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2021 was a big year here for us in the Mommy Bear family.
So big and busy in fact, that I haven’t even had a chance to write about it until the middle of February 2022!
While the year was still largely mid-pandemic, we still found a lot of fun things to do that were socially distanced, and even a ton of fun things to do at home.
Ready to recap our 2021 with us? We’ve made a family photo album using the Qeepsake app to help us recap this big year with the kids (when there were still just two of them!).
The Kids Grew Like Weeds
Oh my gosh!
I knew the kids grew a lot over previous years, but they both hit some crazy growth spurts this year.
Especially Little Cub who looks like a totally different kid.
She can reach a lot more than she used to be able to, but is old enough now that we are trying to teach her to be more responsible about new things she can reach instead of putting things even higher.
Responsibility has to happen sometime, and honestly we are running out of creative ways to keep things out of reach.
She grew so tall!
A New Member of the Family
While 2021 was a lot of fun with family, we did have some bittersweet things happen.
We lost our family dog of 6 years in June. We had rescued Jack in 2015 and he’d been with us before we even had kids. He had also moved with us from our old house to the new.
It was very sad that he passed on, but we wanted to make the most to honor his memory.
We wanted to rescue another dog from the same shelter we got him at, so we adopted Maggie!
She’s a sweet German Shephard mix who loves people (not so much other dogs).
When we adopted her, we found out that her fee for adoption had been sponsored by someone else, so we asked which dog had been there the longest and sponsored the fee for that one. We later found out that dog had been adopted a few weeks after we did that.
It was good to honor Jack by helping that other dog, and to also welcome our sweet Maggie to our family.
Some Outdoor Fun
What are you supposed to do when most places still have restrictions and your still trying to social distance?
Lots of outdoor fun!
It’s hard to find a nice day to go out in the winter and have some fun, but we managed to get some sledding and snowman building in a few times.
The kids got to attend their first wedding of their uncle and new aunt. We were pleasantly surprised how quiet they sat to watch the ceremony. They knew they had to be quiet to watch, and they were so excited to watch!
Beyond the wedding we hit the local parks several times, and got good use out of many trips to the zoo, thanks to my aunt gifting us season zoo passes the previous Christmas.
We didn’t always have to go to the zoo to see animals though. We live by a ravine, and see deer visitors in our yard every other week or so! That kids love checking out the deer before Maggie barks and scares them away.
Sports and Exercising
Exercising has been a big part of my life for a few years now, and 2021 was no different, at least until I got pregnant in May.
I enjoy doing p.Volve, which is a type of resistance exercise you do at home. I also had a gym membership for a bit, though I quit doing that once pregnant as well. It takes a lot of energy to grow a human 🙂
Little Cub decided she wanted to join the T-ball team at school, so our summer was full of trips to the ballpark and practicing during non-game days.
Of course at her age it is all just for fun and learning fundamentals, but it was great to see her grow in her skills not only in the game, but also as a team player.
Celebrating Birthdays and Holidays
My husband turned the big 3-Oh this year, and I’m never going to mention my age.
The big birthdays are always the kids’ though. We are still having shared parties for them since their August birthdays are only 6 days apart.
We were able to have a nice, small party where they got to have family and a few friends over.
We couldn’t find a Blaze and the Monster Machines pinata that was under $80, so we just went to Walmart and bought a $10 Batman pinata and covered the logo with some printed Blaze sheets. The kids loved it and the guests were none the wiser. Quite a good bargain!
With kiddo #3 here, we’re deciding on whether we should have 2 separate parties, or 1 big one sometime between all their birthdays.
Keeping Busy in the House
While we are still in the midst of a pandemic, and with a baby on the way, we have found new and creative ways to stay entertained around the house.
Since we go out less, we’ve spent money on things we can do at home.
One thing we like to do is building forts. We have a kit that has sticks and connectors that make it easy to build different fort shapes. Throw on a blanket, and easy fun is had.
We’ve also invested in some educational games for the kids.
StoryTime Chess is a favorite with our Little Cub. It’s a chess game that explains how the pieces move with fun kids stories. We’ve also invested some into Osmo. The kids love the detective agency kit, and also love playing out the stories with the dress up characters.
Don’t even get me started on CodeSpark. Once we got the free trial to write the review, they wouldn’t stop bugging us to get a membership. Luckily their grandparents opted to get us a lifetime deal for a very early birthday present.
When we aren’t doing things in the house, the kids always love the swing set in the backyard we bought for the first summer of the pandemic since everything was on lockdown.
It’s been an adjustment, but we’ve found plenty to do to keep ourselves busy, and even busier with kid #3 here now!
Our Qeepsake Family Photo Album
We’ve been working with Qeepsake for many years now, and when they offered us photo books, there was no way we could say no!
We’ve already ordered one photo book for our Christmas 2021 fun that we absolutely adore looking at, and now we’re excited to create another one to track our family adventures through all of 2021.
I’ll be sure to update this article with photos of the family album we get in the mail, and let you know how it all turned out!
Want to start capturing your own memories in the meantime? Try Qeepsake.
The Family Photo Album Arrived!
We got our Qeepsake book that recapped our 2021 adventures as a family of four!
We love the quality of the hardcover book, and the photo quality is awesome as well.
We took advantage of the Be Funky Collage Maker app to combine some images into one memory since we had a TON of photos we wanted to include.
It’s so cool that we can use Qeepsake to record and get a book for not only memories of each specific child, but to recap our entire year!
If you want to start easily collecting your own memories by answering a few text message questions a day, you should really consider signing up for Qeepsake.
You can sign up for Qeepsake and get a $20 book voucher just for being my valued reader.