Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas Letter

I love the whole Christmas season. I love the colors, smells, and the music. I love the whispers and shouts of “Merry Christmas”, and the children’s wishes and dreams. I love the spirit of the holiday beginning with remembering the Savior who came into the world so humbly. The dichotomy is crazy—spending so much while honoring a babe born in the manger. But I love it all, the whole package. It’s just so ……….JOYFUL!! It is a great end to a blessed 2009.

Scott has had a life changing year for sure. He reconnected with an old high school friend (crush) through Facebook. We all could see the writing on the wall immediately, and in a hot air balloon over Temecula he asked Cynthia Allen to marry him in August. They bought a “forever” house that is big enough to raise their future family, and Scotty got his BA degree. To top off that very special year they are going to have a little girl around May 22nd. Neither of them wandered far from where they were raised. Scott is a policeman and Cynthia is a teacher in Chino. They both knew they were waiting for someone special, and they found each other…….again!

Jim, Samantha, Hailey and Madyson are thriving in Lake Elsinore. Hailey started middle school this year…I know can you believe it? She will be 12 in January. Mady is 9 and besides school she enjoyed competition dancing with Just Dance It. We are so proud of both of our beautiful girls. I especially enjoy our “girlie days” together. Jim is working as Guest Services Manager at Riverside Community Hospital where he loves giving hospital patients and their families the kind of attention they need and deserve. Samantha is looking forward to some great opportunities ahead as she works at Winco in receiving. They have had some great family moments this year! One of the best was Madyson's baptism. Uncle Marque did the praying and the dunking but there was lots of family and friends there supporting.

Marque, Sarah, and Leah have done quite a bit of traveling in 2009, disproving those naysayers who said life would change with a baby. Have to tell you they seem to pack and carry a ton of stuff with relative ease. They have really been here for the family this year. I think they have made the trip to California five times. Marque is Vice President over legal stuff (I think) at PMI. Sarah is so creative with her time and talents while she is a full time Mommy to Leah. Leah has had an eventful year learning new words, how to crawl, then walk and lots of other new things. The biggest event for the family, the whole family, was the day the adoption became final. Another special day was when she was sealed in the Mount Timpanogos Temple to her Mommy and Daddy. What a spiritual feast that was. Leah is very proficient in engaging everyone with her big blue eyes and sparkling smile, and is growing way to fast.

As for Bud and I, our divorce became final in February of this year. We have remained friends which makes gathering with family so much easier. Today he is coming over to help wrap the presents we bought together, and then we are heading to Scott and Cynthia’s for a pre-Christmas celebration. He had a heart attack in September which scared all of us, but him particularly. He will be doing some life changing so he can stick around for awhile. I have had some recent changes too. I will be working 3 days a week from now on. Not my idea, but it’s growing on me. Who knows what 2010 will bring?

It is so funny that as our divorce ended our marriage we had such an incredible year of family. We were all together for such magnificent events this year including a baptism, wedding, birthdays, Thanksgiving, and a cruise together to the Mexican Riviera. Bud and I definitely did something right as we raised our children because they are truly amazing. They have turned the tables and given us such love and support as we have lived through this challenge. My boys have chosen the most amazing daughters for me, and have given me a wonderful identity as “Gramma” to the cutest granddaughters ever. I feel incredibly blessed!

Let me wish all of my friends and family a very Merry Christmas and a spectacular 2010!