Greetings and God’s blessings to you this Christmas season. We trust that 2008 has been a good year for you. It has been for us if for no other reason than it was a pretty quiet year. Some of the highlights included:

  • Our first all-family trip to Six Flags where Anne was quite the coaster lover and Ty wasn’t quite as sure but did it anyway.

  • Getting to spend lots of time with Grammy & Papa Luttrell, as well as Steph, Joy and their kids this summer. The cousins LOVED hanging out with one another.

  • A week-long vacation for Mike and I (Chrisy) with some friends which in turn meant a week-long spoil-fest for the kids with Uncle Derek, Grammy & Papa.

  • Family vacation weekend at Starved-Rock State Park with lots of hiking and beautiful scenery. Over three days we hiked for almost 15 hours. Not bad for two kids with short legs.

Anne has been quite the star this year. A tumbling recital and kid’s musical in May, a dance recital in June, a solo at the Academic Foundation dinner in October (all the 2nd graders provided the entertainment), dancing at the nursing homes for Christmas, and a number of solos as well as a speaking line in the K-2 Christmas program at school. She loves being in dance, tumbling, kids choir, and 2nd grade. It’s hard to believe that she’ll be 8 years old in less than a month.

Ty is loving preschool and Sonrise (daycare). He is learning so much and is looking forward to Kindergarten next year. He does tumbling (but only because it is with sissy) and is active in every possible way. (What that means is we have lots of bumps, bruises and scratches all the time.) His 5-year-old humor keeps us laughing (or trying not to laugh) most of the time.

One of the biggest moments of the year was the completion of my practicum and Masters of Leadership and Ministry. I walked during graduation ceremonies in May and turned in my practicum paper in August before we left for vacation. I think Mike and the kids like having me around a little more now.  Another accomplishment for me this year was running and finishing my first half-marathon in May. It was hard, but really good. I’m still loving ministry at the church after 8 years and will be doing some new stuff in 2009.

Mike is now in year 5 at Carlisle Syntec. He is doing well and got a promotion this year. He has filled his free time with kids, golf, bowling, hunting and fishing (as always).

As we look toward 2009, we have hopes and dreams for our family and we pray that you will be richly blessed this season and in the coming year.