A Denver Family's Adventure Through The Ups And Downs of Life

Thursday, December 31, 2009

My Life During the 2000's

My life has COMPLETELY changed since the start of 2000. Here are just a few highlights of my life during the first decade of the new millennium:

2000: I rang in the new millennium with my boyfriend who was (let's just say) not too nice to me. I was living in Columbus, OH. I had finished college, but didn't have any real direction. I had taken a vacation to CO the year before and decided that it was where I was going to move. I dumped my boyfriend, moved back into my parent's house and started saving money. Surprisingly, there weren't too many fights with my parents and they were very supportive.

2001: In early April I took the plunge and packed up all my stuff for the cross-country move. My BFF Jody and her daughter Becca drove my car while I drove the moving truck for our 3 day adventure. My parents were very worried that I wouldn't be able to make it in a new place so far away from my childhood home, but they wished me well. On April 11th, I moved into an apartment to start my new life.
On September 7, 2001, I accepted my first FT marketing position and was scheduled to start work on September 17, 2001. My gamble was going to pay off.
September 11, 2001- There isn't more to say about that.
34 Calendar days after beginning my new position, I was laid off. I barely made it through 2001 by working various temp jobs.

2002: Still in CO, temp jobs sustained me until I found another FT marketing position with a HR consulting firm. What a great job-- 4 weeks paid vacation, small office, great responsibilities. I dated a few people, but it was never very serious. I took a solo vacation to Grand Teton NP and Yellowstone. I smelled like sulphur for 3 weeks, but it was totally worth it. I had some great friends and dated some people, but nothing too serious.

2003: I was able to take another solo vacation; and this time I drove to SLC, Portland, OR and Seattle, WA. What a great vacation. My HR consulting job was steady and things were looking great. Halfway through the year, I was laid off due to economic conditions in the industry. It happens. I have no hard feelings (anymore). Of course I was pissed initially. I took a chance and went on Match.com to look for a boyfriend. I had a few dates and ended up being matched with Brian. I winked at him and he winked back. We started talking online then on the telephone. We set up our first formal date on December 12, 2003.

2004: After doing some temp work, I was able to secure a position with Ouray Sportswear, a screen print and embroidery company. This was my most relaxed job. I was allowed to set my own hours (6am-3:30pm) and go to work in jeans every day. My relationship with Brian was going along so well that we decided to move in together.

2005: Yuck another lay off. The sportswear company was reorganizing their customer service department and absorbed my job. I received a great severance package and started looking for another job. Temp positions save me again. I was able to have "steady" temp work through the remained of the year.
My personal life was going wonderfully. Brian and I became engaged on July 15th and began planning a Summer 2006 wedding.

2006: While my personal life was souring (minus my grandfather passing away), my professional life was going okay, but not wonderfully. I started another new position with a natural foods company. The position was below my intellectual ability, but it was a job and I was thankful for it. By the start of 2006, plans were already mostly solidified for our July 29th wedding. What a beautiful occasion. We were married on the patio at Willow Ridge Manor in Morrison overlooking the foothills. Everything turned out so well. We honeymooned in Paris, Venice and Rome-- the trip of a lifetime. The rest of the year sailed by like I was on a cloud.

2007: Brian and I decided that were were ready to start a family so the first thing that we needed to do was to quit smoking. I was able to do that in 10 days with Chantix. I did not have any of the bad side effects that are described in the commercials. The foods company reorganized our department and I became a data entry person; completely below my education and ability so I began looking for another job. I found it in March and now I'm a Marketing Coordinator with my own office and a door (my first). To make sure that I didn't restart smoking, I wanted to start an exercise program. I was able to complete 2 half marathons in 2007 (the original one that I was training for- Denver Half Marathon for Teams in Training and the Georgetown-Idaho Springs Half Marathon). What an amazing accomplishment.

2008: After 11 months, we found out we were pregnant on our 2nd wedding anniversary, July 29th. I did not experience any morning sickness or cravings. My pregnancy was pretty textbook. We decided that we were going to give birth at a birthing center instead of a hospital, so we began visiting the Mountain Midwifery Center and their midwives. On November 24th we found out that we were having a boy.

2009: The only thing that I didn't like about being pregnant was not being able to be comfortable sleeping. Most of the time I ended up sleeping on our chaise lounge in the loft. My due date was April Fool's Day. I thought that it would be cool to have Sam born on his due date. What a great story. Sam didn't see it that way.
On Saturday, March 28th at 11:15, I started having real contractions. When they started coming 4 minutes apart we went to the birthing center and Sam was born at 5:36am on Sunday. I gave birth naturally in a birthing tub. I was so proud of myself.
The past 9 months having this magnificent child in our lives has been great. I never knew that I could survive on the least amount of sleep ever.

