Will you forgive me for writing you a Christmas greeting online?I’ll try to make it relatively short and sweet (with lots of photos)!I haven’t attempted sending Christmas cards for several yearsbut still love receiving cards, e-cards, and joyful photos and drawings—which go right up on our refrigerator.Thank you to each dear person who has blessed our family in this way!Alan and I have had a memorably happy year
despite the fact that he’s working harder than ever.We love living in Grand Rapids! Of course, we also love touring with our kids, medical meetings in Hawaii,hanging out at the top of Victoria Falls, etc! We have no plans to retire any time soon, even if does get pretty snowy around here, and we’re acutely aware that every new day is a gift from God.Concerning Aaron’s family, Carlie pointed out that they are suddenly at a crucial new threshold with everyone out of diapers, speaking clearly and totally mobile. They’re having lots of fun adventures in California, although they’ve been very faithful about returning to visit, and we enjoyed a memorable canoe trip with them last fall. Mike’s family is living in Italy now, where Christmas is foggy and neither white nor bright but life is beautiful anyway.
They came home to visit us here at “Tanglewood Cottage” last summerand then went on a U.P. road trip “in the RB” (aka/recreational vehicle) with “Papa and Nana.” Super fun!Jon and Gerlinde welcomed their third daughter into their home last summer, and Nana and Grandpa (different families have different designations for us) were able to visit during that most happy occasion! They’ll be in Germany this Christmas with Gerlinde’s family. Daniel’s family lives here in GR, so we are blessed by getting to see themnearly every week and watch while Samuel grows up right before our eyes.What a special joy it is to have them living close by!
Brianna is expecting Baby #2 in April. I can hardly wait!
Stephen is home for the holidays between semesters at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY, where he is working on a PhD in music history. He also plays part-time at a local church. Joel decided to drop his graduate studies to take a position as assistant editor with Kregel Publishers here in GR. I can’t tell you how much fun it’s been having him back at home! He adds a dimension to life that I’d forgotten how much I missed until he came home again. “The more the merrier” and the more the emotionally richer too, I think! Life for me is happiest when lived in community with other loved ones. In fact, I can’t imagine anything better than graduating to heaven one day, where I will share a “mansion” (abiding place) with all those who have become God’s children by faith in Jesus. I am hoping and praying I’ll see you all there! Meanwhile, Merry Christmas! May you have a splendid 2017!
“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” (John 14:1-3)