I know some of you will receive this in the mail, but instead of typing two posts in one day, I decided to take the lazy man’s way out and do the copy and paste thing. This is our annual Christmas letter that we will be sending out this year with our family pictures! Please don’t tell me I’m late because I’m already kicking myself that these aren’t in the mail yet, however, to look on the bright side…..at least it’s not the week after Christmas yet.
To all our wonderful friends and family,
I’ve tossed around the idea of how to address you. “Dear” might not quite cut it, then for some that might be a little overpowering. So I settled on “wonderful”. I’d say you all fit under that description pretty well. For what would we do without our friends and family to weep with us and laugh with us in turn.
I’m not sure if this will come out sounding like a normal Christmas letter. That is a word that we’ve debated this house even knows, so let’s just say this letter will simply be us. Scary prospect, so you may discard it right now if you wish.
To begin, we will start with the semi-normal part. We’ve spent the better part of the last year eating and sleeping, playing, working a little, eating and sleeping again. Can’t get much more normal than that! The working part has taken a different turn since Christmas of 2010. Lowell is now employed at Trusstek which is owned by our bishop and his sons. He began working there in June and they started him out in the yard using the forklift, etc. Soon afterward he was upgraded to the saw where he cut trusses. This was a job that required standing all day. With his bad foot that throbbed, I’d say he did very well. I know it hurt him but he enjoyed it and did an awesome job!
After getting him trained there, they made his final upgrade to the office where he is now designing trusses. He also gets to answer the phones which I find quite fun! I can call work and chat away to him and his boss doesn’t know he’s actually not working, but talking with his wife. Hopefully his boss won’t see this or my fun might be spoiled!
Trusstek also offered us the job of cleaning the offices. Ok, I’ll say they offered me the job for every other week. But I am such a fainthearted female that to do a 6-hour cleaning job by myself looked too daunting. However, we figured out since the job had to be done on Saturdays anyway, we might as well do it as a family. So we are grateful for this little extra bit and Trusstek gets overrun by Grabers for 3 hours every other Saturday morning. I have learned some really interesting tidbits about businesses such as this. Dusting offices can reveal a lot of secrets! I’m convinced Trusstek would fall in a big black hole without its sticky-notes and dumdums. The sticky notes must be part of the designing program and the dumdums fuel the designers brain for extra clarity. By the way, if you don’t know what a dumdum is……it is those lollipops you get at the bank drive thru window.
School started in September and we now have three in school. Derek is 10 and in fourth grade. Terrel is 8 and in third grade. Megan is 6 and our little first-grader. My two little sidekicks, Logan and Wyatt, are the only ones left at home. Logan is 5 and Wyatt will be 2 next month. These children are a joy to our lives and the apples of our eye. My heart goes out to folks who cannot have children. They carry burdens I’m not sure I’d be able to carry, but I know the same God who is faithful to us is also faithful to them.
The three oldest absolutely love school! The two youngest absolutely love Mom! Ok, so maybe I am trying to make myself feel good. Logan is getting rather tired of being the “big boy” of the house during school hours. He is also nearing the end of his patience with being my “gopher”. I ask him to go get this…and go get that. He’ll sigh a great big sigh and sound like a 90-year-old man when he says, “I’m tired of doing everything.” At his ripe old age of 5 years, he doesn’t realize that everything includes changing diapers, feeding kids, doing laundry, paying bills, working like Daddy does, cutting firewood, mowing grass, and so on.
But school is now out for Christmas vacation. It began with a bang on Friday evening with the Christmas program. Our little 6-year-old angel kept waving at us during the program and Daddy was beginning to get a wee bit embarrassed. I keep having to pick up the shimmerings from her angel halo that keep dropping all over my clean floor and I’m getting a wee bit annoyed. Sounds like the perfect holiday cheer, doesn’t it?
Honestly, we are in good moods around here. Who wouldn’t be at Christmas?! We plan on doing some baking for neighbors, eating cookie dough, making candy, going sledding down the Queen lake road, maybe some ice fishing, and eating all the cookies and candy our neighbors don’t want.
I guess this “normal” letter hasn’t told you a whole lot about our lives during the past year. But since we started the blog this summer, it seems as if you all already know what is going on. For those of you who haven’t read it and want to chance that your vision of this family will never be the same, you can see the blog at www.livingintheshoe.com.
Thank you all for you prayers and support to our little family out here in Idaho! We couldn’t have made it without you. But ultimately, our thanks goes to our Lord who has seen us through many valleys and has conquered many battles on our behalf! May His name be praised this Christmas season.
The Idaho Grabers
Lowell & Kendra
Derek, Terrel, Megan, Logan, and Wyatt