Our View From Up Here

Saturday, December 13, 2014


I definitely have a little seasonal depression.  It might be the colder weather, it might be the impending holidays...  I haven't exercised in a month, my house is messy, and my motivation is limited. 
I am a people-pleaser, and I can't help but wonder if that is why I struggle a little.  If someone else is stressed, it stresses me.  I want everything to be perfect for everyone at Christmas.  Unfortunately, life isn't perfect, but yet, I've always been a "cup half-full" person.  So, let's look at the positives!

Today, my cup feels quite full.  Greg and I were able to serve at the Banquet this morning (a local food-kitchen-type ministry).  I left feeling blessed, and my heart was a little lighter.  Afterwards, I did some Christmas shopping at locally-owned businesses.  It felt good to buy for others while supporting others.  I also visited my mom today, helping her with some minor things, and I talked to my dad on the phone.  Lastly, I spent the evening with my kiddos.

I don't list all these things looking for a pat on the back, but rather a reminder that "giving" can come in many different forms: service, support, time, caring.  And the true blessing of giving is the feeling you are left with: a mixture of satisfaction, happiness and humbleness.  As the chaos of Christmas parties, programs, and presents begin, I am so grateful to be able to do just this: Give.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Merry Christmas 2014

I could probably copy our Christmas letters from the last few years, and only note minimum changes, but no news is good news, right?


Our kids are still cute, smart, and wildly entertaining!  Kyla is 5 and she started Kindergarten at Christian Center Elementary.  She goes all day, every day, and is doing well.  When Nolan is not home with Greg or myself, he goes to "big boy daycare" at Christian Center (2-3 days a week).  He's 3 years old and mastered potty training this summer, so that's exciting.  :)
Of course, the kids are naughty sometimes, and fight like siblings, but they do play well, and love each other too.
Greg is still working night shifts for Sanford Flight Team.  I am still working for Sanford Cardiologists.  I am still working on my BSN degree online.  We still live in SW Sioux Falls.  (Nothing exciting there, but that's ok!)
The little Mason Dog is 7 years old now.  He is lazy as ever, but we love that cute bug-eyed face!!
We've had a couple road trips this year- to Montana, Pella, and Minneapolis, and enjoyed a few camping trips in our old little pop-up trailer.  We honestly spend a lot of time at home, or checking out the different activities that Sioux Falls has to offer, and we have a lot of fun!  We've been blessed with so many wonderful things in life and are so grateful.
We wish everyone a very Merry Christmas with lots of love!
Greg, Melissa, Kyla & Nolan VanDenBerg