Wednesday, December 25, 2013

2013 Family Christmas Letter

2013 Family Christmas Newsletter

Hello, all! As I write this, I'm looking out our 1976 vintage-retro double-wide's window to the most glorious view of snow-covered rolling hills, big whitetail bucks and Canadian geese grazing by the river. Our family's homesteading dream finally came true this year. We are back in the country and loving it! We now live on a 3.32 acre parcel of land. Our goal is to build the shop of Michael's dreams and eventually replace this trailer with a stick-built house that Michael wants to build himself. We also want to raise more of our food via a larger garden, chickens, butcher animals, etc, and provide ways for the kids to flex their entrepreneurial muscles.

How did we get to our new place? 18 mos ago, Michael was hired as a tank mechanic at an Army Depot and hour and half away from where we were living. It took the National Guard awhile to get their shop built and then to get us our orders, but it all finally came together in the fall of this year. God's timing is always best! He is very happy to have a shorter commute that does not involve driving over a treacherous mountain pass and he seems to like working at the Depot.

While moving to our new town meant we would be leaving deeply established friendships and our homeschool support group, we knew God was calling us to do His will here. I'm not going to lie, there have been a lot of tears shed, but it is always a comfort knowing you are in God's will even if it is uncomfortable, painful or even lonely. The kids and I are quickly getting involved in the homeschool support group here in Pendleton and are meeting some wonderful families. We are still in the process of looking for a home church and are sincerely praying for the Lord's guidance in this area. The kids have joined the AWANA group here, and are loving it. We're praying for some good friendships to develop with other kids in the area. We are now in our 5th year of homeschooling and going strong.

It has been wonderful being so close to my mom and Larry Pop. We've never lived near family before but are now enjoying the benefits of helping each other out. It is nice getting more breaks and just having family there to celebrate the milestones of life. We are enjoying having more company as well, now that we are on this side of the mountain. We are now an hour closer to the rest of our family as well.

We look forward to what this new year holds as we get our “homesteading legs” under us. I'm sure we'll make many mistakes, but we will learn from them and continue on. 

Merry Christmas and a Happy 2014!

God Bless,
Michael, Jackie, Josiah (10) and Hailey (6)
 Our 2013 Fall Family Photo
 Josiah (10) and Champ's 4th Grade School Picture
Hailey's 1st Grade School Picture
Josiah read somewhere that dogs like to work, so he tried to turn Champ into a mushing dog when we got our tree. He'll have to work on a harness for him next year. Champ was lovin' it!

The kids did a great job helping me decorate our blue, white and silver snowflake tree.


Nadine said...

Merry Christmas to you and your family!


Becky L. said...

Merry Christmas, Jackie and family. I love the last foto of the kids look so cute in front of the tree. I pray things go well with your new venture. Hugs! Pop over go see my Christmas family post.

aimee said...

I am looking forward to seeing how your homesteading dream unfolds Jackie! Though there will be challenges to face (there always are when moving), I think being out in the country and closer to your family will be a HUGE blessing to you!
May God bless you and continue to work in your life this coming year.

Camille said...

Such a wonderful blessing that you have been able to move to your homestead my friend. I am so happy for you! And, yes...the Lord's timing is always perfect. May He bless you all as you establish a new routine there in your new town. Love to you! Camille

Lizzy said...

So exciting! :D looking forward to see what God has planned for you guys!

RaD said...

Haley looks all cute on her toes in her ballet outfit in front of the tree!

Congrats on the new home! I can't wait to see what you share next!


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