Saturday, December 10, 2011

Giving Thanks as we Move Toward Christmas

December has arrived and with it a notable increase in cold and wet weather. There continues to be a great deal of uncertainty in our lives right now, especially in the area of employment, and there have been some pretty frustrating hassles and complications in recent days, but in the bigger picture we have a great deal for which to give thanks.

I have begun to settle into the idea of living in our new home after coming back to Virginia following a visit home for Thanksgiving and stuff sorting. I now have a pile of items waiting in Phoenix that Alison and I will attempt to pack into our rented vehicle when we leave Phoenix to drive back to Virginia at the end of January. These things, along with things Alison wishes to add from her home in Livermore and wedding related items promise to do a pretty effective job of filling up both the vehicle and also any available space that we still have here. Things are going to be a bit tight, but we are thankful indeed to have this place to live. It is going to serve us well in the coming months. I have certainly been thankful to have the heat in recent days!

We were successful in finding a bed, which I have enjoyed sleeping on this past week. We have begun to bring Alison's stuff over here, a little at a time, and slowly make the transition to her living here as well. In preparation for the coming holiday we have done our best to make the house as Christmasy as possible, adding our very own tree, along with candy canes, lights, stockings, and nativity. It isn't going to win any awards, but it certainly helps to create a holiday atmosphere for both of our first Christmas away from our families.

Things continue to look promising for me to return to the National Mall as a ranger, though there are still a great many unresolved variables (such as congress passing a budget!), and the timeline of that working out remains in question. Still, there is reason to hope! I also found out that I successfully appealed and was granted in state status (and as a result in state tuition) for GMU for this spring. That is exceedingly good news, and means that I will for sure begin my graduate studies at the end of January.   

Details continue to come together for the wedding, an event which is rapidly approaching. In fact the wedding itself is exactly five weeks from today! There is nothing for which I am more thankful than that in five more weeks Alison will be my wife.

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