Merry Christmas 2010!

May the Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ bring you much comfort, joy and peace this holiday season as we celebrate His birth, life, and resurrection! During this beautiful season, we are reminded to put our trust and faith in the innocent baby born on that special night. We pray that Jesus will be the heart of your holiday, and that Christ will be the focus of your Christmas!

2010 proved to bring our family some big changes- some wonderful, some challenging and some very trying and sad.

We have entered the realm of parenting PRE-schoolers AND HIGH schoolers! Andrew is a freshman in high school and loves it (uh-oh….should we be worried?????). He played football for Linn Mar and really enjoyed it. Our youngest, Abigail began preschool, but since her older brother started “high school”, she was convinced that she, too, was in HIGH SCHOOL and called it that for the first month! As the youngest of 5, she really does think she belongs in high school as she tries to keep up with her older brothers and sisters.

This year began a new adventure of HOMESCHOOLING for the Berta family! Ashley, 6th grade, Aly, 4th grade, and Aaron, 2nd grade are all home with mom learning some great stuff (even some of it academic! Ha!) Seriously, it has been a wonderful, yet challenging school year with many valuable academic and life lessons being taught. Tracy has been in “7th Heaven” having the kids home. Brian finished the basement and made a beautiful school room and huge 7 foot desk for the kids. Tracy jokes that after 12 years of waiting for a finished basement, she would have homeschooled years ago! Ashley and Aaron are both “duel enrolled”, which means they go to public school for some subjects. Ashley, who loves music, takes orchestra and vocal at Oak Ridge Middle School. She is playing the violin. Aaron goes to Bowman Woods for gym and music. Both Ashley and Aly enjoy piano lessons.

The hardest challenge our family has faced this year is the passing of Brian’s dad. Les went home to be with Lord a day after his 85th birthday on November 18th. It was a very difficult and trying fall with Les suffering a massive stroke in September. We will sure miss him. But, we rejoice in knowing that we will see him again because of the hope and promise of our Savior, Jesus Christ. This year, we are especially mindful that Christ came to free us from sin and death. When we see the manger, we are reminded of the cross. Jesus made “ A WAY” in the manger….a way to overcome death and to live with Him in everlasting, eternal life. Jesus is truly our Savior, and as we grieve our loss, we are thankful that He is also, Emmanuel- God with us…with us to comfort us…to give us peace….to give us hope….to give us joy.

Our prayer for you, is that you, too know that Promise of our Savior and that you are reminded of the glorious riches to come.

May He bless you richly in this New Year. And, may the “God of Hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him.”

Merry Christmas and Happy 2011!

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