I am delighted to share with you my annual Christmas card message and year-end review about life, family and my real estate group. With 2022 almost in the books, I hope you had an abundance of joy and prosperity! For us, it has been a season to be especially thankful for the deep friendships, family gatherings, and overflowing amount of business opportunities.
My group continues to help a lot of families make meaningful moves even in light of low inventory, rising interest rates, and recession on the horizon. Besides the relational successes we’ve had this year, we enhanced our online presence by establishing a new website that better reflects my brand. We continued to engage through social media, blog writing and through videos. I’m most proud of the case study video series because they showcase real life scenarios where we created value for our clients through our design and pre-listings renovations. (Click here to check them out on my YouTube channel!>>)
My financial advisor recently remarked that he doesn’t know how Realtors keep a positive outlook given uncertainty and market pressures, and especially without the residual earnings like his industry enjoys. Every year is a new year.
I’ve learned to have confidence from what the bible calls out in Romans 12:2 to “be transformed by the renewing of your mind”. By keeping my thoughts positive and on the truths I believe (that I am valued and have been given direction to carry out a purpose - especially in my occupation), I am able to work in the confidence that I’m doing what I have been designed and trained to do.
For family gatherings, we had many.
Micah, our first high school graduate, celebrated an epic backyard pool gathering with so many meaningful people who helped mold him. This fall he confidently and successfully started college in Holland, Mi at Hope (Amy's alma mater). This exciting experience was a significant testament to God's hand in and throughout his life. Micah has already grown on many levels by plugging into a variety of platforms that Hope has to offer. As his family, we were so grateful we can cheer for him on the football field and traveled to most of his games home and away. Go Dutch!
Amy and Abigail traveled to Bloomington Illinois over the summer where she competed in Special Olympics rhythmic gymnastics. Currently she is in her senior basketball season where many of her dearest supporters cheer from the stands. Abbey is a walking encyclopedia of pop music and broadened her love for music by taking guitar lessons right in downtown Clarendon Hills. She has become quite an independent and witty young lady. We are confident in God's direction as she transitions into her unique secondary (or post high school) educational experience.
Noah and I made a special trip to Las Vegas for a red carpet experience at the Pro Bowl. We gathered signatures from many of the players, including one of his favorites, the Viking's, Justin Jefferson. Noah continues to play football and can't wait to be back on the field. Last spring, lacrosse was injected into Noah, and it made use of his most positive attributes; intense, quick-thinking, fearless, team-player and competitive. Hanging with friends anywhere remains his favorite pastime. At home we're thankful that we still make the list of acceptable company. We hope that doesn't change too much with his 16th birthday at the start of the new year.
Elizabeth’s career as an eighth grade basketball, lacrosse, and volleyball player has really taken off. Her biggest fans are her grandparents: Papa & Nonnie and my mom, RaRa. When not on a field or court, she spends countless hours on SnapChat and Tik Tok where she stays connected to friends and learns everything her heart desires and more about baking, modeling, music and fashion trends. She traded in her pink and adolescent wares for silver and bling. Being our youngest, God is always teaching us how to embrace the here and now while letting go gracefully (or not) of the fragrances and sounds of the past.
Amy and I went to a destination wedding of a family friend’s daughter in Vail this summer. This was the first wedding we experienced of a once small child we watched grow up. As memorable and special it was to celebrate with dear friends, we also appreciated the chance to take in the beauty of the mountains and enjoyed hiking, golfing and relaxation. While at home when we are not battling teenage schedules and meal plans we each enjoy making the time to play in both paddle and golf leagues and often together as a "date". From the start of our relationship, we both value small group communities at church and beyond- where we can face struggles and celebrate moments with good good friends. God remains at the center of all of our relationships- especially ours.
Life is always full of drama, and our family certainly has its share. It seems the more that piles on and the older we get, the more Amy and I enjoy each other. I am truly blessed by being able to raise my children with the love of my life.
To look back on past Christmas letters, see here: