With the Christmas season clipping merrily along and the daily demands of a young family, I realized that the only way to get some semblance of a Christmas card out was to work together! So here is our semblance of a Christmas letter.
To start out with, Dad is awesome. We went backpacking together on my 12th birthday. He carried my pack for some of the way--I love him for that! He took me hunting this year and we were successful at harvesting white-tail deer. He makes the best hamburgers. Since Dad switched jobs, he is not weighed down by being on call--he's happy, fun, and relaxed. He is happy to be raising his family in good old Montana. (Written by his eldest son, Xander)
Our wonderful mother is the best!! She is so happy to be in this house that we got this year. She has a big kitchen that she loves to cook and bake in. Her eggrolls, pot stickers, and ravioli are my favorite meals.😋 I love baking with her. Mom turned 38 this year and is a great leader. (addition to Dad) She is a great example to not only our family, but also the whole community. She is not afraid to start a conversation, or talk to someone she doesn't know! Thanks for what you do for our family! I'm so glad you're my mom! (Written by her favorite oldest daughter, Elodie)
Xander has participated in tennis, swimming, and basketball with tennis being his favorite (like father like son :)) this year. He also earned some extra money moving lawns this past summer and has been very service minded. Xander and I went backpacking to Renshaw Lake up at Benchmark in the Lewis and Clark wilderness just south west of Augusta, MT. He did great and it was so fun to have him go up the mountain being 11 y/o and then came down the moutain 12 y/o and transitioned into being a young man. He was ordained a deacon and has been doing a fine job passing the sacrament and magnifying his calling. He has progressed to a first class scout and will go up to a Star scout at his next court of honor Jan 2018. We also went hunting together and harvested deer together. Xander loves engineering and is active in a robotics club in 4-H, It is exciting to have him become such a capable outdoors man, athletic, academically capable, and well rounded young man. I am very excited to see what becomes of him in 2018! (by his very proud father)
Elodie shares a room with me. She usually sleeps in the top bunk, but once she fell asleep in my bed with me. Elodie is a great sister. I love her. Elodie LOVES to read. And she loves to take care of Kaleb. She is good at playing the piano and she's learning to play the flute. Elodie played tennis. I bet she likes it a lot. And she loves to make treats like cookies. She once tried selling cookies--she made a lot of progress. I love it when Elodie makes treats--they're really good! Elodie loved it when her cousin Corinne got to spend a week with us in Montana this summer. (dictated by her one and only sister, Hazel)
Hazel plays with me a lot. She is really good at making stuff. Hazel is really good at singing and sings in music class and at home. She splashed in the water at the swimming pool in the summer (she was on the bubble blowers swim team). She really likes to play house with her baby dolls. She does really good at school. She's a Dahle. (dictated by her little brother, Max)
Max is my best friend. He plays with me a lot. I'm glad he's my friend. Max is learning how to swim. It's fun seeing him swim. Max is funny a lot. Max is in school. He really likes kindergarten. He likes his teacher, Miss Rowley. Max is really good at making projects in school. Max is 5. Max loves to play Legos. He loves to dress up like a knight and play battle with Oliver. Max is such a playful, kind, lovable guy. (dictated by his big sister, Hazel)
Oliver is a 3-year-old with a big personality. I love the time I get to spend with him everyday. He definitely misses having older siblings around now that Max is in school all day, so he is constantly trying to recruit me to play with him--bedtime tigers, dinos, and trucks being some of his favorites. He is a goer and when he knows we're going somewhere, he can hardly wait to get out the door. He's got some definite leadership skills in there, though they may need a bit of refining. "No, mom! Don't do a job! Get your shoes on and go to the mini-park!" When I try to reason with him about how we'll go as soon as I ____, he tries a different approach. "I am not staying here!" and he walks outside. He's a determined little fellow. Many times I have heard his cute little voice say, "No, I'm not hungry for dinner, I'm hungry for cookies!" I usually win that battle. But bedtime, whew, bedtime. I'd say he is winning that battle night after night. Currently, he will only go to sleep if I (or occasionally Dad) stay in his room until he falls asleep, which takes him around an hour. Poor Max can usually fall asleep through Oliver's antics, but sometimes, when Max is looking exhausted by dinnertime, Aaron jokes that Max is The Goob from Meet the Robinson's. Oh, I am capturing a bit of Oliver's feistiness but not his absolutely endearing cuteness. "You're the best, nice mom! I love you really much!" and "We're having the best day together, right mom?" are just some of the exuberant, loving phrases I hear from him. He simply adores helping me cook and bake and knows the names and locations of many cooking utensils. He's an adorably helpful little assistant, sometimes even anticipating my needs for a "spatula" or "cookie sheet." And he gives the best, sweetest, most sincere, timely, unprompted apologies. Last week, when he was doing a slumped-shoulder pout that he learned from Max, I knelt down and started talking to him heart to heart. He immediately said, "Mom, I'm sorry I did bad shoulders." Melts my heart all the time. Watch out, Primary, here he comes!! (I am currently the Primary President, so I'll get to see first-hand how that goes! Well, I'm getting close to a thousand words here (which is why I needed my less verbose family to help me lest I never get this done!) so I'd better just include a picture and call it good.
Kaleb is a very sweet soul. We are all very grateful for the newest addition to our family. He has blessed us with his sweet, lovable self! He has a fever, and we all are very sad, we hate to see him cry. His first word was ball(that's his favorite toy). He can also say pumpkin, (he pronounces it pumpen) Mommy(muh-ma) Daddy(dah-da),and uh-uh. He loves to eat, sitting at his tray way past breakfast begging for more cereal!😆We love our little man!!💕(Written by Elodie)