Thursday, January 8, 2015

Worden's Year 2014

The following letter was created in December but it is just making its debut on this blog today.  I hope to more faithfully update my blog this year.  Perhaps that will happen if I can figure out how to prioritize my time and energy to include this writing opportunity which brings me great joy.  Stay tuned and enjoy a synopsis of life at our home in 2014.

ear Family and Friends,                                                       December 2014
...The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.
                                                            Isaiah 7: 14b
She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus,
because he will save his people from their sins.
Matthew 1: 21
For there is no difference between  Jew and Gentile – the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Romans 10: 12-13

How grateful we are that God’s greatest Christmas gift of Jesus would be a gift available to all people – Jews and non-Jews.  But gifts must be received in order for them to have personal worth.  Receiving takes place when one believes in Jesus.  The gift is free but cost Jesus his life – love truly amazing & humbling.
Christmas together in Richmond, VA 2013 - L-R, Stephen, 14, Constantine 3.5, Joanna 13(almost), Lydia, 10, Phillip, 15
Christmas 2013 was spent in Richmond, VA at the home of our son, John, and his family.  John continues with his Chick-fil-a restaurant at Tuckernuck Plaza and Diane teaches kindergarten at Veritas School where all 4 of our grandchildren there attend.  With all children involved in school, sports and church, life is busy and blessed.
Retirement party hosted by David & Deborah Rogers;  joined by our 3 children
January 8th was the day John was celebrated for his 29 years of employment at the H.E.Butt Family Foundation. 
Retirement had begun on January 1st.  Having our three children join us for the lovely luncheon and tribute event hosted by David and Deborah Butt Rogers was a delight.  
Our sons stayed on to attend a men’s retreat at Laity Lodge with their Dad.
3 handsome men at Laity Lodge together
This first year of retirement for John has been full – of learning and adjusting – and staying quite busy.   
Together we have traveled...
       February/March – road trip and visits to friends and family...
  Stops in Arkansas, Missouri, Indiana, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Tennessee  

       July – wedding in TN of John’s niece    Late September – 1st visit to the McDonald Observatory in the Davis Mountains in west TX plus a few days in Big Bend National Park along the TX side of the Rio Grande River.  Both of these stops were well worth the visits – hope to return someday.
One photo taken in Big Bend National Park - truly amazing scenery
       June & December – trips to Houston, TX to continue participation for John in the PPMI Study.
·         John’s Dr. is very pleased with his positive response to the 3 Parkinson’s medications he takes daily which control his tremor and allow him to continue doing all that he wants to do without the addition of any new symptoms.  John has added more regular exercise to his regimen and now has the freedom to get added rest as needed. 
Another highlight of our year was to host the Chinese family of our dear friend, Gloria, whom we had met in Moldova in 2011 but who has been studying at Vanderbilt through July of this year.
Gloria with her parents and her cousin
Her parents and a young cousin came to join her for travel in the USA and we had the joy of hosting them for 4 days in August.  We had many very meaningful conversations as we shared our home and some of our favorite TX places.  Gloria decided to remain in the US and is working in a NYC law firm.  A trip to Moldova for us did not take place this year but that allowed us to be available for Gloria’s family’s visit.
These men love snow and ice.  Hockey started in Dec. for Cozzie
Our son, James, continues his life in Detroit.  He is the Administrative Assistant for the Director of the Charlotte Mason School.    He and Constantine, age 4 ½, love the snow, ice and all seasons of Detroit.  We will join them for Christmas week in Detroit. 
Sarah and I celebrate our birthdays together in early December
Our daughter, Sarah, continues to enjoy her job as the librarian at Fort Sam Houston Elementary School in San Antonio, TX.  She also is grateful for her cozy home there and the enriching friendships she has with friends at Oak Hills Church.  She will join us for the trip to Detroit. 

Linda continues part-time work as a Laity Lodge hostess also with the Foundations for Laity Renewal.  It is a privilege to have this meaningful opportunity.  This was the year a new decade began for her and we celebrated the milestone while we were in Houston that day.  On our return, we stopped to celebrate with Sarah.  Having her nearby allows a number of sweet connections throughout the year. 
Taken at Blue Hole on the H.E.Butt Family Foundation property in Nov. 2014
We continue to treasure our time together in Bible Study and prayer, being involved in our church, community and neighborhood and giving to things we consider worthy as ministries sharing godly truths and values.  We plan to stay nestled in Kerrville, TX and would welcome an opportunity to have you come for a visit.  Connect with us on Facebook, follow the blog or communicate through email.  We look forward to hearing from you.

May your lives also be full of God’s joy and blessing,
     John and Linda Worden

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