Monday, December 19, 2011

Merry Christmas!

We hope 2011 has been a great year for you!  It proved to be full of change, adventure, and new life for our family.  I don’t even know where to begin…

The early part of the year found us nestled in a cozy home, on a bubbling river, surrounded by heaps of snow in beautiful Vermont.  Kasen awoke every morning to build new routes for his trains, enjoy play dates with friends, go to his gym class, and help Mommy, who was very pregnant with Baby Brother.  Kai was making plans to purchase the dental practice where he had been working and was excited about the possibility of ownership.  Yet, just as we were in the middle of the paperwork, the deal fell through.  Trying to plan our next steps, Kai realized that he didn’t want to continue working for the practice if he would not be purchasing it, so he put in his 2 month notice and we began making plans for another move.  California and Michigan were at the top of our list because we have family and friends in both places.  We weighed out the options and chose California because of the great weather and active life we could enjoy. 

On March 11, just twelve days before we left Vermont, Kelton Everett Anders was born.  He was perfect!  His bright blue eyes and reddish hue made him melt our hearts from the moment we laid eyes on him.  He has captured our love and is so much a part of our family that we wonder what life was like before him.  He’s such a happy baby almost all of the time.  His smile can light up a room and his laugh is absolutely contagious!   He also is the only one in our family who can be called a true Vermonter! (which is quite a feat!)

12 days after Kelton arrived, we said goodbye to the beautiful state of Vermont and the friends (who felt like family) we had made during our time there.  We made a stop in MI on the way to CA to introduce Kelton to the family.  While in MI, Kai toured the brand new medical facility his dad had been working on, which is also the same company his stepmom, Bev, works for as a midwife.  The medical facility sees all patients regardless of income level and has various specialties in one building including an impressive dental wing.  On seeing this and learning that working for this company also provided loan repayment, Kai decided he would make a call just to see if they needed another dentist to join their team.  When he contacted them, they told him that they needed a dentist in another location, but they were fully staffed at the new facility.  Kai thanked them for their time, but declined an interview for the other location. 

When we moved to CA, Kai didn’t have a job lined up, but he was very diligent about looking.  The first week there he had 2 interviews and 2 job offers as a result.  Life was going great and we loved every second of it.  Kai was enjoying his work and I was really enjoying my life as a stay at home mom in Southern CA.  Our days were filled with trips to the beach, play dates with long time friends, classes at the gym for Kasen, and just getting outside to enjoy the beautiful sunshine.  Several months after we arrived, Kai received a call from the office in MI stating that they were adding a dentist position to the new facility and offered him the position.   This was such a surprise!  We were enjoying everything in CA, yet the MI offer was very compelling.  We prayed and talked and talked and prayed about the decision.  We never thought that after moving all the way across the country again we would be ready to pick things up 6 months later and move most of the way back, but that’s exactly what happened.  We realized that it was too good of an opportunity to pass up and while it seemed foolish to leave a good, steady, full-time position in CA that Kai enjoyed, we had the distinct impression that we were making the right choice. 

So this Christmas season finds us closing on our new home just in time for Christmas within walking distance to the beach and next to the new Jack Nicklaus golf course.  Kai loves his job and has a great team that he works with (thankfully he's been blessed with a great team at every job!).  One of his favorite things about his new job is that while he sees the general population, he's also able to to serve those in our community that need, but can't afford quality care.  It's a very rewarding position.  The boys and I love it here too.  Our days here have been filled with house hunting, time with family and friends, trips to “our” beach, outings to the local museums and family attractions, and and even some dates for Kai and I (a rare treat before!).  After so many years, we are back where it all began for us.  It’s been so much fun to go back to the places where we started dating.  It has been a long and eventful journey to get to this point, but we are breathing in the sweet relief that comes only after having been through an experience such as this.  :-)

We hope that amidst all the holiday bustle and activity, your holidays are filled with special moments among cherished friends and family too! 

With the Warmest Christmas Wishes,

Kai, Kristi, Kasen, and Kelton

“In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.” ~Proverbs 16:9