Sunday, December 8, 2013

Christmas 2013 - A Snickerdoodle Could Say it All

            I’ve always thought Christmas letters should be short and sweet. Like, maybe written on the top of a snickerdoodle cookie with one of those store-bought icing tubes that just holds enough to squirt out, “Great year, brilliant kids, not much hurts, come visit, dog is dead”.
            And, let’er go at that.
            But, of course, there is so much more to say with a family like ours (and yours) that, instead of tossing our cookies around, we just gotta say more. With the Lepley-Lepley-Barkley family here in Kazoo the kids and grandkids are much the focus and delight.
            Granddaughter Ellie, evermore the impressive role-model for brother Gavin and Cousin Andrew, reads as many books per year as the rest of the family combined. And, she is a thoroughly adventurous a young lady with interests from an array of academic endeavors to athletics.  Her brother, the spontaneous, sometimes silly, seldom stern almost six year old often takes his cue from her but more and more is his own energetic orb, a cross between precision and malfunction! Which, of course, delights me as it proves we are a lot alike. Both he and Ellie are becoming confident skiers and he, in particular, often tackles a hill that is not much related to his ability. Good stuff!
            Their cousin, the almost twenty-month-old Andrew, already begins to show a similar spirit with a charming, sparkling mixture of adventure and mischief. He’s at that stage where running legs take him to parts unknown and words flow freely.  This stream-of-words is reasonably often connected into actual conversation, sort of. It’s interesting to wonder if this little chatterbox will communicate this liberally as a fifteen year old!
            These delightful kids’ parents are everything that the note (under the family Christmas photo in the blog entry below) describes and way more. And, what’s more, we really like being with them around them and close to them. And we love doing stuff together. The family cottage in Newaygo furthers that bond, building it in so many wonderful ways. Yes, we are lucky to have the kinfolk in the same town and also lucky that Suzanne’s family is nearby. Ryan’s family, in North Carolina, is not so close in distance but certainly close in our hearts and we enjoy visits here and there when they can happen.
            Personally, I enjoy this time of year to reflect on the positives in my life, like all of the stuff above and what I think I do reasonably well and am attempting to learn or accomplish, but the spirit of Christmas in this house is really a dedicated project of Kristy’s. This happens in so many astonishing ways, from the usual objects of the season placed about, to the baking, the creation and/or selection of gifts, to her seasonal art sales offering the objects and photographs which comprise her hobbies and interests. This time of year is surely a time that she, in particular, clearly shows her dedication to family and friends.
             Kristy and I truly wish you the best in 2014.

Great year, brilliant kids,

not much hurts, come visit,

dog is dead

RML 2013

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