Dear friends and family,
No, this isn’t an errant Christmas card that got lost in the mail. This is me finally getting my act together, which happens long after everyone else has packed up and moved on to the next holiday.
Our family is doing well. This summer Sophie married Jakob Hartsock, one of the finest young men I have ever met. They are presently attending school at BYU in Provo, Utah. Sophie is facing some health issues that will prevent her from playing volleyball next semester and we’re hoping for resolution and healing to occur soon. Izzy is in her senior year of high school. She, too, has struggled with health issues and I’m filled with gratitude and awe to watch how my girls have reacted to these trials by deepening their faith, resilience, and searing, sarcastic wit. Caroline, our youngest, is in her last year of middle school. She is a dear, sweet girl with a rather startling lust for blood out on the volleyball court. I’m enjoying a return to university, pursuing a master’s degree in counseling from UNLV, while Roger and several friends have started a new law firm that’s located suspiciously close to a very good French bakery.
We hope you made it through this year with a deepening appreciation for the goodness of life, even if in less than ideal circumstances. I’ve been thinking about something a friend recently said: “Less than ideal circumstances are exactly what we came to this earth to experience.” It feels good to contemplate the truth of these words, which remind me it’s not what happens to us, but rather how we react that says anything about who we are and what meaning we find in this life.
I am grateful for the Savior, who showed by His example how to endure trials well and who extends power and grace to help me through my difficult moments. It’s because of Him I see such beauty, even in times of sorrow, and the great worth of every soul. Thank goodness life does not have to be ideal in order to be beautiful!
We are grateful for your friendship and wish you beauty, peace, and happiness in the new year to come.