Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Merry Christmas!!! 2009

Merry Christmas 2009

Dear Family and Friends,

Finally we are back after a 3 year break from writing Christmas letters. Thank you for still sending us your greetings and updates! We love hearing from you and look forward to your letters. Where to begin?

2006- Sid was released as Bishop of our ward, Kelly learns to drive and sings in madrigals, Heather works at Club Libby Lu and teaches piano, Nicole enters high school and plays in the band, Julie starts young women’s at Church and plays the French horn, Joseph plays basketball and is in a school play, Jacob also plays basketball and takes piano from Heather, Sarah turns 4 and enjoys Joy School.

2007- Melody was put in as Stake Young Women’s President; Sid got a great commute with his office right downstairs! Sid and Kelly moved house while Melody and the older girls were at Young women’s Camp. We moved 2 houses down the street. We kept our first house as a rental. Sid worked as the contractor and we finished the basement with his office, a bedroom, a full bath, a storage/optional laundry room, and a theatre/family/exercise room. We also replaced almost all of the flooring in the upper 2 levels with hardwood and carpeting, and painted about half of the house. Whew! Kelly graduated from High School and started at BYU on a full tuition scholarship=), Heather played her violin ending her 4 year career in high school orchestra and started driving, Nicole taught summer school kindergarteners, had a gangbuster garden, and went to EFY, Julie participated in a Shakespeare Festival, helped design the basement layout and went on a cross country trip with her aunts Carol, Lila, Joy and cousin Haleigh. Joseph started playing percussion in middle school band, did basketball and scouts. Jacob got baptized in February, was active in cub scouts, and played basketball. Sarah started all day kindergarten, and loves all things little girl.

2008- Heather graduated High School and was accepted to BYU! She absolutely loves it there. She and Kelly have 2 classes together, bought sports passes together, eat lunch together and go on group dates. Kelly still loves BYU and worked the summer at PNC Bank. Both were the Family Home Evening mom for their group. We miss them so much, but with a cell phone it’s easy to forget that they’re a million miles away. Nicole got an internship at the National Institutes of Health for the summer. She learned to drive, made marching band and madrigals. She continued to enjoy concert and women’s choir at school. Julie started her freshman year and seminary at 5:45am (Nicole goes as well). She got contact lenses, worked with the summer school kindergarteners, went to yw camp and youth conference, took ballet, and joined women’s and concert choir. She also was in the school productions of Oliver and Big River. Joseph turned 12 and was ordained a deacon at Church. He served in the Deacon Quorum presidency, worked on scouts, and enjoyed the camping and activities. He went to Aaronic Priesthood camp that summer and loved it. He played basketball. In October the Maryland part of the family all went on the Alonzo Stagg Hike. Melody, Jacob and Sarah walked 4.1 miles, and then drove the shuttle through the night. Sid, Nicole, Julie and Joseph all walked 12.4 miles. It was a fun night=) Jacob was in 4th grade. He was in the Eagle writers club and was the top walker in the school, walking a total of 33 miles during lunchtime each Tuesday and winning an Ipod. He got his bear in cub scouts and played basketball and percussion in band. He, Joseph and Sid wake up early and jog or do pushups and have a scripture study together every day. Sarah was happy to be a 1st grader=) She learned to ride a bike and played basketball - one of the other coaches told his boys "you got beat by a girl" after Sarah took the ball away from them and scored some baskets. Sarah loves to tell that story. Sid and I celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary in 2008! It’s been a great 20 years with an eternity to follow. Amazing how quickly time passes.

So here we are in 2009-

Sarah, 7 yrs, 2nd grade and looking forward to getting baptized next year. She’s exuberant, engaging, silly, an excellent reader, and delightful! She loves to email and text her college sisters (yes she’s actually cell phone and computer savvy), play with friends, dance, and sing, do her little karate kicks, drink hot chocolate out of my china cups, play the piano, and draw pictures on the computer. She’s started in the basketball league, loves to cook the German pancake for Sunday breakfast, and is losing many teeth.

Jacob 10yrs, 5th grade and almost finished with Cub Scouts. He loves to run with his Dad and Joseph, play basketball and football, go to scouts and plays percussion. He is super diligent and hard working. He played piano over the summer with Heather teaching him. He had a lead role in the school play in 4th grade.

Joseph 13yrs, 8th grade and Deacon’s Quorum president. Joseph serves faithfully and works hard in scouting. He is playing basketball, planted and harvested with Jacob a great garden (actually 3 gardens, one next door, one at our old house, and one here). He keeps 2 yards mowed and raked. He is a lead technician in the TV program one day a week at school. He's awesome.

Julie 15yrs, 10th grade and excited to get her drivers permit. She had a great summer with EFY at SVU, went to young women’s camp, and spent 4 days on a pioneer trek. She was in the school production of ‘Into the Woods”, ran a 5K in the Baltimore Running Festival with Aunt Carol, served in her YW class presidencies, enjoys youth dances, friends, seminary, took piano over the summer, mostly likes her classes in school and loves having her braces off!

Nicole 17yrs, 12th grade and just finished marching band season. She’s our best driver yet, has an internship working with the U of MD and the Baltimore Nat’l Aquarium and went on Trek and to yw camp as well this summer. She is again in madrigals, symphonic band, women’s and concert choir, is applying for colleges and a job, and enjoying her senior year.

Heather 19yrs Sophomore @BYU- busy, busy! Kelly 20 yrs just got accepted into BYU’s business school. Yahoo! We will see them in less than a month=) They both worked hard over the summer and through them we adopted 4 or so young men each Sunday for dinner during the summer. They were fine young men.

Sid loves working downstairs, runs about 4+ miles/day on the elliptical trainer and then some with the boys, is on the stake high council, and goes out on flight tests about once a quarter. He is the most amazing tutor for our kids. Kelly and Heather will send him their papers for his advice, on any given day he’ll be doing math on the white board with someone and talking science at the dinner table. If these kids don’t get it, it’s not for lack of parental involvement! He’s enjoying his participation in scouts with camping out and being on the scout troop committee.

I volunteer at the school, love working with the young women, am so grateful for the support and encouragement of Sid and the kids, have taken up running for part of my daily walk, and love watching our kids grow up. I’ve also started helping to digitize records on microfiche. I’ve made progress in home organization (we can now park in our garage!!), started working on family history, taken some trips to my parents in Utah, and went on a trip to Kirtland, Ohio with my parents and sister, Carol. I learned how to lay laminate flooring with my sister Cathy, and finished a quilt for Jacob. I ran my first Half Marathon in Oct. It was surprisingly fun=) We all went to Midway UT for my parent’s 50th Wedding Anniversary celebration! It was GREAT to see my siblings and extended family!

We feel so blessed and know that Heavenly Father is real and that He sent His Only Begotten Son to Earth as a tiny baby to bring all of His children back home. Christ made it possible to return to our heavenly home even after we've made mistakes, or committed sins, or suffered because life is just hard sometimes. He showed us the way and invites us to follow Him. May we all seek Him today and always.

We’d love to keep in touch!