Monday, August 31, 2009

Time Again

It feels like it should be about that time again. It's not like I enjoy the work, the mess, the cost, the hassle. It's just in my blood.

The urge to move. To change. To throw everything up in the air and land where it may.

It's the opposite of my personality. But it's there nonetheless.

The problem is: we're not moving. Not anytime soon.

I'm not really sure why that's a "problem". It shouldn't be.

Last night as I was trying to fall asleep, I was thinking through all of the places I've lived. Here's a list. Get some coffee. It's a bit complicated.

-Born: Ft. Hood, Texas, stayed for 18 months
-Ft. Monmouth, New Jersey, 6 months
-Giessen, Germany, 3 years (Preschool)
-Ft. Jackson, South Carolina, 2 years (Kindergarten & 1st grade)
-West Point, New York, 4 years (2nd-5th grade)
-Wurzburg, Germany, 2 years (6th & 7th grade)
-Wiesbaden, Germany, 2 years (8th & 9th grade)
-Aurora, Colorado (10th-12th grade) Graduated from Smoky Hill High School in '97
-Chicago, Illinois (College) Graduated from North Park University in '01
Sidenote: my parents moved to Batavia, IL for the first 2 years of college and then back to Colorado for the last 2 years of college
-Littleton, Colorado (1st year of teaching) Yes, I lived with my parents for 1 year after college. It was great. I'm so glad I did.
Sidenote: my parents moved to Wisconsin after this year and have lived there ever since
-Lakewood, Colorado (2nd-3rd year of teaching) Lived with a great friend in an apartment
Married: May 2004 & moved to an apartment in the city in which we now live.
-Summer 2006: moved into the house we currently live in, in said city.

Can you see now why I just get the urge every few years to mix it up?

I guess I'll just have to settle for rearranging the guest room.

Friday, August 28, 2009

One Year Ago...

One Year Ago Today...we had no idea what we were getting into. But what an amazing journey we've had. And it's only just beginning.

Anders Eric
08/28/08, 1:42am
7 lbs, 14oz. & 21 inches long

Happy Birthday, Little Man.

We love you more than you will ever know!


October &

& February

& May

First Birthday Pictures to come...

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Summer Wrap-Up

I've been attempting to write this post for about a month now, but every time I sit down to write it, I am interrupted or I just can't consolidate all of the fun we had this summer into a short enouch blog-length worthy of publishing. So, here it is. I'm determined to hit "publish post" before Anders wakes up this morning.

Drumroll please.

Highlights of this summer (and there were many, many, many!)

*Running a camp at school in June for 30+ elementary age kids and working with some great teachers & counselors. Joel & Anders got to spend a week at home together.

*Joel was able to take a 2 week intensive class in Advanced Poetry writing. It was a crazy time to take it with camp going on and the amount of work he was already doing on his master's capstone project, but it was well worth the time, effort & money.

*In June, I spent a few days in Wisconsin with my family, while Joel spent a few days in Nebraska with his best bud from growing up. They were able to relive their bachelor days by grilling, playing golf and just relaxing. He drove to NE and then up to Wisconsin to spend a few days with my family, too!

*A few of the highlights from the trip are:
-Celebrating mom & dad's 40th wedding anniversary--all of the adults went out to a nice
German restaurant in downtown Milwaukee for dinner while my Aunt Connie stayed home
with the 3 kids.
-Watching Anders try to keep with his 2 cousins, Faith & Avery. He wasn't really sure what to
make of these crazy girls. But it sure was fun watching them all interact. The girls were so
kind and helpful with Anders, it was very sweet to watch.
-Spending an afternoon at a beautiful park picnicking, riding paddle boats & enjoying the
unusual cool weather.
-Taking family was an adventure, but lots of fun, too.

*This spring my parents offered to watch Anders for 24 hours while we were there, so we didn't even think twice abotu saying yes. Joel & I left on Sunday afternoon and spent the afternoon in Madison. We had a great time, sans Anders, eating at an outdoor cafe, window shopping and just enjoying a quiet evening together. We stayed in a hotel overlooking the capital building and enjoyed every minute of our quiet morning before meeting up with family the next afternoon.

