In my ususal procrastinating habit, I have finally composed the annual family holiday letter. I DO write this every year. I just never get around to sending it. I take photos of my ornery kids and make a cute card, and I never mail that either!
Dear Family and Friends:
I sit at the keyboard once again to update you all on the epic experiences of the Roper Family. It was a great year, with many milestones and adventures. First an update on all the family members:
Here's what you expected to hear:
Thing One has graduated from college and is now shopping for a Master's program. She's making six figures at her current job, and is dating four very nice young men (who all have six figure incomes as well) but hasn't decided which marriage proposal she should accept...
Here's what really happened:
Thing One is making great progress in college (she is taking a break, actually, after deciding to change her major and discovering she must start over). She is currently furthering her career at a wonderful company in Orem where she excels at answering the phone and handing out donuts. She quit her second job at the movie theater and is very happy with her "real job." Mommy is sad that she doesn't get to go to free first run movies anymore. With the adoption of our new kitty Asparagus, she has now become a Certified Cat Lady. She continues to sing with Mapleton Chorale, it is her only joy (if she were to start dating, she might have more joy -- any eligible young men you could fling in her general direction would be appreciated).
And more exaggeration:
Thing Two graduated from high school with half of his college credits completed. After agonizing over his many, many options, he finally decided to accept the full ride offer from Yale. His side business doing video capture of Halo gaming has netted him enough funds to retire by the time he is 28.
And some truth:
Thing Two graduated from high school. You probably missed the announcement because I failed to mail it: please find it enclosed with this letter. We were a bit worried that he would not graduate, merely to spite us. He is still working at the dollar movie theater, and hating it. He wants a "real job" and is spending a little effort to find one. He is busy preparing for his mission by playing Halo until very late in the night and waking up by the crack of noon everyday. I can only figure that this prepares him by getting all the fun and sleeping-in over with so that he's sick of it, and later he will be eager for rising early in the morning for scripture study with a companion. We can only hope. And he went on a date. With a GIRL. To Prom. We are so proud.
On to more falsehoods:
Due to her stellar performance in school, Screamapillar has decided to graduate early and move directly to a modelling career. She has had very generous offers from Vogue and Better Homes and Gardens as a foot model.
Screamapillar has grown tall enough to pass up her older sister (who apparently will remain a midget forever). She's playing many much soccers at the high school, and scoring many much goals. She likes boys, talking on the phone, texting and chatting on Facebook. And crab fishing. And looking beautimous. Since getting her phone for her birthday last March, she has sent 4,782,817 text messages. Yes, she has worn out the keyboard on her phone. She hates housework, her siblings, and housework. She also sings in choir, mostly because there are not enough boys in soccer. She will be turning 16 in three months, and we live in fear.
And what has Luke Skywalker NOT been up to?
Luke Skywalker has excelled in all things sporting. He's playing Varsity first string on Provo High's football team, and averages four goals per game.
In real life:
Luke Skywalker is 13 and now officially a teenager. He doesn't quite have Thing Two's capacity for sleeping, but give him time, people, give him time. He suffers from extreme shortness. Since his older brother suffered from the same ailment, and has now topped six feet in height, the little boy has hope. He decided it would be in his best interest to skip middle school, and proceed straight to high school, thus opening up new methods of torturing his older sister. He does this just by being there. It causes Screamapillar untold humiliations. He has had a little trouble adjusting to the middle school schedule, sometimes losing track of all the stuff he's got to do. But he's trying hard, and making progress.
And the little one?
Eclair has mastered four languages and has written and published a children's book. She has learned to drive and use a credit card, taking a lot of the pressure off me in running errands.
In real life she's pretty amazing:
Eclair continues to thrive in her big school. She's in fourth grade now and moved up to the "big kids" special ed class, and has a new teacher for the first time since pre-school. She misses her old teacher, but thinks Mr. C is "cool." She is almost at grade level in many subjects, which is big progress for her. She loves to read, and is currently working on doing a project for the science fair. She has lots of really great friends who love her and she is a happy little soul.
Enough now. Here's what really went down this year:
We unfortunately bookended the year with two tragedies. We lost our Grandpa Paul (Hubby's dad) in January, and then lost the tabernacle to fire in December. In between, better stuff happened: we saw the beautiful ice castles at the Zermatt, and had a wonderful vacation to the Logan valley where we camped and go to cheese factory and a demolition derby. We traveled to Ramah for our dear grandpa's funeral and again for a dear cousin's wedding. We watched our kids sing in choir, march in band, play soccer, play in orchestra, act in plays, serve in church, blow things up at the science fair, and do many other amazing things. Our kids are the best.
Hope 2010 was as good for all of you as it was for us.
Sorry about the picture, it's the best we could manage.