Thursday, December 22, 2016

Merry Christmas From Us

Well, well, well, it appears as though the earth had just about survived another turn around the sun. Which means it is time for our annual Christmas letter. 

I'll try not be cliche with the tired old this has been a year of many exciting changes for us.   

Although it really has. 

The youngest member of our family underwent the most changes this past 2016.  After all, she started out the year as en embryo. 



Progressed into fetal status, growing and developing all sorts of organs in the meanwhile. 


On July 28th ye old uterus sent out the eviction notice and baby made a rather hasty exit. Annika Amelia was born at 7:47 PM, sharing a birthday with her great-grandmother (Amelia P.) weighing a perfect 7 lb, 7 oz. 



Now, she is a rolling, cooing, babbling, smiling, laughing, drooling, nap-hating 4-month old. 





Elsa Rose started out the year as a bright, imaginative, youngest child of three years of age. 



And is ending the year as a big sister, a 4-yo who loves coloring, drawing, learning the alphabet, "reading", making up stories, dressing up and playing with dolls.  She loves attending preschool class in our homeschool co-op and playing with her little friends. 




She adores her little sister, although the feeling may not always be mutual.  



However, no doubt it won't be long before Elsa and Annika are just like Elsa and Anna of Frozen lore. (No, we did not purposely name our kids after characters in a Disney movie!). 






John de la Croix started out the year as a 7-yo 2nd grader that won the Indiana K-3 state Chess Championship.




In May he put on a monkey suit and make his First Holy Communion.




He's finishing off the year as an 8-yo 3rd grader, who likes to think deep, pensive thoughts, or least sorta approximate a pose of doing so.



John loves chess, Garfield, sports, Star Wars, Calvin and Hobbs and taking whatever chance he can to play with his friends and get away from the girl-ness at home. 

Greta Marie started out the year as an 11-yo 5th grader. 

She won 3rd place in the Indiana Girls Chess Championship.




She entered our cat, Zorro in the 4-H fair and won a blue ribbon.




She loves baking, crafting, creating stuff, writing stories and acting. She played the lead in a small 4-H production of Jackie and the Chili stalk (playing Jackie) and is now a 12-yo 6th grader who has a small role in an upcoming homeschool production of The Jungle Book. 



Heidi Marie started the year as a homeschooling non-confirmed,13-yo 8th grader. 

in March she received the gift of Confirmation.



In July she entered our dog, George, in the 4-H fair and won a really big trophy!





And in August she started high school at a local, early-college, magnet school.

So she's finishing out the year as a public-schooled, high school, 14-yo student with mostly A's.   She played soccer in the fall with her school and just joined the speech team.   She also likes to think deep, pensive thoughts and is still a voracious reader. 




Amelia started out the year gestating a baby.




She is finishing up the year pretending to be a cow while feeding said baby.  




She is still keeping busy homeschooling Greta, John and Elsa, teaching Chemistry lab in our homeschool co-op, volunteering with La Leche League and working with Leapforce. Occasionally, she blogs. Even less occasionally, she cleans. 

Ben started the year as a substitute teacher/self-employed struggling lawyer and is ending the year as an employed Associate lawyer for a local law firm, working out of their satellite office up in Amish country, Indiana. 



The new job is going well and is an much-awaited answer to lots of prayer and waiting and hoping. 

In his free time, Ben enjoys playing chess, watching movies and spending time with his lovely wife (who just called herself lovely because she is modest like that and likes to speak of herself in the 3rd person) and darling children. 






We wish all our friends, family and dear readers of this sad, neglected blog a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and Blessed New Year.  No matter what happens in 2017, may His Joy and Peace Reign in your home.

Love,

Ben, Amelia, Heidi, Greta, John, Elsa, and Annika. 





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