Like every year, not everything has been easy this year, but great good has come where there has been struggle. God has been shaping us, growing us in grace, humility, and love. We have been driven to points of uncertainty, reminded that we are not in control, and challenged to trust God more. We have been blessed to have been able to share our home and lives with others, to share in their trials and to have them share in ours. God is good all the time.
Many of those who read this letter will be familiar with our Facebook posts about some of our greatest blessings.
Katie, currently 10, now wants to be called by her full name, Kathryn [though we're having a hard time adjusting]. She is responsible and hard working, but equally fun loving and silly. Whatever she does, she puts her heart into. Her great love is horses, and though that is a somewhat illusive dream, she gets her fill in reading about them. She loves the social life, but is learning more about who to keep close.
Reuben, age 8, is our impulsive child; he is often devising plans, building forts (inside and out), climbing structures, and has a great fascination for Rube Goldberg machines, traps, dominoes, marble tracks... He needs to have a project at all times or he's bored and / or hungry. Sometimes he can be distracted by "Calvin and Hobbes" or "Bone."
Jordan, age 6, is our disorganized, absent minded, head-in-the-clouds, funny guy. He'll do a lot to get a laugh and is interested in knowing what the world record for burping is as he is confident that he can break it. He has shown great creativity lately in his Lego building, commemorating Remembrance Day with a display, and is now devising a display for Christmas.
Molly, age 4, has been Ezekiel's surrogate mother since he was born. We suspect that this may be why he didn't crawl until he was a year old (July) and doesn't walk yet. She was attentive to his every cry, picking him up and lugging him around, up and down stairs, through various rooms of the house. She definitely has maternal instinct. She can be a "diva" at times and likes things to be done for her. She also has a peace making, diplomatic side to her; she is often in situations where she is working to pacify her younger sister, while also serving her own sense of justice.
Zeke, age 1, loves his big brothers and sisters. He is a happy little guy, for the most part, but likes to stick close and be carted around / cuddled. He likes cars, balls / balloons, and books (well, he mostly likes to hold books and "talk" about them, not so much read). He loves music - loud music (no surprise there!), and is showing signs of the same destructive streak that some of his older brothers had (no surprise there, either). He is particularly fond of bathrooms, specifically toilets.
We are anticipating yet another blessing: an eighth child to join our family somewhere near the end of May or beginning of June. The kids are excited; names suggested have been Calvin, Hobbes, and Suzie.
"Many things about tomorrow, I don't seem to understand, but I know who holds tomorrow, and I know who holds my hand." (Ira F. Stanphill)
So, we look confidently to the new year, not knowing what it may bring, but reminded by the verse that hangs over our front door, "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous, do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for The Lord your God will be with you wherever you may go." (Joshua 1:9) Our prayer for you is the same, that you would go into this year, free from fear and discouragement, confidently trusting that The Lord goes with you and before you wherever you go.
Love, the Dixon Family