We’re Back! Looking Ahead (TRAVEL!)

It has officially been over a month since my last post. Considering this blog was supposed to be updated weekly, that’s no good!

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The reason for the absence was simply the holidays. The fall semester was over “all A’s, phew”, the kids were on their winter break, and work has been insanely busy. So I’m not going to really recap on the past 4 weeks, except for one moment which will stick with me forever. Instead, I’m going to be looking ahead at what’s to come this year and beyond.

The only moment that I truly want to share is about my family, church, and feeling for the first time like God was working through me. As a reminder, 2016 is the year my family found our faith. We have been going to church now for about 4 months and it has been an amazing experience. So we were of course really looking forward to the Christmas service our church had to offer. I wanted to share this with my mom so we invited her to come with. This was about a month before the actual service. Christmas Eve comes around and the group had grown from the 5 of us, plus my mom and dad #2, to a huge group. My baby brother came home from the Marines for a week, my sister and her family (7), my dad, uncle, another brother and his girlfriend.

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So we were sitting in service during the candlelight portion of the evening and my wife looks over at me and says “they are all here because of you.” And I got emotional and felt so blessed to have been able to share such a remarkable moment with those I love. So many of them!

So now that 2016 is officially behind us, it’s time to start looking ahead. For starters, the spring semester has begun (my final Calculus class and Financial Management). I am finally into the core of my degree program and the next 2.5 years are going to fly by. All the kids are back in school as well. Benjamin was a little hesitant to go back after such a long break, but he’s good now.

Last year I participated in my first Spartan race and became obsessed. It literally was the hardest thing I have ever done in my life so far, and I definitely was one of the last people to finish, but I did it and I vowed to continue pushing myself and do better. The next race is in June and the training is kicking off. I will post another blog specifically about the race in the near future (maybe the next one!) with pictures and an overview of my experience (or should I say struggle!).

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We have a lot planned these next 3 years and I definitely need to be in much better shape to keep up with it all. Dad #2 and I go to the gym together which I really appreciate because he pushes me where I wouldn’t push myself. I give up too easily when it comes to exercise, and he doesn’t let me do that.

2017 is A and I’s 10-year wedding anniversary (yay!). We never had a honeymoon, never gone on any trips together, or really had much time alone other than evenings when my mom watches the kids. So this year we decided 10 years is worth celebrating. We are biting the bullet and going forward with one of our dream trips to Ireland! This was originally supposed to be planned for 2020 with the kids, but we decided to move it up for ourselves. It’s going to be such an amazing experience. I will be sure to take lots of pictures and blog about it.

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We have officially made all of our plans for the huge Disney World trip next fall. Hotel is picked, dining plans and restaurants are decided on, dates are marked and approved. Including our 5 there are about 11 (potentially 12 if my dad decides to share this once-in-a-lifetime experience with us) going. We are booking the trip in full in October and will have a looooong year of waiting to go! The kids are already getting so antsy. The wife and I trying to make this an amazing memory for our kids as it is likely the only time we will go while they are children (we have so many other trips planned!), so we are trying to figure out all the best options for them, as well as ourselves (couples massages are definitely on the schedule!). I can NOT wait for this trip!

walt disney world - magic kingdom castle fireworks

A little bit further out in 2019 is my big Yellowstone hiking trip. One week backpacking through Yellowstone with nothing but what we have in our packs. I’m a little apprehensive about being out in bear country, but we’ll manage. As of now I only have a confirmed yes from my dad, but others may decide to join. It’s still 2.5 years away.

Farther out is Hawaii, Italy, Machu Picchu, New Zealand and so on.

As you can tell, we have made a decision to live our lives while we are young. Give our children unforgettable memories. Experience the world and get out of the local bubble. The world is massive and it is begging to be explored (or I’m just begging to explore it). There are so many things I want to do in life, and I’m never going to do them if we keep playing the “what-if” game. Life your life! Tomorrow is not guaranteed!

So on top of all this planning for the family vacations, A has business trips planned to California this year and a potential business cruise next year. Talk about getting out there. To go from no real vacations in the past to so many big ones scheduled now is mind-boggling.

I .. can’t .. wait!

And between all these trips are the usual school (graduating December 2019), girls cheerleading and robotics, Benjamin starting baseball this year, A continuing on her path.

We will also be getting back into the kitchen more than ever this year and I will FINALLY be documenting it. I’ve promised in the past, but I always forget. The fast food and restaurants are out (except for date nights – although fast food is permanent). Almost everything will now be homemade, from scratch, with real, fresh ingredients. We have a big goal to hit, hosting Thanksgiving this year with nearly everything being homemade, or locally produced.

So as you can see there’s a lot going on in our lives right now. We are on a path in life that I never dreamed we would be on. I’m blessed and I’m excited to be able share them all with you.

K~

 

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