*We spent the next three days in the Wisconsin Dells (the Las Vegas of water parks as our neighbor likes to call it).

*After leaving the Dells, we drove to Grundy Center, Iowa, where my Aunt & Uncle live (and where my dad spent most of his childhood). It is a great small town and they were in the midst of celebrating their annual "Felix Grundy Days", including a Kiddie Parade themed "You're a Star". Anders won a $5 prize for best "float". How cute is that? He was even featured in their town newspaper! We had a great time visiting with family--including 2 of my 3 cousins from that family! We missed you, Anne!

*Jacobson visit in July--we had a great time spending a few days with the Jacobson family including a picnic lunch and "hike" around Echo Lake. Haiku joined in on the fun.

*Taking a number of trips to the zoo with friends & Grandma J.

*Watching countless movies are a few of our favorites:
The Soloist
August Rush
New in Town
Marley & Me
Slumdog Millionaire

*Playing lots of Battleship & Yahtzee on our Wii

*Taking walks with Haiku down to the park...Haiku loves playing fetch and Anders enjoys swinging in the swings and sliding down the slides. A bath is always required after a visit to the park.

*Going swimming. Anders loves the pool! We've enrolled him in swim lessons for this fall.

*Spending lots & lots & lots of time with friends.

*Our most exciting event of the summer was probably Joel's graduation the University of Denver with his Master's Degree in Creative Writing! It has been a long 2.5 years as he's worked on this project, but I know he feels a great sense of accomplishment and I am very proud of him for all of his hard work!

Thanks for reading. It was fun writing. (And Anders is just starting to wake up for the day)

Friday, August 14, 2009

The Big Day

We have been waiting for this day for 2.5 years! It is finally here!

Joel's Graduation Day!

This morning's walk down the aisle signified the end of a long journey for Joel, and our entire family. Joel began working on his Master's of Liberal Studies in Creative Writing through the University of Denver in the Summer of 2007. He has worked very hard over the past couple of years taking classes, writing papers, composing poetry, sharing nonfiction pieces and even creating some fiction. Today's ceremony was the final step and Rhonda & I were there to take it with him. We are so proud of all his hard work!

Here are a few pictures from the outside ceremony--the weather actually cooperated & the commencement speaker kept it short--we were done in 1.5 hours!

Joel is the tall one down in front in the center of the picture--he was in the front row!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

A Little Chair For Little Man

Three years ago when Joel & I purchased this house we inherited some items from his mom. One of these items was a little brown rocking chair (covered in some horrible leather-looking plastic fashionable in the 80's) Joel & his brother had when they were kids. At the time, I told Joel that if he hadn't cleaned it up within a year, I was going to get rid of it. Thankfully I never got around to fulfilling that promise.

This summer I decided it was time to do something with the little rocker or it should be tossed...I've been in a tossing mood lately. So, I called my friend, Briony, to come & help me recover it. I thought this would involve much sewing, fitting of fabric & a few hours worth of work.

Boy was I wrong.

Briony immediately began disassembling the small chair and about 2 hours later it was in pieces. I was amazed. I had no idea. We headed off to the fabric store and found some awesome brown fabric. Very chic. We worked for a little while and then decided to finish the next day.

In the end we worked for about 12 hours, spent about $75, used about 500 staples, sewed just a couple of seams on the bottom flaps and ended up with the cutest chair ever. I am so pleased with it & Anders loves it.
I bet you are wondering why I haven't posted a picture of Anders IN the chair. It's not because he doesn't love the chair, he really does. He just doesn't sit still enough in it to get a picture. He would just be a big blur, unlike the pictures in the next blog post where he is strapped down in his seat!

New Seat

Just a few days shy of his first birthday, we moved Anders into his new car seat--one that sits him up and faces forward. He had been growing tired of his "old" car eat because his legs were getting too long and he was always wanting to turn around and see what was going on besides the leather on the back of the seat.

So here he is in his new "Cowmooflauge" seat, cute as can be. He was a happy camper in the car today when we drove down to the University of Denver to pick up Joel's gown for graduation for Friday. More about that in another blog later this week.