Here’s the Christmas letter I had planned to write before December decided to go into turbo mode and nearly speed right by me:)
Merry (belated) Christmas! I hope this letter (well, in this case, blog post) finds you well, and that you got to spend the holidays with those you love (oh, and if you’re over twenty-one, sipping on a nice glass of wine…if you’re into that sorta thing:)
2013 was good to the Dietz family. Although I found that I blogged very little, our days were quite busy. Fenix is in the 6th grade now. He has four months of middle school behind him, and he loves it! He has some great teachers this year and a wonderful group of friends, who he spends many a weekend with and shares an abundance of text messages with. He played soccer once again this past Fall. Our team didn’t fare too well in terms of games won, but they definitely had fun. Fenix met one of his closest friends, Logan, through soccer, and then they both found themselves at the same middle school this year. He also has one of his closest friends right down the street from us, so we see a lot of them. Lucky for us, Fenix has great taste in friends, and so we enjoy bearing witness to their 6th grade wit and creativity. They make Ken and I laugh almost as much as they laugh themselves. We are also really grateful for how well they all treat Grace when they are over.
Speaking of Grace, Grace continues to grow despite our many protests. She is two and a half now and her attitude shows it. We call her the “Sour Patch Kid” because one minute she is sour and all attitude and the next she is sweet and doling out the hugs and kisses. Her brother (who she still calls Ba-ba even though she can now say Fenix) is still her best friend, along with my niece Brooke. She started going to a pre-school/daycare this year. Her first two years were spent with a family friend, who we are eternally grateful to, but this year we decided to get her into a pre-school program of some form and move her a bit closer to home. I was very much the panicky mom when she first started, but she LOVES it! She has made lots of friends and she is learning so much. Most of her colors are mastered as well as her basic shapes. She has a few numbers and letters down, but that’s an area we are still working on. She is quite the performer. She loves to dance and sing. (She even won tickets to So You Think You Can Dance for Ken and I with her killer dance moves!) She loves Minnie Mouse, princesses, and the Ninja Turtles equally. In addition, she likes to run around the house pretending she’s a ninja (which her daddy could not be more happy about) and she also enjoys curling up on the couch with her mom to watch movies. Santa brought her The Little Mermaid, which I’m hoping will be a favorite. I’ve watched enough Ninja Turtles to last me a lifetime, so I’m trying to mix it up:)
We have two beautiful, healthy, happy, loving kids. We are beyond blessed. I am excited to see what this next year brings for the two of them and how much they will continue to grow and change.
Ken and I are both doing well and keeping busy. Ken is still with the pharmacy as a tech. He moved stores this year and he has really found a store and a group of co-workers that are a great fit for him. His schedule used to jump around quite a bit, but at his new store they have a set schedule and weekends off! This has been great for us as a family, and it also allowed Ken to coach Fenix’s soccer team again. Ken loves to coach. He had a good group of kids this year and a challenging group, but he loved every minute of it…well, almost every minute of it, and he was sad to see the season end. Spring season is right around the corner though, so he doesn’t have to wait too long, and in the meantime, I am enjoying having home for supper more. (Did I mention, I also am enjoying him cooking supper more? That has been a huge plus to the off-season.)
As for me, I am still teaching middle school. One of the members from our literacy team left this year (a fact which my fellow literacy teacher and I still mourn), and so I moved up to eighth grade from seventh. I have the same group of kids I had last year, and I’m really enjoying them. They are a good group to have twice:) In addition to teaching, I, in some fit or craziness, decided it was time to go back for my master’s degree in literacy. I only took two classes this semester and they kicked my tush! Seriously! I have never been so busy between teaching, going to school/working on school work, being a wife, and being a mom. It was a lot. I was happy to see the end of the semester come. I’m not sure when I’ll be done. We’ll be taking things as they come and nickel and diming our way through. So, sometime in the future, I’ll be done with a master’s degree under my belt.
We’ve spent the majority of our year close to home. We managed a trip to McCall for the Winter Festival last January, quite a few local camping trips, and then one camping trip to Utah, where we met up with Ken’s family. We spent a few days on the lake and by the camp fire and we really enjoyed the time we got with Ken’s side of our family. We saw both his dad and sister again this Thanksgiving and hopefully, finances willing, we will make a trip back to the Nebraska/Colorado area this summer. That’s the plan anyway. We always enjoy the time we get with them and both Fenix and Grace love the time they get with their grandpa and aunts and uncles. In addition to Ken’s dad and sister visiting over Thanksgiving, Ken’s mom and step-dad came to visit in September, where they got to watch one of Fenix’s soccer game and we got to take them to tour some of our own version of wine country. It’s been a great year for family time.
In short, this letter sums up our year. I’m hoping to maybe post about Christmas and post some photos of our year on here as well, but all in good time:) I am finding that I am not the best blogger. I hope you had a beautiful Christmas. I also hope that 2013 brought with it many happy memories for you. Ken, I, and the kids are really grateful for all of you who are in our lives. We are so very grateful for our friendships and our family and we hope the new year brings great things for each of you!