And so it is, we find ourselves parked in a new year; A brand new year, full of possibilities, and wonder at what may be.
Although 2008, the year we leave behind certainly had it's challenges, and the news was far from all good, even the weather threw some pretty good right punches at us, somehow I find myself thinking it was a good year. Perhaps that is because I tend to enjoy challenges, so long as they are ultimately surmountable. Or, perhaps it is because, in looking back, I tend to dwell more on the good than the bad.
In 2008, we finally broke through the invisible barriers, and managed to get permits for gleaning wood from BLM lands. In the process of harvesting that wood, we discovered some pretty amazing places, and were truly impressed with BLM's logging practices. Beginning late fall of 2008, and continuing now, in early 2009, we are happily enjoying the fruits of our labor, keeping warm by the heat emanating from our wood stove.
2008 was also the year my amazingly trusty old washer finally gave up the ghost, leaving me with a pile of laundry that grew at a rather alarming rate. In the end though, I was rewarded with a great new washer, capable of things I never realized were possible!
The old trusty washer wasn't the only appliance to give up on me in 2008.The range we purchased in 2007, gave out as well. That resulted in some interesting purchases which led to discovery of some "new to me" styles of cooking. While I will admit those experiments provided me with plenty of entertainment I was more than happy when Pa was able to locate and order the needed part, as well as figure out how to replace it, putting me squarely back in the kitchen again.
2008 was a year of discoveries for our family, including some great frugal shopping options! We discovered the Grocery Outlet in our area and have found ourselves happily saving significant amounts by starting our shopping there each week. We also learned our local little store down the road, provided us with access to Costco savings. Naturally, we're taking full advantage of that source of savings!
As with every year, my children have insisted on growing taller, older, and, according to Nathan, wiser ;-) They have learned a lot this last year, and much of that learning has been on their own time. Nathan now knows more about gardening than I do, and more than once has informed Pa and me about useful things we had not been previously aware. Lindsay is learning to crochet, and is beginning to spread her wings in other directions, discovering new interests.
Knitting was where I made my biggest strides this year. I finally broke through the barrier that held me back, and pushed beyond the squares and triangles I had become so comfortable with. In early spring I knitted my first two sweaters, for my young'uns. They turned out so well that I was encouraged to forge ahead. I then knitted a summer top for my youngest, and then tried my hand at knitting an adult garment, a top I sent my older daughter for Christmas this year.
While I was quite pleased with those projects, I think my biggest knitting accomplishment this year was creating my first original pattern. Again, it was by necessity, a rather frustrating search for a pattern for a summer shirt for my son. I searched high and low and couldn't find a thing in his size. Finally, I gave up and decided if there were none to be had, then I'd just create my own. And so I did, and he was quite happy with the finished product :)
December of 2008 was when our young'uns lost their belief in Santa Claus(Actually, Lindsay's still on the fence). Although I was a bit saddened by their loss of the fantasy of the jolly old elf, I was pleased to note in that loss, they had gained the spirit of Saint Nick. They both wore bright smiles as they marched up to the bus in the Bi-Mart parking lot with their bags stuffed full of food, and a new Christmas gift for a less fortunate child.
Towards the end of 2008 I lost one more major appliance. My old DELL, which had served me so well, for so many years one day just sputtered, blinked, sputtered again and closed it's eyes one last time. Fortunately, I realized it was getting old, slowing down, even getting a bit cranky, and so, with some hugely appreciated assistance from Kimmi's SO, Nick, we were able to order, and set up a brand new DELL, prior to the demise of our old one. Unfortunately, I hadn't managed to transfer the files from the outgoing DELL, prior to it's demise, and I lost a lot of valuable, and memorable items. I am happy to note my blog came to the rescue on at least a few of those items, memories, both in text, and in photos.
Ah! My blog! Here we are, at Boondock Babble, another product of 2008! Although I've had my lapses, times when I didn't quite manage to update so often as I ought, for the most part I've kept up on my newest blog, the one that replaced my previous two blogs. I've had a lot of fun with my blog this year. I've learned how to post pictures (which I'll be relearning as soon as we acquire a new camera), how to make a few little changes within my blog, and most importantly made new friends, and gotten to know older friends a bit better.
Yes, 2008 was a great, memorable adventure. While I am able to look back fondly on that year, I find myself eagerly awaiting 2009, the next year on our journey into the great unknown...