Dec 21, 2011

Our Christmas Letter

This year the Christmas Letter that would be mailed to friends near and far, will be staying home. Right here it will find ears to hear... or not. 
Either is okay, as we can become overwhelmed with news from friends at this time of year.
Much can transpire during a year of our lives.
Some good, some wonderful and some... not so much.
And then there are the stories....
There have been times I have been nudged awake by my dog, Christmas letter still in hand......waiting to hear what happened to Aunt Edna's third cousin, once removed, living in a hut in Peru. My dog may have been checking for a pulse. If I was still alive she would be assured her dinner that evening.

If at anytime you begin to feel feverish or faint, please desist from reading 
The Coleman 2011 Christmas Letter. 
It's okay. There will not be a quiz at the end.

Greetings dear friends. I am writing this letter to you from Wichita, Kansas. Yes, if that makes you laugh, you are not alone. We chuckle too, though Dan and Ali not so much. They just roll their eyes and look at us like we must have really lost our minds this time.....

Alexandria and Daniel are both living in Nashville. Ali at Belmont University, Dan at Lipscomb University.
Yes, we are VERY thankful they are in the same town.
Ali is a senior and moved into a lovely house with 4 amazing ladies. They are all students at Belmont and we are impressed with each of them. They are from Tulsa, Chicago, St Louis and Louisville. 
They have recently added a puppy to their home. Joey is his name and he has his own twitter account. Sorry I do not follow him so I am unable to give you his twitter name.

Ali will graduate in May with a degree in Social Work. She finished an internship with Big Brothers and Big Sisters and will be working with a foundation for Autism and Aspergers in the spring semester.
She in undecided as to her choice for next fall. She may work for a year and decide if she wants to pursue a masters in Social Work or Education.
She loves her home and friends in Nashville and we are thankful for that. 
We give our children wings to fly and we thank God when they do.... but we do like it when they come back to us, from time to time.
It is nice to have her home(even though it isn't the home she grew up in) at Christmas.

Since last December... Dan graduated High School from Champaign Central, worked as an intern for Fellowship Of Christian Athletes, traveled to the Grand Canyon, traveled with FCA doing college camps, met lots of new people who love Jesus, continued as a life guard with the Champaign Park District, prepared himself for college athletics with a tough running schedule. This was the hardest part of his summer. 
The unknowns of college life and college athletics.

We delivered Dan to college in August where he joined the Lipscomb XCountry and Track teams. This has been a blessing as Dan has solid teammates and friends and has learned that he can run 18 miles every sunday morning and still make it to church.

He has exceeded what he thought his body could do and he has enjoyed college life to the fullest. 
He even attends classes and does quite well. 
He did call me the first week of school and told me to get him out of this crazy biology class he had found himself in, as he had no idea what they were talking about. 
After he vented I reminded him of two things. First, that he had to take two science classes to graduate college and second, he was a science major ... just in case he had forgotten. 
Being the kind of kid he is, he started laughing and said, "Oh yeah."
I suggested he get a tutor or find some cute girls in his class and ask to study with them.
He called me back the following week and said everything was fine and he understood everything. Hmm...
Good news... he passed Biology. 
On to Physics and he is quite excited about this class.
After we dropped our kids in Nashville we drove on to Wichita where the moving truck would be delivering all our worldly possessions the following day.

Yes, we like to drop off the youngest at college, leave our community of friends for the past 16 years and move to a new town... all in one weekend. 
It's nuts and we do not suggest you try this.
However, we survived and found ourselves loving all things Wichita. The people, the restaurants, the shopping and lots to keep us busy. 
We had hoped to do some fall planting.... do you have any idea how hot it gets here?? 
Makes an Illinois summer look like Minnesota on a cool day in March.
You can get a tan in the shade of September out here.

We had lots of plans for fall....
We were able to see two of Dan's races, spending time with he and Ali in Nashville, and watch him settle easily into college life. 
A trip to San Francisco where Bob was taking a course, a visit to friends new lake home a few hours from us, a 10 day sailing trip to the BVI the end of November.

The good Doctor turns another year better this December 25th and it was a good year for the boy. It was time to retake the General Surgery boards to keep that coveted Board Certified status. Yes, he passed! 
He is enjoying his time at the Robert J. Dole VA Hospital and meeting some good people and patients.
He continues to entertain us and make me laugh.
Feeling blessed.
I am trying to settle into a new community. 
I left wonderful people who I worked with, volunteered with, did life with. Best friends don't get replaced... but we make room for new blessings in our lives, as God provides.
I miss all that I was involved with and yet I know God has a plan for us out here in the wild, wild west.

Life is a beautiful melody until someone goes off key. 
My dear dad went off key.
At 78, he was diagnosed with liver cancer. A terrible shock to him, my mom ... all of us.
They were the ones who took care of others. 
They were the ones who walked every day, did meals on wheels, golfed, played tennis, were active in their church.
They loved their kids and grandchildren. Dad would call often and leave sweet messages for us.
We miss his voice. We miss him.
Life is like that sometimes...
No warning.
The blessing is dad did not suffer long. 7 weeks..... so the shock is still fresh. 
He handled the diagnosis with amazing grace and peace. We lost him and God claimed him on November 9th of this year. 
Of course we are thankful that he is in heaven as he had faith in Jesus Christ as his Lord and Saviour, but we miss him. 
Mom misses him terribly. 
54 years will do that to a couple. 
At least it should. 
So this season is different in many ways. 
We will celebrate the birth of Christ in a new home, a new town.
The joy in the blessing of Christ is evident in our hearts, but there is also a sadness for the loss we all feel. 

From our family to yours, we wish you a very Merry Christmas.  May your hearts be glad with the joy of the season and know the truth of Christ. 
He is the One we celebrate this season.

Love, Bob, Dale, Alexandria and Daniel Coleman

1 comment:

  1. Lovely letter, a year full of change and challenge. Excited to see how God uses you this year in Wichita. Looking forward to coffee soon!


Don't be shy...