Hello lovelies!

Well, look how big they got! Those who’ve been following me since I started here in 2004, before I even got married, probably have seen them on facebook, but still!

Naya (on the left) is 4 and is in Pre-K.

Lexi is 8 and is in 3rd grade.

Art is now working as a truck driver.

I am now teaching history to 6th grade at a charter school in an inner city as well as serving as the middle school academic dean (my first administrative position). I am also one year away from getting my second masters. It will be in educational administration and will grant me my administrator’s license.

We have weathered a lot since 2014 when OD closed, many changes including my mom being diagnosed with early onset dementia and Art being diagnosed with ADD and bi-polar. Lexi was also diagnosed with ADD and a subtle anxiety issue. She is on medication for the ADD and it is making a huge difference.

She is a straight A student, she was also before the meds, but now she also enjoys school a lot more as she doesn’t feel so “frazzled,” her words. Lexi has shown an aptitude for music. She can hear a new song and within ten minutes she will have it figured out on the piano and be able to play it flawlessly by ear. She took some piano and voice lessons this summer and I was told she has perfect pitch and a good voice. However, her true passion is writing and art. She is a very good artist and takes art classes. The work she does in there and on her own is amazing. She is so creative. She even makes some of her own clothes either sewing or cutting and rearranging t-shirts and scarves. Her teacher said her writing is near perfect with very descriptive language and creative storytelling.

Naya began gymnastics at age 3 and within 3 months was moved up to the 5 year old class due to “natural talent.” Now, at almost 5, she has been placed in the 7-8 year old class; even in there, her coach told me they are holding her back and she has the ability, talent, strength and flexibility to go far and even compete. She wants us to start private lessons but those are very expensive, so we will see. She is also starting to read a LOT on her own and she loves school. She is still obsessed with baby dolls and has over 25. If I try to secretly get rid of one, she will know and accusingly ask, “Hey! Where’s Melissa?” or whatever name she’s given it.

As for me, I started a photography business on the side and have even gotten some paying jobs with my work being featured on a company’s website as well as some family, pregnancy and child portrait work I’ve been paid for. I would love for it to take off and I could do that for my full time job but right now teaching pays the bills. We also started a YouTube channel, a vlog, where we were very active for awhile but we haven’t posted a video there in awhile. I hope to get back to it soon.

What are you all up to?

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