Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Merry Christmas to you and yours!

Welcome to our 3rd annual on-line Christmas letter! Whether you arrived via our Christmas card, blog reader, Facebook, or are simply passing through- we wish you a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year!

Dear Family and Friends-

It’s hard to believe that another year has flown by… Life continues to progress at the speed of light in our household, where kids keep getting taller- while our house continues to get smaller!

‘Teenage Son’ is midway through his junior year at MVHS where he is enjoying Chem AP and World History. It’s hard to believe that we are already starting to look at colleges for him- wasn’t it just yesterday that he was toddling around our living room sporting his trademark bowl haircut? He has his learner’s permit and is looking forward to getting his license soon. He also enjoys being active in the youth group at church and went on his first WOW JAM trip to LA in June.

‘Teenage Daughter’ also attends MVHS and is a freshman this year. She loves the social aspects of being a high school student; even though her visual issues have made the academics more of a challenge (her favorite class is drama). We are blessed to be in a district with a great support system for disabled students, however and she seems to be settling into a rhythm now. She also went to WOW JAM this summer (her second trip) and has also been very active in youth group this year.

'Young Son' is now a 5th grader at CMA School. He loves school and complains during the summer months when we are out. One of his highlights of 2008 was taking a solo trip to Poppy and Grandma’s house in N Idaho where he learned to snowboard at Schweitzer. He also loves camping and is looking forward to a week-long class trip to environmental camp in Mendocino this spring.

J and I continue to serve at the church that we have attended for the last 19 years - Jim as a TRAC teacher (adult Sunday school) while I serve as missions director. We traveled to Tanzania again this summer, taking two separate, short term missions teams to work with CHaRA. We both accompanied a team to the remote area of Haydom, where the team completed a school for the village children. After two weeks, J returned to the US while I stayed in TZ for an additional two weeks with the second team. This team worked in CHaRA’s malaria clinics on the islands of Pemba and Zanzibar where we screened thousands of Muslim women and children for malaria, administered medical treatment, and distributed mosquito nets. J and I continue to be burdened for the people of this amazing country and look forward to returning in the future, perhaps even on a long term basis. In addition to our overseas trip, we managed to fit in a couple of family trips to Disneyland and a short, family trip to Seattle just before Thanksgiving.

In the midst of all the craziness that we call everyday life, we have discovered Facebook! We are enjoying keeping up with friends and re-connecting with some that we had lost touch with. If you are on FB, drop us a ‘friend request’- we’d love to hear from you! In the meantime, we hope that this finds you all well and we pray that you will have a joy-filled Christmas and a blessed New Year!


Monday, October 13, 2008

At least the kids ate their veggies!

You might remember this WFMW post from several weeks ago in which I requested help in sneaking veggies into my kids' diets... I received many recommendations for Jessica Seinfeld's cookbook entitled Deceptively Delicious, which I did purchase. After perusing the cookbook, I decided that cauliflower might be an easy veggie to slip in under the radar.

So last night I undertook what will forever be known as The Great Cauliflower Caper of 2008. Planning on making mashed potatoes for dinner, I snuck one whole head of cauliflower into the batch of potatoes. I quickly steamed the cauliflower in the microwave while the potatoes were boiling, then pureed it in the blender with the butter and milk that were already going into the potatoes. After draining the potatoes, I added the puree and mashed it all together.

The result?

In a word- delicious! You honestly could not even taste the cauliflower and my kids were thrilled that I had made one of their all-time favorite foods for dinner. Even more thrilling was that I was encouraging seconds!

I was equally thrilled with the success of my experiment. Until J started vomiting that is. Unfortunately, I forgot that my husband DOES NOT tolerate cauliflower well and as a result, he spent the next 1/2 hour in the bathroom expelling said mashed potatoes.

I guess we won't be doing that again after all!


Friday, October 10, 2008

Still FrazzMom

Things have been kind of crazy at my house lately... The combination of fall sports, parenting teenagers- including one with a disability, and juggling all the usual activities is taking its toll. Honestly, something has to go- and right now that would be blogging. I just don't have the energy right now.

Frankly, I am exhausted.

So consider me on hiatus right now. The good news is that fall sports will end in a few weeks and one of my other major committments will wrap up in early November. Life will once again be a little more managable.

I hope...