Holt Family 2016 In Review

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays Family and Friends –

We hope you have enjoyed 2016 and look forward to 2017. We had a great year full of new experiences, creative opportunities, and lots of laughter. See the many photos below at the end of the post.

Our family made some wonderful trips this year. In July, we explored the great State of Washington with a week long trip around much of the eastern and central part of the state. We made stops at Mount St. Helens, Ape Cave, Stonehenge replica, Spokane, Palouse Falls, Curlew Lake, Grand Coulee Dam, North Cascades National Park, Lake Roosevelt, and more. We are so fortunate to live in such an ecologically and geographically diverse state. 

Later in the month, we took a family backpacking trip on the Ozette Triangle, a coastal route in Olympic National Park. It was a beautiful 3 day, 9-mile trip filled with excellent weather and lots of play time. We highly recommend you make it out to this part of the state as the scenery can’t be beat.

We made our trek to Oregon in late August for the annual Zemke family outing. We camped for 4 days just outside of Tillamook. It was time spent with family, playing badminton, relaxing in the water, sleeping, reading, and smelling like camp smoke. 

Laura and I spent a few days in California earlier this year as we celebrated the retirement of our good friend Kim. He’s been such an influential part of our lives both professionally and personally, it was an opportunity we didn’t want to miss. 

We’ve continued our almost nightly family reading routine. We started it last year and have enjoyed the time diving into a good book as a family. Brett sometimes brings the book with him on his business travels and reads to the kids via FaceTime. We completed the Harry Potter series this past summer. As we finished each book, we would watch the movie. Of course, the movies can’t compare to the books. Other books we read include Call of the Wild, Hatchett, The Little Princess, and just started the first book in the The Mysterious Benedict Society series. 

Ethan finished 3rd grade and is currently loving 4th grade. His teachers are wonderful and not only challenge him and the other students to be good learner, but to learn to show empathy, how to work together, and think rationally. His favorite subject is geography. 

Ethan stopped taking piano lessons earlier in the year but started up with the double bass in his school orchestra in September. Yes, that’s right. He plays an acoustic upright bass that’s as tall as he is. He is enjoying this new instrument. Earlier in December, he obtained his deputy black belt in Tae Kwon Do. His goal is to test for is black belt by the end of 2017. We support him fully in going for it!

Autumn is a 1st grader and loves the experience. She truly loves the challenge of learning. She is a social butterfly and has made a lot of great friends. We’re fortunate that she is in the same class that Ethan had so the classroom and teachers are familiar to her, as well as us. 

Autumn just finished her second season in the Nutcracker. She performed as a Bon Bon and learned so much from the experience. She enjoys being on stage, learning new moves, singing songs, and the whole production. She played soccer for the first time this past fall. Her team the Running Raptors did very well. She scored a few goals along the way, learned to work as a team (lots of progress), and was thrilled to play in the mud! 

Music continues to be a large part of our life. We rearranged the basement so that we had a larger area for Brett and the kids to jam together. We’re exploring the many creative sounds found in Apple’s Garage Band. Both kids love listening and dancing to music. Ethan enjoys the American Authors and Autumn enjoys Jewel, Katy Perry, and the Trolls soundtrack.  Laura and I enjoyed Billy Joel in Seattle last May. So much energy and hit after hit after hit. 

Laura was hired as a full time 2nd Grade teacher in September. Wow! The hard work she put in to substitute teaching last year paid off. Admittedly, she wasn’t looking for a full time job, but an opportunity to work with wonderful staff at a local school opened up and, well, it was hard to pass up on the opportunity.

This past spring, she expanded our garden from one large garden bed to three garden beds. We grew tomatoes, pumpkins, peas,  sunflowers, different herbs, onions, garlic, peppers, and a few more. She keeps busy with gardening, canning, and enjoying a good book. 