I stole this last line from my friend Katie, but it reflects my life and hopes for everyone.
It's been a decade of ups and downs, joy and sorrow, laughter and tears. Here's hoping that the next decade is good to us all!

Osh Kosh & Carter's Coupons- Through 01/06/10

Here are the Osh Kosh & Carter's Coupons that are valid through the 6th.
Have a very happy and safe new year.

Carter's Coupon

Osh Kosh Coupon

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Wordless Wednesday- Not Today

I have too many things to mention and pictures to show that Wordless Wednesday will not be available this week.

#1. Yesterday, at exactly 9 months old, I started to feel his first tooth coming through. It's very pointy and sharp. We need to start moving away from purees exclusively.

#2. I took Sam to the doctors today for his 9 month appointment and here are his new statistics. He's such a big boy. Everything is great with him.
21 lbs. 6.5 oz.
29.5" long

#3. More Photos from Christmas-- Everyone know Sam, but here are some of the other people. Nana & Pop Pop (my parents), Aunt Kiki and Uncle Tim (my sister and brother-in-law who are pregnant themselves) and my grandmother (Sam's Great Grandmother).
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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Freezer Clean Up Completed!!!!

I had "Clean Freezers" on my To Do list for over a month. We have our side-by-side freezer in the kitchen and a chest freezer in the basement.

I was hoping to clean it out and throw away the old stuff before Christmas, but that didn't happen. Since it is tough to complete large projects like that during the week when my husband gets home late, I wanted to do it before my parents flew back to GA so that they could watch Sam while I completed this monumental task. I didn't think that there was a so much to throw out as it ended up being.

3.5 kitchen size bags of empty boxes, 4 year old elk meat, expired veggies, expired meat and freezer burned bread were tossed. I wish that I had taken before and after pictures. What a mess. I hate wasting food, but if I didn't clean out the freezers now there would be even more food thrown out within the next few months.

We have a lot of venison that I can use in recipes in the next few months, so if you have any good recipes please let me know. If they are crock pot recipes, even better.


Some Photos from Christmas

These are some of the photos that my sister and her husband, Tim took during their trip out here for Christmas. There will be a ton more, but I haven't gotten them from my parents and my in-laws. I can't wait to see them all and post them for everyone.

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Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas Eve Video

Sam's Uncle Tim recorded a video of him just after we went to Christmas Eve service at the First Baptist Church of Denver. We had just arrived at the restaurant Here you go. It's pretty cute.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

I know that I won't be able to get back online to update this blog until the 28th (at the earliest), so I wanted to take the time now to wish everyone a safe and merry Christmas. I will definitely be posting about 5,000 pictures that my family (myself included) have take of the festivities and of Sam.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Early Christmas Gift

During our most recent photo shoot with Kelsey Bigelow in August, we had her take pictures of Sam in a Broncos onesie. Sam was very talkative that day so one of my favorite photos that was taken is Sam talking to the camera.

I came up with (what I thought) was a great idea. Have this picture put on a t-shirt for Brian for Christmas. Since the Raiders are the arch rivals of the Broncos here is the shirt that I designed and printed.

If you can't read the text it says:
Raider Hater
Established March 29, 2009

I gave it to Brian just before the Broncos-Raiders game on Sunday as an early Christmas present and he loved it. I was hoping that it would give the Broncos good luck, but unfortunately it didn't work.

I'm going to wrap it up for him to open up formally on Friday, but I just wanted to get it out there before all of the holiday photos take over this blog.

Have a safe and Merry Christmas!!!!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Samuel's 2009 Letter to Santa

I wanted to make sure that Samuel got a letter written to Santa, so we put one together and mailed it out this weekend to the North Pole. Here it is.

Dear Santa,

We are writing this letter to you on behalf of our son, Samuel. He is only 8 months old and can’t write yet.

Sam hopes that everything is well at the North Poll. How are the reindeer and elves? Sam tells us that he dreams about you and the reindeer and elves almost every night. He bets that Mrs. Clause has been busy getting your suit ready for the big day.

We wanted you to know how good Sam has been this year. He is right on track with his growth. He is hitting all of his milestones and sleeps through the night (at least to 4am most nights). He is a very happy baby and makes our lives enjoyable every day.

