Saturday, December 23, 2017

2017: A year of milestones

Let’s rewind back to the beginning of 2017 for a quick trip through the year. 

We celebrated the New Year and then James’ 30th birthday at Walt Disney World. We ran a 10K and then hopped onto a Disney Cruise to the Bahamas. Coincidentally, James then played the cruise director in Toledo Swiss Singers’ murder mystery in February.

In March, James went to his first business conference for work in San Diego with his friend Heather. Matthew tagged along, and we enjoyed pandas at the San Diego Zoo and sea lions in La Jolla.

On March 31, we bought a house! We moved in a few weeks later. It’s been a dream to have a place of our own where we can watch movies at any decibel at any hour. We’ve had some beautiful gatherings, dinners, and visits to our house since then, and we continue to offer our guest room for bookings.

In April, we ran on a relay team for James’ work in the Glass City Marathon. It was quite the haul, but worth the gorgeous medal.

In May, we got a behind-the-scenes tour of the Columbus Zoo giraffe barn and fed giraffes, Matthew’s favorite!

For the Fourth of July, we participated in our first neighborhood parade and gathering. We love our neighbors!

Later that month, we took the cats south to Charleston then Hilton Head. This was Sonoma’s first trip. It wasn’t without its bumps, but once we got there, she enjoyed all of our accommodations. While there, James drank his weight in sweet tea. We visited the beautiful gardens of Middleton Place outside of Charleston and learned about this history of America’s oldest landscaped gardens. We also hopped on a boat and took a tour of Fort Sumter National Monument. When night fell, we took a ghost tour of the city. On our trip, we introduced Matthew’s cousins, The Friends, to Charleston and the humidity (whether they wanted the latter or not).

Then we all gathered on Hilton Head Island. Our Florida friends, David and Michael, met us there, and it was an exceptional week with them and Matthew’s family. David and Michael got married on the beach, and Matthew officiated. It was touching and special to be witnesses to such love, ahead of our special day coming up.

After some quick paperwork and a whirlwind orientation experience, James started grad school at The University of Toledo in August, working toward an MBA in Marketing.

THEN IT HAPPENED: September 2, 2017. We got married! It was a wonderful weekend to have all of our friends and family gather in Toledo for our special day. Everything went off perfectly. We couldn’t have asked for a better day.

Then, we found out Kitty was going to be featured in the 2018 Page-A-Day Cat Calendar on October 27 — James’ sister’s birthday! How special.

In September, James took a fun road trip with The Toledo Swiss Singers to Wisconsin for a Yodeling Festival. He even got to introduce some of his fellow singers to his college stomping grounds, Milwaukee, and of course, the Cheese Castle!

Matthew returned to work at Williams-Sonoma for the holiday season.

Right after Thanksgiving, Matthew made a return to theatre and directed his first show in a few years at one of our favorite local theatres, The Croswell Opera House. He directed “Meet Me in St. Louis.” James attended almost every show and even took pictures of the show for local media. Clang, clang, clang went the trolley!

The holiday season was a joy to decorate our new house, our first Christmas married!

Matthew celebrated his 40th birthday with a surprise weekend he couldn’t have imagined. Friends and family surprised him all weekend long.

What a year!

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