"The Muffled Cries For Help From a Daddy of Four Beautiful Little Girls"

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Our Narcissistic Holiday Blatherings

Here's the annual Family Christmas Letter that you were warned about. I assure you, our feelings will not be hurt if you turn back now. I'm sure you could come up with all kinds of productive things to do with the 3 1/2 hours it would take you to read this.
Oh, and the pictures were right side up in the real letters that are arriving in mailboxes as we speak. But YOU, oh internetters, must turn your monitors sideways to enjoy them.
Have at it.


Merry Christmas!
We hope this finds you and yours relaxing by the fire, sipping hot cocoa and clawing over who gets to read our riveting Christmas letter first.

The biggest news at the Newland house recently is that Cassie (5th grade) and Shelby (3rd grade) went to public school this fall after a successful career of homeschooling. I joke that they got expelled from the Newland Academy, but that's just nonsense, because they were both at the very top of their respective classes before leaving. Both girls are doing a fabulous job at school. We prayed a lot before making the transition, and God has overwhelmed us with His faithfulness! They each have terrific teachers that are perfect for their personalities and an amazing principal. We couldn't be happier! With her class size cut in half, Cindy is enjoying a little more time with Brynne (2nd grade) and Jenna (1st). They are smart little whippersnappers just like their big sisters.

In order to enrich our daughters' educational endeavors, we took a big trip out East in the spring. I know, we keep putting off the visit to world's biggest ball of twine, but with our studies of Lincoln and the Civil War, it just seemed to make better sense to visit Gettysburg, PA; Washington, D.C.; and Ocean City, Maryland. So Ocean City didn't actually fit in with the history theme, but Thrasher's French Fries is considered a historic site on the Boardwalk there. History highlights included Ford's Theater, The Holocaust Museum, Little Round Top at Gettysburg and freeze-dried ice cream at the Air & Space Museum. Cindy and I also got to add a side trip to the Grand Canyon to some business travel. Can’t wait to take the kids next time!

Cassie (11 1/2) is doing great at school in all subjects (even though she's absolutely horrified by missing ONE speeling wurd awl yeer long.) She's still sweet and relatively quiet, but would you believe that she had a 'big' part in the church Christmas musical? We are so incredibly proud of her. She did great; she even had a line that brought some laughs. That's my girl. She's in Bible Bowl again (with Shelby and Brynne) and doing great, already bringing home trophies, ribbons and the scalps of her opponents.

Shelby (9) is loving school too. While I'm sure they teach things like math and writing at this public school of hers, I mostly hear about who she played football with at recess. She played soccer in the fall and has just started Upward Basketball for the winter. So like her jock dad she is. (Shelby just read that over my shoulder. 'I'm NOTHING like you in sports, dad!' Perhaps 'sarcasm' hasn't been on her vocabulary list yet.) She's also a great Bible Bowl competitor on the same team with Cassie. It is absolutely amazing how much Bible knowledge they have!

Brynne (8) continues to hone her mad fashion skillz. And yet she can also tear up the soccer field and basketball court. This was her first summer to go to Mexico with Shelby and me to build homes. She loved it and has now convinced the whole family to come with us next year. She's doing Bible Bowl this year with her big sisters and also getting her hands on some trophy action. As I'm writing this, she's down at the bus stop watching her sisters ride off into the sunrise as she dreams of the day that she too may be shipped off to sweet blessed Public School.

Jenna (6 1/2) tries hard not to be the 'baby' of the family by insisting on growing up. No, she's not wearing lipstick and high heels, but she does keep losing teeth at an alarming rate, and she's learning to read and other such non-baby things. The theme of soccer and basketball continues with her as well, plus she is a self-proclaimed artiste. She finally is old enough to join Mommy's choir at church, so all four girls were in it at the same time; this will happen less frequently than Halley's Comet, so we're making a big deal of it.

Cindy has been crafting, painting, and even sewing in an effort to subsidize her Starbucks habit. Babysitting a few little ones each week allows her to upgrade to Venti. She directed the children's musical again this year and is keeping busy in so many ways, but never too busy to be a great mom and wife, I assure you. She even has enough left over to adopt a couple of college girls who we have enjoyed making part of family at birthday parties and Christmas-cookie-making-time. Cindy’s health is improved as her neuralgia episodes have been fewer and farther between, so thank you to any and all who have prayed for relief in that area.

Those of you who have prayed for miraculous hair regeneration for me, on the other hand, get no thanks. I went and shaved it all off in July for the kids at church camp, and I've kept my head smooth and shiny ever since. With the money saved on shampoo and hair care products, I've gone out and bought a can of Coke. Work is good and Sherwood Oaks continues to be a fantastic place to work and worship.

Well, enough about our family and my hair.

We do pray that 2008 brings bucketfuls of blessings for you and those you love. Thank you to those of you whose own updates we've already received. We look forward to more still coming. And for those of you whose wives don't force you to write these narcissistic blatherings, you have one more thing to be thankful for this blessed Christmas season.

Love and Blessings in the New Year,

Scott & Cindy
and Cassie, Shelby, Brynne and Jenna


javamamma said...

Thanks for putting us on your Christmas card list. I enjoyed reading about your year.

Bucketloads of blessings to you guys too! I've enjoyed getting to know your family {via the blog} this year!

David said...

Getting your letter in the mail was one of the best days I've had in awhile.

Roses Are Red, Violets are Violet said...

I just love your family.

Stacy said...

Great letter!