December 25, 2009
Dear Friends and Family,
Our Christmas cards did not make it out this year, although, we still may send them. Better late than never, we hear. We have had a year full of blessings and trials, but what year doesn’t include both?
The last half of this year was especially marked with much sickness in our home. We rarely deal with much illness here, so it was very surprising to find ourselves dealing with so many medical issues. The girls dealt with severe reflux for several months and had an endoscopy in September. We discovered damage to their esophagus and each began taking a medication that has helped tremendously and is expected to do much healing. We love their doctor and he expects them to only have to take this medication for 6 months to a year.
In August Kristie became ill with a sinus infection that quickly turned into a long drawn out battle with bronchitis. After three doctor visits and two different doctors, she was finally able to recover. Not long after she got well Kelsi, Keeli and Mason all came down with the flu. We were very blessed that it was only a mild case and thankfully we were completely flu free within a week.
Kelsi has struggled with some sinus and hearing issues and praise be to Jesus we have finally found a doctor that wants to get to the bottom of what is going on and try to correct here issues. On Tuesday we took her in for blood work to test how well her immune system is functioning, on Wednesday she had surgery on both ears, received tubes and some restoration work to her left ear. If all heals well and her left ear improves beyond her right one, he will go back into the right ear to replicate the work he did in the left one. Sometime in January she will also begin allergy testing. Kelsi was also diagnosed with hypoglycemia this year. She also deals with asthma, so this year has been tough on her especially. She has a great attitude and considering their premature births we are so thankful to have such minor issues to deal with and we are all believing for a much healthier 2010.
We were very blessed to be able to take an amazing vacation to Disney World with some great friends and all of our children in November. We had the most amazing weather and the crowds were very slim. Homeschooling has many, many perks and being able to travel while others are in school is certainly one of them. Kelsi, Keeli and Mason loved having Josh be with them while they experienced all that Disney had to offer. Josh had to return a couple of days before we did and he was surely missed.
A year or so ago God began to stir a desire in our hearts to serve Him in a greater way. We knew this calling was within our own church and that it would be in some way connected to children, but we were very unsure what exactly he desired for us to do. Several months ago He opened the door and made it quite clear to us that we were to take over the responsibility of directing the early childhood department at our church, it’s called “Little Praisers”. We prayed along with our Pastor and ultimately were given the responsibility of being Directors over that ministry. It has been challenging, but even more so rewarding. We are so thankful that our Heavenly Father would dare to entrust us with the opportunity to speak into the lives of these little children and pray that we would impact them for eternity.
Mason is our little bundle of energy. It’s all we can do to keep up with him. In good old Mason fashion, he was thrown from a horse this year and walked away with no more than a nose bleed. He’s super sweet and super energetic and constantly keeps us all laughing. Kelsi is a servant through and through, she is always looking for ways to help others and we wonder so often what we did to deserve such a sweet girl. Keeli is her father’s child, we are constantly laughing at how much she reminds us of Patrick. One of her many talents is imitating others, that in particular keeps Patrick in stitches.
The most important update of the year to us is that Josh has joined the Army. He enlisted a few months ago and will leave for Basic Training in Fort Benning, Georgia on January 5th. He spent much time in prayer and felt as if this were the path the Lord would have him to take. He took a test and scored high enough to qualify for the 18X program, which is an accelerated program into Special Forces. We are so proud of him, but certainly as parents are concerned for his safety and well being. We are clinging to Jeremiah 29:11 that says 'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’ We believe in our hearts that this is God’s plan for Josh’s life and are trusting our Heavenly Father for His guidance and protection of him.
All in all we have been blessed day in and day out by a most gracious Father. He gives us each and every day far more than we deserve. We are so very thankful that God loved us enough to send His precious Son Jesus to die on the cross to save us from our own wretchedness. We cannot imagine walking through this life without Him. We pray that you feel that same love from the Father and are enjoying celebrating the birth of Jesus and some precious time with your families this holiday season.
Much Love and Merry Christmas,
The Wetzel Family