Saturday, January 2, 2010

Year In Review... Farewell 2009, Hello 2010

Wow, I can't believe another year has just whizzed by. I guess the old saying is true "time flies when you are having fun!" 2009 was another fun filled year for our family full of blessings for which I am truly thankful. Let's look back on them together shall we.....
I rang in the New Year by getting a brand new Iphone and haven't looked back since, LOVE the technology this wonderful phone has to offer!

January also gave us our very first major snowfall of the year and we had TWO snow days in a row and enjoyed lots of time playing in the snow together:

Out with the OLD, in with the NEW..... fortunately RIGHT before that major snowfall we had gotten rid of our old living room and family room furniture and got brand new sofa's and loveseats, one of which was a pull out couch which we allowed the kids to spend the night on after snow day #1 which they were THRILLED about!

After we dug out from the snowfall in January my baby boy Luke turned EIGHT years old in February and we celebrated at Krazy City with friends and family and he had a sleepover with cousins:

Shortly after Luke turned eight we packed up the family (including our dog Mickey)
and headed for a long weekend in Gatlinburg, it was HEAVENLY getting away together

There is nothing like soaking in a hot tub in the mountains:

February of 2009 also brought a wonderful occassion for us, Lauren accepted Jesus into her heart and asked to be Baptized, so she was baptized by her grandfather at Fellowship Bible Church:

March brought my mom's birthday and our family got together to a cabin in Brown county for the celebration (I can't for the life of me locate pictures of this wonderful time right now) but it was a wonderful time with my family (my mom, dad, brother, his wife, and of course Tim and the kids) it was unseasonably warm and we enjoyed some outdoor hikes, shopping and swimming (indoors) at Brown County State park.
March also brought Easter and fun outdoor egg hunts (although cold) and all of the festivities that typically brings:

Then came April and a WONDERFUL escape to the beaches of Kiawah island South Carolina for Spring break (ahhhhhh, I can feel the sand on my toes just thinking about it!) I just love those Spring Break getaways with my family (again a great trip with my mom and dad, brother, his wife and Tim and the kids).

The sunshine makes you excited about the summer that is quickly approaching and when I return to school there is less than 2 months before summer vacation.

Then the warmer weather that April and May bring to the Ohio area and we enjoyed setting up movie nights outside for the neighborhood, we popped popcorn, set up Tim's projection equipment and enjoyed the movies under the stars in our shorts:

Then came May, wonderful May. The sun was staying lit longer, temperatures were starting to feel summer like and we enjoyed playing outside after I came home from work. Lauren had a Mother's Day Tea at her preschool in May:

These tea's are so precious and always make me cry. She made wonderful crafts for me and the class sang to me, wonderful memories.
The kids and I traveled down to Krohn Conservatory for the Butterfly show and enjoyed holding many butterflies, what a wonderful display:

May also brought Spring soccer for Lauren and we watched her enjoy it more than ever and really run up and down that field agressively. Spring baseball for Luke was wonderful, his team did outstandingly well and landed a top spot for the 2010 team placement rankings.
Then came June, OH HOW I LOVE June! June to me means school is wrapping up for the year, soon I will be spending time with the kids by the pool and taking a stroll down Main Street U.S.A in Disney with the family.
We kicked it off in grand style in 2009 by traveling to Indianapolis to see WICKED with my sister n' law, LOVE THAT SHOW!
Then we transformed our bedroom into a "haven" for ourselves, after having hodge podged furniture from our childhood we finally had our own wonderful haven to escape to:

I also turned 33 in June surrounded by my family:

Then came my FAVORITE time of year, DISNEY TIME!!!! This was going to be the trip of a lifetime. We recently bought into the Disney Vacation Club and as an incentive for joining received a TON of developer points that must be used quickly so we were booked for 18 heavenly Disney days, I couldn't wait!!! I'm not going to re-cap the entire trip here (you can read my ENTIRE 18 day Disney Trip Report here:
But it TRULY was the trip of a life time. Tim injured his knee for some of it but overall it was MAGICAL, MEMORABLE and will go down in history as one of my favorite trips, one of the reasons it was so magical was because we met some WONDERFUL friends on the trip and spent a lot of the vacation with them and it made it all the more special. Here are a few of my favorite shots from the trip:

