Once again, a full year has come and just about gone. And I am left sitting here wondering what happened to it? 2012 has been a year of monumental changes in my family’s life. After a move north from Utah to Idaho, our little family has experienced everything from adventure to trauma, fears to excitement, milestones to miracles, and sorrow to elation. Pictures depict this range of emotions much better than words can ever describe:
Of course, being up north, we’ve had our share of cold weather, snow, and sub-zero temperatures. However, we’ve made the most of it whether snow machining, building snowmen, sledding, or doing 360’s on a tube behind the 4-wheeler.
Living in a new area, my husband took it on him to show our little family around on multiple adventures including hiking, camping, sightseeing, 4-wheeling, and picking flowers in a meadow. Where we live, we’re surrounded by some beautiful scenery and wildlife. Rule 1 while we’re driving? “Always look for game”.
Aside from being surrounded by mountains, lakes, and rivers, we are also not too far from a different type of landscape – the St. Anthony sand dunes. Sure, the beach is relaxing, but riding on some sand dunes or simply walking barefoot in this fine sand is exhilarating.
And of course, we’ve made plenty of time for the fishing! Whether it be standing on a frozen lake, pulling fish from a 10 inch hole or casting from inside a boat in the warmth of the sun, we’ve caught some lunkers! And these girls are becoming more and more versatile in their outdoors capabilities.
We’ve learned a few skills including riding a bike without training wheels (but still keeping it feminine with a skirt):
and learning how to ride a horse for the first time:
Along with other learned skills, the girls learned to take advantage of the 15,000 university students living in our midst. Before school, on the cold mornings, these two girls sat near the crosswalk intersections selling cups of hot cocoa to the students walking to their 7:45am classes! They were able to also learn the value of money, hard work, success, and sometimes rejection.
But life doesn’t come without its pain and grief. C8 learned that the hard way (and so did her mom!) when she spent the beginning of the 4th of July weekend in the ER with a broken collarbone. Because of that, she had to sport a blue over-the-shoulder sling for the rest of the summer.
However, being a little girl of a positive disposition and an ingenious mind, she soon turned lemons into lemonade when we noticed how she was using her sling at the local parade.
The immense grief our entire family had to experience this year was one that no family, nor parent, should ever have to live through. Many tears were shed as we said good-bye to our new cousin/nephew once he was called back to heaven with our Heavenly Father. Such a perfect soul whose smile brought great joy to his parents and siblings, Grady slipped away quietly one morning and left everyone behind devastated. He is missed every day.
Yet, amid heartache, our family grows closer together and are grateful to be an eternal unit. We rejoice in our growth and achievements.
And as we look forward to a new year of 2013, we are already aware it’s going to be another whirlwind of changes:
Happy New Year from my family to yours! May it be everything you’ve planned, hoped, and dreamed it to be!