Merry Christmas 2022


{This isn't really a blog post -- it's the Christmas letter we sent out to friends and family, because I think of our readers as family please take it in the spirit it is written}:

Say it with me.  One. Last. Kid! {clap} One. Last. Kid! {clap} One. Last. Kid! {Jazz hands}  Yes, I’m typing this as child #2 exits our sanctuary post-Thanksgiving.  Bye dear, enjoy adulting elsewhere!!!!

Those of you with us for the last 25 years of Christmas letters (frankly, I’m pretty sure we didn’t have enough  money for stamps the first 2-3 years of our life, so maybe we’re only at 22 or so) you’ll know that this has been a long {stomp/clap} time {stomp/clap} coming {jazz hands}!!!!!

I know, it’s bringing out the cheerleader in me.  Ew.  Back to drum major.

Our oldest -- is now a Software Development Engineer at a large tech company after graduating from ASU last May.  He has his own apartment, a brand new (to him) car and a shiny bi-monthly paycheck that is more than his entire salary last year at Chipotle.  Ok, not quite -- but, also not too far. His job is here in town.  We’re all begging Alexa to help him skirt any layoffs (“Alexa, keep my son from moving back home”).  He’s in the retail department and works with sellers.  

I just have to say that as much as I have regretted about ½ of my steps at Disneyland this year (more to come on that, don’t worry) -- we had a great day at the Happiest Place on earth earlier this year.  Conner got his official job offer (a dream workplace for a new grad Computer Engineering student) while we were in line for the Incredicoaster, AND we got on all of our favorite rides in both parks. That will always be a favorite memory of mine.  I couldn’t be more proud of how that kid is turning out.  Ok, turning my sarcasm back on…..  I’m well aware there’s always plenty of time to make a poor decision.  Like, going to Waffle House.

Mr Middle graduated from high school last May (it was a big month, what can I say?).  He is majoring in Computer Engineering at our local university and yes, those two brothers who fought like Trump and Pelosi for the 15 years they were in the same bedroom are now talking Java, latency and API’s together.  He’s living his best life in the dorms this year.  And we are loving that for him. 🙂  He was Emmet in Legally Blonde last April in his high school musical, and enjoyed being the MC for his high school choir concerts… back when he was a big fish in a small pond.  He continues to enjoy singing in a university acapella jazz group.

Princess P is a bright star at middle school.  She was just Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz and being back at home with Drew and I in the afternoons is a bit of a “come-down” for our li’l diva.  She’s excelling at all things school and FINALLY we have escaped the parent teacher conferences where they say “he’s smart, but he sure talks a lot.”  Of course, at home she’s our own Ethyl Merman constantly belting out her beloved show tunes.  What a blessing.

Mr E. continues to teach at the community college, dabbling in some directing of some local community bands and bishopric’ing (yes, used as a verb) away his free time.  He also spends a good amount of time saying, “where are you going this week?” to Hilary.  He and P have a whole Korean market plan every time I’m gone.  Which isnt…. Infrequent….

Hilary has perhaps spent more time with Mickey than with Drew this year.  Yes, I went to Disneyland (I think) 5 times this year (plus a conference in LA).  But in September I let my Magic Key go and I heard all my shoes sigh with relief. I continue to Tiktok, blog, Facebook, Youtube, Pinterest, Instagram and Podcast the heck out of life.  I also really ramped up my second site The Pregnancy Nurse® and I’m really proud of how it’s going.  Less proud of some of the articles (looking at you “Can You Eat Hot Cheetos During Pregnancy”) but you gotta answer the people’s questions, right?

I don’t want you to think that the rest of the family did nothing while Hilary got sick on Star Tours...

In July, D, H, S & P went on a cruise to Alaska via Seattle.  It. was. Amazing.  We enjoyed both Seattle (hello space needle and their homeless situation) and Alaska (hello LUSH green-ness and bald eagles). It’s hard to believe we are the same country… Arizona and Alaska. It’s like the fires of hell and the fjords of Heaven.  I pick heaven btw.

In October, D, H and P went to New York (can we just take a minute to say HOW MUCH cheaper things are with only one kid) where we did all things touristy, took in broadway shows, and realized the distinct difference between the smell of roasted nuts vs the smell of NYC (aka, Marijuana).  Educational and fun. 🙂

This truly was a pinch me year.  Just seems like all the good things are staring at me from this letter.  Don’t worry, those two really made me work for those graduations.  Not literally, but when there’s a lot of changes in our lives we all know our moms get our “best” side.  I needed some happiest place on earth after that. #lamazebreathing

So much good, so many blessings and yet my brain only sees what’s wrong on most days.  But, that ends with 2022.  I’m working on being content with things just as they are.  So long ago a baby was born in conditions that had a hundred things wrong with them, but he still made so many big changes both in the world and in our hearts.  I hope you feel the light of God’s love this holiday season also.  With our

warmest holiday wishes,

The Ericksons

P.S.  Yes, all of our photos were taken in the world’s brightest sun, often with strong winds.  But, when you’re having as good a year as we had you don’t stop to take fancy photos.  You just enjoy the sights as they come (and you tolerate a mom who says “selfie time” a few times/day. :)

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