We had a wonderful Christmas with our children and grand-children. Maddie’s litter was five weeks old and so fun to hold! We are very thankful for a blessed year in 2009 and talked about the things this year that were significant to all of us. We are very fortunate to all be healthy, and have had three new girls added to our family this year…our new daughter-in law, Missy, and our two grand-daughters. January 6 was Russ and my 31st wedding anniversary! I still remember the first time I met him, when I was 13…he came over to hang out with my brother Glenn. I thought he was so cute, but never dreamed he would ever be my boy friend. When I was 15 he asked me to go to “Jaws” and held my hand for the first time. I can’t explain the feeling, but when he held my hand, I felt like melting! I had never felt that way before, or since…I was so young and had no idea what real love was, but I knew what I felt for him was unique. As time went on, I knew Russ was my soul mate. I couldn’t live without him. By the time I was 18 I couldn’t resist marrying him! We had been married for a year when we went on a mission trip to Haiti with Glenn. Two days before we left on the trip, I found out I was pregnant with our first baby, Christie! That trip to Haiti was life changing. It was just like you see on TV and magazines. So much poverty. So many hurting people. I thought about the child I was carrying, and how she would never go hungry, always feel loved, never know a night without a warm place to sleep. When we came home, as we turned a faucet and hot water came flowing out, or we opened the refrig, or laid down in a soft, warm bed, we couldn’t help but think of all the people we had met, and how they survived on little or nothing. I learned to be thankful for a roof over my head, no matter how big or small it was. I became thankful for the smallest things. Now as I see the Haitians suffering even more through the after math of the earthquake, I can’t help but remember the people we met, and the look of gratefulness in their eyes as we handed them penicillin. We shared the truth of God’s word, and told them of the love of Jesus Christ. We left everything we had brought, except for the clothes on our backs. 30 years have passed, and that trip is still impacting my life!