Monday, January 21, 2013

New Year Greetings from the Christensen Family

Every year our family has a Japanese tradition of sending off New Year cards.  Actually, it is our late answer to Christmas cards, but I prefer the cultural twist from my LDS mission to Japan.  In the past, I’ve emailed it to friends and family, but always hate to miss someone who might be interested.  I thought this year, I would post it in my blog and those of you who faithfully follow it, might enjoy it.  Happy New Year!

Christensen Family 2012 Newsletter

            2012 was a great year filled with many transitions for our family.  Sending our eldest away to school, loss of our long time family dog, shift to full time employment and figuring out what’s the next phase of our lives.  We also realized in going through pictures of last year, how blessed we were with numerous experiences and opportunities and how fortunate we’ve been as a family.  We anticipate 2013 being a great opportunity for us all.
            Daisy, our nine year old black lab passed away last year.  Ironically, she had lost a lot of weight (after being put on a mandatory diet by the vet) and started getting energy back she had not had for a while, Then suddenly Daisy got sick, and died fairly quickly from a form of liver cancer.  Our hearts have been lonely for her many times this last year but we also have many fine memories of her as part of our family.  Sarah really comforted her in those last days and it was tough on us all.  We buried her in our yard with her ball and one of Carlton’s gloves. Daisy was always stealing one of his work gloves and we would find it buried in many places throughout the yard. We planted daisies over her grave. 
            Sarah turned 13 last September and is officially 6’1” tall or three inches more than last year.  Sarah serves as the Beehive Class President for the 12 and 13 year old young women in our church congregation.  She also is famous for her origami work. The little kids at the end of our church meeting come flocking to her for something she has made.  Sarah is in eighth grade at the Salt Lake Center for Science Education.  She enjoys the math portion a little more than her science portion but has some good teachers.  Last May her class went on a three day field trip to Mesa Verde near the four corners region of Utah and last month they went snow shoeing up Big Cottonwood Canyon.  Sarah and her Dad share the same iTunes account and constantly surprise each other on what each other purchases! 
Jessica now 21, graduated from LDS Business College with her Associates Degree in General Studies and is now a junior at Utah State and recently applied for entrance into their Elementary Teacher Education Program.  If life went perfectly she would be done with her studies there in about a year or so.  She has had some good roommates who have encouraged her to “participate in life” and her parents still cry every time she drives away.  Her 2002 SAAB continues to work well in transporting her to and from school and we have been pretty lucky to have her visit some weekends when we’ve had family functions.  We can always tell when Jessica is gone, because something seems to be missing in our home, but we are grateful to have Sarah around to torment.
            Cathy started working full time last August for Utah State Office of Higher Education doing customer service on student loans.  It’s been a little bit of a change from her prior work with the school district, but has given her some additional opportunities and pay.  She also continues to serve as the Relief Society President for the Salt Lake Rose Park Stake. Cathy enjoys driving our recently acquired Subaru Tribeca and so graciously assigned our 1996 Chevy Suburban to Carlton.   Cathy still enjoys reading when she gets a chance and has instilled that desire in our kids.
            Carlton is starting his 16th year on the City Council in Salt Lake City and has decided it will be his last year as a councilmember.  He serves as the President of the Utah League of Cities & Towns, President of the Associates Board of the Natural History Museum of Utah and as Chair of the Wasatch Economic Development District. Carlton is still employed at Zions Bank and continues to serve as the Stake Sunday School President in our Church. In March, Carlton participated in the My Heart Challenge with Intermountain Medical Center, loosing 43 lbs and winning most improved.  The whole family worked together and benefited from the effort.  His blog which can be found at: now has 10 followers a huge gain after 12 months! 
            We are ever so grateful for your friendship and support of our family.  We want you to know how much we love our Savior Jesus Christ and what a profound impact that has played in our happiness and the direction we plot for ourselves.  We wish you the best for 2013!