What a wild ride this year has been! My word for the year was grounding. I looked for ways to connect with the community and just s l o w down. In turn, command my monkey brain to quiet for even just a bit. We sought for ways to create traditions and rituals for our family. There were fairs, hikes, discoveries – all full of laughs and memories made.
There was also plenty of heartache and disappointment this year. Career paths unclear for myself while we struggled finding our way as John stayed home with kids by day, only to work at night post bedtimes (sometimes to the wee hours of he morning). Not a lot of sleep for any of us. I returned to the insurance world in a rush over the summer and those new responsibilities are shaking out as time marches onward now and into 2017. Our circle of friends near and far experienced their own trials, tribulations and losses. Somehow our love bound us together and we can still say, yeah, we are pretty-ok.
While these are uncertain times and our political climate is stormy, I remind myself of these bonds, this community and the strength we have within us to keep doing the work of goodness, kindness and love.
While contemplating this year, here’s a small list of 10 items that truly made this year sparkle for Team Apczynski. They are not in any particular and in truth, I could likely come up with another 10+!
Together, they all made this year amazing.
Bodhi’s diagnosed speech delay was resolved through surgery, hard work and perseverance. Here he is post surgery malaise smiling at the camera.
The transformation has been amazing to witness. Now speaking in full sentences, he has acquired his fathers quick sense of humor and belly laugh. He is such a love.
#2. FAMILY ADDITION:
Our hearts grew, Harvey joined our family. After losing Emlee and Ari earlier in 2015, it was time. This little (big guy) stole our hearts. With a temperament of a saint, he enjoys kiddo snuggles the most.
See the heart? This dog is nothing but LOVE. Harvey Halftone Dent Apczynski, 4/20/16
Sweet Harvey hanging with me on the deck!
A boy and his dog.
#3 TRAVEL ADVENTURES:
Anjali and Clover reunion in Denver, Buffalo 2 X, Rhode Island 4 X, Massachusetts 2 X and many long windy Maine drives for the heck of it!
This is what pure love and friendship looks like.
Benny, Bodhi and Clover too busy having fun in Williamsville, NY
When we first moved into the house our sliding glass doors dropped off 8 feet!! This past late Spring our deck was built solving this danger. YAY for lots of outdoor living!
John then worked on our backyard space – let them run wild!!
Frosty view of the double decker deck and backyard!
#5 MAINE FIRSTS:
1st Maine Summer in all its glory. There were fairs, Red’s Eats, Sebago Lake 4th of July and on and on…
My first RED’S EATS Lobster Roll – did not disappoint.
Pemaquid Point Beach, Maine
Sebago Lake, Maine with dear friends July 2nd
Clover began full time school (Kindergarten) and took the bus for the first time!! Mommy might of cried. A LOT.
Bodhi also started preschool 2 full days a week at Children’s School House in Bath, Maine.
More than anything this year we focused on connecting to our community and friends. However, we were very blessed with many visits from new found local friends and from family and friends from away. To name a few (and certainly not all):
Dad, Nancy, Eva, Maureen, Bela, Lorena, Sara, Marilyn, Lorraine, the Dimbleby’s, the Simond’s, the Casey’s, Gail and Adrianna, Dick, Cindy, and, and, and….
Auntie Maureen and Auntie Bela visit for our own special Christmas.
Annual Nutcracker adventure with the D’s.
Nana and Papa Proulx.
Auntie Mimi all the way from California.
Yes, indeed this month wins the GOLD star of the year: Clover’s birthday, our 6th wedding anniversary, crisp leaves, hikes, Halloween and pumpkin everything.
#9 DISCOVERING HYGEE:
Learning to embrace the colder days and cultivate serenity has significantly impacted my ability to metabolize heartache, sadness and the melancholy that comes when the days grow short (and a painful election year). Our family practices hygee through candle lighting, twinkling lights, warm snugly throw blankets, quiet moments and warm tea at night.
#10 HOME AKA SLOWING DOWN AKA SAYING NO
Finishing off the year with a week AT HOME…no travels, no crazy commitments. The biggest thing I’ve worked on this week is this post!! Most of this year I’ve taken long weekends here and there. This is the first full week off ALL YEAR. AMEN.
Team Apczynski has been hanging around a glowing fat tree just being. A small spark of hope and light is anew. Our family may be a little chaotic and crazy, but we are one loving sweet group.
While 2016 has been a different one (sorta a tangled mess), it brought with it many blessings and an abundance of connection. This list could be substantially longer, with more pictures and moments to share. It is a small slice, a sweet review of some of the gorgeous days 2016 gave us: A simultaneous thank you, good bye and hello!
Fat Sparkly Christmas Tree
Team Apczynski sends you love, light and lots of cozy times ahead in 2017!