Monday, December 23, 2013

Merry Christmas 2013!!

Merry Christmas Family and Friends!  We can’t believe it has been a whole year already.  It feels as if 2013 went by a lot faster than 2012, but it’s been a great one for us! We are still in Saratoga Springs, and absolutely love it!  We are surrounded by wonderful people that help us learn and grow each day!
We've been blessed to do a lot of traveling, and do many fun things this past year! In May we went to Disneyland with Janell's parents and sister, and the kids absolutely LOVED being able to go. We enjoyed seeing the Disney magic in the eyes of our children. At the end of May we went to Moab and Arches with the Rowleys, where Janell's parents opened their mission call to Columbus, Ohio. Then in June we were able to spend a week enjoying things here in Utah with the Croppers.

Darrell is still working at WJ Bradley as a mortgage underwriter, and we are grateful for all the hard work and effort he puts in for our family both at work and at home. He was able to also go on an adventure in November with his brother, sister and nephews to the BYU vs. Notre Dame Football Game in South Bend, IN.  Despite frigid, freezing temperatures and BYU losing, they all had a great time! His biggest news of the year was being called to the Stake High Council and getting to be ordained as a High Priest by his father.  He insisted that he’s “too young,” to be a High Priest, but we know he was given the call from Heavenly Father and that he will do a marvelous job. Since being called, he seems to also have caught the Spirit of Elijah, and he, along with some of his family members, have been able to do a lot of family history in the past few months.  It’s been awesome seeing the progress that has happened with the help of the Spirit.

Janell has had a busy year keeping up with 3 kids. She has to agree with the phrase that 3 kids are a lot more than 2!  But she loves being able to be at home with the kids and is enjoying them each day. She has enjoyed a lot of running this year with many 5K’s, a 10K, and even completed a Half-Marathon in June. She has about 12 piano students, and loves being able to pass on her love of music.  
She stays busy at church playing the organ, and being in Young Womens.  She has also had the new opportunity since August to be on the Stake Preparedness Committee over Provident Living.  Despite feeling very inadequate, she has made some great friendships and has grown a lot.

Steven turned 6 this year and started Kindergarten in August.  His first day of school he prayed that he would would “not be scared, and that he would be the smartest in his class.”  He’s learned a lot so far, and we especially love watching his reading ability increase daily.  This past fall after playing for 3 seasons, he seemed to catch on to soccer really well and now loves it!  He scored his first goal, and we’ve really seen him start to turn into a little athlete.  He loves playing with friends, going to music class, and will be starting piano lessons at the beginning of the year.

Lillie is 3, but will be turning 4 within the next couple of weeks.  She started preschool in September, and she is always telling us of the things she is learning.  She also started a dance class with a local studio and loves it so far.  She sings songs all day long, is almost always seen playing with a baby doll, and is very, very independant.

Jonathan turned one on Thanksgiving Day and is such a wonderful and happy kid.   He is definitely a momma’s boy, but has a quick teasing smile for many.  He loves to follow his brother and sister everywhere, and wants to go, go, go! He crawls and climbs everywhere, especially up and down the stairs.  He also loves to play with cars and balls.

We are especially mindful of many family and friends who have gone through happy times, and sad times this year, and we are thankful for the chance to be able to smile with them, laugh with them, cry with them, and pray for them.  We are so very blessed and we know that the Lord is mindful of each one of us and is always standing by ready to help and bless us.

We send our love and prayers to all!! We love you!