Santa, we know that Sam would want world peace, but he has told us that he wants presents, so we are supposed to let you know that he would like these gifts.

1. Books, so Mommy and Daddy can read to me every day.
2. A Radio Flyer wagon so that I can pull all of my stuffed animals and friends around the neighborhood, once I learn how to walk. I will want to get pulled around too.
3. Toys to play with.

Sam wants us to let you know that Mommy and Daddy will be leaving out cookies for you and carrots for the reindeer, so please don’t forget our house.

Thank you very much Santa.

Brian, Angie and Samuel Wilson

Friday, December 18, 2009

Thank You Sally's Sunbeams Daycare Center

Miss Sally, Miss Jenny and Miss Margaret,

Thank you so much for providing such a warm, safe, educational and fun environment for Sam. We know that he is being well taken care of every day. The time and energy that you are providing to help raise our son has not gone unnoticed.

Thank you for answering all of the 1 million questions that I have asked since we started Sam with you when he was 6 weeks old. As a first-time mom, your real-world knowledge has been priceless. I can read a ton of books, but you see the things that I am concerned about every day and always have suggestions.

I would love to be his full-time caregiver, but since that isn't possible, there isn't any other center that I would want him to be. I can't wait to continue to see him blossom over the years with your help. I will tell all of my friends what a great center this is.

Sally's Sunbeams
4200 S Marguerite Pkwy
Aurora, CO 80013
(303) 693-1073

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Current Christmas Week Schedule and Menu

This is the first year that we are hosting Christmas at our house. Everyone wanted to spend Christmas with us because it will be Sam's first Christmas, so we are going to accommodate them. Our house isn't big enough to have anyone stay over, so our out of town guests will be staying in a local hotel and come over for visiting and meals.

* My parents are going to be arriving on Monday, December 21st in the afternoon and staying through Christmas; leaving on Monday, December 28th.

* My pregnant sister and her husband will be arriving on Thursday, December 24th and staying through Christmas; leaving on Saturday, December 26th.

*Brian's parents live in Denver, so we will see them on Christmas Day, maybe on Thursday as well.

Schedule for Christmas Week
Brian is off work for the entire week, so he and Sam will meet my parents at the airport. My parents visiting with Brian and Sam. Dinner at our house.

My parents visiting with Brian and Sam. Dinner at our house.

My parents visiting with Brian and Sam. Dinner at our house.

My parents visiting with Brian and Sam. My sister and her husband arrive from Philadelphia. I get off work at 3pm. We are planning to go to a 6pm Christmas Eve service at a local First Baptist church since that was the faith of Sam's Dedication (Brian and I talked about it and we want to be consistent with his upbringing). Dinner will probably be after that at a local restaurant. I need to make reservations soon (if reservations are even possible).

Friday (Christmas Day)
Everyone will meet at our house to visit, open up presents and have breakfast. Right now, I'm unsure at what time we are planning to serve Christmas dinner, but I have a few days to figure it out (yea!!).

I think that we have most of our Christmas menu set. Here is what is currently scheduled to be on the menu.

Parmesan Artichoke Dip with Veggies
Cheese & Crackers
Ham (I'm not sure which recipe)
Pressed Herbs and Spices Turkey Breast
Pumpkin-Zucchini Muffin Stuffin'
Smashed Potatoes
Veggies (I'm not sure which recipe)
Dessert (I'm not sure which kinds will be available yet)

Right now I'm not freaking out about having everyone over, but I know that as we get closer, my nerves will become more and more frazzled. Please bear with me and do what you can to help keep me sane.

Thank you.

Osh Kosh & Carter's Coupons- Through 12/23

Are you done with your holiday shopping for the little ones? If not, here are the Osh Kosh & Carter's Coupons that are valid this weekend through the 23rd. Have fun shopping.

Carter's Coupon

Osh Kosh Coupon

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

What I'm Missing by Working

I have some friends that blog about their children and their activities during the day since they don't work. They know so much about the activities of their children since they see them all day, every day. It makes me sad that I'm missing so much of Sam's developmental milestones since I work.

I told the daycare not to tell us when certain things happen so that Brian and I can experience them and think that it was the first time the activities were performed. I do ask them if he is close to doing something so that we can look for it, but we only have 2-3 hours per day (during the week) and all day on Saturdays and Sundays to be with him.

I'm definitely jealous of my mom that she was able to stay home with me and my sister and witness all of our milestones. I would love to be able to work at home or be a full-time stay-at-home mom, but it just isn't in the cards right now.

