2009 Year in Review: (Ben is my guest blogger for this post)
*Vegas in January! Ben’s sis Emily was Miss Kansas in the Miss America 2009 Pageant and we took Kate with us when she was seven weeks old. Taking a newborn to Vegas wasn’t the best idea looking back, but both sets of grandparents were there to see her and help out, as well as my favorite Aunt Christy and cousin Beth!
*Jambo is no longer the center of attention at our house (as Kate has taken that role over by force) but she’s still cute as ever.
*(Ben) I continue to do International Student Ministry through New Hope Church. I went to the ACMI’09 conference in Los Angeles at the end of May. Manhattan, KS will host that conference in May 2010 & I’m excited to serve as the conference director. I also went to the Xenos Summer Institute with the New Hope staff guys in Columbus, OH. Once a month I enjoy leading worship & I have preached a few times too. You can check out the latest sermon here!
*(Ben)I performed a friend’s wedding at the Thorncrown Chapel in Eureka Springs, AR in early June. Eureka Springs is a town you’ve got to visit at least once. Then we hopped over to Branson, MO for a couple days; a town which everyone has visited at least once.
*(Ben)I procured a 1995 Ford F-150, extended cab, stick-shift at a great price. Now I’m able to help folks move junk without borrowing Paxton’s trusty Chevy. I love cruisin’ Manhattan while listening to The Avett Brothers & contemplating life! Kate & Jambo can ride along too as I was able to pick up an extra car seat at the end of a neighborhood-wide garage sale in Verona Hills, KCMO (my in-laws’ neck of the woods).
*Both Ben and I had our ten-year high school reunions in September and October and had so much fun reconnecting with old friends and sharing the stories of our lives. I graduated from St. Teresa’s Academy in KCMO & Ben graduated from Sumner Academy in the Dotte…both in 1999…saving the best for last ya’ll!
*Kate had a year of milestones, some of which were awesome! She started walking around 101/2 months and sleeping through the night on her first birthday!
*With the exception of a handful of nights, Kate was a night-waker and most all of 2009 has been lived in a state of exhaustion. But you get used to the rhythms of life, I think.
*(Ben) Kate is strong, beautiful & healthy. Kate’s walking/running all over the place. I don’t want to leave the house in the morning. All I want to do is play with my daughter. Our whole family (Maris, Kate, Jambo & I) love to make a pile & howl together. Go watch Where the Wild Things Are & you’ll know what I’m talking about.
*We received our degree (Ben) & certificate (Maris) from Emmanuel House Seminary. This was a very formative experience for us. It affects every context of our lives. If you are in the Manhattan or Kansas City area you too can look into what Emmanuel House offers, as we highly recommend it.
*A great friend of ours, Mitch Trumpp, constructed a dining bench for our kitchen table. It’s a beautiful addition to our family table space and something we will have for years and years. Check out his products here!
*Ben and I celebrated our four year anniversary in November over Thanksgiving (November 26) by going to Blanc Burger in South KC. It was de-lish!
*Ben and I ran our first 5K race together, on Thanksgiving morning, and so enjoyed our experience that we are wanting to train for another race once the snow melts in our area…and the weather gets a little warmer. (At least above 20 degrees…)
At the end of 2007 we were hoping & praying that we would be able to have a child. At the end of 2008 we were welcoming Kate into this world. At the end of 2009 we were delighted to celebrate a difficult but good year together, Kate’s first year. Thanks to many of you for your role in our lives & praise be to God for His abundant provision!