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Saturday, 31 December 2011

Good-bye 2011, hello 2012!

Gosh, it's been a while since I've written. Sorry about that.
Since last time this is the super short condensed version of what I should have written about but didn't:
I turned 41, Alan turned 48.
We gave thanks in November but bypassed the traditional Thanksgiving dinner because we were living in Germany and well, yeah - we just didn't do anything! :)
Alan drove to England and Chloe and I flew (and had a rough time - I don't recommend flying alone with an infant)
We spent a week with Alans family celebrating Alans birthday and an early Christmas
While in England we went to two Christmas markets, visited a beach with a great lighthouse and enjoyed church at Hillside
We flew to Georgia and had another birthday celebration for Alan and me
Chloe had her 6 month birthday
Met sweet Emma for the first time and got reaquainted with Charlotte and Lily Kate
Went to meet Santa with Chloe for the first time
Chloe attended nursery at church for the first time and did great
We had the annual Abney Christmas party and 60 came. Great food, fellowship and fun introducing everyone to our daughter
Chloe said "mama" for the first time
Dad turned 68 and I made chicken pie for his birthday party
We celebrated Christmas "Abney" style with tons of wonderful, thoughtful presents and a great southern breakfast
We shopped so much at Kohl's I think they are going to literally cut us off but we saved a ton of money!!
Alan and I went to the lake twice so he could go fishing
We took Chloe swimming for the first time and we think we'll go ahead and enter her into the Olympics she was so awesome. Not scared a bit and just full of smiles. Yah!
Alan helped put down flooring in my sisters attic and helped build a kitchen window for her into her living room
Alan re-wired the barns electrical system at my parents house
Alan hung french doors for Emma's room at Christine's
We ate dinner at Brett's, Graze and Mirko's and my sister Lee Anne's
I spent the day with Mel and Jackson, Hannah and Luke at Gyro Wrap, Chuckie Cheese for games and Menchie's for frozen yogurt
We started recruiting GAP year students and team members for the WFBC missions trip to Germany next year
We saw the awesome movie Courageous - highly recommend it
I cooked fajitas for the family and Chloe swung on the new playset a lot
I worked out but not enough to burn off all the calories we ate!
And so much more but those are some of the highlights! :)

As we gear up for the close of 2011 and the start of 2012(in 43 minutes and counting) I look back on this last year and the one word that summarizes how I feel is "grateful". If you had asked me to summarize the year 3 weeks ago I probably would have said "discouraging" as Satan ran us through the wringer as we adjusted to our move to Germany but now that I've had time to really reflect and refresh, grateful is a much more appropriate word. Grateful for the opportunity friends, churches and families gave us to serve in Germany this year. Grateful the Lord provided a home, furnishings, a car for us to drive, computers for us to use to stay in touch with family and friends and food for us to eat. Grateful for the precious gift of life given to us on May 31 and every single day we've spent with her since. Grateful for a husband that loves Jesus far more than he loves anything else and for a husband that absolutely adores me and his daughter. Grateful for family that will always be home for us - both in England and America. Grateful for friendships that never change, despite the distance that separates us. Grateful for God's unending grace, forgiveness and love.

I approach 2012 knowing God is faithful to complete the work He started in us. Faithful to make all things work together for good and faithful to never leave us or forsake us. Happy New Year to you all. We love you.

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