Monday, December 21, 2009

Merry CHRISTmas and Happy New Year

Merry Christmas to all our family and friends,

Blogs are a great invention.... if you can keep them updated! I started my blog over a year and a half ago and found it a wonderful way to let family and friends keep up with our ever so busy life. The last several months I have put my blog aside. I suppose there are several factors for doing so, like having very little time to sit in front of the computer, but the main reason has been because of my chronic pain. I just can't sit more than a few minutes in front of the computer before it throws my neck and arm into severe pain. So I have had to let that part of my life go for now. There are plenty our "must do" tasks that I need to perform that don't help my pain situation.

As you may gather from my first paragraph, this year has been another difficult but growing year for me. I have spent 12 months trying to seek the help of doctors to help my ongoing pain problem. Thus far, nothing has been solved. God is growing me in tremendous ways. I am learning to live my life joyfully in spite of my affliction. I am not quite sure how he might use this, but I am confident that He will. To God be the Glory!!

We have now been in Redmond over four years. We love it here and feel so blessed that God has placed us in a wonderful church to minister in. Michael loves his job at Redmond Community Church and can't imagine being anywhere else. We have a wonderful group of musicians, vocalists and tech people who sacrificially give of their time and talent each week. These folks are so wonderful to work with and we feel we are getting to know them well as we minister with them.

I,Kristin,have been keeping very busy with my growing piano lessons business and childcare. God has blessed me with 15 piano students!! I teach two evenings a week and on Friday mornings. I am totally in love with teaching and especially enjoy each and every child that I have. They brighten up my day. I also have a few children that I watch during the day. This isn't full time but it is enough to bring in a little extra money. The children I watch are darling and keep me happy and busy throughout the day.

Amanda, a.k. Mandi, is turning 14 next month. She is truly becoming a young woman before our eyes. It's hard to believe that in a year she will be getting her Learner's Permit. Michael and I have had a lot of joy watching Mandi mature into a lovely teen who loves Jesus with all her heart. She is so sweet and gentle, giving and kind but also has a very spunky, fun loving side to her. I am sure it won't be long before the boys start calling. Oh my... Daddy get your gun!!

Just recently Mandi had a huge part in her school play. I couldn't keep my eyes off her. She is so fun to watch and her spirit is so contagious. She really has a knack for drama. She also is very studious and is striving to get through her junior high years with straight A's. I never had that kind of drive at her age.

She still has her hopes set on Moody Bible College in Chicago, IL. She feels that God is leading her into full time missions when she gets older. She has a real passion and heart for Central America. This summer she really wants to go on a short term missions trip and has asked Michael and I to pray about it. To me it seems that she may be a tad bit young still to go away from home for that length of time. It's probably more me not wanting her to be away from us yet. I am pretty confident that her maturity level is there for such a trip. Our church does mission trip to Nicaragua and Argentina and I would love for her to start out on one of those trips with people that she knows from church.

Jeffrey is 11 and is getting taller every day. He is just a few inches away from my height. I am sure it won't be long before he will be looking me straight in the eyes. Jeff just got done with playing basketball for the 6th and 7th grade team at Central Christian. We attended almost every game and had a blast watching him improve over the season. He has a terrific side court shot and his height helps him get the rebounds.

Jeff is enjoying school to the fullest and really likes his 6th grade teacher who has been teaching some 30+ years. She has been so helpful in getting Jeff ready for Junior High. He is becoming more responsible and starting to learn good study habits.

Jeff is our fix-it man! He loves to fix things around the house. Michael loves this- except when he can't find his tools. I think Jeff will need his own tool kit soon!! He has also taken on the job of mowing the lawn. He does a wonderful job. He has the goal of starting his own mowing business this spring. He wants to make some extra money. Not to spend, but to save. Boy is he a saver. He still hasn't spent his b-day money from his May birthday. He is also a giver! I love that trait in him.

Jeff also loves playing his guitar. This year he has taught himself how to play. He regularly plays for chapel on Wednesdays at school. Michael was asked to lead the chapel music each week and has let some of the 6th grade boys join him with their guitars. It truly blesses my heart to see my son using his gifts for God.

Emma, she is almost 10 and full of life. She is has become a real mother's helper this year. I know that if I ask Emma to clean something that she will do it with all her heart and do it to perfection. Believe me... she didn't learn her organizational skills from me. She makes me want to be a more organized person. But that will never be! Every morning her room is perfect. It is the only room in the house that I will not shut the door on. She has learned that she can get money from her siblings by cleaning their rooms. This we had to put a stop to.

Emma's type A personality shines through at school. She received straight A's last quarter. This is the girl who had such a rough start because of her speech problem. I remember so vividly how we could not understand her at all when she was between the ages of 2-4. Her hard working personality has really helped her overcome that speech impediment.

Emmie starts basketball through the park and rec program in January. This will be her first year playing ball on a team. Of course, she plays with her siblings every chance she gets and is a feisty player. Watching her games will be a ton of fun!

Lastly, there is Joshua. Josh turns 6 two days after Christmas. I remember so well the Christmas I was pregnant with him. He is truly a blessing. I am so glad God had one more child for us. When all the other children are growing more independent day by day it is nice to still have little Joshy home half days and have him by my side.

Josh is in Kindergarten and loves it. He is known to say "Today was the best day ever". Every day ends up being his best! I love his zest for life. He loves hanging out with his big brother and copying all Jeff does. This sometimes isn't the best thing, but I have enjoyed watching their relationship grow. Jeff is an amazing big brother- so patient and includes him in most things that he does.

Josh also starts b-ball this January. He is so excited! He plays in our driveway almost everyday and won't quit until he makes a certain amount of baskets. Josh's strong trait is his persistence. He is also so easygoing. I guess that comes from being the fourth. Josh was baptized this summer by Michael and really loves Jesus. It gives me great joy to know that each one of my kids have made a decision to ask Jesus into their heart. Now it is my prayer daily that they will follow Him wholeheartedly.

This brings me to my wish for you this Christmas season- I pray that you will remember what Christmas is all about. Jesus, the King of Kings, chose to be born in a lowly manger; he lived a humble but perfect life and gave up his life so that you and I have the gift of eternal life. We who were once dead because of sin can now have life if we choose to put our faith in Him. This is the ultimate "free gift" and there is nothing we need to do for it except to simply receive it. I hope that if you are reading this today and you have not accepted by faith this gift that you will put your hope in God and give your life over to Him.

If you have a personal relationship with him then my pray for you is Duet. 10:12- “And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul."

May your year be filled with many blessings that God wants to give you as you surrender your lives wholly to Him.

Merry CHRISTmas and Happy New Year.


The Kuhlman Family

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