessed to have each other through everything that's happened, and we appreciate each other now more than ever. We're still wildly in love, and expect to be in love forever now that we know how to make it happen.

In two more years, we will have been together half our lives. In six more years, we will have been married half our lives. This summer will be our 18th anniversary.

God is good!

A smooth sea never made a skilled mariner.
~ English proverb

Neak's Story