Thursday, December 24, 2015

Merry Christmas 2015

Merry Christmas to all. Winter has arrived in the Northwest with high winds, lots of rain and some cold days. Praise the Lord, we stay warm and dry. 

We get to watch our grandkids several times a week. Sonja is now 7 and in second grade, Freya is 6 and in kindergarten, Emma is 5 and in preschool, Hannah is 3 and in preschool, Parker is 1.75 years old. We really enjoy being part of their lives and watching them grow. What a blessing. 

Our property looks so different now that we logged almost every tree the government allowed. Today we sat on the porch bench in the late afternoon sunshine and felt warm even on this cold 30 degree day. Sunshine in the Northwest feels especially nice. Living without a barrier of trees on the road side changes the feeling of the land but we are grateful the big trees are down and the sun shines brighter. We now have 2 more acres of pasture which Jeremy used this year to raise 3 sheep. We learned that sheep are lots of fun to raise, however we did have one break-out artist. The pasture is still in the process of growing as we had such a drought in the Spring and the pasture grass struggled to germinate.  

We had 22 logging truck loads along with 5 split loads we shared with Al from our homestead. It is hard to believe we have been on this property for 46 years watching the trees grow a couple feet a year. We planted new trees but half of them died due to lack of rain. We have scheduled another round of tree planting next year. 

Our garden produced extremely well except for a rabbit family that ate most of the pea starts. I nailed 5 of the guys with a trusty pump pellet gun. We harvested 30 large squash along with corn and lots more. We were able to enjoy two camping trips this year, one to eastern Oregon on the Colombia River and also the extended family campout in Oregon at the Colombia River’s exit to the Pacific Ocean (Fort Stevens). 

Jim had carpal tunnel surgery on his right hand which allows him to use the computer mouse in the right hand for the first time in 5 years. Linda will be out of her walking boot and casts by Christmas after surgery on her big toe. Arthritis had taken quite a toll on one joint. 

Lord permitting Linda and I plan to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary on a 19 day cruise through the Panama Canal next April. On our 25th anniversary we cruised the Southern Caribbean so we thought another cruise would be appropriate. 

We pray all is well with you all! We are certainly grateful God has not forgotten either mankind or us as individuals. Blessings to you as we celebrate Jesus‘ birth, and enter 2016.

Jim & Linda