Greetings from the Shumates! 2009 has been another great year! We’re pleased to be able to report to you how our family is doing.
Matt’s family continues to enjoy life in Spokane. We were able to take a couple trips to visit and really enjoyed having the girls spend two weeks with us in the summer. Reagan is turning ten in February and is such a sweet girl. She loves to read, excels in piano and is a wonderful big sister. Kelsey turned seven at the end of their at the end of their summer vacation with us on August 1st. She loves lots of activities and also takes piano lesson. Gwyn turned three on December 1st and is very sweet and loving. She is definitely a grandpa’s girl. Gina works nights at Safeway and volunteers at the girls’ school. All this while keeping up with her mom duties keeps her very busy. Matt continues his job as a graphic designer and has started his own photography business. His photography keeps him very busy and he is very good. Check out his work at http://photo.mattshumate.com.
Devin and Dacia have big changes ahead of them in the real near future. They are moving to Columbia, South Carolina in January. Devin got a big promotion and this is a wonderful opportunity for them. We will really miss having them live five minutes from us. We will be saving our money for plane tickets. Dacia has an unbelievable amount of talent and hobbies, and makes use of each of them as she spends nearly every waking moment raising four children. Tanner is seven and is a very sweet and gently boy. Anson is five and loves to be the center of attention. He is also a gifted reader. Both boys played soccer and baseball this year and are also taking piano lessons. Ella is 2 ½ and is an active, busy little girl. She loves all things pink and girly. She has also learned to say "South Carolina" with a Southern accent. Joseph Palmer was born on April 9th. He is a loving and calm baby. Learning to crawl is taking up his attention right now.
Cory continues his property development business, Sustainabuild. Check it out at http://sustainabuildnw.com . He is also drawing up plans for their own house to be built in an historic part of town. It has been thrilling for us to watch his drawings develop into actual houses, which he built. Danielle is back at school with plans to become a teacher. Actually, she would like to be a middle school science teacher. She volunteers in the classroom and enjoys it quite a bit. She will graduate next year and work on her master’s degree. They have been spending their free time this year snowboarding, hiking, and enjoying nature.
Travis got a promotion at his job. They love him and the creativity he brings to the job. As a supervisor, he is able to inspire others to be more creative, as well. His band, Colonies, just put out a new album. It is excellent. Listen to it at http://colonies.bandcamp.com/. Jaqui changed jobs and is now working at a dentist’s office, instead of the craziness that was the real estate office. Jaqui and Travis also have a photography business, which keeps them hopping. Go to their web site, http://jaqshu.blogspot.com/, and look at their work. It is very good.
Alan’s dad passed away this year. He lived a long and full life and his passing was a sweet experience with lots of opportunity for time with family. We are thankful for the example he was to each one of us. Our lives haven’t changed much. Alan still works for the city at the Tacoma Dome and Stella is still the cashier at an elementary school cafeteria. We have really enjoyed spending time together and with our family. Our church responsibilities have changed, with Alan working with the teenagers as the Young Men’s President and Stella working with six year-olds as a Primary teacher. We enjoy the opportunities that come to us from serving in those capacities. We also appreciate the many people who have touched our lives over the years and consider ourselves lucky to have people as you as our friends. But most of all, we are grateful for a Savior who gave His life for us and continues to love us even when we least deserve it. Merry Christmas!