Friday, December 30, 2011

2011 Recap

Since I've only posted about three times this year I thought I would let y'all know what went on in 2011 for me and my family.

It wasn't a horrible year but it wasn't a great one either. The Lord has blessed me tremendously this year. He has provided for us on so many different occasions when I didn't know how we were going to get by. And I mean in every sense. Like emotionally, financially, spiritually and our safety! He always has provided for us. (read Philippians 4:19)

The year started off normal enough. I was just enjoying life and my family. We had started planning for my step-father's 80th birthday party in May. We were having family coming from out of state and we were excited about seeing them. But what really excited us the most was my nephew coming from Michigan. It was what I was looking forward to most of all. It was great to see him and all our other family members that came to the party.

In April there was a tornado that wrecked havoc in our state. I was watching the news when it actually showed it touching down in Tuscaloosa. Immediately I started worrying about and praying for my nephew who works there and lives by the university. It was an F5 while it was on the ground. Thankfully it didn't come near his apartment, it did kill a lot of people and it did destroy a lot of others' homes and businesses'. We continued watching it not realizing it was heading right towards us!

The weather man kept saying it was going to hit metro Birmingham. Well we are about 8-10 miles north of the city, thought we were in the clear. About 6 o'clock that night I looked out the window, I was looking to see if my neighbors were home. That's when I noticed debris on our cars. At that time we heard on the news that the tornado was in Smithfield. Now Smithfield is right across the highway and usually if a tornado touches down there it will hit my neighborhood next. We started heading down to the basement, my phone rang and I was on it when my husband yelled for me to hang it up and come on. It was my sister asking if we were in our basement. I was trying to juggle the phone, a flashlight and my chihuahua all the while heading downstairs. Oh with my motorcycle helmet on too!

We were in our safe spot only a little bit when it hit. My town was struck by an F4 tornado. We were very blessed as we had almost no damage. Just trees basically.  Other neighbors lost their homes and businesses. Our town was hit pretty bad but no deaths which was a miracle. Below is an actual video of the tornado going through our neighborhood.



This video was taken from an apartment building across from my neighborhood (across a 4 lane highway and I65). While I was in the basement with my husband, hearing the roaring and just by the sound of it you knew it was big. I told my husband this is how we're going to die. Strangely enough I had no fear of dying. As I said we were very blessed that day.

Even now there are still lots of reminders of that day. Our trees behind our house are just all broken. There has been a lot of repairing of our town but there are still signs of the tornado. I think the emotional scars have a long way to go before they are completely healed though.

My grand babies turned 4 and 2 this year they are getting so big. The best parts of the year were times spent with my daughter's family. They have brought us so much joy. They are really at the ages where we have a ton of fun. They like to wrestle and let me tell you this Grammy gets worn out! I am so tired after spending the afternoon with them. But there are also a lot of climbing on my lap and snuggling. I will have one on one leg and the other on the other leaning up against me reading stories or watching videos on the iPhone. I love these times with them.

October brought sadness. My father passed away on the 25th. We went to California for his funeral. It was a beautiful service, he was a great person and the best father ever!

Alfredo "Fred" - my dad

After I got home it was about three weeks before we lost my husband's mother. She passed away on November 20th. She had been sick with her heart and on this day her kidneys failed. As we were getting ready to leave the hospital it was about 9:30 when my husband seen all the doctors running into her room. About 20 minutes later they came out and told us she had passed. 
 Kathryn - my mother in law
My husband was her only schild. His father has passed so he feels really alone now. Please remember him in your prayers. Kathryn had remarried about 7 years ago. Her new husband was real good to her. One thing I disliked was that one of her step-children's wife had posted on Facebook that Kathryn had passed before we even got to notify all of her family. I hadn't even told my daughter and it was already on Facebook. I just think that people ought to consider a person's family before they start posting their deaths.

We stayed home during Thanksgiving just didn't feel like going any where. For the first time I had my daughter and her family over and made my very first Turkey. I must say it was really delicious!

We really did have a great Christmas. We enjoyed shopping and then watching our grandchildren opening their presents. Hubs got a kick out of putting Roary the race car together with our oldest grand son Ray. Little Bruce played with his toys for a bit then got on his old airplane toy that he likes to ride on. All the new ones and he was on the one toy he plays with every time he comes over here. Oh and the marshmallow suckers I got them tasted like "turkey and cheese!" I don't even know where that came from. lol

Well that's about takes us through the year. I am sure I have forgot a few things. There were losses but also lots of love and good times. But now that's life. Prayers and a relationship with God will always get you through the bad times and the good times. Just so thankful He is in my life.


Have a blessed day!
Valerie

1 comments:

Teri M said...

I'm sad to hear about the losses in your life but glad you guys have each other! The tornado sounds so scary - I am so happy that your home wasn't damaged! Thanks for the update!!