The Bakers’ 2005

Okay, okay!! Enough already! Your wait is over, you can finally find out what the Bakers have been up to for the last year. You people are obsessed – I can’t tell you how many times over the past 12 months that we’ve been out and run into someone we know, only to be immediately asked “so what have you guys been up to?”, or “what’s been going on?”, or “how’s it going?”!!! You people are like the paparazzi!! Now I know how Dodi and Princess Di must have felt. Hopefully your New Year’s resolution for 2006 is to try to respect other peoples’ privacy a little better, but for now I will appease you with all of our latest news:

As usual, we started off the year at break-neck speed. In January we had so many events and things to get done that it started to feel like I was too busy to even breathe. Fortunately Laurie quickly realized that I was having a turkey reaction and called 911. Even after the epinephrine injection and the tracheotomy I couldn’t relax with all of the stuff we had going on. In January alone we bought Alex new shoes, I shoveled our driveway, Laurie got a manicure, and we put away the Christmas deco. All of this on top of work, school, church, and the normal household chores. And Laurie is convinced we have time to rearrange our living room furniture. Yeah, you and what work crew you crazy shrew?!?

We stayed busy throughout the spring, and as if I don’t already have enough on my mind, Alex and Emily have begun thinking about their futures. This makes Laurie and me proud but also concerned. Alex is very intent on becoming a judge; he’s definitely enthusiastic about it and spends a lot of time debating us on the Supreme Court rulings & opinions, but he hasn’t shown the capacity to be decisive when I challenge him with a tough question. In my opinion this is a trait you must be born with, and when I asked him to tell me whether he loved Laurie more than me he just seemed evasive. I would not expect that from someone who aspires to be a judge someday. Probably better suited to be a politician since his cop-out answer was “I love both of you”. Yeah, spare me kid – my verdict was Guilty. At least he is striving for something respectable – Emily says she wants to grow up to be ‘Pink Pony’, which quite frankly is just ridiculous. Try telling me how you can make a living off of that, whatever ‘Pink Pony’ is? She’d better get her head out of the gutter because she’ll find that her father’s charity is limited in 16 years when she’s out of high school and realizes that the number of job openings for ‘Pink Pony’ are pretty limited – probably even if you have an MBA from Kellogg. As if I don’t already have enough stress!

We experienced tragedy as a family this summer, as most of you are already aware. Laurie was driving home from a shopping trip to get more diapers (more errands – make the madness stop!!) and ran over something. It could have been a nail, could have been glass, could have been anything; the end result was that the truck had a flat tire. We were devastated and I couldn’t console Laurie or the kids. Truth is, I was pretty down on our luck also. Thanks to our friends who called in some grief counselors, we struggled through this dark period in our lives. We also couldn’t have done it without our extended family, who launched a food drive for us since none of us were fit to prepare meals for the kids. Once in awhile Laurie still has a flashback and I see the terror in her eyes, but I think that her emotional wounds will heal in time. Thank you for your prayers.

In October I finally got a moment to relax, since we had gone to the grocery store a few days earlier and the truck wasn’t due for an oil change for another 640 miles. It didn’t last, though – as I stared out our window at the changing colors of the leaves on the trees in our neighborhood, I was reminded that I needed to change the color of socks that I was wearing. Laurie had scolded me earlier that brown socks don’t go with black pants, but damn it, just give me a few minutes in peace woman!  Even Mother Nature herself provides no escape from all of the activities and obligations in my life. Make the tension go away!!!

Time for me to run – I’m due for a cat-nap since we now have to do our grocery shopping at night to avoid all of you stalkers.

Merry Christmas to You and Yours from Us and Ours!!!

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