Wow! Is 2015 over already? That went fast! We feel very blessed as we look back over the events of 2015. Here are some highlights of our year.
After 18 months in US Bank’s commercial banking division working with very large Utah-based companies in an office downtown, I accepted a position back in the in the small business banking group of US Bank where I started in 2008. This time, however, I’m working as a team lead in addition to being a business banking officer. I’m passionate about helping small business owners grow their companies and also helping to develop younger bankers. It has been a great move for me professionally, and I’m really enjoying the job. I split time between offices in Provo and Sandy, and no longer have the long commute to SLC.
In May, I ran the Ogden Marathon (my third, and possibly last) and attempted to achieve my goal of finishing the race in under four hours. The first half of the marathon was pretty good, but the second half was grueling due to the pouring rain and cold temperatures. By the time I crossed the finish line, I was borderline hypothermic and very uncomfortable — race officials even made me recover in the medical tent. And while I didn’t quite make my goal of finishing in less than four hours, I smashed my previous PR and learned some valuable life lessons.
During the summer, I was part of Alpine Community Theater’s production of the musical “Mary Poppins” at the Covey Center for the Arts in Provo. I performed the role of George Banks and my two daughters Lily and Brianna were in the ensemble. It was a memorable experience for all of us. The were 14 shows from July 24 to August 15, so the show dominated our time over the summer, but it was a lot of fun. I blogged about some of my thoughts at the conclusion of the show.
Here are two of my favorite clips from the second half of the show. The first one shows George Banks facing possible termination from the bank:
The second clip is shows George facing his fate at the bank:
Throughout 2015, I served as an assistant in my ward’s high priest group leadership and on the scout committee. I completed my Wood Badge tickets and received my beads (finally) and enjoyed helping the scouting program progress. In September, I was called to serve on the stake high council with an assignment to support the young men’s organization and scouting. 🙂
Robin has remained very busy this year with her roles as mom and interior designer. She did some freelance work during the first half of the year and then landed a job at Interior Concepts, a Orem-based interior design firm that does both commercial and residential projects. She works part time so that she can continue to be a full-time mom and she’s done a great job balancing client projects and model home installations with her roles as master chef, chauffer, home project manager, mediator, therapist, etc.
Parley continued to maintain his 4.0 GPA in school even though he’s taking some tough AP classes (physics and calculus) as a junior at Lehi High School. In 2015, he participated in two musicals: “She Loves Me” with the Lehi Arts Council in April and “Tarzan” with the musical theater department at Lehi High School. He did a great job in both productions. Once again, Parley spent the summer as a counselor at Maple Dell scout camp in Payson Canyon. He finished his Eagle Project and earned the rank of Eagle Scout! He got his driver’s license, got a job at the new Wendy’s by our house, was ordained to the office of a priest at church and baptized his younger brother James.
Brianna made great progress on her piano and cello skills and is a gifted musician. She is also a talented artist whose drawings have gotten many likes and shares on social media. She also enjoys the theater and got to be part of her school’s production of “Charlotte’s Web” and also “Mary Poppins” with Andrew and Lily. She also enjoyed a week at the Heber Valley Camp with the girls in our stake.
Lily auditioned for her school’s production of “Shrek Jr.” in which she will play the part of the dragon this coming March. She made good progress on her piano this year and is definitely the most social of our four children. She’s constantly reaching out to friends and loves to spend time with them. She’s in sixth grade at Traverse Mountain Elementary and makes life interesting for us.
James is keenly interested in how things work and has an insatiable curiosity. He asks dozens of questions each hour and loves to learn. He’s a good boy with a good heart and he was SOOO excited to be baptized this year.
Our travel experiences in 2015 were memorable. In April, my friend Mike Peterson and I went to Southern California to ride roller coasters for two days. We enjoyed dozens of rides at Knott’s Berry Farm and Six Flags Magic Mountain. We stayed from open to close each day. Here’s a video of one of our favorites at Six Flags, “Apocalypse.”
In April, Robin and I visited Chicago and explored the sites at this amazing city. We loved our three days there.
During fall break in October, we took our children to see our nation’s capital. And although the trip was sometimes hard (details here), it was an unforgettable patriotic journey for us.
In December, we took a fun post-Christmas trip to San Diego via Las Vegas. We traveled 1,500 miles by car, visited Old Town San Diego, the Mormon Battalion Museum, San Diego Temple grounds, Grand Beach, Sea World, Balboa Park, Coronado Island and the Bellagio atrium and fountains.
As we look back over the year, we feel very blessed to have had so many wonderful experiences. Our lives are greatly enriched by the relationships with friends and family. Here’s to a wonderful 2016!