Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 In Review

Can you believe another year has come to an end? Neither can I. For an adult, a year doesn't seem like a very long time and often little changes, but with kids, boy oh boy, does a year make a difference!

From birthday #1 to birthday #2, William grew almost six inches and gained nearly 10 pounds. He is still tall and fairly lean but he is filling out some too. And in the past 12 months he went from saying very few words to saying all of the words all of the time. He is a non-stop talker. He's also running and dancing and climbing everywhere. We figured out that if we read or sang songs during meal time, he ate twice as much food. I guess we'll work on table manners next year!

Chris continues to work for Pulse Entertainment, crossing the Golden Gate bridge for work every day. The projects have been pretty slow at coming, so Chris was able to spend a lot of time working on computer programing for the company; they even gave him a new title of "Web Developer" this year! They had some staff changes recently so he is now the only one in that department making him technically the "Senior Web Developer!" Once the projects start coming, I think he'll need to put his editor hat back on for a while.

Chris also finished his final draft of his novel -- all 146,000 words! We'll let you know when we have a publisher! He also finished creating his first web app--a program that will tell you how much to pay for stock. Check it out: Chris has been so very busy!

I continue to work from home for Jews for Jesus, now just 20 hours a week. I needed to make the change from 24 hours/week when William dropped his afternoon nap at age 22 months. I was so lucky he napped so well for so long! It's still a stretch to get 4 hours in each day, so I hired a sitter for one day a week which allows me face time with my co-workers and a chance to focus a little more. I have been with this organization for five and half years now! How blessed I am to have applied for that 6 week temporary position so long ago!

My photography sessions also doubled this year! I was able to do three newborn sessions and a lot of families. Its exciting, but also pretty time consuming. I typically only shoot on weekends so Chris can be home with William. Check out my website:

In July, we flew to Minnesota, making the rounds to see as much family as we could. We finished the week out with a three-day lake cabin vacation with my family -- all 12 of us! Everyone had a great time fishing, canoeing, swimming, biking and playing games. This was probably one of my favorite family vacations so far. Even with the toddlers running around, it was fun and relaxing.

In September, I took a solo trip to Australia. My best friend has lived there for nearly four years and another couple I love dearly moved there around the same time. Between my Jewish-holiday vacation days, Chris's work being a bit flexible and William not yet 2 (and could fly for free), it seemed like the perfect time to go. And I had a lot of birthday/Christmas money saved up to pay for most of it! (Thanks everyone!) Chris and William spent the week in Texas with his family and I explored Melbourne, Ocean Grove, a bit of the Southern Coast and Sydney. It was really a once-in-a-lifetime trip!

It's no secret that we've been looking for a larger apartment for a while now. Actively looking for nearly a year. Our 600 sq ft. space still works for the most part, but we get quite tired of the street noise (any guesses as to how many fire trucks drove by during nap time on Christmas Day? There were six...blaring their sirens for our entire block and then some). I have such a hard time facing the fact that our rent would have to double to add another bedroom . . . and triple if we add a yard or laundry and parking. And the kitchen might be smaller and there might not even be a bathtub (when you have kids, that kind of matters right?) Anyway, it is taking a long time to find something that works for us.

We had a lot of family visit us this year. Which was awesome! Even my dad made it out here for the second time in five years! Thanks Dad! In March we had my brother, Chris's mom and sister out for William's dedication. Chris's brother, sister-in-law and nephew all made it out here in August too which was so fun. I am so thankful William had some cousin time! Chris's parents made it out here several times this year and Shannon just came out again for Thanksgiving too.

We've had a lot of fun watching William grow and change this year. I can't wait to see just how much he changes in 2016! (We have hopes of potty training and introducing a big-boy bed. Tips anyone?) I love how much we got to see our families this year and pray we can make trips out to see everyone next year. We have much to be grateful for and we try to thank to the Lord often -- for our marriage, our health, our home, family, friends, jobs and our community.

Wishing you a bright and wonderful New Year! Thanks for reading!

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