Thursday, December 17, 2009

Christmas letter, 2009

EDIT: I am so sorry that this is cramped and hard to read! I am in a fight with blogger right now, and I might not win. My apologies!
Wow, another year has passed! I so look forward to Christmastime, despite it's hectic and over scheduled nature. Believe it or not, I also look forward to writing a Christmas update, letting people know what has been going on in our lives and reflecting on the past 365 days. This year, like every other, has been full of ups and down and lots of firsts for kids and parents alike. More ups than downs, thankfully- and that will be the subject of this year's letter.

At the close of 2009 the Patenaude's are extremely thankful for...

...Sisters! Our crew now numbers three, and three GIRLS at that! We have so much fun watching the girls be sisters together. Playing, pretending, laughing, loving, fighting, and being funny.
...The end of a decent pregnancy with no true complications.
...A face paced and simple delivery, welcoming Esther Hansen Patenaude to the family (October 2).
...A steady job for Eric that meets our needs.
...The sometimes uncomfortable opportunity for reflection and change that Eric's job brings.
...The opportunity for Becca to stay at home with the girls, attempting to shape little people into God-followers.
...The forced humility that comes by parenting and being with these little people day in and day out.
...A co-worker who picks Eric up two days a week so that I (Becca) can use the van. On Tuesdays and Thursdays we scurry around to preschool, errands, and play dates.
...A warm, dry, and snug house.
...The possibility that someday we will live in a warm dry and spacious house. :)
...An emergency room only 4 blocks away. Each of the girls had a trip this year: Eva for stitches in her chin, Hope for anaphalactic shock (egg allergy), Esther for viral meningitis.
...The opportunity to supplement our income by providing daycare for another baby.
...And the last day that the baby came to our house and started being cared for by her own daddy.
...Our not-so-small group at church. We share the intimate details of each other's lives and do our best to "love each other deeply" (1 Peter 1) through word and deed.
...The five weeks of meals provided by our small group after Esther's birth.
...Monday nights when we alternate childcare and dates with our dear friends Aaron and Bethany.
...A growing marriage in which we seem to become increasingly at peace with ourselves and each other.
...Camping. Eric did some hardcore winter camping last January. The rest of us camped with him several times during the summer. It was especially fun to camp with my grandparents and parents at Lake Mille Lacs, a four generational camping trip!
...Levi Justice. We happily welcomed our first cousin on the Spears side, only 4 weeks older than Esther. We're expecting two more cousins on the Patenaude side, bringing the grand total to 12!
...Energy. My days at home are bustling, and I'm thankful for the grace to keep up with it all. I'm also thankful for happy little girls who spin circles around me and make daring leaps off the couch into my lap.
...Fun. Nintendo Wii, trips to the park, bike rides, hiking, sight seeing, relaxing with friends, grilling, and building snow houses are just a few of our entertaining endeavors.
...Visits from friends and family. This year has been a bit slower than years past, but our itty-bitty spare room and bath provided comfort for many dear ones over the past year.
...Good books. I have so enjoyed reading to Eva and Hope this year, particularly the Little House on the Prairie books and the Box Car Children. Eric and I have even cracked a few books lately as well!
...Hard work. Eric continues to get himself into a wide range of home improvement projects, and it seems to be really good for him on many levels. We all enjoy the fruit of his labor when they're complete.
...Friends and family. We are blessed to call many delightful people friends and so thankful that they stick with us through the ups and downs. We also cherish the fellowship of both sides of our family where relationships are strong and constant.
But we are immeasurably thankful for...
...the birth of Jesus, celebrated at Christmas. Through Him we have these abundant good gifts, fellowship with God the Father, and the Holy Spirit to walk with us on this wild journey. Someone recently praised Eric with the words, "you're a good man, Mr. Patenaude." To which he rightly responded, "Noooo, but I have a great Savior!" We are thankful for Jesus' birth, death, and most importantly resurrection this year.

We wish you a Merry Christmas and a new year filled with a deeper understanding of God's love for you!

with Thanksgiving,

Eric, Becca, Eva (4), Hope(2), and Esther(2 mos.)

1 comment:

The Mrs. said...

Very appropriate. We are thankful with you! (goodness I sound like Mom and Grandma :-) )