When I get home with Sam from daycare, I relish every second that he is with me, but I can't get over the fact that I'm missing things that I really don't want to miss. ::sniff sniff::

Of course, when I do pick Sam up from daycare he has the biggest smile on his face when he sees me. I know that he is well taken care of and has had fun all day, but I still want to be with him.

Does anyone want to pay off our mortgage so that I can stay home and raise my child??

Anyone?? Anyone? Bueller??

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Osh Kosh & Carter's Coupons- Through 12/16

Are you done with your holiday shopping for the little ones? If not, here are the Osh Kosh & Carter's Coupons that are valid this weekend through the 16th. Have fun shopping.

Carter's Coupon

Osh Kosh Coupon

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Messange from Santa

I told Santa about Sam and he wanted to record a video for him. What a great idea for all children, no matter what their age. I just hope that this video is still available in a couple of years so that he can watch it.

Sam's Message from Santa

Wordless Wednesday- Here is one of the photos that I took for our Christmas Cards


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Our Photographer- Pricing Increase

As many of you know, I love the woman that has been taking quarterly pictures of DS and did our maternity photos.

If you book your session by December 31, 2009, you will still receive the 2 hour photo shoot and disk of photos. When the clock strikes midnight on the new year, the rules change.

Please let her know that I referred you. She has a great referral program.

Kelsey Bigelow

Monday, December 7, 2009

Adventures With Santa & Misc.

We took Sam to Southlands Mall on Saturday for his first photo with Santa. I had a general description of where in the mall that the photos were, but Southlands is an outdoor mall, so we needed to park as close as we could since it was in the 30s. I was expecting a long line, so we had Sam bundled up awaiting the crowd.

We went right into the shop and there were only 2 families in front of us. We had a little bit of time to take off Sam's layers and put on the sweater vest that our wedding planner bought him. Very cute!!

The Santa that they had had a real beard and when we put Sam on his lap, he was memorized. It took a lot of coaxing to get Sam to turn toward the camera, but we were finally able to get him turned around. I'm surprised that Sam didn't try to grab it and put it in his mouth.

Some of the other kids that were getting their pictures before Sam's turn were crying and it was tough for the photographer to get a good picture. Sam is such a good boy!! Once we got him turned around, he did so well. The photo is now on our mantle in a very special frame that we will be able to keep and update for each subsequent year. I will take a picture of the photo and frame and post it ASAP.

I guess he doesn't take after me. My mom says that I cried every year and they finally stopped taking me since I hated it.

To Do List
Here is my completed list for this past weekend. I completed only 33% of what I had hoped. I was able to sent out our Christmas cards and Brian hung up our outside lights(and that stuff wasn't on the list). I'm satisfied.

2. Pictures with Santa
5. Buy baby proofing items
6. Send photo and frame to Pop Pop
14. More holiday shopping
15. Make more food for Sam

Christmas Shopping
I have purchased at least one thing for the following people for Christmas so far. I'm very proud of my progress since I rarely leave the house after I pick up Sam from daycare. I love internet shopping.

My husband
My parents
My son (actually his list is just about completed)
My sister
My in-laws
Cousin picked in drawing

Friday, December 4, 2009

Wilson "To Do" List

So far, here is the list for this weekend. I don't know how much will get done (or even started), but we will do the best that we can.

1. Take pictures of Sam in pot on the stove
2. Pictures with Santa
3. Reorganize pantry (possible to put bottles into)
4. Clean more of the basement
5. Buy baby proofing items
6. Send photo and frame to Pop Pop
7. Install mud room shelves and put chemicals on top shelf
8. Find bins of Sam's stuff downstairs
9. Find gold to sell
10. Organize freezers
11. Xmas tree and decorations
12. Start working on Sam's letter to Santa
13. Clean Sam's bathtub toys
14. More holiday shopping
15. Make more food for Sam

Pictures from Thansgiving and Sam's First Swing Ride

We spent thanksgiving with Brian's dad's side of the family in Platteville. There were 25 adults and 7 kids. Sam was the 2nd youngest.


The weather on Black Friday was so nice that Brian's mom came over and we took Sam for a walk in the stroller and passed by a small park that had swings.


Thanks for taking all of these pictures Andrea.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Osh Kosh & Carter's Coupons- Through 12/9

Here are the Osh Kosh & Carter's Coupons that are valid this weekend. Have fun shopping.

Carter's Coupon

Osh Kosh Coupon