Thursday, January 27, 2011

2010 in Review

I'm sorry I've SO neglecting posting here.  2010 was a great year, but it was pretty much the busiest year we've ever had.  We had so many wonderful family happenings -- and of course a few rough spots -- that I can't even begin to summarize it all.  So I made this video at that has most the photos I uploaded to FB last year in about 4 1/2 minutes -- it's mesmerizing!

And then I'm going to paste in our family New Year's letter, since I didn't get it out in time for Christmas and now it's not looking good for January either...

January 1, 2011
Dear Family and Loved Ones,

I know I’m really late with these, but I figure the card does say “Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year,” so if I write the letter today and get it mailed this week I’m good, right?  Just go with me here...

2010 has been such a busy year, full of all sorts of trips and projects and happenings and milestones.  Even though things were a little overwhelming at times, we had lots of fun together as a family!  We went to California to visit Grandma and Grandpa Olive and go to Disneyland with Nana and Bapa, we got to be part of two siblings’ weddings, we went to Washington for  a nice long summer visit, we had a great Big Family Outing at Bear Lake, and of course we had lots of fun here at home, too!  We even put our home up for sale to try to move closer to Dan’s office and all of the family, but that ended up going nowhere and so we’re quite happily staying here in Saratoga Springs.

All about Sam, according to himself:
This year, I learned to ride my bike with no Training wheels, I entered 1st grade.  I am a great artist.  Thats why my picture on the left has a Graffiti background.  I made about 6 great drawings!  I have a great teacher, class, family, and friends.  I LOVE to dance.

And now, a few words from Mom:
Sam is such a great kid to be around, and he is a huge help in our family.  He loves school and says his favorite thing is math.  He is so creative with his artwork and stories, too.  He just gives his all to everything he does, and we are really proud of him.

weet, funny Joshy... what can we say about this wonderful boy?  He makes us laugh every day with the funny and original things he says. He is in his second year of preschool, and also played soccer for the first time in the spring.  He has an incredible imagination and tells us such amazing stories.  He also has a very tender heart and just seems to know when people need comfort. My favorite Joshy moment of the year was at Grandma Hill's burial, Josh went to Grandpa and put his arms around him and just loved him for the longest time.  He is starting to learn to read and write, and he gets so excited to show us all the new things he can do.  He can't wait for kindergarten!

Oh, our little Eliza -- so full of personality!  This year she has grown from a baby to a sweet little toddler with a funny mix of girly-girl and tomboy traits. For instance, she loves to dress up and carry a purse, but it's sure to be full of trains and cars.  She also loves animals, especially ones that roar.  With the help of speech therapy, she's also talking more and more, and she really loves being able to communicate better.

According to Dan:  The year of 2010 has been a full one for Dan. At work he has overseen a project as it has grown from nothing to a little more than that. At the gym he's seen his muscle-tone grow from average to a little more than that. He's helped the lawn grow from ‘unpleasant to walk barefoot on’ to a little better than that. His writing projects have gone from nowhere to no better than that. Thankfully, these are all as well or better than expected! The most important things have all grown marvelously. The kids are healthy, happy, and learning – and that is the greatest joy of all.

According to Tomi Ann:  It has been such a busy year for me -- I was called to be the stake drama specialist and directed two big shows for the stake, helped with two siblings' weddings, was a cub scout leader, worked as a graphic designer, carried out some big home improvement projects to get our house ready to put on the market, all while still trying to give our own three awesome kids the attention they need.  Phew!  It was a lot of fun, but I need a nap! 

We are so grateful for the beautiful life God has given us!  There are certainly struggles and trials big and small, but there is so much happiness as well.  Through the gift of His son Jesus Christ we can overcome any obstacle.  I know that 2010 was a tough one for many of our family and friends, and so we pray that 2011 will bring hope and peace to each of you, wherever you may be. 

With much love,
Dan, Tomi Ann, Sam, Josh, and Eliza Hill

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