Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Happy Holidays 2011 - Hanson Style

Happy Holidays from all of us to all of you!

For those of you that know us well, this means that it is time for our annual holiday slideshow.

Arik and I started this tradition three years ago, so the ability to look back at the kids is getting pretty funny. We sat down as a family tonight and watched all of the old ones before turning our attention to 2011. We laughed so hard! It is amazing to watch how much they change year over year.

Of course, 2011 was no different. Matthew graduated from kindergarten in June, and started 1st grade this fall. His teacher is wonderful and he is having a fantastic year. He likes to play t-ball and soccer, and has really turned into a fish in the pool. We just celebrated his 7th birthday in December. As you will soon see, Matthew's biggest change this year had to do with his mouth. He lost a lot of teeth! The poor tooth fairy almost went broke keeping up with him!

Like her big brother, Amy has also turned into quite the swimmer. Apparently our membership at the pool last summer was worth every penny! She also tried out gymnastics and can't wait to get into dance. She turned four in August, and is well into her pre-K year at her daycare. If you can believe it, she will be going to school next fall!

Arik's business is still going strong. He puts in a lot of hours, but it has certainly paid off!

Some of our other annual highlights include my trip to Puerto Rico in March, a family vacation to San Diego in August, and another little family getaway to Lutsen in October.

We want to sincerely wish you all a safe and happy holiday season.

Now go and enjoy our 2 minutes and 39 seconds of fun!

Matthew turns 7!!

I can't believe it - Matthew is seven! Wow! As we looked back at pictures of this year, he has grown and changed so much. He continues to be an incredibly smart and creative little boy. He is doing so well in first grade, and we are so proud of him.

We had two birthday parties in one day for him this year! We had our family over in the morning for a birthday brunch, and then hosted six little boys at Grand Slam for an afternoon of mini golf, laser tag, arcade games, and birthday treats.

It was such a fun day. Happy 7th Birthday Matthew! We love you!

Thanksgiving 2011

Thanksgiving is the perfect time to once again reflect back on the many many things we are thankful for in our lives. Obviously, we are thankful for our two beautiful children and our good health. We are also forever thankful for having almost all of our family living within 20 miles of our home. Our children get to spend so much time with their grandparents, aunts and uncles. Plus, this year we have another family member to be thankful for - a new cousin!

We are thankful for the newest addition to our family - baby Bruno! Rocco and Meg welcomed a beautiful baby boy at the end of August. He is such a pumpkin, and the kids just adore him.

We are thankful in a rather tough economy to still be gainfully employed and living in a home that we own.

We are thankful for food on our table, and opportunities to get out and do the things we love to do.

Sometimes it is the basics that we forget to be thankful for - not this year. We are thankful for everything.

Happy Thanksgiving!

First Snow!

It hasn't been a very snowy winter this year. The kids have been dying for some snow so they could head out to do some sledding. Because it is coming so late this year, I have a feeling it will still be here May!

Check out some pictures of the kids in our first snowfall!


Check out my little Vikings cheering squad. It is a tough team to support this year, but we have lots of purple pride! Go Vikes!

Halloween 2011

It's Halloween time again! This year we had a Super Girl and a Transformer to take trick-or-treating. Uncle Aaron decided to join us this year, so it was extra fun! After a few blocks, we had all the candy we could carry (or so we insisted), so we headed home to enjoy it.

Check out our tiny carved pumpkins in the second picture.

Happy Halloween!


This year, our annual trek up north took us further than we usually go. We always try to get the whole family together for a long weekend in Two Harbors, MN at our favorite resort - Larsmont. This year, not everyone could make it, so we gathered up those that could and headed to Lutsen!

It was awesome!

The weather was perfect. We got to spend lots of time hanging out together, eating, swimming and playing games. We also got to spend an entire day in Grand Marais. What a great little town! We spent most of our time hiking around the rocks on Lake Superior. The kids had a blast!

It is always fun to just get away and relax for a few days. We got to spend lots of time with Grandma Jane, Rocco, Meg and baby Bruno. We also got to see Tom and Mindy and their boys, Lisa and Bill, Fred, and Teri.

Overall, a fantastic weekend.

Grandma Jane's Retirement

I never thought this day would come, but my Mom is officially retired! She didn't want a party, but she did allow Rocco and I to host a nice dinner in her honor. We held it at W.A. Frost, and included our immediate family and all of her siblings and their spouses.

It was such a fun night! Even thought we didn't officially have one of their party rooms, we did have a separate little room to ourselves. The restaurant owner was kind enough to let us do a custom menu and make the evening extra special. My Mom was a wonderful nurse for many years, and she deserved it! Congratulations Mom! We love you!