2 * 5 * 201

It’s been such a great year and a wonderful winter vacation. I’m sitting here with my family watching Travis Pastrana jump 250 feet over Rainbow Harbor in Long Beach, California. Ben and Tam are shooting Nerf darts at the family from the balcony. Christine is talking about cutting more quilt squares. Nobody really wants to get up, though. And mom has just announced that North and South (the Elizabeth Gaskell chick flick) is starting in the other room. Decisions. Decisions.

Where to involve myself? That is the question for tonight AND for the next twelve months. 2009 was a great year of finishes for me: the translation certificate at the University of Chicago Graham School [check]. The thesis about Julián Aguirre to complete my MA in Latin American Studies at the University of Chicago [check]. A move to a new job at Illinois Wesleyan University in Normal, IL [check]. A new home and community of friends in central Illinois [check].

Now what? It’s time to think about what new goals to set for myself and where I’ll be heading next. There are a lot of options and for that I am grateful.

I am grateful to live in a country that still, in spite of human weakness, provides me with opportunities to develop myself and make a difference. I am thankful for the seen and unseen hands that have supported me when I’ve needed it. I am extremely thankful for my large family—so many personalities and challenges enrich my life and make it interesting. And I am thankful for my connection to God. His hand is and has been over me this year, guiding me step by step to the people and circumstances that I need for my own growth. I am glad and grateful for all of these things.

If I can just survive Travis’s 250 foot jump, ten more Nerf darts, and the final kiss in North & South, 2010 will be off to a great start.

My best wishes to everyone for a WONDERFUL new year!

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