Saturday, December 31, 2016

The end of 2016

It's the last day of the current year.

I wrote a letter to send out with my Christmas cards this year, but never finished editing it, and never got copies made.  I did send out Christmas cards though and and Ross' Great Aunt Pat made sure to send a note in her holiday card telling me she missed the letter.  She also called me "Amy".

It's all good in the hood. 

So, being as it's the end of the year and I never sent the letter, it will serve as the final blog post of 2016, along with my accompanying end of year slide show.

The boys and I discussed it the other day and decided that our song of the year was "Hand clap" by Fitz and the Tantrums.

Happy New Year!

Merry Christmas 2016

As I sit down at my computer and try to figure out the best way to sum up the past year, I sort of draw a blank.  It feels like the last year has been a whirlwind of activities, vacations, carpools, practises and games for all the kids sports.  But, of course, I’ll give it a try, and I’ve got my instagram feed to remind me of all the highlights.

This year we took a great trip to Seattle in June to watch Argentina (Leo Messi specifically) play Bolivia in the Copa America soccer tournament.  We hit all the Seattle sites, drove up to Anacortes to go on a whale watching excursion and ate great food!  We went to Disneyland with Annie’s extended family in October to celebrate her parents 40th wedding anniversary and the safe return of Willie (Annie’s brother) from a LDS mission in Lithuania.  Ross’ parents also returned from a mission in South Africa and spent the Thanksgiving holiday in our home.  We took a couple road trips to and through Las Vegas just so we could eat hamburgers and french fries at Shake Shack.  And, the biggest project of the year, we finished our basement over the summer.  It was a long 9 weeks, but we are so happy to have the project completed and no, we didn’t do it ourselves.  

Ross started a new job in April of this year with a company called Solera.  He is just as busy, doing just as many projects as before, all of them technical and finance related, but luckily is working  closer to home.  He coaches Elliott and Wyatt in basketball, Quinn in soccer, and is a great dugout manager for any of the boys baseball games we are attending.  This fall, Ross was released after 5 years as scoutmaster as his church calling and was given a new calling as executive secretary to the bishop, keeping him very busy on Sunday’s in meetings.  Oh, and lest we forget, he spends what little free time he has (about five minutes) playing fantasy football and obsessively checking the ESPN and WOOT apps on his phone.

Annie is continuing to be a stay-at-home-mom with the boys and staying busy being their tutor, coach, short order cook, nurse, classroom volunteer and everything else that comes along with keeping three growing boys from starving every day.  Some days, she drives back and forth from the elementary school 6 or 8 times.   She continues to make and sell tote bags and lots of other stuff at local boutiques and seems to always have one too many projects going on to keep her sane.  This spring, Annie switched over to an insulin pump for her Type 1 diabetes and it’s made all the difference in the world.  Like Ross, Annie  also got a new church calling in the fall switching from a three years tenure teaching primary to a position as the secretary to the young women’s organization working with 12-18 year old girls.

Elliott will be turning 10 in January and is in the 4th grade, in his 4th year of Spanish dual immersion.  He is nearly fluent in Spanish speaking and is above grade level in reading and writing en Espanol.  He’s growing like a weed, and by next year at this time, may be taller than Ross’ mom.  He is turning into a really great kid and a  pretty responsible one, too.  He’s pretty goofy, but takes his school work, mine craft, ipod, fit bit and Pokemon very seriously.   He plays competitive soccer in the Spring and the Fall and basketball in the Winter; regularly helps cook dinner; has become an obsessive reader; plays the trombone in the school band; and mows the lawn.

Wyatt is 7.5 years old and will be turning 8 in May.  He is looking forward to getting baptized in the Spring.  Wyatt plays soccer, basketball and baseball.  He is a really good baseball player.  He is fast and smart and has a great time.  At the end of this past season, he was chosen to be the “all-star” representing his team   Wyatt is in the 2nd grade and also in the Spanish dual immersion program.  He is a very talented artist patiently coloring complicated designs and paint by numbers; he loves to listen to music and identify all the instruments being played; he sings and dances, plays nice with his brothers, and is a perfect, straight A student.  In fact, his Spanish teacher, Senora Gonzales told us at the most recent parent teacher conference that she LOVES him.

Quinn is 4 years old and the crazy sparkle of our family.  He loves Pokemon and dinosaurs and his favorite movie is Jurassic World.  He sings and dances and talks all day long.  He loves to draw and color and practice writing his letters and numbers.  Quinn goes to preschool three days a week, just finished his first season of soccer, where, surprisingly, he was exceptionally aggressive and scored a dozen or so goals.  Quinn makes us laugh all day long, is pretty sarcastic for a 4 year old, and would live out on the trampoline, no matter the weather, if we’d let him.  Or at Target.  The kids loves to go to Target.  I can’t complain about that one.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

December blur

I thought November went by fast, but December seems to be in hot pursuit of the world record for time flying by.  We blink, and a week goes by.  We sleep a night, and it's a new month.  That's really what it feels like sometimes, like time is just flying by.

December so far has been full of band concerts and assemblies, preschool Christmas programs, parties, cub scouts, basketball practices and games, Utah ball games.  If we are lucky, there has been one night a week this month where we haven't had something going on, and that's the night ALL the homework gets done for the week.


This month is always hard for me.  I miss my grandmothers terribly.    Even though my Grandma P. has been gone for eight years, and my Grandma Huber for almost 6, it really feels like it was just yesterday that they were supervising breakfasts and feasts and presents and parties.  It seems that in these years since their bodies left us behind that though their spirits are still with us, the hole just feels too big sometimes.  Their magic is missing.  We move on, we celebrate their lives, we talk about them daily, but it feels especially during this month, that the gap between us and them is too large.

