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~~~A Note From Ruth~~~
Don told me I could have the back of the Christmas letter to write my own message!
The temperature now in Oryol, Russia is around 30*. There is snow on the ground making the view from our 6th floor apartment windows a refreshing and beautiful sight. During this winter season, the sun is up at 8:30 AM and back down soon after 4 PM. The shortness of the day was quite a surprise and adjustment 5 years ago when we first moved to Oryol.
Our daughter, April, does her school lessons at home. She enjoys e-mailing letters to her friends, reading the news, editing pictures with “photoshop”, recording and editing music and other audio, chatting with her friends over the internet, and cooking.
Our son, Alan, has been working 4 days each week helping our fellow missionary Travis Decker to build his house. Alan eats breakfast before he leaves at 7:00 AM and he returns back home around 7:00 PM. In his leisure time he likes to read, play ping pong with the young men at church, put up posters that invite people to our English Bible lessons, and help to give exams at a private English school.
Alan and April ice skate together at a new rink in our town of Oryol. When weather permits, they like to cross country ski together. Alan plays the accordion and April plays piano for our church services, so they are always practicing and preparing new special music.
I have found cooking for my family to be one of my favorite entertainments! I also bake desserts for “tea time” on Sunday, which is served after the Sunday morning service. April and I have found that peaceful walks through the woods are very inspirational.
Don keeps up with the news by reading articles he finds on the internet. Every month, he prints thousands of Gospel tracts on colorful paper with the computer, and the whole family works together to cut and fold them. We distribute these tracts to the people of our town.
Don and I have a bit of fun sipping coffee, hot chocolate, or Coke at “Santa Bean”, the new coffee shop in town. They also serve cheese cake from Moscow!
The highlight of our family’s day is dinner around the table each evening! This is the time when we converse over the topics we know and love the most. We often make time to play Rack-o, Phase 10, or some other game.
May God bless you in a special way this holiday season. We love you and you
are very special to us!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!