Thursday, January 27, 2022

Happy New Year 2022!

We are now at the one and a half year mark since our retirement from Cru in the summer of 2020! Retirement life has been wonderful, and we are thanking God for His care and help as we have made this big change in our lives. We'd love to share a few of the highlights from 2021 with you ...

Our 50th Anniversary Celebration

Twenty-one members of our family gathered at a rental home in Missouri the end of July to celebrate together! Our six kids and their families gave us the most memorable 50th Anniversary celebration! And what fun it was to spend several days together in a big spacious home with its own little private lake.

Our 50th Anniversary Trip

Shortly after returning home from the most wonderful time together with our family in Missouri, we left on a ten-day trip, just the two of us. This trip was extra special, as we used the money gifts that our family had given us over the past two years (for significant birthdays 75 & 70 for us, and also for our retirement) to fund the trip! We especially love to be by water, so drove down to the southern part of TX, and stayed on Galveston island.

On our actual 50th Anniversary Day (August 14), we were at the Riverwalk in San Antonio, TX. We are thanking God for the joy and blessing of sharing life together for 50 years now! 

After being together with our wonderful family during the summer, we did not even entertain the idea that we could be together again for Christmas. But before we even left the rental home in Missouri, our two sons (the ones who live the farthest away from us), told us that they wanted to come home for Christmas, too! 

Family Christmas 2021

It was a blessing beyond measure, the icing on the cake, to be together with our family twice in one year. Especially after the very unusual season due to pandemic when we had our longest stretch ever when we were unable to all be together.

We were 25 precious family members around our dining room tables, with everyone home except very two loved family members who are in Japan (our oldest granddaughter and her husband). With each year that passes, we are even more in awe of the priceless gift of family. 

Mixed in with the joys of being with family in 2021, we also hold so very many memories of times with our friends, special gifts from God in this season of life that we are in. We are grateful for many memories made, especially with our CityGroup (small group), a special trip we took in the fall with close friends, and so many connections we made with others throughout the year.

And overarching all of the gifts of 2021, we treasure most of all the Greatest Gift of all ... Immanuel: God with us. Through all the joys and trials of life, we sense in even deeper ways than before, the nearness and presence of our Lord and Savior.