2023 Year in a Review

Sunday, December 24, 2023

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Here is hoping you had a great 2023.  We had some fun times this year and here are some highlights.

In late February, we visited the Ice Castles with Danielle’s family and Nancy. The weather wasn’t too cold, and the ice castles were amazing. It helped to get us out of the late winter slump.

We attended several Minnesota Twins and Minnesota Loons (soccer) games this year with family and friends. We had some unique experiences including on field access to Twins players’ batting practice and on field access holding the Loons’ banner during the national anthem.

Our godchild, Carmen, celebrated her First Communion in early May. Eric’s niece, Banyan, graduated from high school in the middle of May. We traveled to Omaha for a lovely tea party to celebrate.

Also, in May we drove to Montana to run the Queen Bee Half Marathon. This was state #29. It was brutally hot with wildfires in the vicinity. Eric’s brother Phil joined us for the race. We made a mini vacation out of the trip by stopping at Theodore Roosevelt National Park on the way out and Pompey’s Pillar National Monument and the North Dakota State Capitol on the way back.

For Memorial Day we made a quick trip to Chicago for a baseball doubleheader. We saw the Cubs at Wrigley Field for a day game and the White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field for a night game.

June was a very busy month. It started with Adrian visiting from Brazil. The first couple weeks were a whirlwind with Anna’s graduation activities. She was part of the largest graduation class in Shakopee history with almost 700 kids.  We had a lot of Eric’s family from out-of-town visit during the week leading up to the party. It was fun to do activities with them, including kayaking, hiking, grilling and a Twins Baseball game. We capped the busy week with a nice grad party.

We went to Milwaukee in July for the Annual Race to Cure Sarcoma 5K Run in honor of Dylan. Melissa hosted a nice after party at her house. We also took our great nephew, Blake to his first Brewer’s game.   At the end of July, we had all the family over for a July birthday celebration. Eric, Caio, Anna, Alec and Celeste have late July (or early August) birthdays. Danielle’s family camped in a tent in our back yard, so we had s’mores by the campfire that night. The next day we went to Valleyfair. It was a fun weekend.

We helped Anna move into her dorm at MSU-Mankato in August. It seems like she really enjoys college life. The next day Eric, DJ and I flew out to Vegas and met up with Eric’s sister, Tracie for a long drive to Spring Creek, NV. Eric’s niece, Heather got married in a nice outdoor ceremony. There was a good turnout of Williams family at the event. We stopped at the Valley of the Fire State Park on our way up. It was a very long, desolate drive.

To celebrate our 20th Anniversary, we went on a big trip out west. We started in Pocatello, ID for a half marathon race in state #30. Phil joined us for this race too and he brought his two boys along for the ride. After the race, we started our weeklong trip around Idaho, Nevada, and Utah. We saw Craters of the Moon National Monument, went rafting down the Boise River, toured the Idaho and Utah State Capitols, drove out to the Bonneville Salt Flats, and the highlight of the trip was seeing the night sky at Great Basin National Park. It was an amazing sight.

Caio moved back to his college apartment in September, so Eric and I are getting use to our alone time again. We are really enjoying it! :)  

This fall, Eric’s niece, Allista and her husband Bailey moved to the Twins Cities from Montana! We helped them move some items and we didn’t give them a chance to settle in as we dragged them to a corn maze the first weekend. We also got to meet our newest great niece, Brynne. Abbie had her in October. She is so cute and such little peanut.

Last weekend we went to Denver to see Eric’s niece, Katiana graduate from the Police Academy. It was a nice ceremony. They showed a video of their training and all I can say is OUCH. Pepper spray, tasering and being attacked by K9 dogs. Yikes!

Hope you have a wonderful Holiday season and a great 2024.

Eric, Kim and Company

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