Holiday Letter 2011

Welcome All to the 2011 Reveal Family Holiday Letter


This is a summary of the events in our life this year. Enjoy the photos and the stories. After you're done here, please browse around through the photo albums and family trees, there's lots more to see!

Kids

Helena News

Helena is a bright, enthusiastic, kind super star ten year old. She has grown so much this year! She is now almost five feet tall and wears a size 8.5 women's shoe! She has adjusted beautifully to the world of middle school and tween-dom. Yet she has retrained her independent spirit and sense of play.  She loves sushi, legos, reading, music, and imaginary play.  She is an EXCELLENT older cousin and has a real talent for taking care of the younger children.  What a beautiful girl!

Girl Scout Father Daughter Dance

The Father Daughter dance theme this year was a barnyard "Hoe Down." Grandma made the bandana belt and pocket handkerchiefs. Helena is really excited because this January 2012 our troop is hosting the Father Daughter Dance. The theme is Hollywood "Walk down the Red Carpet." She is really excited!

Girl Scout Camp

"Play Football Like a Girl"  Helena's troop this year had to break a stereotype about girls. They decided to break the stereotype that girls couldn't play football. They hosted flag football games at the Girl Scout Camporee, making posters with the rules and illustrating the first game. They expected maybe 10 girls would want to play. They had 50 girls sign up from kindergarten to high school!

Helena Turns 10

Helena turned the big "10" in May! She is so excited to be double digits. Grandma Pam helped with the party and made the pareus, traditional Tahitian women's wear.

Helena 4th Grade Graduation

Helena graduated from Elementary school this year. She was really sad to leave. She had a fabulous elementary school experience with great teachers and super fantastic friends. Upper right: Helena pictured with friends Zoe and Gwendolyn. Lower right: Helena pictured with Mrs. Lynn.

First Day of School

Helena's first day of Middle School (5th Grade) and Xander's first day of 3rd grade. Helena was really nervous for 5th grade. She quickly became accustomed to changing classes, multiple teachers, agendas, and 2-3 hours of homework a night. She has made a new group of friends, joined the Tween book club at the public library across the street from the school, and really enjoys playing the clarinet.

Clarinet


Helena's favorite class is band. Her teacher is amazing. She is really enjoying learning to play the clarinet. Click to see Helena's Clarinet Concert:  Holiday Concert

Helena Dances!


Helena is in her 7th year of dance classes. This year she is taking a combo ballet/jazz/modern/tap class. Helena loves it that her dance friends have been together for so long and that they get to see each other weekly even though they are all at different schools now. Click to see Helena's class practicing their dance:  Dance Practice

Xander News

 

Xander is a super cool, super sweet, ninja powered genius of an 8 year old. He really thinks out of the box and comes up with great ideas. He loves everything electronic, everything about animals and nature, and everything dragons, gems, and mythical creatures. His current favorite books are Judy Blume's Fudge books. He love Bay Blades (Japanese battle tops) and Netflix (we gave up cable last summer). Xander has tons of energy and could outlast the best of us. His favorite hobby is sketching - especially mythical creatures. His favorite sport is rock climbing, thanks to Uncle Jonathan.

Xander 2nd Grade

In 2nd grade Xander did his first "Book in a Bag" report. Click to see Xander's Presentaion (2nd grade): Lyndon B. Johnson 

Boy Scouts

Xander LOVES Boy Scouts! He really likes being outdoors and family camping weekends with the Pack. He also enjoys the smaller setting of the Den meetings.  Top left: Doing activities to collect beads for our necklaces at the Pack camping trip. Top right: archery. Bottom left: Making planets in a Den meeting. Bottom right: fishing with the Pack (and Uncle Jonathan's help)

Here is a movie of Xander at the catapult: Xander Catapult

Another of Xander's favorite things about Boy Scouts is the Den field trips! This fall he really liked the print making at the El Dia de los Muertos "Day of the Dead" celebration at Cheekwood.  He also enjoyed seeing the flamingos and other critters at the Nashville Zoo. It is always more fun with friends! 

Here is a photo sequence of Xander building a bird house with Nathanael at a Den meeting this fall.

Xander's 8th Birthday

Xander's birthday splash party!  This year upgraded with the super high, super long water slide! The boys had a blast on the water slide and with water balloons. An 8 year old boy's birthday dream!

Xander 3rd Grade

Xander has had an amazing 3rd grade year so far. He has caught the "super learner" gene and really taken off with his studies. We think this is his best year yet!

