Dear Friends and Family,
A few months ago, as the summer was nearing its end, Brian and I were talking about how life had kinda settled down and things had been pretty good. I told him I felt like sending out our Christmas letter right then so I would be able to honestly say that things were going really well. I wanted our friends and relatives to get it while the gettin’ was good, so-to-speak. Well, guess what, folks---I’m so happy to report that the gettin’s still pretty good . :)
This has been a decent year for us. Rather than giving the highlights of the year, though, I thought maybe I’d tell you about a regular day at our house. Will you oblige me?
Brian got up early this morning to travel to Mt. Pisgah to run a 14-mile mud race. Yes, the man is still running. Sadly, Brian’s dad passed away a few weeks ago after struggling with his health for some time, but it seems this has further strengthened Brian’s determination to live a healthier lifestyle. It seems he is committed to making the most of his life, in general, and I’ve been impressed with the changes. Anyway, he loved the race and came home only a little stiff with his normally (and tragically) aching feet. (And no, it’s not his shoes, unfortunately.)
For the rest of us, the morning started off pretty peacefully. Once we all got out of bed, though, things started up as usual. (Anyone else thinking of that poem you always hear at church: Dear Lord, so far today I’m doing all right. I haven’t gossiped, yelled, etc..... But in a few minutes I”m going to be getting out of bed and I’m gonna need a lot more help. Amen) Camp and Jane got in some kind of tiff involving a piece of wood that Brian had fashioned into a weapon, of sorts, for Camp. When I insisted the stick be taken outside, Camp wigged out and the situation escalated until we both lost our control. I was sooo close to making it, too. Sigh. That was probably not the battle to have chosen.
I headed out after lunch to the baptism of a woman in our area. Right before the baptism started (yes, I was there on time!) Danin, who has been sick with the flu all day, called me on my cell to report that Janey and Camp were using bad manners at home. Apparently they were drinking straight out of the water dispenser on the fridge instead of using cups. Wow. That is serious. Danin’s ability to contact me via phone in the event of an emergency? Check! The baptism was wonderful, though, and I felt grateful to be there. I only wished I had just been the one washed clean. The wet Sis. Stratton took the opportunity to share with us how wonderful she felt and how she was anxious to dedicate her life to Jesus Christ and how she would always remember the way she was feeling. That’s cool.
Janey did crafts throughout the day, periodically checking the advent calendar’s # 15 mitten for a small note or gift. Oh, man.! Do I have to forget that so often? It’s heart breaking to realize I’ve forgotten it when Janey rushes over to it only to be disappointed. Don’t worry, though. Tomorrow she will get a little Fancy Nancy Christmas sticker book to take along to church, and she will be delighted.
Skip was darling and enjoyable all day long, of course. Come dinner time, though, I went over to his high-chair and pushed his Gogurt thing up, not realizing I had just been seeding jalapeños. When Skip started to cry and wriggle around, batting at his mouth, I went over and stuck my fingers in his mouth in an attempt to get whatever in there was bothering him. Whoops! Double whammy. Poor kid.
The kids really are doing fine, though, I think. (I hope.) They are fun and creative and generally healthy, despite all the Ramen I feed them.
And I’m doing well, too. I happen to have a sore throat right now, but thanks to a fateful day my senior year in seminary, I know that it is my lymph nodes that are sore, and not my gonads. As I finish this letter, I am bundled in my coat because the shivers have started in. But I’ll be fine. I’ve had good eyelash days all week, so I’ve no room to complain.
I love you all so much and hope you’ve had a decent year as well.
P.S. I just found a little yellow folded paper on my night stand which reads "Do not throw away!!!!! to: Mom." Brian informed me that Camp had written the rest of the note in invisible ink with his magic spy pen. After locating the pen, I was able to decipher the rest of the message: " I love you, Mom. I’m sorry about my temper. Merry Christmas." Ahhhh, man! Merry Christmas to you, too, Homie. What a cool kid.
Normally, I would be posting pictures from Christmas here too, but since we were in Vegas for Christmas, I forgot to do a bunch of the stuff I normally do--like take Christmas Eve and Christmas morning pictures. :( I think Brian got some on his phone, though, so I'll post those later. Aaannnddd, just give me a day or two and I'll fill you in on all of the hundreds of things I want to improve on in this new year....