Yikes....Where did the year go? It seems like just yesterday we were ringing in the new year, looking forward to all the exciting opportunities ahead in 2009. But here we are, December, a little over a week before Christmas and 2 weeks before we launch into 2010. Although we try our best to keep everyone informed about what is happening in Jensen household through our Blog, it is a tough job keeping up with EVERYTHING that is going on. So, this is always a great time to look back at the year that was and reminisce about all that happened....Luckily for us we do have a blog, because I'm not sure we could remember otherwise :-)
Makenzie - One word can sum up little KK....BUSY! This kid is nonstop 8am-8pm, go go go. In February she turned the big 4, and this September started P4 (PreK) at Hope. Kenzie loves to play store...all the time. The minute we get home, it is off to her cash register to pretend ringing up groceries, books, etc. I think we have bought all of our possessions about 10 times. With all that energy, we got her into a few different activities to see what might help channel her excitement. In the Spring she did T-ball at the Y with a couple of her buddies from school and really enjoyed it. After the first game where we had to run around the bases with her, she was sluggin it out like a big leaguer...fielding, well, that's another story. This fall we got her into Soccer, thinking that she can run run run...well, after the 1st game when she got elbowed in the head while in the middle of the pack (you know how 4yr old soccer is) it was tough to get her motivated. However, by the end of the year she was going after it, and mixing it up. The latest activity is a dance class with her friend. We always thought given her energy and flexibility, that gymnastics or dance might be her thing...so far she is really enjoying it and even has her own pair of tap shoes. Watch out Broadway! The thing that Kenzie adores the most is her big sister...Maddie is very patient (at times) with her, but they have a good time. They also tend to get on each other's nerves too, but hey, they wouldn't be sisters if they didn't. Kenzie is growing fast and it is hard to believe that next fall she will be going into Kindergarten.
Maddie - Well, where do we start with Maddie....It seems like she has grown WAY up this year. From her recent feat of getting her ears pierced, to being elected to student council, to playing 3 different sports, to getting a 4.0. In April Maddie turned 8, and this September started 3rd Grade at Hope. She loves school, her friends, her teachers and everything else that comes her way. She always seems to be happy no matter what. In the Spring Maddie started her 2nd year of girls softball and had an awesome time. Their team went all the way and won the "championship" for their age group. This Fall she was again on Team Quicksilver for soccer. Although she loves to score goals (don't we all) she naturally found a spot as a defender. Last year we were gung-ho on being goalie, but a rocket off her hand in the jamboree and she wasn't as much into that. Although their team didn't win a lot of games, they played hard each and every week and they got a ton better as the year went on. Now, Maddie is returning to our old stomping grounds, the Fauntleroy Y, for her first year of Basketball...or as we called it back in the day The YBA! For her birthday we got Maddie a basketball hoop, and between practicing outside and doing some day camps through School she is getting better and really enjoys it. Along the way in all these sports has been one of her closest friends, Mikayla. They love hanging out and having fun....but like I said earlier, Maddie loves all her friends. I think she could do something everyday with someone different.
Steph - The first thing that comes to mind when I think of Steph is dedicated. From the kids, to school, to church, to friends, she has dedicated her time and herself to making things better. She has a special gift to see how to make someones day...either through a phone call, an email, a Facebook post, a card, a special present...or more importantly just being there. This year Steph really took on the hobby of beads. Through a class at a local bead store she has developed an amazing talent to create beaded earrings, necklaces, etc. To the point that she is now getting "orders" from friends and acquaintances. She has always toyed around with the idea of starting her own little craft/specialty store, and I will continue to encourage her to do so. With Kenzie moving into Kindergarten next year the door might open a bit to think more about that. Be on the lookout! With her successful work on the Hope Auction back in Nov 2008, they and another local school have asked her to help coordinate their auctions, so that will occupy a lot of time in the coming months. One of the highlights of the year, was when her new little nephew, Felton, was born and she had the opportunity to go spend some quality time with her sister and family during the first few weeks of his life. Another highlight was her trip back to Nebraska to help her grandma prepare for a move to St. Louis. Although not the most fun, it was a time to be with her Grandma that she loves, and her way to help through her amazing organizational skills.
Mike - Hmmmm...since I wrote Steph's, I'll let Steph write mine...take it away. Mike is certainly the one that keeps us all grounded. With 3 girls, well, actually 4 if you count Josie dog as well, I don't know how he does it. Not only are we 3 girls, but 3 strong willed girls. We thank God everyday that he gave Mike an extra dose of patience. Maybe it isn't just a coincidence that work is requiring a bit more travel for Mike? :) He has been traveling about a week out of every month. His most recent trip took him to the Big Apple and not only the Big Apple but the Big Apple at Christmas. After flying a red-eye, one of his first stops before meetings was at the American Girl Store - with no girls along - to check some items off the Christmas list! Daptiv still keeps life exciting. It has taught us all a lot about change and the importance of adaptability. We are grateful for the 10 years that Mike has been there. He recently took on a new position as VP of Community Development. Mike loves technology and social networking and is eager to develop this new role. Quite often we joke that Mike's "other job" is School Board Chair at Hope - the girl's school. It too has taught us all about change and the importance of adaptability. We know that Mike was put in this role for a reason. Given the work changes and schedule, Mike decided to step away from coaching boys basketball this year but gets out their with the girls and their sports on a regular basis and still enjoys golfing and fishing whenever he can.
Friends, Family and Faith.
The three F's...three very important words that impacted our lives every day in 2009. We have been so very fortunate to surround ourselves with amazing friends. Friends that we laugh with, travel with, hang out with and genuinely enjoy our lives with. Coming back to Hope when Maddie was in P3 honestly changed our lives through the friendships we made. On the Family front, this year Grandma Cook(Mike's Gma) passed away after a short 4 month bought with cancer. Then, just recently, her husband Ray passed away quickly after suffering a brain aneurysm. Although we miss them, we know that they are in a much better place. In August, our family was blessed with a new little life - our nephew Felton. Steph and I have been lucky enough to see him in person, and the girls are counting the days to see him this Christmas. The Lakewood Jensens continue to make their annual summer visit to the NW and we really enjoy it when then come up. Maddie and KK love to hang out with their cousins, and we enjoy getting the whole family together when they visit. We are also extremely fortunate to have our parents in our lives and so close to us in West Seattle. We get together often both in town, as well as at the Channer cabin near Hood Canal. Faith wise, Hope Church and School continues to be a big part of our lives. Between School Board, teaching Sunday School, small groups, etc. Hope has emerged as our "third place" and we are excited about that.
We wish everyone a very merry Christmas and fabulous New Year. We hope that 2010 brings continued blessing to your families.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
After an awesome Thanksgiving, we headed downtown for our annual holiday night. This was the first time we went the Friday after Thanksgiving, and it was crazy....fun crazy, but crazy. We will get pictures up later of all the festivities which included gingerbread houses, the Macy's star, carousel, tree lighting, shopping, etc. The exciting news from the weekend was that Maddie got her ears pierced. We have been asking Maddie for awhile if she wanted to get them pierced, however, like most 3rd graders, she wasn't too excited about it...for some reason, she was a-Ok with it this last weekend, so we went for it. We snapped a before and after picture, as well as a video. Maddie is super excited, and it taking good responsibility for keeping her ears clean in order avoid an infection...she is already planning what earrings she will start wearing in a few months.
And here is the video
And here is the video