Merry Christmas from Hayden, Logan, Madison and Dusty the golden retriever

It’s that time of year again when we send and receive Christmas cards with updates from friends and family.  I have a few family members who write lovely letters with the details of their year and so here is the annual message from our family.

2016 has been a terrific year, with the kids growing up (and up and up) and lots of lovely memories to reflect on.

Our oldest son, Hayden, turned 11 in March and he continues to grow into a fantastic young man.  His animal blog is growing and has passed 250,000 views this year which is a great effort and he was accepted into a really cool program at school as an Ambassador for the Dolphin Research Institute which he is very excited about.

At the start of the year, Hayden was still very unwell after contracting an illness in late 2015, but after a few days in hospital in April, he recovered quickly and was able to resume his sporting activities.  In football, his team won the premiership and he finished 5th in the league Best and Fairest award which was wonderful achievement after his slow start.  He played mainly at centre-half back, where his height and speed give him an advantage over his opponents.  He was blessed with fantastic coaches and team-mates who help to bring out the best in him.  He has also been able to resume playing basketball and athletics as well, which he really enjoys.

Madison turned 9 in November and is an energetic young girl who keeps us all on our toes.  She gave up on gymnastics during the year, but is doing really well in her swimming and athletics and throws herself into her activities with great enthusiasm.  Madison loves horses and the highlight of the year for her was going horse riding for the first time when we were on holiday in Port Douglas during the middle of the year.

Logan turned 9 in November as well (of course) and he is a lot of fun to be around.  He has a cheeky grin and delightful sense of humour and keeps us all entertained.  Although he is a good swimmer, he isn’t quite as keen on sport as his siblings, but has made some great friends at athletics and that keeps him happy there.   A typical 9-year-old boy, Logan loves Pokemon and Minecraft and can spend hours on his favourite past-times.

Each of our kids had brilliant teachers this year and are looking forward to 2017.  Logan and Madison will be in separate classes for the first time next year, but they are ready for the challenge.

Karen has had a good year at work.  She works in a local Christian school and has Wednesdays off which gives us the chance to have a lunch date every week, which is lovely.  To have the time and space to catch up without interruptions is something that we haven’t had for a few years, so it still feels like a luxury to us.  We celebrated 20 years of marriage in December which is a fabulous milestone and we are looking forward to the years ahead.

For myself, it has been a great year.  It’s felt much less chaotic than last year, but still very busy.  Trying to juggle a full-time business, being on the board of the kids’ school, church, sporting activities almost every night and trying to find the time to write this blog certainly keeps me out of mischief and I am looking forward to having a couple of weeks off over Christmas.

As a family, we love Christmas and can’t wait to celebrate the birth of Jesus together with the extended family.  I hope that you have a fantastic Christmas and festive season and thanks for your support and encouragement throughout the year.