It’s that time of year when all the letters from friends and family come pouring in letting us all know how amazing everyone is. So, here is ours.
This year, Josh cured cancer. Shara developed a new approach that will eradicate autism. Jake became the head chef to the queen of England. Robin opened a 200 bed family home for detached, unwed teen girls. And me? I learned to tie my own sneakers! Not bad, huh? Yeah … a good year overall.
The Real Story
It’s still good but not quite to the level described above. My kids did stuff that made Robin and I proud but those things aren’t our highlights.
Highlight #1. We have TWO grandbabies on the way! Daughter-in-law Kristen, Josh’s wife, could be heading in any day now when baby Calvin decides he’s ready to come out and play. Officially, his arrival is predicted on December 29. And then, daughter Shara and husband Jake will welcome our sweet granddaughter!
Emma is due February 27 so she has the possibility of being a leap year baby. Robin and I are absolutely beside ourselves with excitement!
Highlight #2: I’m going to say that the fact that I am still alive weighs in at #2. My transplant recovery has been remarkable. In fact, I am so healthy that this season I’m approaching the 2,000 mile mark on my bicycle and completed the 180 mile, 3-day Trek Across Maine in June. It’s December 4 and we are still riding outside. Wow!
Highlight #3: The gift of time. Time together is so much more special to us than individual achievements and accomplishments. We have enjoyed so much family time together. From a Spring weekend away in Vermont to a November bus trip to Boston, we have loved being together. We are so very, very blessed to have all our kids worshipping with us on Sundays and then often hanging out all Sunday afternoon. Trust me, we are so thankful for this season in our lives.
“Time is too precious of a gift to waste, so make the decision to use the time given to you wisely, and you will not only find fulfillment, but enjoyment in the process.”
– Diane Dutchin
Robin and I value time together so much more now than ever. This year we escaped to Newport, Rhode Island for a few days, spent a couple weeks house sitting in Florida and then explored Williamsburg, Virginia on our bicycles to close the summer. Robin volunteered at the Trek, partially to keep her eye on me, but also to share the joy of three years post-transplant. Hugging her at the finish line after 55 miles in the cold, pouring rain, the tears rolled down my cheeks. We are so very fortunate.
Highlight #4: This one is a bit of bragging about an accomplishment type thing. This summer, I had the pleasure of officiating (and photographing!) a wedding where my son Jake was in charge of the catering.
I know, he’s 24 and has his degree from the best culinary school in the country, but he is still our baby.
Holy cow, that kid is SO talented. The food was phenomenal. I sat by the door to the kitchen for a while just to grab hors d’oeuvres before the crowds devoured them all. I’ve since experienced his catering services a couple more times. Man, my kid is the real deal.
Highlight #5: Our oldest kid now lives in our basement. Wait, that’s a highlight? Yes! No, he’s not playing video games and eating all our food. Robin and I finished off the basement to help Josh and Kristen in this season of life while he finishes medical school. The scary part is that since I am often up at 4:30, Kristen is threatening to bring Calvin up and plop him into my arms when he wakes up early! The basement looks awesome thanks largely to our skilled friends. In 2.5 years it becomes my MAN CAVE! (Robin disagrees.)
Highlight #6: Relationships. Life is always full of changes. We flow in and out of each other’s lives, God places us in different spots in His church for seasons and we lose touch while still caring so much for each other. And then, new people come onto the scene and we develop new friendships that are just as special. Our lives are now full with so many people we didn’t even know three short years ago. I love that about life! Yes, we miss our friends from past seasons of life and look forward to the rare times we get to reconnect, but we love that every change brings new relationships with new people to grow to love. We are thankful for you!
In 2016, I’m thinking that we should take Shara’s phenomenal event planning skills and creativity, (she is amazing) join them with Jake’s culinary prowess, add Robin and my photography skills and Kristen’s social media marketing skills to launch an event business and get rich, rich, rich! Josh, Shara’s Jake, Laura, Emma and Calvin can be the wait staff. Bailey, Lola and Pompom can be our mascots because everyone loves cute dogs. Unfortunately, my brilliant idea and my 60% share (it’s my idea) will be ignored again! I’m sure they’ll use some lame excuse like “the babies are too little.” Meh…
We pray that 2016 is a year where Immanuel, God with us, becomes even more meaningful to you and the people you love. We pray for a year of thanksgiving and that you will know God’s presence through every storm that comes your way. If you are far friends traveling through Maine, stop in if time allows
Have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Love, Scott & Robin and the rest of our crew.