Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Last Year

Old Pictures of Jana

Sunday, November 13, 2011


This year has been an interesting year! First we sold the condo. We rented it back for the summer, since our house deal was moving slow. At the end of our rent-back period, the house deal was still stalled (thanks to big banks). So we decided to move onto the Colorado State University campus (family apartments). The apartment wasn't quite ready for us when we needed it, so we put our things in storage and spent a week (5 days) tent camping at Boyd Lake. It seemed crazy at the time, but it was honestly the best week I think our family has ever spent together. We went fishing, biking, and ate enough toasted marshmallows to feed a small village. When our apartment was finally ready, we didn't want to leave the campground!

The family apartments at CSU are dirt cheap ($670 month-to-month including all utilities, cable, and wifi), and the experience was incredible. Almost all of the families living in Aggie Village (where our apartment is) are international graduate students. When we moved in, our neighbors greeted us with homemade potstickers and party invitations. Within the first week Michael had learned how to do some really cool drifting tricks with his BMX bike and how to build a bike ramp. Within the second week, Michael had blown out a bike tire on his BMX bike and built a bike trailer to pull behind his banana seat bike. That was very convenient for me because the bike trailer also doubled as a trash hauler and Michael instantly had a paying job as a trash man (every kid's dream). The residents of Aggie Village get together regularly for things like international feasts, yoga, cooking classes, and holiday celebrations. (Let me tell you there are a lot of holidays to celebrate if you celebrate every holiday from every country!)

Our close friend and neighbor (from the Condos), Jack, passed away in September as a result of a car accident. Still not done processing our grief over that loss. The kids took it especially hard because of their friendship with him and because they are at such tender ages (5 and 8).

Just as we were getting comfortable with campus living, our house deal went through. We are happy to have the house, but very sad to leave our new friends. (I'm going to miss only having to walk 700 ft to get to class!) Luckily we are only moving 1.6 miles away (12 minute bike ride), so getting to class and visiting campus friends should be easy.

The new house is HUMONGOUS! At least it is to us; the big house makes our furniture look tiny. Matt plans to remodel everything (of course). I want a piano! The thing I'm most excited about is being able to sing at the top of my lungs. (That should be fun/torture for Matt and the kids.) I'm also excited that we now have a spot for a Slip-N-Slide! I'm NOT so excited about all the unpacking and remodeling I foresee in the near future.

We are planning a trip to California SOON! We're going to swing through Las Vegas, Los Angelos, and San Diego on our way up to Santa Rosa. We are hoping to spend time in San Francisco and Lower Lake also. Yes, we are driving, so wish me sanity please!

At the Denver Zoo

"Puppy" the goldfish.

Jana the Waterbug (from summertime)

No she's not dead, she's swimming underwater!

We already miss summer, and we are going to miss the pool a lot!