Monday, December 12, 2011

twenty eleven in review

I just did a quick review of our pictures from the year b/c you know those times when you think- Hmm, what did we do this year? And ohh I'd forgotten so many sweet moments and relived some moments that I'm pining for now such as...the first warm days in March and when everything started blooming. It was a really beautiful spring this year cheesy as that may sound. I know some years are hard and some are easier but really every year is a huge gift. I know I'm being so cliche. Okay so I'll tell you some things I've loved about this year... playing in the snow, watching the kids make hilarious faces while sledding, Hallie learning to crawl, watching Ben play baseball (as long as I have help with Hallie- she is everywhere!), mom/daughter dates with Natalie (we love some Cupcakery), long walks in spring, Hallie learning to walk, crafting with the kids, painting, listening to Natalie talk about her horseback riding lessons(Michael's mom takes her), the BEACH (I would try to be more specific but I love every bit of it), summer oh sweet summer, swimming and then warming up in the sun, playing with friends, long walks in fall, making a new friend from Germany and experiencing so many new things with her, watching Michael and Ben bond over Legos, watching the gibbon (its a monkey! my dad thought I was making it up) at the zoo,Natalie learning to be more independent and going on her first girl scout camping trip overnight, our first family camping trip, my sister moving from Denver for Nashville (so much closer!!) finding a new church, watching my babies grow....
I realize over and over how much I have to be thankful for. I read this book Winter Garden last month, and it was a bit heartbreaking. Okay I bawled my eyes out at some parts as part of it is about the life this family had under Stalin during the war. It sounds rough but really it was a beautifully written book, and it flashes from the past to present day so its not quite so intense. ANYWAY, I was reminded of how much we have to be thankful for just having our freedom, our health, and food, and a warm house, and being together. But we are blessed with so much beyond what we need- with friends who really care about us, with extended family that is close by and willing to help, with really nice teachers this year, and I could go on and on. So this Christmas I'm giving thanks to God for everything including hope for this weary world (you know... the thrill of hope a weary world rejoices). Love and hugs from all of us - Merry Christmas!!!