Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Celebrate! Merry Christmas from the Loys!

2015 was quite a year and the Loy family theme was “Celebrate!” We began the New Year on a cruise ship with the whole Johnson side of the family (thanks to my dad) and celebrated my dad’s 80th birthday and our 20th anniversary in the Hawaiian Islands. Greg has definitely proved his vows of “in sickness and in health” as I was still undergoing chemotherapy when the year began. Chemo stopped in March and my port came out in July, and we have spent this year celebrating newfound health and fun times with family and friends.

Celebrating new energy since chemo was behind me, we managed to fit a number of small trips in throughout the year. I visited my hometown of Concord to see my dad and my high school friends. I went on a “girlfriend” trip to Savannah, Georgia and Aiken, South Carolina and had a blast seeing the beautiful history of those cities. In June we took a family trip to the San Juan Islands in the Pacific Northwest and finished that vacation celebrating my sister’s 50th birthday in the Portland area.

We celebrated the boys’ academic successes—with Micah’s promotion from middle school and Noah finishing his junior year. This year we had a freshman and a senior in high school—with Noah driving his little brother to school daily—my years as carpool chauffeur were over—time to celebrate again! Both boys are involved in Young Life at our high school and we are excited that Young Life has expanded into our local area. We love supporting this ministry that has been near and dear to us for many years. In the fall we continued with birthday celebrations as Micah turned 15 ((driving permit on the horizon) and Noah turned 18 (and I had a small melt down—my baby becoming an adult!) Micah continues with lacrosse and Noah continues with soccer and we have spent much of this year focusing on the college application process.

Over spring break we went on a Southern California college tour visiting Biola, Whittier, Westmont, UCSB and Cal Poly. Since I have former students at all those schools, visiting the college campuses comes with private and fun tours. But after looking at a number of schools, Noah changed his focus and decided to look at larger schools with an emphasis on his major of sports marketing.  So we found ourselves on a lovely fall trip to Colorado where we visited five schools and fell in love with that state. Consequently, Noah chose his number one school, applied to it for early action, and has been accepted to Colorado State University, Fort Collins—he is excited to be a CSU Ram and we are thrilled for the opportunities to visit next year! Another reason to celebrate—the stressful college application process is OVER!

Our backyard didn’t fare well in the California drought and our oasis quickly became a sand pit, so Greg worked hard to implement our drought resistant design into making our yard kid, dog, and neighbor friendly again. We celebrated with many summer sunsets and happy hours on the cabana. Greg spent a lot of hours working, taking care of his business, and taking care of me and the boys, so I am hoping that in 2016, the theme of the year will be “Greg!” I need to get started celebrating this amazing husband of mine!

Deciding that being cancer free wasn’t enough, I set out to run some races and set some goals for 2015—and while training for a half marathon and triathlon, I fell off my bike and tore my ACL. I managed to continue biking and hiking (but no running) up until my surgery on December 1—and have been in recovery for the past 20 days. If there is ever a reason to celebrate walking, moving, and living life to the fullest—go through being immobile for 14 days and you will be so grateful for the things we all seem to take for granted!

We live in a broken and unsettled world. But we celebrate the Savior who came in the humble form of a baby—Emmanuel—God with Us.  It is in Him that we place our hope and our daily celebration of a life renewed by His spirit. Everything we have, everything we are, we celebrate because of Jesus. We pray that as you navigate life, that you would find reasons to celebrate—the small and the big, the mundane and the exciting and that your hope, your purpose and your joy would be found in the Savior, Jesus Christ, the King. 

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