Halle’s 18th Birthday

Happy 18th birthday Halle! Right now we are sitting on a plane home from Phoenix where I watched my first born jump out of an airplane and go hurdling toward the earth. I’m so glad we got to do that together. You always have been, and always will be my forever adventure buddy. You didn’t even act scared or nervous in the least. You were to first one out of the plane and you didn’t even hesitate. And you haven’t let Riley or I forget that you were the only one to stick the landing. 

What a year it has been. Maybe even more specifically, what a Fall it has been. I feel like I’ve never had more fun being a parent as in the last few months. Seeing you be so busy doing so many things makes me so happy. 

Watching you perform in Marvelous Wonderettes?  Be still my heart. You were incredible. After your first song Dad and I turned to each other and said, “did you know she could do that?” You blew us all out of the water. 

Seeing your final halftime marching band performance was emotional. I have loved watching you through the years and just felt really grateful that you got to have your senior season. Clarinets rule, flutes drool. 

We have also had some pretty epic girl trips this year. Houston in the spring—although the weather didn’t cooperate, we still had an absolute blast. Such a good little escape from a hard online school year. And then Disney this fall. I’ll never forget our magical days together at Disneyland. I had so much fun making ears and planning outfits, eating all the treats and riding Haunted Mansion a million times. 

A few more highlights from the year include getting Covid vaccines and working with the Dolphins in the Florida Keys. 

It hasn’t all been fun and roses. Ever since your hospital stay in Sept 2020 you hadn’t been feeling your best. We made the really hard decision that it was time to start Humira injections. We all know needle sticks are some of your least favorite things, so this was a big deal. I’ve been so proud watching you take on this new challenge. I helped you with your first 3 or 4 injections and now you administer them yourself. So brave. It’s no fun. But we have seen some pretty good results. It seemed like you got a big boost in energy and stamina and a reduction of your symptoms. It’s not perfect yet, we still need to do some adjusting but I’m so glad we had this option to try. You have such courage as you face the new challenge Crohn’s brings. 

This next 6 months is going to bring about even more change. After A LOT of hard work, all your college applications are in! We’ve now gone on 3 college tours—BYU, CSU, and NAU and you’ve already been accepted at CSU and NAU.  I can’t wait to see what you decide. And even though I’ll miss you desperately, I am so excited to see you spread your wings and fly. I have a feeling college is going to be your time to shine. 

These 18 years have flown by in a heartbeat and some days I wish I could rewind and do them all again just to keep you with me longer. But I know we still have a million memories left to make. I love you my smart, talented, dedicated, hard working, ADULT daughter! 

Love,  Mom 

Our Trip to Phoenix came at the beginning of Thanksgiving Break. We had such a fun time! The rental car place upgraded us to a Mustang. The sound system was amazing. Sitting in the back seat–not so much.

Skydiving was incredible. So much fun. We all had pretty funny instructors? Tandem partners? I don’t know what to call them!

We tried to get some pool time, but of course, it was cloudy and a touch rainy by the time we got back to the pool. We went around the lazy river a few times and then called it quits and hit the hot tub. Where we eavesdropped on the most hilarious drunk conversation. There was a lady who lived on a horse farm with 52 horses, 3 donkeys and a pig. And she must have said that same phrase 10,000 times. The three of us were having such a hard time holding in our laughter.

It was a long drive to Flagstaff, but our NAU tour was really fun! Long–but very informative. I think our favorite thing were these little robots that deliver food all over campus. A robotic DoorDash, if you will.

We RUSHED to get back to Phoenix for our flight. Traffic was a mess and we were panicked we’d miss our flight. So, after 3 hours of stress we made it to the airport and rushed to our gate. Just as the flight crew announced that we’d be delayed for an hour or so. GRRRRR….

So glad we got to do this! Now we get to wake up and prep Thanksgiving.

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