Year in Review: Brown Family ABCs
A is for Adriatic North Mission. Sarah entered the MTC on September 11th to serve as a missionary in the Adriatic North Mission, which covers the countries of Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia, and Montenegro.
B is for Blog. Todd has become a blogger! We started a family blog with the title “Converting on Cobblestones” to share the adventures of our two missionaries in Eastern Europe.
C is for Cheerleading. Naomi made the Fairfield High School cheerleading squad. She enjoyed dancing and performing stunts at the football and basketball games. In her free time she continues to model for a local photographer.
D is for Driver’s License. Naomi obtained her California driver’s license and can now drive herself to school and all extracurricular events.
E is for Elephant Seals. We saw a huge colony of elephant seals on our way to a robotics tournament at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo in February. Both Rachel and Julian remain involved in robotics. Julian’s team made it all the way to the California state finals, leaving him the youngest driver to compete in that tournament.
F is for Feathers. We saw plenty of colorful feathers when Sarah became a bridesmaid to one of her closest friends in a peacock themed summer wedding.
G is for Gymnastics. Both Ariel and Rachel have taken up gymnastics. Their favorite apparatus is the balance beam. They also marched with their Dream Xtreme gymnastics group in our local Fiesta Days Parade.
H is for Honor. Ariel was honored with the special “Be the Change” award by the mayor of Fairfield for exemplary leadership at her school and charity work in the community. She also distinguished herself by performing magic tricks in her school talent show. Rachel started taking art lessons and is studying how to paint portraits.
I is for In-line Skates. The twins love rollerblading and going to the roller rink to skate to music.
J is for Jump Highway. The girls celebrated their 11th Birthday with a trampoline party for all of their friends. We also attended the Pirate Dinner Adventure show as a special birthday surprise.
K is for Kidnapped. Ariel was briefly kidnapped by Goofy, only one of the special memories we made during our visits to Disneyland and California Adventure Parks. Since Disneyland is on the way to Sebastian’s University, we spent a few extra days there this year.
L is for Ljubljana. Sarah is learning to speak Slovene while serving in her first area in the capitol city of Slovenia, Ljubljana.
M is for Marathon. I achieved a lifelong goal this year when running my first marathon. I completed the Western Pacific Marathon at Quarry Lakes with my husband and kids to cheer me on. Julian, Rachel, and Ariel even came on to the course to finish the last mile of the race with me.
N is for News. Sebastian surprised us when he appeared on the Moldovan news. The local Chisinau TV station covered the opening of a children’s center that had been renovated by the LDS missionaries serving there.
O is for Operation. Both Sarah and Sebastian had their impacted wisdom teeth taken out on the same day. While Sebastian experienced no complications, Sarah’s incision became infected and she needed an additional procedure and continued care in the MTC before she fully recovered.
P is for Pierced Ears. Both Ariel and Rachel had their ears pierced.
Q is for Quorum. Julian served faithfully as our ward’s Deacon’s quorum president before being ordained a Teacher after his 14th birthday.
R is for Romania. Sebastian was called to serve for two years as a missionary in the Romania-Moldova Mission. He began his mission in Chisinau, the capitol city of Moldova, and is now serving in the beautiful city of Brasov, in the Transylvanian mountains.
S is for Surfing. Naomi spent a week in surf camp at Stinson Beach. Sebastian received his first surfboard as a belated Christmas present.
T is for Teacher. After serving for seven years as a Relief Society President, I was released only to be called as an early morning seminary teacher the same day. I absolutely love studying the Book of Mormon and teaching seminary. I love all the teenagers in my class.
U is for UC San Diego. Sebastian finished his freshman year as an undergraduate at the University of California – San Diego.
V is for Visitor Center. When visiting the Mormon Battalion visitor’s center in San Diego, we discovered that the family featured in the multi-media presentation consisted of our own ancestors. Julian dressed up as a soldier in the Mexican American War and we panned for gold.
W is for Wrist. Ariel broke her wrist in a horse-riding accident, but jumped back in the saddle to gallop again as soon as the doctor allowed.
X is for Executive Secretary. Todd’s new calling as the Stake Executive Secretary keeps him consistently busy. He also continues to travel frequently for his work.
Y is for YCL. Naomi served this year as a youth camp leader at girls’ camp and as a member of the Stake Steering Committee, mentoring younger girls and planning youth activities. She also spent a week at the University of Utah for EFY conference.
Z is for Zoo. When visiting Sebastian at college, we also toured the famous San Diego Zoo. We even saw a baby panda bear!
Merry Christmas from the Brown family!!!