Goodbye 2011 . . .

It’s been a big year.  This time last year, we hadn’t yet made the final decision about whether or not we were going to take this opportunity and move to Austria.  Now, here we are, we’ve been here almost 9 months, and we’re feeling relatively settled (but very homesick).

This year, Liam took first steps and said his first words (even if I’m the only one who understands most of them).  In the way of babies as they become toddlers, he’s barely recognizable from this time last year — except he still manages to smile most of the time, whether or not he has his pacifier in.

Benjamin started preschool and even gave his first school performance (in German — extra credit).  He’s learned to read numbers and letters and (shudder) is even starting to learn to spell.  He’s learned to ride his push bike and put on his own socks and shoes.

I’ve made great progress myself:  I’ve been focusing on being more flexible, letting go of the details and focusing on the experience — all of which is evidenced by the fact that 1) I actually moved to Austria and 2) I have not yet lost my mind (that I’m aware of — would I know?).  I’m also working on learning German — I don’t know much, but I certainly speak a lot more than I did this time last year (which included only “Gesundheit” and “Danke”).  Dan has a new job, which he’s really enjoying, and he’s working on his German, too.  We’re no longer home owners, which is weird.

2011 was a year of a lot of change for us.  It’s been a remarkable year (but aren’t they all?).