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2011 Christmas Newsletter, Part 2

December 14, 2011

Erin is now 12 years old and in the 7th grade.  She has shot up this year in height and most who haven’t seen her in awhile can hardly believe their eyes.  She went from a size 6 shoe to a size 9 in a school year.  Erin is involved in Student Council, FCA, Youth Group, FFA, Jazz Band, Southwest Swim Club, Scouts, 4-H, softball, and of course, basketball. 

One of the highlights of Erin’s year was to participate in an AAU team that competed in the Twin Cities for about 8 weeks this past spring.  She loved every minute of it, and basically, basketball could be her middle name.  The second highlight of the year for her was learning to quilt.  She has been taking classes, and has really done a nice job, including making some of her Christmas presents.  She is an often sought after babysitter, who adores the children that she watches, particularly three neighborhood boys.

Cloie, affectionately known around here as our one and only Sally Gal, will be 7 years old tomorrow.  We can hardly believe that can be true.  We remember that cold day she came into the world like it was yesterday.  She recently told one of Huck’s nursing home friends when she asked her about what it was like to get a puppy long ago, “I have no idea. I was born into his family.” 

Cloie is involved in 4-H, Girl Scouts and Southwest Swim Club.  Her biggest accomplishment was doing very well in her two events at the Beat the Blizzard swim meet.  Her face upon learning she won her heat was priceless!  She loves to play with her friends; anything to do with rocks, Barbies, or art; and school.  Cloie loves to read!  There are so many times that she takes our breath away, because she does so many things just like Reed. 

The family vacation was the Nowatzki Family Reunion in Devils Lake, ND followed by a week in Leeds to celebrate the Leeds 125th anniversary.  It was a fun seeing so many family and friends all in one place. 

Our second biggest event each year is the Lyon County Fair.  The kids all did fabulous in their projects: quilting, photography, aerospace, and our family favorite: pigeons.  We are exhausted at the end of each day, but the best part of August are the days spent at the fairgrounds getting the pigeons ready.  The kids work so hard on their projects throughout the year, and they enjoy earning their ribbons.  Some of the best memories of this year’s fair were Sawyer earning Reserved Champion in Showmanship, Cloie earning Grand Champion (3rd year in a row) in Open Class Junior Photography, and Erin earning a blue ribbon for a quilt she made all by herself. 

Even though, they are typical preteens and teenagers, a moment at the poultry show will forever be etched in my heart.  Sawyer, Erin, and Cloie are the only ones currently showing pigeons.  As they went through each class, Sawyer earned Grand champion and Erin earned Reserved.  When it came to the last class, Sawyer once again took top honors, but before he did, he turned around and said, “I’m so sorry, Erin.  I wanted you to win this one.”  Hot and sticky on an August day, I had to work hard to hold the tears back. 

We continue to look for God’s blessings in the smallest of pieces of our daily lives.  We can find His goodness in the time spent with friends, in the blessed bounty from our gardens, in the chance encounter with a stranger, and in any place we purposely seek Him. 

We pray that you and your family are doing the same!

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