Thursday, 3 December 2015

Christmas Update 2015

Well, here we are at the end of 2015 and this year has packed a few changes for our little family. 

Here’s a quick update on all family members.

Nathan: Currently moving into the “distinguished” category, thanks to the sprinkling of grey hairs thoughtfully provided by the following three family members, Nathan enjoys road biking to work whenever possible, making delicious soups, building and renovating projects at home, and just about every aspect of his career choice of general surgeon. He would love an extra year to study for the Canadian and American general surgery board exams coming up in May, June, and July of 2016.

Abbie: With hopes of finishing the school year with her fantastic students dashed, Abbie ended up relaxing at home a little earlier than planned in preparation for Gabrielle’s arrival. Prior to Gabrielle’s birth, Abbie experienced extreme weight gain, an (unrelated) newfound love of bagels, and the unconditional support of friends and family. Since Gabrielle’s arrival, Abbie has enjoyed the roller-coaster that is life at home with two little ladies and fitting into her jeans. She’s also been getting back into running with her sister and spending quality time with friends and some good books. She would love a nap that ends in May or June of 2016.

Emily: With her grasp on the English language complete, Emily is beginning her foray into befriending members of the French community at large (be forewarned) and enjoys time with friends, all aspects of dessert, asking many questions, reading books, and her new role as big sister. This year, Emily has faced challenges such as naptime, sharing, time-outs, and the tyranny that is using the potty. She especially enjoys activities her mother vowed she would never partake in, like eating a lot of candy and watching TV. Emily would love to meet the members of Paw Patrol, especially Rubble.

Gabrielle: Sashaying into the world fashionably late, four hours after her due date, Gabrielle boasts a full head of hair and a gregarious personality. Since her entrance at the end of July, she has been thriving despite her sister’s attention, gurgling and laughing through her second-child circumstances, practicing her pterodactyl call, and working to not miss one minute of each day. Gabrielle would love a long walk in a baby carrier and to be cuddled all day and night, while receiving one-on-one undivided attention.

Now that you’re all caught up, here’s our top 10 list: 
5 already happened happenings in 2015 and 5 hopeful happenings for 2016 (in case you’ve blocked missed the excessive informative updates from Abbie over social media).

5 Happened Happenings this past year:

1.     Travel: Abbie and Emily enjoyed quality time with Granny and Grandpa in Ottawa last summer and Nathan completed some rotations for work in various parts of the country, as well as attending and presenting at several conferences, allowing the family to explore San Francisco, Vancouver, and Quebec City. While Nathan hasn’t embraced Abbie’s love of French, he did grudgingly acquiesce that the natural beauty of QC is magnifique.

2.     Residency: Nathan entered his fifth and final year of residency in general surgery in Saskatoon (but who’s counting?). His dedication, consistent studying, and hard work have earned him several accolades this year, including two awards received at a national general surgery conference in September, one for his role in teaching other residents and one for his high level of success on a yearly national general surgery exam.

3.     Pregnancy: As a family, we survived the tumultuous nine months of a very different pregnancy than Emily’s and have since revised our ideal family size from football team to bobsled team.

4.     Toddlerhood: Emily turned two in May and has been a non-stop life adventurer of the grandest kind. She will tell you all about anything you want to know in 2000 words or more.

5.     Bébé: Lastly and most importantly, we thank God that Gabrielle joined our family in July with everyone healthy and accounted for.

5 Hopeful Happenings for 2016:

1.     More Travel: We are ready for a little more travel as we are headed on a family vacation to Cuba this January and hope to do some northern Canadian exploring in the Yukon this summer, coupled with surgical work for Nathan.  

2.     More Residency: We are excitedly looking forward to the accomplishment of Nathan’s five-year residency, following four years of medical school in June 2016.

3.     Exams: We are counting down to the SUCCESSFUL completion of Nathan’s Canadian board exams in May and June, and American board exams in July. All prayers welcome.

4.     New Sister: We can’t wait to welcome Katie into our family and to celebrate with her and Tim as they get married in Ottawa this May.
Photo by Kris Photography

5.     Moving:  After luring Katie away from Ontario, we are pleased to announce that Granny and Grandpa A have also succumbed to the call of the west and have relocated to beautiful British Columbia.

In unrelated news, after careful and painful consideration of the pros and cons of moving to Orange County, California versus Winnipeg, Manitoba for one year, we are trying to be excited to announce that we will be headed EAST to become Manitobans from August 2016 to July 2017.
Go Jets.

… We only hope we can adjust to the prairie culture and harsh winter climate. 

Nathan IS anticipating a phenomenal year of learning at St-Boniface Hospital (it trumped California, people) as he completes a post-residency subspecialty fellowship in colorectal surgery to become a qualified pain in the ANYWAY... 

Abbie is hoping to up her French fluency, living in the French quarter, and the girls are excited to live near IKEA. Saskatoon Public Schools (best employer ever) has granted Abbie another year's leave for this time and the whole family will likely be returning to Saskatoon in the summer of 2017 so book your holiday visit to Winnipeg as soon as possible so you don’t miss out. 

We very much hope to hear all of your news and would appreciate your prayers going forward into 2016. We know that God is directing our path (even unto Manitoba) and look forward to what He will bring this year.

A very joyous Christmas to you and yours,


Nathan, Abbie, Emily & Gabrielle

“He has shown you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?”
Micah 6:8


  1. Ah, Winter-peg. We've had the Winterpeg discussion...that's where Skipthedishes' headquarters is. Dan works there every 3 weeks. Good times. Can't wait to catch up with you on Tuesday.

    1. Ditto! Let me know when and where. Oh yes. That is a lot of travelling!! At least I'll be able to order in good food...

  2. you're too funny... busy year indeed but my goodness, you've got such a sweet family! and holy blue eyes!!!

    Confessions of a Frumpy Mommy

    1. Thanks Shaunacey! Yup, they are pretty great... before 9pm.

  3. Bahahaha... visit Winnipeg..... that's a good one! I was there once for a layover and have never felt compelled to go back ;) In all seriousness though good luck on the move.

    And don't think about the pregnancy... think about the beautiful newborn who will cuddle with you and smell amazing. My pregnancies are horrible and we have 4 kids. How quickly we forget!

    1. Aww! I know people feel that way about Saskatoon and I love it here, so I'm sure we'll have some fun in Winterpeg too. ;-)

    2. Yup, the little humans are worth all the trouble! Totally agree!

  4. Book us in! Actually Caryn and I were talking that we should reinstate the girls weekend that we use to do and maybe next year we will do in Winnipeg! So you will have to scope out the good outlet malls for us :)


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