Today is my brother’s 24th birthday. Not going to lie, it’s weird to think he’s that old (no offense, bro). It’s to the point where I have to do the math every year. “If I’m 27, that means he’s… 24?!” It’s crazy to think that my little brother is now in his mid-twenties. He’s been in the “real world” for a year and a half now and I’m so proud of how much he’s grown in his position at work, how he’s making a life for himself in Denver, how he loves those around him, how I can see him maturing even when I’m far away in Texas. Growing up in a close-knit Hispanic family, Alex and I spent a lot of time together when we were kids and he was often my closest friend. We would play different games together while my dad was at work and my mom was napping following her nights shift at work when we were younger, throw the baseball in the backyard together, fight over the TV remote, wrestle, and just hang out together. While there were moments when he was less than charming, like when he threw my beloved NSYNC CD in the trash, I love that we have always been close and that we can talk to each other about anything. Who would have thought that I would be talking about health insurance and rent vs. mortgage payments with the same guy who used to put his racecars outside my bedroom door so I would step on them first thing in the morning (sweet, right?…). We may not see each other as often as I would like, but I am so grateful for my brother and that he’s always just a quick phone call away. Happy birthday, bud. I sure do love you.
Eleven days into January is the right time to post pictures from Christmas, right? Right.
We had a great Christmas in Tucson. We started the drive once Chip got off of work on the 23rd, spent the night in Van Horn, and got to Tucson Christmas Eve afternoon. The dogs did great on the drive with plenty of “are we there yet” faces from Wrigley.
And now for a special presentation, Molly and Wrigley singing along to “Blue Christmas.”
Overall, it was a really relaxing time at home. After a busy December, it was nice to get time to sleep in, take it easy around the house, walk the dogs, and just spend time together. I’m a sucker for being sentimental, and looking back, I love the little moments throughout the trip that reminded me of some of my favorite memories growing up. Whenever I can go home for Christmas, my parents always save Santa’s Marching Band as my decoration to put up in the house. I was obsessed with Santa’s Marching Band as a kid and would slowly put each little soldier on the snow blanket and do my best to hide the electric chords. Some of these little guys have taken a beating over the years and will occasionally get stuck, but they still work great. I secretly love seeing how long I can have these guys play before my dad tries to turn them off.
We were able to take Chip up to Mount Lemmon for the first time and were pleasantly surprised to see some snow at the end of our drive. I hadn’t been up to Mount Lemmon in over seven years, so it was fun going back up. Molly and Penny weren’t too sure about the snow, but Wrigley loved it, even when Chip kept throwing snowballs at his face. Later that day, we got to see some of my old high school friends, most of whom Chip was meeting for the first time. It was a highlight of the trip getting to catch up with them, some I literally hadn’t seen since graduation almost 10 years ago. And to my surprise, while we were eating at Le Buzz our last morning in Tucson, I ran into my third grade teacher. It was so nice to see her again and funny to think about how she used to seem so incredibly tall to me.
I am so thankful we were able to spend some more time in Tucson, we really do love that city. Chip was back to work that Monday after Christmas while I had a few extra days off. We spent New Years Eve with some of our great Trinity friends out in Fredericksburg. It was so great ending 2014 with some of the friends we love most. Hope 2015 is off to a great start for all of you!