Saturday, December 13, 2008
Dear Family and Friends, December 8, 2008
I hope this letter finds all of you doing well. I can’t believe that another year is over. We are all doing great here in Florida. We get too busy at times, but that’s just the way it is these days. So, here is our little yearly update so we won’t be complete strangers to everyone.
Bren is six years old and in first grade. He is growing so fast; I can’t believe my baby is so big. He has a quick wit and keeps us laughing (or scratching our heads). He loves to torture Kelsi’s boyfriend. I seriously wonder where he comes up with the things he says to him. I just asked him what he likes—besides TV and games—and he said “Hershey’s”. His big news of the year is that one of his front teeth that he knocked out a couple years ago is coming in! Look out Chuck~E~Cheese, here we come ~ it’s party time!
Seth will turn 11 next week. He loves to read, and is often toting a book or two wherever he goes. He is still a huge Star Wars fan. He is in 5th grade, and looped with Mr. Greenlee, his teacher from last year. His favorite subject in school is science. He decided not to play football anymore, but is interested in martial arts. Seth is an awesome big brother, and I often get compliments from other adults about how good he is to Bren. (They don’t see the way they can be at home.)
Zayn is 14 and started high school this year. He lettered his first year of JV Football, and is now wrestling for the high school team. He became a certified scuba diver this spring. He is almost as big as Derick, and so much like him. He is getting excited to start driving soon. Seminary starts at 5:40 am and he just wants to get there—Ha-Ha. The girls are swarming, but so far nothing too serious has developed. Keep your fingers crossed.
Kelsi is 17 and a junior at Lake Gibson High School. She is an honor student (NHS), and participates in several clubs, such as FCA, Lionettes, and French. She is gearing up for the tennis season to start. As mentioned before, she has met “the love of her life” and can’t seem to live without him. She graduated from Barbizon in September, and is doing some modeling work. Kelsi is flying to Los Angeles in January for the International Modeling and Talent Association (IMTA) Competition.
Derick is still loving his job at Pepperidge Farm. He just received the Extraordinary Performance Award, which is the highest recognition in the Campbell Soup Company. He is also the Executive Officer for the 841st Engineer Battalion (Combat) based out of Miami. So, if he isn’t at work, he is on the road. Miami is approximately 250 miles south of us. He enjoys what he does, but he is getting ready to retire from the military. There just comes a point when you are too old to play soldier. He is also serving as the Second Counselor/Scout Master in the Young Men’s program at church, and that definitely takes up the remainder of his time.
The following was written by Kelsi:
DyAnn is about to hit the big 40! (But really it’s only the 11th anniversary of her 29th). She started back up with college this year to become a teacher. So, that keeps her constantly studying and on the computer. (Poor kids!!!) She is always keeping busy between her family, school, volunteering, and her calling as the YW 2nd counselor. She loves Kelsi and all the drama she brings into her life.-can’t wait til they’re BFF’s!! She also loves the adventure the others bring as well. She is a great mom!
All true, what can I say?
Derick and I are excited to accompany Kelsi and Zayn on a pioneer trek, as a Ma and Pa, over the Christmas break. They won’t be in our family, but it will still be a wonderful experience for all of us. We hope that your Christmas will bring you lots of joy as you feel the spirit of the season. We love and miss everyone. Have a wonderful holiday.
Sites from our tour
Typical Street Market
Looking down from the top of the Queen's Staircase
We found Zion at the bottom!!!
Derick in front of the waterfall
Derick always tells people to call us the Double D's (which I don't like) so I had to take a picture of this restaurant as we passed by
Celebrity homes on Paradise Island
And the hospital where her baby girl was born, and her son died
Lobby of Atlantis Hotel/Resort on Paradise Island
The bottom floor is a huge aquarium
Private beach at Atlantis
An example of the homes that are not on Paradise Island
Light house as you enter the harbor
I guess the steward thought I missed my dogs
The ice sculpture on board. This started out as a swan, but the neck broke. So, without any hesitation, the sculptor changed it into an eagle.
It was fun to have a few days to ourselves, but we are looking forward to taking the kids next time. We ate ourselves silly, but it was oooohhhhhh so good! Zayn would be in heaven.