Wow! As I pause from my busy schedule to write my annual Christmas letter I find myself enjoying a hot cup of homemade apple cider, listening to Christmas music and reflecting on the wonders of this past year. I am finding it hard to figure out where to begin, so I'll start where I left off last year.
I am still working for Grace Clinic and finding new challenges every week. I love my job because it gives me a feeling of joy and accomplishment. The clinic is doing well and we are now serving even more people and we have five employees and three work study students. We are looking to hire two more work study students and we are still praying to find two full time nurses. We had two nurses for a little while but do to other obligations they were unable to stay working full time. They both still volunteer for the clinic and are a great help. Please pray that we will be able to find their replacements soon. All our volunteers are such a vital part of the clinic and they are truly a blessing to help meet the needs of those who come through our doors every week. We know that God is good, He will bring more help, and He is faithful to complete the good work He has started within each of us.
My parents are doing very well and have been making updates to their house as well as spending time being grandparents to five little boys. Izaak, Kynda, and Caden are doing well and still enjoying Reno. I got to go spend about a week with them in April of this year and really enjoyed hanging out with them. It is hard at times to have them so far away, but at least I can hop on a plane and be there in just a few hours. Caden is growing up so quickly and he is such a delight to talk to on the phone. I am looking forward to seeing them here very soon. They will be here around the New Year. Lisa and Josh have four wonderful boys who keep them very busy. Chester has started kindergarten, William is still in pre-school, Markus and Joshua Jr. are at home keeping Lisa busy. As you can tell I just love spending time with my family!
Well this year has brought me a huge change in that I bought my first home! Preacher and I are now living in a three bedroom, two bath home on nearly an acre and a half. It is a brand new home so I have a ton of landscaping to do, but because it is winter some of it will have to wait until this coming spring. Preacher has adjusted well to the new place but we are still having a battle over the kitchen. He just doesn't want to stay out of it, which makes me laugh sometimes and other times I want to cream him. Oh well, he will learn eventually.
I hosted Thanksgiving in my new place this year and let me tell you it was such a joy to have my house filled with my family and friends. There were thirteen of us for dinner and let me tell you I now appreciate mom even more for all the hard work she did every Thanksgiving to make it such a wonderful time. I had her come and help me since this was my first time making a turkey and learning how to be a good hostess. Mom found out that she likes my kitchen just as much as I do. It was such a blessing to have Mark and his family come for Thanksgiving.
Yes, Mark and I are still together and he is a blessing to me! He brings me such joy and I love spending time with him any chance I get. In fact he is here right now as I write this letter. He has a tendency to know just the right times to come over, usually when I am making dinner or just needing some company. I have been reading him this letter to make sure I haven't left anything out. Mark and his parents have been a great joy to me this year! They have encouraged me to pursue my goals and dreams. I feel like I am blossoming into the woman that God has created me to be. Mark got me a piano from good friends of his and Mark's dad and mom helped to restore it to its former glory. It sounds so wonderful to have music in my house. I find myself sitting down and just playing and singing what comes into my mind. The joy that is filling my life is indescribable!
That is all that has taken place in a nut shell this year. I am excited to see what the New Year will hold for me. I hope that this letter finds each of you in good health and surrounded by family and friends that will encourage you to shoot for your dreams too! May God bless each one of you and shine His face upon you this year! I will continue to lift each of you up in my prayers this coming year as I pray you will do the same for me!