2011 in Review

 - by Brittny

Well, it’s time for our obligatory year-end update on the family. It’s hard to believe we’ve been in our new home for over a year now! Time has flown by for our little family. We are very grateful for blessings and support we received this year from our family and friends. Adjusting to a homeowner’s life took more effort than anticipated, but it’s been a fun experiencing learning more about lighting, electrical wiring, installing water sprinklers, and other handy skills. I get the feeling that there is a never-ending supply of home improvement or maintenance jobs in our future.

Of course, the most exciting thing that happened this year had nothing to do with our house, but with our new baby!  Our sweet Daniel was born on 15 April at 11:00pm.   He weighed in at 7lbs 9oz and was 20 inches long.  Of course, he isn’t the same small baby that you see in that first post – he is 8 months old now! He is an extremely happy and easy-going child.  His smile constantly makes our day, and makes him lots of friends wherever we go.  All of a sudden, he has started moving around a lot! He is crawling very quickly and confidently, has taken to standing on his own for a few seconds at a time, and even crawling up stairs–much to our dismay. It won’t be long before he gets moving on two feet!  He has developed a few “tricks” like clapping, and clicking his tongue.  Our favorite thing he does though is sniffing.  Every so often he will scrunch up his face and start sniffing really hard for a little bit.  It doesn’t seem like he’s really trying to smell anything, and I’ve checked to make sure he didn’t have anything stuck in his nose, he just enjoys sniffing I guess.  His face when he does it though cracks us up.

He started out as an amazing sleeper which was totally new to us.  However in October we did some travelling and he got sick.  Since then we had at least one person in our family sick through the end of November.  Daniel’s sleeping habits haven’t been the same since, but he is still the least complaining child.  I took him in for his 6-month check up at the end of October and told the doctor that he was acting just fine, but that his eyes had been really goopey.  It was weird.  She said it was probably nothing and started to check him out.  When she looked in his ears she said “oh!  He has an ear infection!”  It was just a viral one so nothing that we could really do about it except let it run its course, but I was totally surprised that he had something really wrong with him because he’d been acting so cheerful!  That’s just the way our Danny rolls :)

Sam is a really good big brother to baby Daniel, but of course not without a good bit of jealousy mixed in.  He will be turning three in March, but you would think he was much older by the way he speaks. Whenever you ask him a yes or no question, he rarely responds with a one-word answer. If you ask him, “Sam, are you done eating yet?” he’ll respond, “No, not quite” or “Yes, I am done eating.”  Or the other night Eric asked him, “Sam, would you like some dinner?” and Sam responded with a gasp and then said, “Dada! That would be so great! I do want some dinner!”. He loves reading and asking very precocious questions. For example, Eric took care of Sam one day while Brittny went to a meeting: Sam: “Is Mom home yet?” Eric: “No, not yet.” Sam: “Is she at school or play?” (Referencing a particular line of “Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam”)  Or on the day that he was wearing a shirt that said “USA” he looked down and said, “U-S-A.  Does that spell freedom?”  He has started going to joy school twice a week and loves it.  Even though he’s a little bit young for preschool we’re really glad that he has the opportunity to participate in this activity.  He loves the chance to learn and to play with other kids.  Sam loves letters and reading.  He can spell a few words – his favorites are Sam and Eric.  His favorite show is Super Why, and he even dressed up as Super Why for halloween!

Eric is working harder than ever after being baptized by fire into the Product Management group at Adobe. There is a lot to learn, but he enjoys the way the job challenges him and gives him opportunities to grow. He also is having a lot more opportunities to travel lately visiting clients all over the world from Sydney to New York. Probably the most exciting thing for Eric this year is that he developed an algorithm for Adobe that they’ve started to patent.  He’s pretty excited to have his name on a patent, even if all the rights are assigned to the company and not himself. He always dreamed of inventing things when he was a young child, and now that dream is being realized! His church calling as a building scheduler is relatively simple. All he has to do is answer the phone and maintain an online calendar, but he is still very involved in church with the ward choir and putting on special musical numbers.

Brittny was released a couple months ago from her calling as the Nursery coordinator, which worked out well since Sam had been well adjusted to attending on his own for a little while now. She was then called to be the Secretary in the Primary! So her workload has expanded dramatically, and she still helps out with the Nursery from time to time. All of the exposure to so many little kids has turned our family into a petri dish for the illnesses floating through the ward. We’ve had at least one member of our family sick every week since the beginning of October until a few weeks ago (*knock on wood in hopes of keeping good health*). We’ve started implementing some new healthcare practices (multivitamins for everyone, extra hand washing etc) to hopefully ward off more nursery-borne sicknesses in the future! Brittny also still works from home as a freelance web programmer whenever she gets a moment’s rest from chasing kids. With Eric’s new job position the extra money isn’t really necessary, but it’s nice for Brittny to have the hobby and extra spending money. She appreciates the reminder that she’s good at things other than changing diapers and cleaning dishes (especially since she’s not so good at the dishes part!). But she does a great job caring for our two little ones, the most important job in our family.

So that’s our family update for the year. It’s been very exciting despite the fact we didn’t have to move, and that’s something to be really excited about! Our best wishes go out to you for an excellent 2012!

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