圣诞节快乐 (Merry Christmas) from a more worldly Gruenbaum family! We have had a busy year and continue to be blessed, and we hope we can summarize our year without too many of you nodding off….;-)
Rachel and Abby are middle schoolers. Rachel is definitely growing up with longer hair and caring a little more about what she wears; she still makes her grades, guinea pigs and her bassoon a priority. In a word, we still describe Abby as “crafty”. This continues to mean she loves staying busy with looms, duct tape, crocheting and crafts of any kind. Both girls were on the cross country team for the first time. Abby medaled in every race. Rachel had many personal bests throughout the season. They both enjoyed it. When practice starts at 5:45 am, you have to love it! Abby also played soccer and Rachel discovered softball.
Jeff is 17 and is having a busy senior year. He imposed term limits on himself, and only served for one year as class president. He now serves on student council. Before September was over, Jeff had completed his role as the mayor in “Suessical the Musical” at school. He also participated as a member of the “crew” at school football games. Think grungy cheerleaders. Jeff enjoys playing soccer although his broken arm has hampered that a bit. He was too busy to get his driver’s license, but we are hoping he will have it in February 2014. Tim graduated in May and has started college on campus of University of Texas, Arlington (UTA). He is not far away. Having a really good engineering school close by has made the transition to campus life a little easier (at least for his mom). He is not sure of his major, but really likes chemistry. He seems really focused, and we are looking forward to having him home for Christmas break.
By Judy’s own admission, this past year has been the most difficult of her professional career. She could go on and on, but will spare you. She did a lot of soul searching and has decided to stay at the bank (for now) in a new position she started in July. As usual, Andy’s year had some changes. His sign business has slowed this year, but he continues to remain busy – – running kids to track/cross-country meets, soccer games (Remind why it was a good idea for Jeff to wait on his license?) and to Michaels (craft supplies). In the spring, Andy went on the 6th grade trip to Houston for their NASA trip, and this Fall has coached the 7th grade robotics team. He also attended his 30th class reunion. To avert any concerns of boredom, the Gruenbaums are likely to be licensed as foster parents in Texas in early 2014.
We’ve been blessed with some great trips this year. Tim and Jeff spent Spring Break in Italy with a group from school, while the rest of us went to L.A. including Disneyland. During the summer, we went to Ohio for a few days and then spent a week at the beach in North Carolina with Judy’s side of the family. In November, Judy and Andy took an escorted tour to China – a true once in a lifetime experience!
We hope your busy lives will slow enough to celebrate the true reason for the season. May God richly bless you in the coming year and show you how your life can be enriched if you will seek Him daily.