Wow! Has it really been 6 months? Until a month ago I was under the impression that no one was reading this blog anymore. Actually, I was under the impression that I wasn't updating this blog anymore. You see, I assumed that I should only post when something extraordinary happened. I figured our life here in Virginia had stabilized and there wasn't anything interesting to report anymore. If we all waited until something extraordinary happened to speak, we would just walk around in silence most of the time (which doesn't sound all that bad to me, now that I think about it). But it was brought to my attention that some people like reading about the everyday, mundane things because it just lets them know that we are still alive and doing well. So, in addition to some extraordinary things to report, I will throw in some mundane nonsense just to spice things up.

For the most part, life is clicking along just as it was when we got back from the Smoky Mountains last March. I am still teaching classes at UVA, with the occasional online class for Casper College. Gina is working for a research center in the nursing department and we are a little further along on our quest to become Mr. and Mrs. Doctor Doctor. Sydney is still pretty darn cute and not quite as hyper as she used to be. That means she only jumps on you a couple of times when you walk in the door and only tinkles a little bit on the floor. We're still going to the same church, I still faithfully watch UVA soccer every chance I get (2 games this weekend!) and we still like to volunteer with ISI and help international students adjust to life in Charlottesville. So you see, life hasn't changed that much for us at all ...

... Yet ...

That's right, there are big changes coming down the pike on 12th street. And by big, I mean bigger by the week. Gina and I found out in June that we are expecting twins! We don't know the gender yet and we haven't settled on names (the most common questions), but we are very excited for February to arrive so we can meet them in person. In the short term, this means I have been moving furniture (either to other parts of the house or into somebody else's) in order to convert what used to be our study into a nursery. So, the laundry room is now the laundry/library, and the dining room is now the dining/computer room (surf and slurp). We may even need a storage unit before it's all over. But these are all welcome changes as we get ready for these precious treasures God is placing in our family.

Another extraordinary event is that our niece, Joella Gale Murray, was born this summer on June 21. If you want the back story, you can read her blog. I've been told by a reliable source (her mother) that she is now over 10 pounds and eats like a horse. She has the classic Alexander/Murray appetite, so now let's just hope she can sing and throw a baseball. Even if she decides to do neither of those things, that's fine because we think she is just perfect! I know she will be a wonderful role model for her baby cousins down in Charlottesville.

Other than that, there isn't anything very exciting to report. I am about to take Gina to her office to print out her comprehensive exams (affectionately known as "comps" by us doc students). If you don't know, comps are the first big hurdle we must pass in order to be considered a doctoral candidate. Until we pass our comps we are nothing more than tuition-paying desk warmers sucking the oxygen out of the building, but once we prove our mettle we are called "candidates" and get referred to as "scholar" by our professors. Slap some tape on my glasses and call me a nerd! I took my comps last summer but Gina's program won't let them take theirs until after their second year. So, she has reached an important milestone; one that was hard earned, I should add. She wrote over 40 pages, and that was in addition to eating 6 meals a day and going to the bathroom every 5 minutes! :-)

So, that's it for now. Have a great week, leave us a comment and stay tuned for more ...