The following is our annual Christmas letter sent out to friends and family. Authored by my wife Elizabeth (Like most clergy I know, I married up) it may be of interest to some blog readers. For background, my wife is a Family Nurse Practitioner, and we have three dogs, a big black lab, a medium sized orangish puggle, and a small white toy maltese–KSH.
Kendall is a moving target for the dogs since he is never in one place for long (and the dogs follow him from room to room). He can be found running on the elliptical while listening to NPR, using the Apple TV for downloads or catching up on Nightline; at the computer answering email related to various publications and responsibilities or tracking the stock market or updating his blog; walking outside with the dogs throwing the ball; with his head in a book or the Bible preparing sermon texts or articles for journals. Never one to need a great deal of sleep his usually up WAY before dawn and has put in half a normal workday before the rest of the family is awake and coherent.
Elizabeth has switched medical practices and is working part-time in a family practice an hour north of her home in a small town with one traffic light and an IGA food store. Being available to her children and husband for support, talking, errands, counsel and laughter fills her days to the brim and sometimes it overflows in not the easiest of ways.
Abigail spent this summer studying French Literature in Paris, which was a perfect fusion of her love for French and English. She transferred this fall to the College of Charleston as a sophomore, and is enjoying every moment of her new friends and classes. Her American Literature and Literary Studies classes have both refueled her passion for her English major, and she is excited about pursuing this field in the future. After three years of dormitory drama, she finally has her own apartment, which is situated in the old ballroom of a historic Charleston house. She is an active member of a small group with Seacoast church in Mt. Pleasant, and enjoys every chance she gets to drive over the new Cooper River Bridge. Abigail misses the snow of New England and hopes to return North in the future; for now she is looking forward to spring in Charleston and its every-weekend mass exodus to the beach.
Nathaniel is currently knee-deep in the college-app period of his life. Juggling which schools take what form and when is it due and who is writing the references and (praise God) no more SAT exams. This fall he was not home much between school, girlfriend and 2 varsity sports – cross-country and swimming. He will adamantly state that he hates to not have something to do and so we mostly keep in touch by text messaging with a nightly check-in. At present he is considering a double major of economics and computer science but recognizes this may change (as in “have you ever heard of ocean engineering? I was reading up on it and it sounds fascinating!”)
Selimah has transitioned to a boarding school this year and is currently at the Millbrook School in Millbrook NY. Adjusting to freezing weather and lifestyles that may be radically different from hers has pushed her out of her comfort zone but she continues to be resilient with a wry sense of humor. She continues to ride Aherlow, her Irish Sport Horse, who is boarded near the school, and she has discovered the racquet sport of squash this fall, making it onto the junior varsity team. Her competitive drive gets its outlet in smashing the ball. She is also a worker at the Trevor Zoo on the school campus and is currently working with the otters this term and previously tended to the black and white lemurs. The future may hold some kind of animal training or husbandry for her as a work profession.