Hiking is my absolute favorite activity we do as a family. It's good for our souls and good for our family. So it's no wonder that these pictures are a good representation of our year.
We started hiking early in the year. This picture was taken in January! Snow on the ground makes for a great hike.
We discovered some amazing views on our hikes this year. This view can hardly be seen in the summer. It makes a winter hike completely worth it.
We learned that Lex doesn't like crossing moving water where there may possibly be crawdads.
This was the time that the boys made me stop climbing the tree because they thought I would break it. The whole tree. They thought I would break the tree. I laughed so hard (but did stop climbing - you know - just in case..).
The boys however climbed on whatever they could find.
It took us three days of exploring to find this lookout spot. Totally worth it.
I just love this hiking hobby of ours.
My three favorite men.
And then there were the other outings and adventures we experienced this year.
Like zip-lining for the first time. I was so proud of these two for trying something new and then realizing that they loved it!
Then there was the time the boys went rolling around with their cousins in Ohio.
And went down the giant hillside water slide.
There was the mud run in July that was a perfect mid-summer activity.
We went to the Science Museum where these guys learned how to power a giant ball machine with their leg power.
And went to the state fair where the boys did bumper cars for the first time. How cute are they?
There was loads of bike riding - sometimes in minion costumes.
Extracurricular activities were a big part of our schedule this year.
Eli joined Lex in tball.
And soccer. He was a natural.
Jeremy and I actually coached the boys' soccer team in the spring. We had so much fun and loved the kids on our team.
Eli got a speaking part in the kindergarten Christmas program and only fussed a little bit about getting so dressed up for it.
Lex continued his piano studies.
He earned a trophy for his spring competition accomplishments and also won second place in the state in the first grade division. We were so proud of him!
He was also invited to be the "opening act" for Anthony Hernandez at the Boone County Historical Society concert series this past summer.
And then there was the downtime...
Like on the 4th of July when they refused to just smile for a picture. And now I can't help but smile every time I look at this one.
Lex started reading stories to Eli.
And Eli spent endless hours on the trampoline. Seriously.
When we asked Eli what kind of cake he wanted for his birthday, he said, "trifle," ... and then made it himself. He has grown up so much this year.
First, Jeremy earned his Bachelor's Degree after 20 years of working on it. That's right. We are still getting used to all the extra time he has now that he isn't constantly taking a class here and there to finish.
And also... Jeremy and I celebrated our 20 year wedding anniversary in December. We celebrated with a romantic getaway to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, which I plan to write about soon. What an enchanting little place.
So from our family to yours, we wish you a happy new year!