Happy 2010

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Happy New Year to our friends and family!  We hope this message finds you well.

The first day of the new decade started at about 7:30am for us when Everett decided he had slept enough to recover from the New Year’s Eve party (he went to bed at 7pm).  We managed to stay in bed until about 8, then had Goetta, eggs, bagels and lox for breakfast.  By 9am Chris was on his bike, headed downtown to meet some fellow Tosa Spokesmen for a New Year’s Day bike ride before the polar plunge into Lake Michigan at noon.  The ride was followed by coffee and conversation at Alterra.  Melissa, Everett, Klaus and Meri-Jo also met us there and at about 11:30 we headed over to Bradford Beach for the plunge.  We were expecting a dozen or so crazy people, so we were shocked to find a crowd of well over 1,000 people on the beach without any parking available within a mile.  Even Elvis was there.  See photo above and video below.  None of us took the plunge this year but as soon as Chris saw the event he regretted not bringing his swimsuit and a towel.  Maybe next year.  But it did make us realize something important about Milwaukee that we did not appreciate until we lived here for a while: this place is alive.

Other New Year’s weekend activities…

First, a visit to the Milwaukee Public Museum.  Melissa and Everett have been there many times but this was Chris’ first visit, and it is a truly impressive museum.  There Everett learned about local birds (this photo also contains a nice view of his baby mullet),

while Melissa and Chris learned about members of the weasel population in Wisconsin including pine martens and fishers.  We also learned that Wisconsin is not named the Badger state for badgers, even though they appear prominently on the state flag and as school mascots.  Rather, the state was so named for miners who dug burrows in the ground during the winter.  We read this at the MIlwaukee County Zoo as well as the Public Museum, so it must be true:

Second: Everett’s first time sledding.  Because it happened so quickly we were unable to capture the look of surprise and concern on his face as he and Chris rode a saucer down the hill behind our house.  The single digit temperatures and setting sun made it a short outing, but next time we will try out Everett’s new skis as well.

Lastly: a visit to the zoo.  This was on another cold day, which meant that Everett had to be pretty bundled up, so much so that he could hardly move and we sounded like the parents from the Bill Cosby skit who overdress their child.

One funny thing about his snowsuit is that it’s almost as wide as it is tall.  Poor kid.  Here he and Melissa are watching the otters frolic.

It was a busy weekend but we still had time to reflect on how much our lives have changed over the past year.  At some point Everett transformed from an infant into a person with his own volition, opinions, desires and imagination.  We aren’t sure precisely when this happened even though it was right before our eyes, but we are mindful of and amazed at the rate at which he changes.  And we are looking forward to new family adventures in 2010.

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