2009 - Year in review

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Wow, 2009 just flew by! As always, our year was full of family, friends, travel and fun.
We started the year down south in Houston, TX. We visited Kim’s friend Mary Linda. On the way down we stopped at the Oklahoma City National Memorial which honors all those who died in the 1991 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah federal building. It was very sad, especially seeing the teddy bears on chairs of two children we assumed were brothers. We saw all the Houston attractions including the zoo, aquarium and NASA space center. We also went to the Texas Bowl and decided to root for Western Michigan since the Rice campus was 2 blocks away. As always our team lost.
In May we traveled to London. We ventured into the English countryside and saw Leeds Castle, Canterbury and the white cliffs of Dover. We attended the play “Madame de Sade” which starred Judi Dench. Afterwards, Kim got to meet her and even had a picture taken with her.
In June, Kim and her mom traveled to the Carolinas. We visited charming Charleston, SC, historic Wilmington, NC and the beaches of Myrtle Beach, SC. We had a great time, but got a little too much sun!
Many of our summer travels included the Great Lakes and/or Twins baseball. Eric mentioned he wanted to see the St. Louis Arch. We picked a random weekend in June and shockingly the St. Louis Cardinals were playing the Twins! We joined Kim’s sister, Nancy and her kids in St. Louis for a weekend of Twins baseball and the Arch and best of all the Twins won!
For the 4th of July weekend we took Eric’s sister DJ and kids to Lake Superior’s Apostle Islands near Bayfield, WI. We went on a kayaking tour of the various shipwrecks around the islands. It was very interesting and fun. We all made it back safely to shore with no capsizing issues.
A couple weeks later, we traveled up Minnesota’s North Shore of Lake Superior with Kim’s family. We stopped at all the state parks along the way, hiking around the cliffs of Lake Superior and viewing the many larger waterfalls, finishing with the largest Minnesota waterfall, High Falls, on the Canadian border.
For our sixth anniversary we spent the weekend in beautiful Door County, WI (the peninsula). We saw lighthouses, took a splash in Lake Michigan and kayaked around the coastal caves.
To finish our summer travels we took a circle tour road trip around all the Great Lakes. We made stops in Cleveland and Toronto for Twins games. We also saw Niagara Falls, Syracuse University and Boldt Castle. After 7 days, 2 Twins games and 2,858 miles, we drove around and touched all the Great Lakes.
Between our travels, Eric works for Centerpoint Energy and referees soccer. Kim works for Ameriprise Financial, plays trombone in the Eden Prairie Community Band and plays volleyball two nights a week.
Swirl, our “fearless” cat, just turned 6 years old. We had a scare in April when it was discovered he has a heart murmur. We had a kitty MRI done and they say he is fine for now. Kim’s nephew, Dylan, now insists on calling him the “little heart patient.” Swirl even made his own road trip in 2009 with a trip to Omaha for Thanksgiving weekend. We visited with Eric’s sister, Bonnie, and brother, Chris, and their families. It was quite the adventure for our poor kitty and he behaved surprisingly well.
We just welcomed our fourth Godchild, Evelyn Rose Stayer, in November and have one more on the way in late December around Kim’s Birthday! J
Hope you had a great 2009 and best wishes for 2010.
Love, Kim, Eric and Swirl 

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