With Christmas drawing near once more, it is hard to believe that our not-so-little bundle of joy, almost one-year-old now, was still a package waiting to be opened at this time last year. While time flies it is almost hard to remember life before Aiden (although there are times we whimsically recall the two words we may never say again... "I'm bored"). So this year, while we're minus a Christmas tree (an attempt to preserve Mom's sanity), Aiden's goofy smile continues to light up the house.
On January 19th, 2008, Aiden entered the world and suddenly "the Scanga family" was born. The winter was spent largely indoors taking care of our helpless, little newborn (lucky for us and our bitter distaste for cold weather). As spring approached and warm weather made its joyful return we took full advantage of the great outdoors as well as our quaint little town. After an hour or so of packing diapers, emergency pacifiers, blankets, warm clothes, cool clothes, change of clothes, and anything else our stroller could hold, we marched the two blocks to town like warriors armed for battle (we may as well had posted "new parent" signs on our forehead).
With the onset of summer and a slightly more confident approach to parenthood, we ventured beyond our small town hoping to infect Aiden with our love for travel. In the course of three months Aiden traversed the streets of the Big Apple (riding a ferry to Ellis Island and meeting the Today Show family) navigated the city of Seattle (passing mere feet from flying fish and the world's first Starbucks), beheld the natural wonders of Yellowstone (we're not sure which he liked more, Old Faithful or the hood of his backpack carrier), and spent time with family in Missoula, Montana (enjoying the outdoor market and his Great Uncle's wedding, not to mention the hotel pool).
While the fall brought our adventurous summer to a close, it opened a whole new chapter of family fun at home. The weekends were spent hiking and biking through picturesque fall foliage (for all you "Office" watchers), frequenting our local, kid-friendly coffeehouse, and attending events like the Fall Festival where Aiden could play in a tub of corn kernels and excitedly observe a whole array of farm animals. As we move into winter again we frequent the local YMCA and seek out other fun, indoor activities.
So that's our year as a family, now a quick update on the individual players...
Joel began grad school this past summer. He is pursuing a Master's in Technology Education through Boise State University (an online program of course). The course work can be very demanding, but he loves what he is doing and cannot wait to integrate everything he learns into his current position. He continues to teach sixth grade science at a local elementary school where he truly loves his job.
Kim enjoys staying home with Aiden during the days, although most of their time is spent on the go. This fall they began Water Babies classes at the local YMCA. Aiden loved the swimming and Kim enjoyed her interactions with the other moms. They also joined the Moms and Babes group at the local hospital where Kim gets some adult time while Aiden learns to play with the kids ("learns" being the key word).
Aiden began the year in a sleepy haze, but his personality bloomed in the last eleven months and he now possesses more than we sometimes know what to do with! Physically, he moved from rolling to sitting, crawling, and finally, around 9-and-a-half months, he took his first solo steps. While he utilizes crawling to get places fast, he can walk the length of the house, stop, turn corners and is ready (a little too ready for Mom's liking) to really take off. Emotionally, he seems to grow jollier all the time, making us burst with laughter nearly every day. Socially, Aiden may be considered a busybody. He enjoys trips to the grocery store (where he smiles and waves at every passerby, demanding their attention), going out to eat (where he once more smiles and waves at both customers and staff), and finally spending time with both grandparents (where he is sure to find an adoring audience every time).
It was a joyful and challenging year, and we look forward to many more to come. Thanks for all your support and we will continue to update you as Aiden grows and changes.
The Scanga Family