Like we’ve said before – we’re here for the big adventures and the little moments. The end of the year (and end of the decade!) is always a fun time to reflect on all the fun times, so we thought we’d share our top 5 moments of 2019 in no particular order!
Sara’s top 5
1. Rocky Mountain National Park
I had never seen mountains in real life, so I was SO excited to see them on our trip to Colorado this summer. Driving from Denver to Steamboat Springs gave me some glimpses, but driving / climbing 12,000 feet above sea level and looking out over the vast Rocky Mountain range was incredible and indescribable. Basically this whole trip was a TOP 2019 moment, but if I have to pick just one – it’s this.
2. Watching kids learn to ride bikes without training wheels
Our daughter was the first one to ditch the training wheels one day when she was outside alone with Justin. She’s a determined little girl, but also doesn’t cope well with failure so I didn’t really want to be around to see the meltdowns :). Justin and her took off the training wheels and off she went! I came outside to see her riding around with the BIGGEST smile on her face. Shortly after, her little brother decided he needed to keep up. His ego grew about ten times bigger after he learned (at only 3 years old) that he could ride a bike just like his 6-year old sister and her friends. Totally a sappy mom moment, but it was so much fun watching them ride together and the pure excitement and pride they had.
3. Spring Break trip to Florida
Fort Myers Beach, Florida is a place near and dear to our hearts and we were excited to make the trip for Spring Break in March. Justin went here nearly every year as a kid and it was fun to be able to take our own kids – especially since our daughter’s birthday landed during the trip and we got to celebrate with a beach day and a fun birthday dinner with friends who were also vacationing. Playing with my kids in the ocean is the BEST. The laughter, giggles and shrieks while playing in the waves makes me smile just thinking about it. Plus, a week of dedicated family time with no pressures of normal life ranks high.
4. A special month with our dog, Moose
Justin and I got Moose as a puppy in the summer of 2008 – we soon became attached at the hip and we were lucky to have him by our side for nearly 11 years. The past year or two, Emma and Moose bonded so tightly – he slept with her every night and spent every moment sitting alongside her. In March, we found out he had a massive tumor in his spleen and didn’t have much time left together – so we made the most of our days with lots of off-leash walks, Culver’s cheeseburgers, and snuggles. Our Florida trip fell during this time period so we were hesitant to go but so relieved to know he’d made it through the week that we were gone. Upon coming home and seeing him and Emma reunite when we walked in the door was something special that I’ll never forget. She later told me her favorite part of the Florida trip was “coming home to see Moosey”. We sadly lost him a few weeks later so this will be a moment I’ll always look back on with happy tears.
5. Camping and Boating with Friends
Each summer around the 4th of July, we look forward to spending a long weekend camping and boating and doing all the fun things. This has become sort of an annual tradition – the kids have an absolute blast playing together with their own sense of freedom, staying up late, eating junk food, and spending days on the water. There are usually some pretty hilarious stories that we walk away with and I usually leave these weekends feeling like I’ve never laughed harder. We are so grateful to have such a fun group of friends to grow old with and our kids to grow up with.
Katie’s Top 5:
1. Family Vacation to Arizona
We took a vacation in March to Arizona with my mom, dad, and brother. The boys enjoyed some golfing in the mornings but some of our highlights were visiting and hiking around a cool lake just outside of Scottsdale. One day we road – tripped up to Sedona. Sedona is so beautiful with such an unique landscape. Our daughter, five at the time, was so proud of herself for pushing through and keeping up for the family hike.
2. Trip to Silverthorne, CO
Travis and I took a trip without our kids to Colorado at the end of May. We flew out with my cousin and his family to stay in Denver with my cousin’s wife’s uncle. (Yes, its confusing. I know.). After a fun couple days in Denver we went and stayed with my high school friend at their house in Silverthorne, CO. We did so many fun and exciting things. The definite highlight was the day they took us white water rafting on their raft down the Arkansas River. It was SO fun!
3. Family Vacation in Hayward, WI
My husband’s parents rent a cabin for a week every summer for the entire family to come and get together. This picture was my favorite from the trip. My daughter with her girl cousins floating on a unicorn raft just being so happy. This is a week we look forward to every year to relax and spend time as a family.
4. Summer campfires
This is an accumulation of memories but I loved all the campfires we had this summer. Making s’mores, talking about the day, and listening to music – likely with a beverage in hand. My daughter loved gathering twigs to use for marshmallow roasting (see what I did there? – haha kidding. Kind of. 😉 )
5. Rocky Mountain National Park / Steamboat
It is so hard to pick a favorite day or memory from our week in Colorado. It was truly one of the best weeks. There are so many great memories from that week but I truly did love our day in Rocky Mountain National Park.
Look for our 2020 Adventures post coming soon to see what things we’ve got planned for the new year ahead!