Well, as we wrap up presents and another awesome year, here are a few of the Dukes family highlights from 2006. Hope you enjoy! We are so very thankful to know a God who came near and who continually shows His love to us through family and friends!
CALEB had a big year of firsts!!! He started off the year with his 1st ever soccer league at the local YMCA. We all went together on our 1st ever cruise (a Disney one nonetheless thanks to some dear friends). He attended his 1st ever basketball camp. He had his 1st day of school (Pre-K). He got his 1st bike and learned how to ride it. He learned how to swim. This fall, he turned 5. He still loves trains and space shuttles. And, his favorite thing to say right now is, Ã¢â‚¬Å“I have a brilliant idea!Ã¢â‚¬? He continues to be our pride and joy.
This year, KATEY GRACE turned 2 and began to really show her personality as the sunshine of our family. All the talking she already did became understandable. We especially enjoyed her peaking out from the curtains in our room on the cruise and declaring Ã¢â‚¬Å“Surprise!!!Ã¢â‚¬? Every time a camera was around, she welcomed it with a big grin and a cheesy Ã¢â‚¬Å“cheeeeeeese.Ã¢â‚¬? The cutest of all is probably her invitation to play hide and seek. She looks at you with her stunning beauty and captivating blue eyes and asks, Ã¢â‚¬Å“One, tu, tree, po, pie?Ã¢â‚¬? Translation: Ã¢â‚¬Å“1, 2, 3, 4, 5 (will you count and come find me)?Ã¢â‚¬? She also has grown quite fond of Larry and Bob and all those wonderfully funny Veggie Tales. She makes the Ã¢â‚¬Å“twosÃ¢â‚¬? so terrific!!!
2006 also brought us a bundle of love named ABIGAIL, born November 4th. She showed her fashion and style, coming a week late but perfectly healthy. Caleb and Katey have fallen in love with her, and they both love to hold her on the couch. She definitely looks like her older brother. In fact, when Caleb prays, he says, Ã¢â‚¬Å“God, I love that you made Abby to look like me.Ã¢â‚¬? We all agree, as he says, Ã¢â‚¬Å“She is soooo sweet.Ã¢â‚¬? Katey has noticed the sweet baby she is and calls her Ã¢â‚¬Å“sweet girlÃ¢â‚¬? all the time. We are very blessed with our 3rd and canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t wait to get to know her more and more!
Jen and I are so thankful and so content with all the treasures God has given us. Most of all, for the grace given to us in Emmanuel. We are thankful for our marriage and our strengthening oneness. We are in awe of the gift He has given us in our 3 little ones. We are also very thankful for our family and friends. Almost daily, we pinch ourselves at the blessing we have to do life together with our loving church family. Jen walks very closely with so many of the ladies and young moms. She is so sharpened by each and every one of them. She still feels much like an RN as they call with questions about kids and pregnancy and more. SHE ABSOLUTELY LOVES IT and feels so valued in those friendships! As for me, I am so grateful for our leadership teams, the menÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s group IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m in, and the many men and women I am learning from in the marketplace and beyond. You can read more about it all by going to www.westpointchurch.org and www.restorationconcept.com.
As you reflect on the year and maybe get out your old Christmas letter, I pray that you will know the God who came near more dearly and follow Him more closely.
MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!