It’s the end of another year… time for the usual review (see below for our Christmas letter 2017) … and also looking forward to 2018! Happy New Year!
How are you? We hope this finds you and your family well, all sharing and caring together as we celebrate the birth of love; the birth of Jesus.
2017 has been a year of ups and downs and quite a few medical encounters.
January and February saw us busy with Tobias’ recovery from his two broken arms. One of the consequence of Tobias’ arms being broken was that he was not able to his final primary school exams and it was decided by the school that his average grades would be calculated from his various tests throughout the year and that he would go into the apprenticeship track for secondary school, which was where we felt suited him best.
Another consequence of his injury was that we went to Paris for our Sports holiday in February instead of the usual skiing. It was lovely to finally see Paris in all its beauty.
The doctor finally gave the all clear for sports activities mid-February, much to Tobias’ delight as it was just in time for his class ski trip.
March and April was a time of much traveling for Walter, around Africa and Europe is mostly where he gets to. Sandra continues to teach Chinese class and Sunday School, as well as run her English Playgroup.
In May, Sandra attended her first writers’ conference in Brussels, hosted by SCBWI (Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators). She enjoyed it very much; the first time she has traveled within Europe alone. And she learned a lot.
Of course, Tobias officially turned a teen in May! Now a 13-year-old boy! No longer a little guy,; he is taller than Sandra now.
May was also when Walter’s father fell seriously ill and was hospitalised. His mother’s health also suffered and she was also in hospital. And they both remained in hospital and rehab care respectively until we arrived in Singapore in July.
So much of our July/August holidays was spent caring for Walter’s parents and arranging for long-term carers for them. It was a tiring and trying time for all involved but by God’s grace, we managed it, with lots of help and support from Sandra’s family and all our dear friends.
Mid-August, we came back to Switzerland fairly tired out but got right back into the routine of school and work, while trying to help keep an eye on things in Singapore.
September was filled with the usual school, work, church and weekend activities. Walter still leading worship at church and fulfilling his role as an elder. Sandra continues as Missions coordinator for the church and leading Mission Focus Sundays for the Sunday School. Tobias now enjoys being in the teen class at church.
October meant lots of work travel for Walter. We managed to squeeze in a short few days holiday in Copenhagen. We like the city a lot and Sandra can certainly see us living there… lol. Walter also had to make an emergency trip to Singapore as well, to sort out family issues and his parents’ care.
November was a whirlwind of activity for us; lots of concert rehearsals for Tobias and Sandra, work travel for Walter, as well as having Walter’s best friend and his family stay with us for 2 weeks, which was great!
Tobias also switched to the academic track at the end of November, which meant a new school (further from home), new timetable, new classmates and teachers, and having to catch up on work he’s missed for the last 3 months.
December saw us having our previous pastor and his wife (they are also Tobias’ Godparents) stay with us for a couple of days, which is wonderful because we have not seen them for quite a number of years as they live in New Zealand.
And now here we are at Christmas!
Wow! That was some year. And through all of that, we have to thank God for everything He has provided; in all of our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual needs, giving us amazing people who supported, encouraged and prayed for us. Thank you all!
Wishing you a Happy Christmas and a Blessed 2018!