We've had a lot of fun in 2013. Nathan was in the HS Marching Band, Brayden played Volleyball, Ryland competed in gymnastics and Michele and Randy chased the boys around. Here are a few pictures from 2013.
I will never get use to the idea of my kids starting school so early. When Nathan first started kindergarten and I was told that school started 2 weeks before Labor Day my first thought was that of a 3 yr. old "Why"? Since then I have gotten use to it but in our minds summer still doesn't end until after Labor Day. For this reason we decided to enjoy our great summer weather and go to the beach for the holiday. We were joined by about 5 families and we went to Cowels so Randy could teach some of the young women in our group how to surf. We had a fun day!!!
I can't believe that my baby is 8yrs old. Time flies! I guess I should have listened to the old ladies at the grocery store who kept telling me that time would fly by. I of course was half listening to their words of wisdom because my babies were usually screaming or crying at the time that they were sharing this information and all I could think in my mind was "time can't fly fast enough for me right now!!" Ryland has been looking forward to his birthday since October, when Nathan and Brayden celebrate their birthdays. He was so excited to have all the attention,(not like he is ever hurting for attention normally but I guess this is attention with presents so it's different). He celebrated his birthday with a party on Saturday the 27th and on Sunday(his actual birthday)with the family. The phone rang non-stop with birthday wishes from the family. He was so excited to hear from everyone. We love this little boy so much!!!
We have a family tradition that we like to go up to the Santa Cruz mountains and cut down our Christmas tree every year. Our other family tradition is that we wait until the week before Christmas to do it, by then it's pretty slim pickin's! This year we went to the same tree lot that we like to go to and set off to find the needle in the haystack, that one perfect tree! Trees have gone up in price over the years and we have watched the prices grow along with the trees. Now a Douglas Fir is $50.00 and a Noble Fir is $75.00 (we never get the Noble Fir)!
Nathan and I were curious how much they would charge for this one!
The one thing that changed this year, much to Randy's relief, was that Nathan and Brayden are now old enough to cut down the tree and haul it up the hill...so Randy let them!! (Can you see the smile on Randy's face??)
Don't you love Brayden's goofy look. He did this on purpose!
Brayden is practicing posing so he had me take this picture!
It turned out to be a beautiful day and we had a wonderful time!
Ryland got to play the angel Gabriel this year in the Primary's Christmas Program. He was very good and took everything very seriously during the telling of the Christmas story. Afterwards, I think all the attention went to his head and he started performing "Saturday Night Fever" dance routines during the closing song of Silent Night. I was not paying attention to him so it wasn't until later when everyone was coming up to me and describing how entertaining Ryland was dancing on the stage that I realized what had happened. When I confronted him about it he re-enacted it for me. I am now glad that I didn't see him during the closing song. I would have been turning shades of red. We have since had a discussion about what is appropriate behavior during a closing song and what isn't. Despite all the John Travolta moves I think he made a good angel!
We loved this sign when we saw it on the "Big Island" near the volcano. Our nickname for Nathan has been "NeNe" since he was little because Brayden couldn't say Nathan so he would call him "NeNe" and it just stuck! Needless to say, as he has gotten older, he has had moments when he did not want us to call him NeNe...but now he is o.k. with it. When we saw it we knew we had to get a picture with Nathan and this sign. I love his expression (he is upset that you can't feed him)!!!
I must confess I have always loved my name. Growing up, there were a few things about myself that I wish I could change, mostly the "Cude hips", but the idea of changing my name never enter my mind. So, I must thank my parents for choosing my name for me.. even if I had to endure the occational rendition of the Beatle's song "Michele, my belle" by strangers and G.E. employees that I would meet when we lived in Japan. Since I have always loved my name, naming my children was a big deal to me. I know that in our day some celebrities seem to have taken the idea of naming their children to a new level. I don't know if it's their desire to have their child stand out in the world or their love of fruit that cause them to choose odd names... but who knows maybe they stressed over the perfect name as much as I did when we were naming our children and "Apple" is what they came up with!
Now that my children are getting older I look at them and feel like their names fit them well. I can't imagine Nathan going by any other name. I remember when we sent out the birth annoucements for Nathan, we got so many responses asking how we came up with the name Nathan Reese Anderson. They said a name like that sounded so corporate. We thought that was pretty funny since that never crossed our minds.
Brayden, who's name we thought was so unique at the time, has run into several Braydens as he's gotten older. Since we started off giving Nathan my dad's middle name we had to keep the tradition going so we gave Brayden Grandpa Ray's name as his middle name. I think it was a good choice because Brayden Ray Anderson flows very well and is smooth... just like Brayden!
Last, but not least, is Ryland. Most people know the story of my quest to have a Ryland... and the third time is the charm. Randy agreed,(actually I think he figured I'd keep having boys until he agreed to name one of them Ryland!) Ryland has fit his name since the day he received it. The name Ryland is unique... and so is he! I first heard the name Ryland when my former boss introduced us to her son, Ryland, who was in high school. She later went on to explain that his father was of Irish descent and wanted to find a name for his son that would compliment his ancestral home. I thought that sounded good, my family's ancestors had also come from Ireland so I thought maybe some day, if I had a boy, I could also name him this beautiful Irish name. When I finally looked it up, I found out that it was Old English and that it means "land where they grow rye", so much for the romantic idea of the whole thing...In the end I realized that no matter what it meant I still loved it...as I love all my boy's names!!!