Usually I'm able to get Christmas cards out, but this year, something had to give. Please forgive me. I hope each of you know that we think of you and wish you a Merry Christmas, even though you didn't get a personalized card in the mail. This impersonal, e-card is going to have to suffice.
Just a quick update on our family:
We had a busy year - as I'm sure most of you did. We were loved having the chance to go down to Utah this summer for a Gee family reunion at BYU's Aspen Grove. It was a wonderful time, and we loved spending time together and seeing all the family we don't see near enough.
Kendall: He finished out an 5 year (approx) 'term' working with the Young Men in our church. He misses working with them. He now is the Ward Clerk, dealing with membership records and whatever else the Bishop wants him to do. He has been very busy with work. He was just offered an opportunity to become an owner in his company, DOWL/HKM. Its a big professional and financial commitment, but we're excited about this new phase in his career.
Carinne: I'm busy with the kids, homeschool. It may not sound like much, but my time is pretty much filled all the time with teaching, driving, organizing, cooking and constant cleaning. I love my days (most of them). As my kids get older, I cherish the time with them more and more (most of the time). In January, I had so much fun grabbing Isabel and Clara, and taking off for California. We spent 5 days going to Disneyland and to their "Mecca" (The American Girl store). It was a fun mother/daughter trip, and hopefully we'll get to do it again in a few years.
Ethan: 15 and in 10th grade. He's doing well in school. He had a blast going to EFY this summer in Provo. He also spent 10 days visiting my brother, Luke and his wife in Virigina. While he was there, he spent 5 days rafting down the James River with Luke and his Boy Scouts. He in enjoying participating in plays. He's been in 3 this year. He was on the track team last spring. He's still playing the piano, loves going to dances, learning to drive and can't wait to turn 16 in March so he can drive and date. Hard to believe he'll be gone in a couple years.
Isabel: She turns 12 next month and is in 6th grade. She can't wait to start Young Women's. She has become obsessed with horses. Her and Clara are taking horse back riding lessons. She is working a day every week cleaning out stalls to earn more riding lessons. She also was on a volleyball team this year and enjoyed that.
Clara: 9 and in 4th grade. She's getting so old. Seems like she really grew up lately. Her main obsession is books. You will hardly ever see her without several books surrounding her. She says that she has to have a pile of books with her just in case she finishs the book she's reading and she doesn't know what to read next. With all her reading, she's developed a more mature vocabulary and is always saying the funniest things.
Miles: 6 and in 1st grade. Miles is still in his 'adaptive learning' classroom at school. Its a small class (4 kids approx) with 3 teachers. The teachers are all training in teaching children with Autism. He's been making great strides. We are confident that he'll eventually he'll be mainstreamed. He talks all the time and has such a funny sense of humor. Everyone comments on his sense of humor. His big stumbling block is keeping him focused on those around him, and not letting him disappear into his mind. He still LOVES Angry Birds...in particular Star Wars Angry Birds. And thus...he's developed a love of Star Wars too. He loves Darth Vadar. We've had more than a few light saber accidents.
Joe: 4 and in preschool. He is such a character. He loves to show off and cause trouble. He's still pretty quiet with everyone else, but very talkative with us. Him and Cole are like a little 'gang'. They spend all their time together causing trouble, playing and beating each other up. He still likes cars, but also loves Jake and the Neverland Pirates, Superheros and Star Wars.
Cole: 2 - He's grown so much. He follows all the other kids around. He has to be apart of everything. We're hearing a lot of "I can do it myself". He's all smiles - except with he gets beat up (which is also frequent). I also hear a lot of "Joe pushed me". But, he can dish it out too. His obsession is Jake and the Neverland Pirates.
We hope you and your family enjoy the Christmas season. We hope that you feel the love of the season, the love of Christ and may you enjoy the blessings of Christ's Atonment in your life. I try to remind my kids that unless you work to live your life more like Christ throughout the year, then Christmas doesn't have much meaning. Thank you for your friendship and service to our family.
Merry Christmas and a wonderful upcoming 2014!