Christmas Letter 2010
Well the wheels they are a rolling. That would sum up our year in a sentence. As all of you have heard by now, we have decided to move to Costa Rica, and we are currently taking steps to make that happen. To answer the question of “why” would take several hours to explain, but suffice it to say, we do believe that this is the direction God wants us to go and we are going to do it. Now to answer all the other questions: Yes, we are scared. Yes it is a big move. Yes it is going to be a big change. Yes the kids are excited and they want to go. No I don’t have a job there. It is in Central America and yes it is hot. Yes there are snakes, spiders and iguanas. They speak Spanish and we can muddle through, and we will still be Americans. And finally, Yes we are perhaps a little “loco”. That being said, we did make our second trip to Costa, and we must have drunk some of the water because we didn’t change our mind. In fact, we solidified our decision.
So when we finally made the decision this past year, it put us in the state of perpetual getting stuff done, all the stuff we have put off for the past 5 years. We have also tried to make the most of this year, but in between catching up with all the projects and getting passports and etc. etc. we have not been able to do as much as we would like. None-the-less, there have been some huge milestones for us this year, Dorian driving, Olivia getting her permit, two 17 year olds in the family, two kids attending public school full time, the passing of my grandfather, lots of out-of-state visitors and much more, as has been covered in this blog.
Our original plan was to be heading due south during the Christmas Break. However, a giant monkey wrench was thrown into the works when we found out Jo’s dad had developed colon cancer. So after months of preparing to move, marketing the house and mentally preparing to depart, we found our wheels in motion in a mud bog, spinning in place. We had a family prayer meeting and it was decided that we needed to postpone the move. It was a mixed pot of disappointment and relief. Disappointment because we had mentally prepared to be gone like a freight train, relief because it gave me more time to procrastinate in getting all the necessary things done. Currently our plan is to depart Alaska and head south in the May / June area, Lord willing, and depending on several moving parts.
Speaking of Jo, we still see her several times a month, not near enough but much better than nothing. When she is with us, she jumps right in like she never left. She uses every spare minute to dress up, color, dance and run around the house like a little munchkin. We absolutely love having her here and as you all know, we still pray daily that she will be with us.
Dorian and Alli are both going to Soldotna High School, or SoHi as it is known locally. They are both Juniors and are both getting good grades, or so they tell us. It is amazing to me that we are able to log onto to the school website and immediately see, up to the day their current grade. No more playing “hide the report card” like in my day. Not that I had anything to hide, solid Cs baby! Dorian drives them to school every day which is a huge relief for me and a huge reason to worry for Tra. They are both enrolled in an extra class that starts on hour before school, Advanced Spanish. Muy Bueno!
Jeremy and Olivia both played soccer once again. Jeremy was on the comp team again which gave us ample travel. Olivia played on the Boys and Girls club team and has developed a unique skill of being able to run at full speed while hold her hair out of her eyes with her right hand. Jeremy’s collection of air soft guns continues to grow and I am sure that he is on the ATF watch list.
Ben and Kassie are still home- shcooled and doing very well. Kassie stopped smiling for exactly 98 seconds this year, but I think she was sick during that time. She too played a little soccer and is still in AWANA. Her and Jake are best buddies and when Jo is here they make quite the threesome taking over the house. Ben played Comp soccer and I helped coach his team. We had a great season and finished near the top in several tournaments, obviously its the coaching. He continues to practice his guitar and has actually spent some time assisting Tracy with leading worship at church along with Alli and Olivia. I have volunteered numerous times to lead with my singing, but apparently hardcore rap isn’t quite the style they are looking for.
Jake continues to make us laugh daily and unintentionally. His quips are classic especially when he is 100% serious. His latest is ” I forgive you” in place of ” I’m sorry”. We often call him little Dorian as he reminds us of his biggest brother, and they both will sleep till 1 pm daily if we let them.
Tracy continues to school five of the kids, pack, cook, clean, workout, attend brewing friendships, women’s meetings and lead worship several times a month. I saw her like 3 times last month, it was great to see her and I love catching up. On top of all this she has been packing and assigning me tasks to ensure that the house will sell, all those jobs that I left unfinished from the day we move in. She knows how to crack the whip, must come from running her own Little House on the prairie school.
Much like the years before, we managed to ski, hunt, fish, camp,hike, have a few parties, eat, sleep and travel, all of which has been covered in this blog. I guess we are part of Sarah Palin’s Alaska. We are extremely excited for the next stage of our life and what God will bring. We pray daily for wisdom and guidance, and patience ( we have four teenagers, we need an over abundance of patience). But right now our biggest prayer is for Jo. There is still a giant hole in our family unit without her, and we ache to have her back where she belongs.
So there you have it, our year in a nutshell. If you made it this far you are either closely related to us, up at 2 am and cannot get back to sleep, or thought you were reading a Danielle Steele novel, sorry about that. Alas, now it is time for us to shift this family into four-wheel drive and get them wheels rolling again. So next year when I write the Christmas letter, I should be sitting on the beach and sweating profusely near the Pacific Ocean while watching the sunset, probably wishing I was by some snow and writing in a Spanglish just to make thing interesting.