Sunday, 8 January 2012

2011: A Year in Review

First off I am very sorry for the lack of posting this year.  There were many times I thought about posting something but got busy doing something else and never got around to doing it!  I will try much harder this coming year to post more about our lives here in England but moving on to the main reason for this post...

2011...another year has come and gone!  How quickly time seems to pass.  Here is our year in review...

January 2011
*Began working full-time as Year 4 Teacher in a maternity position
*Matthew finished exams and interviews to be ordained into the Presbyterian Church
*Our old car died so we had to get a new car.  Matthew kindly got an automatic car so I could learn to drive more easily over here....he does miss having a manual though!

February 2011
On the 5th of February Matthew was ordained into the ministry and joined the Evangelical Presbyterian Church of England and Wales.  This was a very special day and one that we will always remember.  We are now officially Rev. and Mrs. Matthew Jolley.

March 2011
*I applied, interviewed and was offered a full-time teaching position at my current school. 
*Matthew got contacts/Kristen dyed her hair red

April 2011
April brought Easter break and a few travelling opportunities with it. 
*Travelled to Cadbury World to see how the company got started and operates today.  Lots of chocolate was sampled during this visit!
*Kentwell Hall
*Wimpole Estate

The highlight of this month was the Royal Wedding.  It was a Bank Holiday which meant no school.  We had a few people over to watch the wedding and partake in a Tea Party!  It was a fun day and an occasion I won’t be forgetting soon!

May 2011
*Kristen began driving lessons and took her road theory exam
*Kristen took practical exams for Biology, Chemistry and Physics test
*Matthew prepared final details for mission trip of Americans coming to England
*Visited Framlingham Castle

*School Trip to the New Olympic Village with my Year 4 students

June 2011
June was the busiest month of the whole year...where to even begin. 
*31 students arrived from America for a mission trip in Bury St Edmunds
*Matthew turned 30!!

*Celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary
*I took my big science exam - managed to get a B.
*We moved house.  J  Finally have parking and yard for the dog!  And an awesome kitchen!! 

My awesome new kitchen!!

July 2011
 *Got my English driving license!  I passed my test!!  :)

*Had a lovely visit with Matthew’s cousin Phil and family
*Holiday (vacation) to Dorset with Matt’s mum, Pat
*First two A&E visits for Matthew with flu with an irregular heartbeat

August 2011
*Highlight of the Year: my parents came for a visit.  Things we saw: Riverboat cruise, Orford Castle, Burghley House, Peterborough Cathedral, Lavenham, Cambridge, Canterbury.

*Visit to Dover Castle
*Visit to Leeds Castle

*I got a chance to visit family and friends in Indiana.  Always a good time!!

September 2011
*Florida to see my friend Amanda (my maid of honor) get married on the beach!
*Start my new teaching job as a Year 3 teacher
*Matthew falls even more ill and spend one week in the hospital.  Get the diagnosis of myrocarditis.  The flu from July went to his heart causing damage around the muscle tissue of the heart.

This was the hardest and worst month of the whole year.  I was working full-time in a new job and Matthew was really unwell...bed rest for most of the days during the whole month! 

October 2011
*With increase in medication Matthew begins to feel better but still not working and doing great
*Visit with Matt’s mum and sister, Pat and Ruth

November 2011
 *Matthew’s health remains about the same still not working and mostly resting at home
*Church Thanksgiving dinner

December 2011
*Another increase to his medicine and Matthew begins to show signs of recovery.  Begins working again.
*Kristen visits Ruth in London - Hyde Park Christmas Market and Wizard of Oz
*Lovely Christmas and New Year’s with Matt’s mum and sister

Mattthew and I got to visit some lovely places over the course of the year and had some great time with family and friends both in the UK and US.  September and onward have been hard months with Matthew battling an illness but as we enter 2012 things are looking up.  God has graciously seen us through a difficult time and it is He who strengthens us.  Matthew is on the road to recovery and feeling better everyday.  Hopefully his full strength will return soon and he will be able to get on with things that he hasn't been able to for the past four months.  This was our 2011...looking forward to the things 2012 brings!

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