Friday, December 30, 2016

Christmas Blessings

Marshall Family Christmas Ode 2016, Volume 12
Hello Friends, here’s a note from us to you
Filled with love and sharing what’s new

Blessed to travel a bit, we celebrated a wedding in SF, and a graduation in Vegas.
Camping trips to the Grand Canyon and Zion which refreshed us.

We spent a few days exploring Sea World and caught alpine slides at Big Bear.
But time with family’s really what we love to share.

Summer months saw us picking berries, sailing the Channel, and learning to cast and reel.
We rock climbed, surfed, watched polo, and rocked a color run - and did it all with zeal.

We caught nearly every festival and built incredible sand castles at our local beaches
Whether paddling or collecting shells, we’re thankful for what’s in our reaches

Summer camps kept the kids swimming, dancing, sailing, VBS-ing, and robotics making
While momma enjoyed some well earned downtime with homeschool breaking.

We spend a lot of time at the Santa Barbara Zoo too,
For camps, home school, comedy, Princess Day, wine tasting and Zoo Brew.

We cherished family, attending the Martinet Reunion: (Laissez Les Bons Temps Rouler) with Gumbo & Crayfish
And are ecstatic my brother (Jon) and Sis-n-law (Courtney) have moved to Ventura - an answered wish.

We continue to lift up my dad in prayer and ask you to do the same
He’s had some health struggles that have been anything but tame
But God is faithful and good in all things and we are confident
that he hears us and we trust in His plans and His vision provident

Oli (5) is crazy tough and has a huge heart. He tried mutton-busting at the rodeo.
He loves talking about Jesus, doing anything bro and sis do, and ripping soccer goals - yo!

Talia (7) is second mom at home. She is crazy creative and loves to flash her toothless smile.
Her spirit is fiery and gentle, bravely trying new things and caring deeply for others - going the extra mile.

Aricin (8) loves friends and exploring - through books, legos, or learning that poison oak stings.
He digs youth group, baseball, water polo, surfing, hoops, and climbing anythings.

We still love homeschooling Monday, Wednesday, and Friday - keeps us parents smart.
Our charter program runs Tuesday and Thursday, covering science, history, and art. 

Janay still works with Cultural Care Au Pair as a Coordinator and Keller Williams selling Real Estate in SB
this year she closed a couple more homes leaving us with reason to cheer- Yipee!

Aaron traveled to Belize for a conservation trip, escaping just before Hurricane Earl hit.
He turned 40, and (finally) finished the PhD  - that took some grit!

He took a group of students to Cuba on a service trip with (Impact Edventures) his non profit.
and he also wrote the first in a series of children’s books - order it and don’t knock it.

We are grateful - for where we’re at, what we have, who we do life with.
We are reminded daily that God is good and his providence truth, not myth

The kids are growing up too fast. We’re trying to embrace every moment
knowing soon they’ll be grown and we’ll just have each other to torment

We’re learning to slow down and practice rest more,
To be intentional with those around us, to keep an open door.

We are trying to live simpler lives
Without complaining that it deprives

We want to let go of unreasonable “expectationships"
Choosing instead to engage grace filled relationships

We are trying to grasp a posture of gratitude 
to help us with a more joyful attitude

So that’s our year, so much to tell
We hope you are happy, healthy, and well

We wish you PEACE, LOVE, JOY, and blessings this holiday season
And invite you to visit us anytime for any reason

With love and hugs,   Aaron, Janay, Aricin, Talia, and Oliver
follow our adventures at:


This is Gustavo- our porch Goose :) Aaron thinks he's ridiculous- I love him and love that he has outfits for every season :)
Hanging with mommy friends for a fun friday teaching the kids about European Geography and discussing The Little Duke
 This is my sweet Grandma Ruth- AKA Mrs. Claus at Santas Village

My au pairs that I get to check in with through Cultural Care Au Pair
School action shots

Salami faces

 So thankful my dad's last scan came back Cancer Free
Serving at church with Feed my Starving Children and helping at the SB Food Bank
Mcconnell Ice Cream Sandwiches
 Christmas in SB
Snow downtown

 Aaron on his way to Cuba
Oli and his crew
Making Man Buns look good

Crazy Pirate
Rocking the Surf Contest

 Christmas Baking
 Grandma AKA Mrs. Claus

Lazer Tag fun in Visalia- Grandpa always dominates all of us

 Making Tamales
Too much fun with Christmas Jammies

Egg Nog

Christmas was great, it was good to be home in Visalia with family. So much to be thankful for.

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