Dear family and friends,
We send our love and greetings, and our wish for a very happy Christmas.
It has been a hard year for us in many ways. We have had losses, health concerns, and other challenges, but things are smoothing out and we are concluding the year with much happiness. We know that if we trust in the Lord we will be blessed.
Cary has worked at four different schools this year. He is now submitting many job applications, and plans to defend his dissertation in April. Please pray that he will have clear ideas and be able to write quickly and well.
I keep very busy and find daily joy in caring for the kids. We do lots of crafts, play lots of games, and have lots of fun. In some ways it is nice having three girls at the same stage. Sometimes I feel like I have my own little preschool at home. I have also been serving in the Primary presidency at church for a couple of years and really love it. When things settle down around here for a few days, I usually get an idea for a big project. The most recent was redoing our livingroom.
I am still feeding Lana, and she is still coming along slowly. She is eating real food instead of special formula. (Most of it is pureed, but it is a step in the right direction.) We have also been able to stop giving her stomach medications. She definitely has slower digestion than normal and still throws up sometimes, but it has improved a great deal. Our prayer is that she will someday enjoy food and eat enough independently to be healthy.
Everett is in kindergarten this year, and enjoying himself thoroughly. He is still as bright and exuberant and boisterous as ever, but he does manage to keep it down when his brain is engaged in learning to read and write. He is definitely like a little sponge right now. He can often hear a song once or twice and have it memorized.
Lana is feisty and sweet at the same time. Recently she has decided that she wants to beat everyone at everything. She also loves to talk. She had been behind her sisters in this department and it seems like she’s trying to make up for it. She has vocabulary I never would have expected her to know. She likes pink and green. She is very loving and usually lists all of her family members when she prays. Though the smallest by a couple of inches, she’s the fastest of the girls.
Gwyn is very thoughtful. She has smiling eyes, which occasionally have a rather mischievous glint. Her favorite color is red. She can be somewhat stubborn. I wonder where she got that from? (That would be both parents in case any of you had any doubt.) She can be strong and quiet. She had fun pulling me down the hill on a sled. For those of you who have trouble telling her and Maddie apart, Gwyn now has a freckle on her right cheek.
Maddie’s smile lights up her whole face. She is a little sunshine. She is sometimes a little sneaky (like when she went up to my room and painted her fingernails—without getting the nailpolish on anything else). Maddie likes purple and pink. Sometimes I think she just picked purple because she wanted to be different. She is the most easygoing of the three, and sometimes changes what she picks just because one of the other girls wanted what she had chosen. She loves her snuggie blanket. (Thankfully she has three so I don’t have trouble washing them.) Maddie is a little artist. I’m amazed at what she comes up with sometimes.
We hope you are well, and wish you a wonderful year to come.
Mandy (and the rest of the family, of course!)