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Christmas letter 2012

December 19, 2012

2012 was a year of big events, beginning in January with the birth of our niece, Laura Ballam, to proud parents David and Suzie Ballam. Then, in April, we traveled to Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri to celebrate the marriage of Elena’s brother Chris and welcomed Kim Romkema to the family. Late in the summer, we were honored to be a part of Lisa and Brian Phillips’s wedding, close friends from our time spent in Iowa. We were thrilled to have the chance to celebrate each of these events!


Elena continues her work as Volunteer Center Program Manager at Community Thread. This past year saw tremendous growth in each of her programs and events, including the Spring Into Service Event, Rake a Difference Day, and the Holiday Bureau. She also continues to volunteer as the Minnesota Volunteer Coordinator for Compassion International, and will attend a Compassion International conference in Nasheville, TN this February.

On November 16th, John officially graduated as a Doctor of Chiropractic from Northwestern Health Sciences University. After 3.5 years of courses (448 credits!), internships, and board exams, we are so grateful to have reached this goal. We were blessed to have both of our families in town to celebrate the occasion, and enjoyed spending time together as a group. For the immediate future, John is working as an Associate Chiropractor for True Chiropractic, an office practicing the Gonstead technique in Roseville, MN. He is excited to be growing his patient base and is already seeing great results.


Lest you think 2012 was all work and no play, we were able to squeeze in plenty of opportunities for fun. John had the chance to do some Minnesota fishing and catch a pike (or 3!), thereby crossing that item off his bucket list. We also signed up to participate in the Color Run, an adventure 5K that involved running through clouds of colored powder, and a  giant color fight at the end.


We took two vacations over the summer months. With Elena’s family, we traveled to Door County, WI where we enjoyed lots of swimming in Lake Michigan, hiking the state parks, taking the ferry to Washington Island, and a tour of Lambeau Field.  We also took our annual trip to Ocean City, NJ to spend time with John’s family at the beach. We enjoyed surfing, walking the boardwalk, and the added bonus of hanging out with one of John’s friends from chiropractic school.DSCN1763

We pray 2013 showers you with blessings and good health. We hope to see or connect with each of you soon. A very Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” Romans 15:13

One Comment leave one →
  1. December 21, 2012 5:36 am

    John And Elena,,,thank you for that beautiful scriptural blessing at the end of a joyous letter. I feel so fortunate to have been a part of your lives as our paths crossed on this journey. I pray we keep in touch and continue to share the wonders of life.


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