Brett received a promotion at work and is now the Regional Mitigation Planning Program Manager for FEMA Region 10. As always, he loves  the work that he does each day. More than work, he loves projects around the house. The projects allow him to develop practical skills and use creativity so that the house has a personal touch. Pinterest and YouTube videos are instrumental in implementing the projects. He’s very much looking forward to remodeling the basement.

We may not keep in touch as often as we have in the past, but do appreciate the role you have played in our lives. Life changes so quickly and goes by so fast as we were reminded a couple times this year. It’s always good to slow down every once in a while, be in the moment, enjoy the now, and smile. 

Have an outstanding 2017!

The Holts

2016 Photo Gallery

We all love science experiments
We all love science experiments
Hiking in Snohomish County
Hiking in Snohomish County
Dad and son time on the beach
Dad and son time on the beach
Holt Family 2016
Holt Family 2016
Business trip to Florida
Business trip to Florida
Smiles
Smiles
: )
: )
Billy Joel concert
Billy Joel concert
Exploring the beach with Autumn and her class
Exploring the beach with Autumn and her class
Outside on the coast
Outside on the coast
Goofing around
Goofing around
Kindergarten Graduation
Kindergarten Graduation
Ethan's first time flying by himself
Ethan’s first time flying by himself
Many road trips
Many road trips
Biking in Richland, WA
Biking in Richland, WA
Palouse Falls. Kids are normal.
Palouse Falls. Kids are normal.
Palouse Falls
Palouse Falls
Tough day. Grape soda helps.
Tough day. Grape soda helps.
Views of eastern WA
Views of eastern WA
Shake time
Shake time
Gorgeous views of eastern WA
Gorgeous views of eastern WA
Caught 4 rainbow trout in Curlew Lake
Caught 4 rainbow trout in Curlew Lake
Stop at Grand Coulee Dam
Stop at Grand Coulee Dam
Camp site at Lake Roosevelt
Camp site at Lake Roosevelt
North Cascades National Park
North Cascades National Park
Happy face
Happy face
Swinging and laughing...perfect combo
Swinging and laughing…perfect combo
Ethan's enjoys a nap at his grandparents home
Ethan’s enjoys a nap at his grandparents home
Running in DC
Running in DC
First time river rafting as a family
First time river rafting as a family
Do these look good on me?
Do these look good on me?
Preparing for our backpacking trip
Preparing for our backpacking trip

2016-08-03-14-37-39

On the Olympic coast
On the Olympic coast
Dinner time with no one around
Dinner time with no one around
Beautiful way to wake up
Beautiful way to wake up
Summer time, bike jumping time!
Summer time, bike jumping time!
Life
Life
best. time. ever.
best. time. ever.
Laura and her dad
Laura and her dad
Ethan found a few friends
Ethan found a few friends
First day of school 2016-2017
First day of school 2016-2017
Date night
Date night
Our zebra
Our zebra
Our skeleton
Our skeleton
Ethan learns the bass
Ethan learns the bass
Are we happy?
Are we happy?
Star Wars: Rogue One
Star Wars: Rogue One
Time together at Christmas
Time together at Christmas
Laura and I at Powell's Books in Portland
Laura and I at Powell’s Books in Portland
Autumn waves during a school concert
Autumn waves during a school concert
Our cute kids
Our cute kids
Ethan chose to be a naturalist for his performance on careers
Ethan chose to be a naturalist for his performance on careers
Hiking!
Hiking!
Ethan made a necklace
Ethan made a necklace
We're outside. We're content.
We’re outside. We’re content.
Bugs!
Bugs!
Earned his brown belt
Earned his brown belt
Autumn performs
Autumn performs
Mount St. Helens (kind of foggy)
Mount St. Helens (kind of foggy)
Visitor Center
Visitor Center
Along the Columbia River
Along the Columbia River
Spokane Falls
Spokane Falls
Vista point in northern WA
Vista point in northern WA
Curlew Lake (great camping)
Curlew Lake (great camping)
Fun in the sun!
Fun in the sun!
Love this photo
Love this photo
Ethan turns 9
Ethan turns 9
Ready for a few days on the trail
Ready for a few days on the trail
Autumn brought a friend
Autumn brought a friend
On the Olympic coast
On the Olympic coast
On the Olympic coast
On the Olympic coast
On the Olympic coast
On the Olympic coast
Hurricane Ridge in Olympic National Park
Hurricane Ridge in Olympic National Park
Autumn dances
Autumn dances
Autumn rides
Autumn rides
Soccer time
Soccer time
Ethan spars in TKD
Ethan spars in TKD
Earned
Earned
Celebration
Celebration
Autumn, mud and soccer
Autumn, mud and soccer
The band room
The band room
Our awesome kids
Our awesome kids

