Sunday, December 22, 2013

Happy Everything: 2013 In Review

Dear Friends,

2013 has been extremely interesting (and long) year for our family, so I’d better start right off and give you a re-cap in case you don’t follow Eric or me on Facebook, there’s no time to waste!

Just before Christmas, last year, my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer, she is now healthy and is cancer free, but her treatment and our need to finish rebuilding our house, and selling our house in North Dakota before we moved, played a huge role into our year. Just after Theodor’s first birthday on January 21st, the boys and I left Eric in Minot and we headed to Michigan for an undetermined amount of time (until we had a house in Colorado).

The boys and I spent six months without Eric while he fixed up the house, worked his final days as a Missileer, and went to do some pretty cool things as an Assistant Hockey Coach for the Minot State Beavers, they WON NATIONALS! Eric was able to travel with the team and even attend the award ceremony at the NCAA Coaches conference!

Every few months we had a chance to see Eric, like when we went house hunting in Colorado in April and again for Memorial Weekend in May, but pretty much we were living up the quality time with our family in Michigan. I can’t explain how wonderful it was to spend that much time with our family, and the boys’ grandparents! I felt like we were home (and just missing Eric of course)! I was especially proud that our parents were actually able to experience both of the boys! Most of the time they see things on Facbook, through a FaceTime, and maybe even through a quick phone conversation, but to actually have them live with their grandkids was truly an amazing gift.

In June, Eric went to training in Dayton, OH for three weeks, so, we got to enjoy a little bit of a Michigan Summer before we had to say some very difficult goodbyes and move across the country again at the end of July. In August we finally arrived here in Colorado where we are LOVING every second of it. From the days above zero in the winter, to the outdoor activities in the mountains year round, to the house, to our friends, Colorado was exactly what we needed after our time in North Dakota. It was absolutely a fresh start for our marriage, our family, and our life. And after two years of absolute hell with the flood and all that came with it, this assignment was much needed.

Eric is now in Acquisitions where he works as the Chief of the Business Branch for the Air Force Launch and Test Range Sustainment (WOW! Longest title ever, right?) and, is an Assistant Volunteer Hockey Coach for the Air Force Academy Falcon Hockey Team. He gets to go into work at a reasonable hour, come home for lunch every day, and is home for dinner most nights. He’s able to make hockey practice and even travel with the team! Eric even has a million more hours to spend with the boys, and while they had to make up for lost time, you’d never notice there was a gap in our year. Eric is a fantastic father and the boys can’t get enough of him. They especially like their wind down routine with their dad each night. It just makes me smile to listen to them read and do puzzles or fix hot wheels cars before they head to bed.

I am a busy stay-at-home mom trying to keep up with the boys, this blog, fooling around starting my own non-profit and working for an amazing Michigan based company, Live Love Michigan.  I am very happy here: I have wonderful friends, the best neighbors in the world, and I even get a few hours a week to go to the gym where I do a boot camp class! It’s wonderful! I haven’t been this in shape in a LONG TIME! Oh! And the best part is that I actually get to go on dates with ERIC! Crazy huh? This Fall, I entered a photo contest from the Grand Hotel (on Mackinac Island) and WON! So, Eric and I will be spending two nights there this Summer! It’s going to be AMAZING and our first vacation without kids since our Honeymoon.

Henrik is three and a half now (four in May); he’s incredibly smart, eager to learn and has a bit of sass to him. He’s funny and witty, loves riding his bike (even mountain and dirt biking), and of course still loves cars. His newest thing, is fishing. He LOVES it. I’d even go so far to say he’s obsessed! Every chance he gets, he wants to look at lures or play on the boat, I think Eric is thrilled he’s got someone who will talk fishing with him! Hank started pre-school this year and is really coming out of his shell. He still likes to cuddle, but he also adores being with friends, and has really learned a lot about himself, being a boy, and doing boy things. He’s pretty into Super Heroes too, or as we call them, Super Guys, and is very interested in protecting everything, from his brother to his friends, people he doesn’t know, and even me! Because he’s getting older, and has turned into a boy before our eyes, he’s become this fantastic helper, a determined doer and always carries a proud look on his face when he completes a difficult or “Big Boy” task.

Theodor just turned 22 months, and will be two before we know it. Though, I have to say that this year, from one to two, has been a long one. Theo, or Thornado as we like to call him, is just as smart as his brother, but 10 times more physical and active. He has only felt pain twice this year and even broke a cast on his leg (he had surgery on a toe) because he’s so full of…. force? Strength? Vigor? Gusto? In a group he’s the dominant player, he’s physical and has a slap shot that rivals his Dad’s, and can throw and hit a ball better than most six year olds. He also likes to do a lot of cause and effect demolition games with his brother, where he destroys Henrik’s train track or whatever, and runs away after he steals something.  One on one though, Theo is as sweet as pie and loves babies (he has five baby dolls) and animals. He loves to snuggle and be a Momma or Daddy’s boy and actually can carry on a fantastic conversation.

Delilah is pretty happy in her new home, she gets to go outside all year long and won’t get her paws stuck to the cement this year! She gets to go on Colorado Adventures with us each Sunday, and gets run on a regular basis. She’s getting older, she’s five now, and is starting to calm down, unless she finds a darn prairie dog in our back yard or a bunny in the front, then she’s useless.

We’re not sure exactly what 2014 will bring us, a lot is up in the air, but I can assure you, that whatever it is, and where ever we spend it, it will be a good one. We wish you the happiest of everything, and hope that this year you find the good in yourself and those around you so that you can have the best this world has to offer.

Love, Abbey and the boys 

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