Ohhhh, I could go on and on with the Disney memories and pictures, but I digress....
Then after our wonderful 18 days in Disney we were home for less than 2 weeks and were on our way to our annual trip to Grand Haven Michigan in July. LOVE Grand Haven (have I mentioned how blessed I am to be able to travel so often with my family!)
Grand Haven did not disappoint, we had a wonderful trip (even though Tim was on crutches and in a knee cast for most of it, we made the best of it and had a great time in the sun):

We joined a new church in 2009 and became Crew Leaders for Vacation Bible School in July, it was a wonderful experience both for us and the kids:

As July came to an end we enjoyed many pool filled days and day trips to Kings Island. Then came August and I was sad the summer was coming to a close. I started setting up my classroom and we began a project in our backyard.... a fire pit:

Then it was back to school time. Luke had his first day of third grade:


I went back to school and it was a very rough and stressful start to the year for me, so my mother and Tim got together and decided we needed an impromptu getaway in September to Grand Haven for the Labor Day weekend to get me away from it all, boy did that help! (so thankful for my loving husband and wonderful family who always has my best interest at heart). Being able to get away from it all, stick my feet in the sand once again and unwind surrounded by those who I love made the stress melt away, (and those gorgeous sunsets on the pier by the lighthouse didn't hurt either):

September also brought Tim's 34th birthday, we went to Montgomery Inn to celebrate. The start of cheerleading season for Lauren and fall soccer for both Luke AND Lauren, which meant a lot of running around and squeezing in homework for the kids when we could.
October came and that meant Lauren was 1 year older. She turned 6 years old surrounded by friends and family at our house (and a juggler and balloon artist too: )

Then we had another much needed getaway planned in October to our favorite place on earth, Disney World in October. You can read THAT trip report here:
We enjoyed dressing up with Mickey for his Halloween bash;

This went down in history as my favorite Disney getaway yet, being able to travel that time of year and experience so many new things was an awesome experience!

November of 2009 brought lots of Christmas shopping, Thanksgiving spent with Tim's family. Girl scouts started up for Lauren. Before we knew it December was here.
In December we had our first snow and enjoyed quality family time playing in it together:

Tim took a once in a lifetime guys only trip to Disney for Disapalooza, he had the time of his life hanging out with friends old and new from our Dis boards contacts through my years of trip report writing. He enjoyed Osborne Lights, the Candlelight processional, and riding Toy Story Mania 11 times in a row without getting off at the Disapalooza party and meeting and hanging out with members of the Dis unplugged Podcast crew that we listen to weekly- he had the time of his life.
In late December I took Lauren to the Nutcracker and Luke to his first theatrical performance at the Playhouse in the Park, he LOVED the Christmas Carol.
Right in time for Christmas on December 21st my nephew Ben was born:

We had a wonderful Candlelight Service on December 23rd at church:

We enjoyed Christmas Eve with Tim's family:

Christmas morning here with our family:
Then mom and dad came over to share in the celebration:

We then moved the celebration to my brother's house to celebrate with my brother, his wife and baby Ben.

We wrapped up 2009 by having our new Disney friends come and stay with us for 5 days. We made wonderful memories with their family,laughed more times than I can count, showed them Cincinnati and rang in the New Year together.

What a WONDERFUL blessed year 2009 was for our family. I hope that you take this time to reflect upon all of your blessings in 2009. HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! I pray that each of us have a wonderful, healthy, memory filled 2010!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas Blessings

The kids were full of anticipation Christmas morning to see if Santa had come in the middle of the night- here they are waiting (not so ) patiently on the stairs:

He came, Santa came and ate the cookies!

We sang Happy Birthday to Jesus to keep in mind that he is the true reason for the season of giving and the first Christmas gift, then the gifts were opened one by one. I just love the look of pure joy and excitement in my children's eyes as the presents they have so desired are slowly revealed:

We had a wonderful Christmas as a family this year, we were truly blessed by all of the gifts we were able to give and receive this year. Then we moved the celebration over to my brothers house to celebrate with them and spend time with my new nephew, what a Christmas blessing. There's nothing like snuggling with a newborn on Christmas:

I think Ben enjoyed his first Christmas surrounded by those who love him and the twinkling lights of the Christmas tree:

I hope that each of you had a very Merry Christmas, see you in 2010!


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