Here he is pictured with his awesome teacher, Mrs. Sanders, and his 3rd grade class. Upper right: with good friends Grace and Joshua. Lower right: Mrs. Sanders and Xander

Trips

Knoxville - Visting Noah and Naomi

We had a great April weekend trip to Knoxville to visit Kristin's college roommate Lynn and kids Noah and Naomi. (Sadly, Jeff was out-of-town.) We had a great dinner at a seafood restaurant that looked over the river with boats. Naomi has grown so much, toddling about. Noah likes bugs and rockets just as much as Xander!

Malina and Rich's Wedding


In June we traveled to LA for Malina and Rich's wedding. Helena was SO EXCITED to be the flower girl. Both kids became fast friends with Rich's sister, Rachel. Xander's favorite part was distributing chocolate roses with Rachel. Helena's favorite part was being the flower girl, of course.

Top left: Nathanael and Xander were in charge of making the "gift card" well. Top Center: Helena was in charge of tying ribbons on chocolate roses. Top right: family all dressed up. Middle left: Xander happy. Middle center: Helena and Rachel. Middle right: Helena's hair decorations. Bottom left: Helena during ceremony Bottom center: Helena walking up the aisle. Bottom right: Wedding party.

Gatlingburg and Dollywood

In July, we had a special treat! Grandma Ann took Grayson, Helena, Xander, and Miles with Kristin to Gatlinburg and Dollywood.  It was SO MUCH fun! We visited the Gatlinburg strip, including many Ripley's attractions - the Beleive it our Not museum, House of Mirrors, 4D Rollercoaster, and Aquarium.The next day we went to Dollywood. Kristin was surprised to see many of Opryland's rides there, including the swings, river rampage, etc. It was a great week!

Here is a great photo of the Wild Bunch!

Fall Break

For Fall Break this year we drove to Indiana to visit cousins! Kimberly watched the four kids while Nathanael and Kristin took two days to go to the Heartland Film Festival in Indianapolis. The kids got to play, go to the movies, go to the Indiana Children's Museum, and pick out pumpkins at the Appleworks pumpkin patch. Kristin and Nathanael got to watch SIX movies, drink coffee and tea together, and eat Japanese! Great adventure for all!

Around Town

Cicadas

This May we had the pleasure of the Brood 19 Cicadas which emerge every 13 years and besiege the southern US. The children were in heaven. First they collected their exoskeletons in buckets. Tons of buckets. Then they would "rescue" "hurt" cicadas (you know the ones with maimed wings) and take care of them in the cicada hospital. Don't worry - they put plenty of leaves, flowers, and water drop in each room for their nourishment. Forget bikes and forts - early summer outdoors was all about the cicada.

Shakespeare in the Park

We enjoyed another year of Shakespeare in the Park.  This year we saw Romeo and Juliet. We went with friends from GNUUC, but also saw Grandma Pam and Grandpa Tommy there! Here Xander is showing us his sketch book that he brought for pre-show entertainment.

Nashville Cares Aids Walk

We had lots of fun on the Nashville Cares Aids Walk with our congregation this September. The kids enjoyed walking through the booths and getting free stuff as well as going on the walk itself with good friends. We raised over $600!

Halloween

We were so happy to have friends Zoe and John plus our cousins join us trick-or-treating this year. We have the perfect trick-or-treating neighborhood - fully decorated, tons of kids, and people just sitting out on the porches handing out candy. Kid dreamland!

Kids: Ghost - Anders, Alice in Wonderland - Zoe, Witch (specifically Kiki) - Helena, Bumblebee Transformer - John, Ice Wolf Ninja - Xander, Witch - Laura, and Rapunzel - Isabel.

Cousins!

We really LOVE our cousins and think it is an extra treat when we get to spend time with them.  We were so HAPPY to meet cousin Luke Collins Reveal this year (born October 3). Here are some fun photos from this year:

From July: Making Sushi with Omma, Helena, Grayson, and Miles

From Thanksgiving: Helena and Sophie, Anders and Helena, Isabel and Helena. Thanksgiving dinner this year was at least 35 people! The table stretched out the dining room, into the den, took a right turn, and kept on going. This was the first year that there was a critical mass of cousins which kept the atmosphere light and kooky as they ran around, played board games, ate turkey (or not), and ate a piece of pie (or two).

From December:  Xander, Luke, Helena, Laura

Closing

Nathanael and Kristin are thoroughly enjoying being parents. The days are flying by. We are also fortunate to work together and enjoy the intellectual stimulation during the day. Sometimes we receive the gift of a rare moment out just the two of us  - for sushi, to Shakespeare, to the movies, for coffee. Know that we value this time and all the family support that makes it possible. At the same time, there's nothing quite so wonderful as waking up with your kids on a Saturday morning to make pancakes, drink coffee, and play.

We wish you all lives rich with love. All the best for 2012!

Love,

Kristin, Nathanael, Helena, and Xander 


Subpages (1): Holiday Letter 2010