This is the first time in my LIFE that a Christmas letter hasn't gone out on behalf of my family!
Like, no card with a family photo.
No written family update.
I feel like I have just broken some kind of unsaid once-you-have-a-family-of-your-own-you-absolutely-must-get-your-entire-(happy/sad/mad/unruly/matchy match/unmatchy match-family-together-for-a-photo-and-then-send-it-to-everyone-you-know-by-snail-mail-or-else-you-are-not-qualified-to-be-a-real-American-family rule.
It just didn't happen this year, though.
(And we even had all the pictures taken and sitting on my desktop!!!)
(And it wasn't like this year was even THAT crazy. I mean, we got a Christmas card out the year we were in Uganda for our adoption, but for some reason I couldn't pull myself together in 2015?!)
But, whatever man!
You have all survived and are engrossed in your 2016 just fine without a photo of our family hanging on your refrigerator.
But...because we had the photo, and I think our fantastic photographer (thanks Jenn!) managed to get our family to look particularly stunning, I thought I'd share:)
And because I can (and because I didn't), here is an update on each of the Colony members just for fun.
As I write this post, Josh is finishing up his LAST day of his LAST seminar for his Doctorate. He is nowhere near complete (the writing will now begin) but the classroom time will be complete! And the family will ALL be rejoicing!!!!! He is doing a fantastic job as the worship pastor at a church we love and is becoming such a wonderful leader in his area.
I, Tasha, stay at home with Jude. We keep ourselves busy during the day while the other kids are away at school with house projects (for both my home and other's), creating jewelry and teaching others how oils have transformed their lives, and doing normal things that mamas do.
Areyna is in 5th grade. She is doing very well in school and I can't believe she is going into middle school next year! Speaking of middle school, she will be joining me and Jude at home next year as we dive into 6th grade together. A preschooler and a 6th grader to homeschool...it should be fun. Honestly. I am really looking forward to it. This year Rainy has mastered several recipes in the kitchen, my favorite are her molasses cookies. She also brings Sunday night pancakes to the table all on her own. And the thing I love most is that she will allow 1-2 helpers in the kitchen with her and teaches them how to cook (which is more than I can say about myself. I hate sticky, floury messes, ok!)
Zeke is plugging right along in 2nd grade. He is still just as active and creative as ever. He is really blossoming in his role as big brother as he reads to Jude and tries to "teach" the littles new concepts. And his broken arm is nearly 100% healed, PTL!
Alethia is thriving in her 1st grade class and is my only child who never complains about going to school. 2016 is going to be the year she masters common sense along with book knowledge, I just know it;). Her loves are the same (playing with horses, barbies, her siblings and being a mommy to Jude:).
Cai is our daredevil. I can hardly watch as he rides his scooter off of boulders, climbs to the highest un-climbable point on a play set or makes an obstacle course out of our home furniture. He has nearly given me heart failure a handful of times as I quietly stand with all the other moms on the playground looking for this kid's mom, because who would EVER allow her child to play like this! He is doing great in 1st grade and learns concepts very quickly. He is super creative when it comes to building things.
Jude. Oh Jude. I really don't want to get into it all on the blog because you know, one day he might read how "spirited" he is. Okay, so maybe it could benefit him and when he stumbles upon this post he'll send me flowers of apology for how "spirited" he was, ha! He is completely and utterly defiant and disobedient one minute and then turn around to love on me and tell me he is going to "obey and give lots of kisses" the next. He will be a great leader one day. ONE. DAY. As in, NOT today. Not tomorrow, or anytime soon! I love to snuggle and cuddle this boy. He is such a joy to be around when he is compliant to direction and correction...sigh...he keeps me on my toes for sure, ha!
"And the Colony Ladies", you ask? Well, our 6 lovelies are doing just fabulous and giving us a steady 6 eggs a day which has helped our grocery budget and protein intake. So thank you ladies, for a job well done!
So there you have it!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the Via Colony!!!