Dear Family and Friends,
I can't believe another whole year has come and gone already. So let's recap the whole year. Don is still working for Magic Leap and loves his job. Rachel and Sarah gave him a Star Wars storm trooper last Christmas. He took it to work and the engineers at Magic Leap use it to hold stuff up for testing their system. He calls this his dream job and can't believe he gets to work for such a groundbreaking company. But don't ask him anything about what he does - he is sworn to secrecy.
As for Barbara she is still home schooling Sarah this year. She has been doing a massive cleaning out of our whole house. We have too much stuff!!! She is trying desperately to clean out the back room so Sarah can have her own bedroom. She is still quite involved in doing genealogy research. Now that there is DNA testing going on, it adds a whole new dimension to genealogy.
Sarah has started 9th grade this year. High school? YIKES!!! Sarah still has a strong love for horses. She hopes to have her own horse ranch one day. Both girls were in Classical Conversations this past school year. They both participated in the Science Fair and a Mock Trial held before a real judge at the county courthouse. The trial was a lot of work, but everyone did a great job. It was such good experience for all the kids. Rachel decided she wanted to go to a brick-and-mortar school this year, so we enrolled her in Westminster Academy. This is the school that is part of our church. It has been challenging for her, but good. I think she thought it would be easier then home schooling.
In March, the girls and Barbara headed to Tallahassee with their American Heritage Girls scouting group. They all got to see how our state legislature works. Our local Representative had lunch with them while they were there. They got to sit in on a legislative session, tour the Governor's Mansion, and we threw in a ziplining event. Last month, the same group headed to Atlanta to volunteer for a few days at the Southern Regional Packing Center for Operation Christmas Child. These girls have been packing shoe boxes since about 1st grade. They have worked on the local level and county level. It was such an honor to serve at the regional center. They sorted through the boxes that were being shipped overseas to make sure there was nothing in there that was not supposed to be sent. They prayed over the boxes so that many children would come to know Christ as their Lord and Savior.
This summer, we all flew out to Denver, Colorado to do a 2 week tour of the mountain states. We spent time at Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs. We then headed to South Dakota, toured the Badlands, and saw Mt Rushmore. That was amazing piece of carving! We headed to Wyoming to see Devil's Tower (see card), which was in the movie Close Encounters. Next we went to Yellowstone - what a beautiful place. I love the mountains! We saw many wild animals, Old Faithful and the Periodic Spring. We also hiked at the Grand Tetons. (see card) That has been on Barbara's bucket list for many years. We went white water rafting on the Snake River. We headed over to Salt Lake City and the Great Salt Lake. When in Salt Lake City one must visit Family Search headquarters and do a little genealogy research. We then headed down to southern Utah and visited 4 of the “Big Five” - Zion, Bryce, Canyonlands, and Arches National Parks. (see card). Even though those parks are all in the south, they are all very different from each other.
You can see a catalog of the whole trip with photos and videos online at:
After that we were home for 5 days and then drove to Georgia to go to a family reunion on Don's Mom's side of the family. It was so nice to spend time with cousins we had heard of, but hadn't gotten to know before. We found out there were some game players in the group. YEAH!!! We hope you all have a blessed Christmas and a very Happy New Year!