Sunday, December 23, 2012

Christmas 2012


Merry Christmas!


What a wonderful year it has been for our family!  As you may have read in our Christmas letter this coming year will be full of excitement as well.  In July of 2013 we will be moving to San Jose to begin a church plant called Basilea. For more information you can visit our website: www.basileachurch.com

This year our biggest news (besides deciding to be church planters) is the fact that we are now free from the slavery of debt!  We finally paid off the last of our student loans and are experiencing the joy that comes from being debt free. The kids are very excited that we now get to start saving for the promised trip to Disneyland this coming year!

Aaron is currently still the youth minister at the Cordova Church of Christ.  This past year he has postponed getting his Masters degree from Fuller while we paid off the last of the debt. It has been a sacrifice, but we hope that he can restart again soon paying for each class in cash instead of taking out student loans! This year the student breakfast has been a wonderful place for Aaron to connect with students from the local High School and Jr. Highs.  

Diego & Indigo
I, Amy, keep myself very busy with homeschooling the kids as well as babysitting two sweet boys three days a week.  I have also taken up teaching a couple of classes for a local curriculum store. I've loved teaching Art Appreciation as well as Home Management this fall!



Grace is a third grader this year and loves homeschooling.  She adores Diego, the baby we get to watch and is such a helper.  I don't know what I would do without her!  Her favorite subject is Spanish, which she does on the computer with the Rosetta Stone program.  Her other interests include art, reading and crafting. She is such a thoughtful and tenderhearted child. She is easily brought to tears when hearing of the misfortunes of others and is always making cards for others.


Noraa is in first grade this year and also loves being at home.  Though school can sometimes be a bit frustrating for her she is glad that she is at home doing it! Her favorite subject is Language Lessons. She and Grace are best friends and they have so much fun learning and playing together.  Noraa is extremely creative and loves crafting too.  She is constantly making things for friends and family, and goes through a roll of tape in a couple of days!

Sam is an energetic four year old.  He loves to come in the school room during school time and do his own worksheets. He says his favorite subject is math.  Three days a week his best friend Indigo comes over to play and he recently stayed the night at his house! They love to play trains and build things together.

May this year be full of laughter and joy for your family!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Christmas 2010



Another year has flown by and it's already time for our yearly Christmas update, but first a story about our Christmas card!

This year for Thanksgiving, we did something a bit unconventional...we left town and went to stay the night at a hotel near the Calavaras Big Trees.  I thought there might be snow on the ground so I packed the kids snow gear "just in case".  When we arrived at the big trees there was over 12"!!!  This picture was taken on the "dancing stump" (called that because it's as big as a stage) done on the timer amidst two melt downs by the younger two kids.  I'm amazed everyone is looking at the camera and not crying!  What a fun memory, and it made for a perfect Christmas card picture...  and now for the "update"!




Aaron has been very busy this year handling the responsibilities of youth ministry, small groups ministry, taking graduate classes, and preaching a 12 week sermon series this fall. (You can listen to them on the Church Web Site!) The last part of October he traveled to Ethiopia again to help serve at the Preacher's Conference in Awasa. He took two teens with him, and led a young adults track of the program there.

I have had a very eventful year as I finally had my hip replacement surgery in September!  It was a longtime in coming, but I decided that this was the time to have it done.  I am so glad that I did.  I am almost fully recovered from the surgery itself and I'm amazed at how much more I can do for and with my family now that I am pain free.  What a blessing medical technology has been for our family this year! 

Grace is a big first grader and doing GREAT in school.  She is being taught at home (by Mommy!) and loves that each day part of her school work is done curled up on the couch snuggled up with books.  One of her projects this year has been to create a blog and chronicle the journey of Paddle to The Sea.  Based on her school book, of the same name, she and her Grandpa made a miniature canoe together that we will be putting in the American River this spring.  We hope it will make it all the way to the Pacific Ocean!

Noraa is an active four year old with an imagination that blows us away.  She has a Twitter account dedicated to her quotes that always make me smile.  If you are on Twitter, you can follow her @ noraaquotes.  She's doing school with us each day as well and surprises me with her joy of learning things beyond her "level".  Her daily selections of what to wear also keeps me in stitches.  There's never a dull moment with Noraa around!

Samuel, the "baby" of the family is hardly a baby anymore.  My big two year old likes to do things by himself, copy his older sisters every move, and work puzzles during school time.  He is always making me smile with his constant chatter about Woody Buzz (from Toy Story), his fascination with sucking his thumb and playing with his bellybutton, and his desire to "nuddle" (snuggle) any chance he gets.  He is a precious boy and a joy to our family!

We pray all is going well with you and yours this Christmas.  May the joy of Jesus Advent seep deep into your hearts and your homes! Much love from our family to yours!




Tuesday, August 17, 2010

School

Every year. Every child.


Every year is different. Every child is different. Every child is different every year! This is why we have decided to make our decisions about school based on those two things. We (like any other parent) want what's best for our children. What's best can sometimes change based on the circumstances. This year we felt it was best to keep Grace home for school. I am so very excited about it! We've had two days of school thus far and I'm loving it already. I know that not every day will be as smooth as these two have been, and that's okay with me. I know that there will be times that I am longing to "have a break", and days that I question my sanity. But above all that the foundational truth of the matter is this: IT'S NOT ABOUT ME!

It's about her...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Summer!

It's summer time! It's HOT... and that means it's time for lazy days outside watching the kids play in the pool or the sprinklers. I realize it's a sacrifice for me to give up valuable time to sit in my lawn chair with a good book and tanning lotion, but it's a sacrifice I'm willing to make!
So here's to ice water in princess water bottles, sun tea and sprinklers!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Smudged Rainbow

It's a melancholy day. The rain drizzles from the sky and the slight flecks of them falling on the wet patio give it a cool sheen. Puddles start to form in the low places of the uneven ground, and worms emerge from their earthen homes. The sidewalk chalk is smudged and kindergarten sight words are not so readable now. I love the rain.
Even the sound of cars passing by, sounds fresher in the rain. The smell of precipitation makes me happy. Today my children asked me why it's raining. I told them that "The clouds have too much water in them. When they have too much water, it falls from the sky creating rain. The rain waters the ground which makes things grow. Isn't our God great for creating such a perfect balance for our weather?" The words come easily and it's a simple explanation that satisfies the five and three year old curiosity, but I know there is more behind it than that. Their chatter fades in the background as I, myself wonder at the days before the flood and how the earth managed it's growth cycles then. What a wonder.

My girls enjoy listening to stories of "when I was a child". Their fascination with it makes me smile. I wish I had more memories, clearer recollections to fill that longing they have. It's something that I remember wanting to. To know what Daddy was like when he was a little person. Last night at bed time I was tired, more than a little cranky and generally overwhelmed. I told the girls that I needed to have a "heart to heart" talk with them. Their tendency to not listen, which then leads to disobedience, is not acceptable. We talked about what makes God happy and what makes Him sad, how we learn to obey our parents so that we can learn to obey Him. I proceeded to tell them stories from when I was a child, of times that I had disobeyed my parents. Their eyes were wide with concern when I told them that not only did I disobey and eat the chocolate diet pill from my mother's closet, I also lied about eating it. I hope through hearing the stories they do more than just listen for entertainment purposes. My heart, my prayer is that they learn from my mistakes. I want them to know that we are all fallible and that even their mother who now makes the rules, at one time had to follow rules laid out for her as well. I want them to know in the depths of their souls, that obedience (the first time) is not only a lesson to be learned now, but one that should be carried with you into adulthood. If applied, this obedience can save one from heartache and draw them into a deeper relationship with our Creator.