 

2016 Projects

Lego table
Lego table
Getting rebar ready
Getting rebar ready
Fill hole (drain pipe is under here so we don't flood) and concrete over.
Fill hole (drain pipe is under here so we don’t flood) and concrete over.
Built a couple more cedar garden boxes in the front yard
Built a couple more cedar garden boxes in the front yard
House project: Build rain garden, build 4 ft wall to level ground
House project: Build rain garden, build 4 ft wall to level ground
Built some shelves in Ethan's room
Built some shelves in Ethan’s room
Built the fence and foot bride
Built the fence and foot bride
Building starts on our shed
Building starts on our shed
The shed slowly goes up
The shed slowly goes up
Laura's potting area.
Laura’s potting area.
Shed is built
Shed is built
Built this boardwalk on the sideyard
Built this boardwalk on the sideyard
Put in a couple bookshelves in the office.
Put in a couple bookshelves in the office.
Updated Autumns room (paint, baseboards, trim, built bookshelves, and more)
Updated Autumns room (paint, baseboards, trim, built bookshelves, and more)
Autumn's updated room (added beadboard, shelf along beadboard, paint, and more)
Autumn’s updated room (added beadboard, shelf along beadboard, paint, and more)
Pouring the concrete
Pouring the concrete

15 Replies to “Holt Family 2016 In Review”

    1. Good to hear from you Ryan. Sending our best to you and your family. The Lego table has been so much fun. It’s an easy way to keep pieces in one spot so they don’t fly off. We added casters so it rolls around. Enjoy building it!

  1. Great picture ! My goodness those two are growing up ! We sure miss having you as (closer) neighbors. Kate and Dylan moved and the house is being updated. We can only pray that the new renters are as much fun as you all, and Kate and Dylan were. Happy New Year to you all. Lets do a BBQ this summer. Love you guys, Doug and Susan.

  2. Love seeing all these photos of your precious family. You are making great memories for your children to remember forever and, hopefully, pass on to their children. Thank you for always being so welcoming to me when I visit. I cherish the times to participate in your family activities. I love you all and look forward to 2017!

    1. Of course, we always enjoy you coming up to visit and sharing the experiences with us. We’re slowly making the basement more comfortable with each visit.

  3. Thanks, Brett, Laura, Ethan, and Autumn for sharing your lives with us. We are always impressed with your creativity, resourcefulness, and zest for living. May 2017 bring you many more exciting and meaningful moments and adventures!

  4. Thanks, Brett, for sharing your year. Beautiful family. Love the reading together (both our girls enjoy that with their children) and your shed is amazing. We’re not campers, but we know how beautiful Washington is from the years we lived there. You are surrounded by one of God’s masterpieces for sure. Blessings to you all in 2017. Love, Cheryl & Dan

    1. Glad you enjoyed the shed Cheryl. It was a fun project. I do remember you lived up here. We visited you in the early 80s. It’s vague but I remember it was rainy. 🙂

  5. What an amazing year! Great to see you all enjoying your time as a family and your own interests. Our warmest wishes for a fantastic 2017! -Jason, Tera, Anoush & Oliver

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