2010…is ending! Is anyone else surprised by this? We hope your year has been as blessed as ours.
Shawn is as busy as ever. He’s in his 11th year at the Veterans Hospital. (And just realized he didn’t get his 10 year pin.) He’s only on three indoor soccer teams (it’s been as high as six) but fills in for one or two others when needed. Most people want him when they see him play! In three games yesterday he scored in double digits. He coached Reagan’s church soccer team again this year and was loved by the whole team. He continues to computer tutor and fix computers for people and we almost always have a spare computer visiting us. As I type this he has three laptops he’s working on. He celebrated the big 4-0 this year while at camp with our schools 5th graders for his 7th year to volunteer as the nurse. We celebrated two days later with a family party for lunch and then a friend party for dinner. Almost 60 people helped make the day special for him. He continues to be my biggest supporter and a wonderful Daddy to his girls.
McKinley is offended if you call her a 9th grader. She always says, “I prefer freshman.” She’s loving every minute of high school so far. She is in her 11th year of piano and finally enjoying it again. Our fabulous teacher let her decide what she wanted to play during high school and she chose praise and worship songs. Basically chords and intervals. From this she can look online and find chord listing for popular songs and sit down and play them. For the first time we now find her at the piano without being told to. This makes us very very happy. She worked for months memorizing three songs and survived three live auditions to make her 3rd year of COCDA Honor Choir and 2nd of Junior High All State. Luckily this year she convinced some friends to join her and now she isn’t the only one from Bethany. She’s been taking voice for 6 years and although she’d never sing in public alone without being forced to, she blesses us with two songs a year at recitals.
Kennedy is enjoying her first year in middle school in 6th grade. She had her first boyfriend this year and went to a soccer practice of Reagan’s because that boy’s team was also practicing. She came home as the newest player on his team. Although the relationship didn’t work out, soccer did and she had a great season. She’s in her third year of orchestra at school and still playing the viola. She’s able to play along with McKinley’s piano songs and we get quite a few concerts. She’s in her 8th year of piano and never complains about practicing! She is often given a new book for one song and goes back the next week knowing them all. She’s on her 5th year of voice lessons and often is asked to sing for Wednesday night Prayer Meeting at our church. She loves getting that letter in the mail from Pastor Wayne. She auditioned for and was chosen for her 3rd year in Children’s All State Choir. This is her first year without McKinley and she’s both nervous and excited about it.
Reagan is in 3rd grade…my last baby in elementary. She was the high scorer on her soccer team this season. Must have been the good coaching. She is in her 5th year of piano and also her 5th year of voice. She is also a frequent singer in Prayer Meeting and was asked to sing for ARMM (Academy of Retired Ministers and Missionaries) recently. After attending an orchestra concert she is trying to decide if she’ll play the viola or cello next year in orchestra. Kennedy is pushing for cello so they can play duets. McKinley is worried Reagan’s little body won’t be able to carry a cello around! She is always ready to be Daddy’s little helper in any project he’s working on and she’s everyone’s biggest fan.
Stephanie-Oh, that’s me! I fundraised and ran another half marathon with Team in Training and the Leukemia Lymphoma Society. (Thanks to so many of you who donated!) I was honored to join with old and new friends running in memory of Mitchell Whitaker. I was asked to mentor our new group of Angels and loved being in that role. 3 ½ months into our 5 months training I got a stress fracture in my left foot and couldn’t run at all. I missed our Saturday long runs and hated getting to sleep in. But I headed to San Francisco in October wearing a walking boot and determined to cross the finish line. I laced up my tennis shoes race morning and set out. I was in constant pain for three hours and thirty-one minutes, but I finished. The Tiffany necklace handed to me by a San Francisco firefighter in a tux at the finish line certainly helped. I am still a stay-at-home mom but I did accept a part time job this year with a friend who started a home staging business. We go into houses that are being listed to sell and make them show to their highest potential. We recently were asked by a local builder to stage their model homes from the ground up. We’ve discovered that shopping with other people’s money is a lot of fun! I’ve also started photographing and making virtual tours for homes for sale for the realtor who also started the staging business.
In February we were all excited to join in a 100 year of music celebration for our schools anniversary. It was a huge event directed by my aunt Janis. A lady on the planning committee had heard the Conrad Girls were talented and suggested they sing a song. A three part harmony arrangement of Catch a Falling Star was written and they did an amazing job that night! (You can watch it by searching youtube.com for soccerjock3) I was in the alumni choir and sang in two ensembles and Shawn kept everything running smoothly as the stage manager. The girls were asked to be part of the entertainment of our church choirs Christmas party so they are now working on Rocking Around the Christmas Tree in beautiful three part harmony.
In July we headed back to Colorado for a few days. The five of us had two days to spend together before 10 of Shawn’s family joined us for three days at Golden Bell. We were able to show them why I’ve always loved that area so much. Tours, games, zip lining, camp fires, and plenty of eating made it a wonderful summer vacation. With road trips to Branson and Lubbock to see the Funk’s, we’ve put quite a few miles on the Expedition this year!
Although this year has had its ups and downs, we continue to praise God for His blessings and protection. We hope this holiday finds your family safe, healthy, happy, and surrounded by the people you love.
Shawn, Stephanie, McKinley, Kennedy, & Reagan