We love and miss “our” missionaries. We enjoy hearing from you and knowing how you are doing. If/when you are in Utah area, let us know. We continue to be impressed with how much our mission shaped our lives.
Here is our Christmas letter … hope you have a great holiday season.
Our 2014 was a sitcom about nothing.* While those around us had lots happen, for the most part Dave and Wendy had a year where personal, work, and family routines were . . . routine – not that there is anything wrong with that! So in this season of Festivus for the Restofus, let us reflect on our year of nothing.
Wendy continues double dipping in church service by speaking at Time Out for Women, serving on committees about missionary mental health, and teaching a Sunday School class on parenting young adults. Her talks are real and they are spectacular. She has become a food nazi, trying to eat more broccoli (Vile weed!) and less of everything else (No soup for her!), so she can fit into puffy shirts. She loves spending time with 6 grandchildren (oh yea, and her kids, sister, and friends).
Dave continues to travel, teach, write, and yada yada yada. He continues to be the master of his domain as he tries to influence thinking about leadership, HR, and organizations. He challenges his audiences to get out… and have an impact to avoid shrinkage of their roles in companies. While Wendy loses weight, Dave does the complete opposite by continuing to eat the top of the muffin and other delectables (that’s a shame!). While preparing for two dental implants this year he has definitely become anti-dentite.
Our children and loved ones also have their routines and their contests that give them meaning:
Carrie and Michael (see above) still live in Salt Lake City, raising 2 children under three, going to school, teaching 18 18-month olds in the Sunday nursery at church, working part time, and now remodeling a 1904 house (which is giving Carrie man hands). They are out there and loving every minute of it! Carrie’s mindfulness training helps her deal with all this with Serenity Now!
Monika and Chris had the family thrill this year of Chris graduating from medical school and taking up residency in Sierra Vista, Arizona where, being so close to Mexico, they could wear urban sombreros – if Sierra Vista were actually anything close to being urban. Monika left her job in Jonesboro saying, I’m out to support Chris’ career, but she now has a child to love, a dog to discipline, a yard to care for, and an old truck to repair.
Mike and Mel and their three girls still live in Columbia, South Carolina where they are not low talkers in their church community (Mike teaches seminary and Melanie teaches adult Sunday School). Come to think of it Mike is sort of a high talker by definition. Mike hopes to finish graduate school before it finishes him. After all, Nobody beats him because he’s The Wiz!
(Most) kidding aside, we are so grateful for friends, family, and the promises of hope through faith that give meaning to our lives. We would love to re-gift (ahem) the spirit of the Christmas season by forwarding to you a Christmas message we loved at christmas.mormon.org. And here is the Christmas card picture that goes with it.
With warm wishes to all,
Dave (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Wendy Ulrich (email@example.com)