On Monday I got a text from a neighbor who grew up in Magna with my family.  Sherry (Belliston) Larson.  She lives in my neighborhood now,  but her mom, Judy Belliston, and my grandma were, I'm pretty sure, forces to be reckoned with back in the day.  Sherry sent me a picture of my grandma from an old Cyprus High School yearbook.  I'm sure it was a PTA meeting, but there was my grandma, smiling at me on Monday morning when I got up.

It's funny how these kind of things make me feel.  I felt that it was a much needed blessing...dare I say my Grandma willed such a thing to happen from her seat up in heaven.  She knew that I needed to to know that she was watching and looking out for me.  But, it is such a bittersweet thing, to be reminded so lovingly of someone you miss so terribly.  I wrote on an instagram post earlier in the week that this week before Christmas is hard for me - it's the week I'd be wrapping her presents, running her errands, and laughing with her at the kitchen table.  Man, I miss those times, but am so lucky that I have them locked away in my memory.  Her, sitting at the table with her yellow notebook of lists, throwing presents into piles, losing gifts in the office, arguing with Haley and me about whether or not she gave that exact same thing to that son-in-law the year before.  We'd have lunch, drink diet cokes, and wrap presents until we just couldn't stand it anymore.

I've been crying off and on all week.  I guess I could blame it on not feeling well.  I do have a sort throat and a stuffy nose.  But instead, I'll blame it on memories of Christmases past, and even though it's a hard time of year, the joys of Christmas present and future.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

time passes quickly, doesn't it?


It's been over a month since my last blog post.  Funny isn't it how time just marches forward, whether we pause to document it or not.  It's nearly Christmas however, and the end of the year and I probably don't want the final blog post of 2016 to be me whining about, what is proving to be, a really horrible election outcome.

Anyway, November.

November went by so quickly.  The boys were off-track for three weeks, even though Quinn still had school three days a week.  The month was eventful and uneventful all at the same time, if that even makes sense.  We had our fair share of ups and downs in such a short four week period.  We also had a really rough 11 days or so, right in the middle of the month where chaos reigned supreme.

In an 11 day stretch of November the following things happened.

*Ross parents returned from the 18 month mission to Africa to our home.  They stayed for 8 days.

*Wyatt broke his toe and had ear infections resulting in a late night Insta-Care visit and some antibiotics.

*We went bowling.

*We hosted a small Thanksgiving with a standing rib roast that Ross prepared and a smoked turkey, we bought from a bar-be-que joint.  The food was delicious and my parents and Willie came by later in the evening for dessert.

*I sewed my heart out for a holiday market in, Holladay, right after Thanksgiving.  Set-up, volunteer in a blizzard and take-down all in a three day span.

*In 11 days, we attended, in some combination of family members, three or four Utah basketball games.

*We got a flat tire on our way to a cousin's baptism.  Luckily, my dad and Willie were close by and they came to help with the tire and take the boys with them to the baptism.  Ross and I headed to Costco to try and get the tire fixed, but because the tire shop was booked up for the rest of the weekend, we had to wait until Monday to repair the tire.  That meant we got a teeny tiny rental car from the airport that, I hit my head on the hood every time I got into it for a couple of days.

*The same day as the flat tire (the Saturday after Thanksgiving) I had a rough day.  Any combination of factors could have caused it, but I had climbing blood sugar all day long and finally, around 5:30 or 6:00 pm that evening, Ross took me to the emergency room because my blood sugar had spiked to 546 (normal is 120).  I cannot say I remember a lot except that I was cold (probably because of the IV), my speech was so slurred that I couldn't talk, and my body was heavy as a rock.  After a few hours of fluids and insulin, a blessing from my Dad, Willie and Ross, I was released to go home.  The next day, Sunday, I felt miserable, like someone had kicked me 50 times in the back.  I couldn't stand up straight or concentrate, and my speech was still slurred for most of the day.  It was a pretty pathetic experience.

*We purchased nine sub-for-santa gifts and helped out a sister missionary at the MTC from Madagascar.

*Quinn stopped sleeping and went completely insane....after a few nights of feeling like we had a hysterical newborn, Ross took him to the doctor, and he too had ear infections and a sore throat like Wyatt the week before.

*I volunteered with a neighbor to clean the temple in the middle of the night.

*I sewed and sewed and sewed for another Christmas show in Provo.

*We got out and set-up all our Christmas decorations.

*Play dates with friends were arranged.

*Off-track was survived (barely)

*Went back to school and had a band assembly.

*Driving to IKEA on Bangerter, a rock found it's way into my windshield.

*Saw Jim Gaffigan at the Delta Center.

It was a lot for a small 11 day stretch.  Ross and I were so tired and worn out from all the commotion, extra people, illness and food preparation and consumption that I still don't think we've recovered.  I made this list on Instagram a few weeks ago and my mom commented that I should look at it not as everything that happened, but as "holy cow, look how much life you still accomplished in spite of all the drama."  She is right.  Even though everything fell apart for eleven days, we still managed to get all our things done.  Our house was clean, our children happy, everyone was fed and watered.

I guess rather than a list of stress, in hind sight, I can look at it as a list of productivity.  Even under pressure, we can get stuff done.  And that, that's a pretty good feeling.


Related Posts with Thumbnails