Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving From The Cochran's!

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving!!  We sure did - I look forward to hopefully posting about that in the near future. :)  

In the meantime, I decided to post our family picture and letter for this year on the blog for those of you who haven't read it yet!! 

Blessings to you all!!

~ Savannah

Thanksgiving Greetings to Our Family and Friends!!!    

We pray you are all well and that you've had a blessed year!

What an exciting and eventful year this has been in our family.  As we mentioned in last year's letter, Phill deployed to Germany from January to July.  Ellen and the children were able to join him in late January and live with him there until the end of May.  What an incredible experience!  Not only were we able to be together as a family, but we were able to travel over 17,000 miles to 11 different countries in just 33 days (primarily weekends)!  Most of the miles traveled were by van - Phill doing most of the driving.  Praise The Lord for GPS!  We also got to experience planes, trains, ferries, tour buses, taxis, subways and - well - foot, yes, lots of foot!!

Our time in Europe was an outstanding opportunity for the family to experience living in a different culture.  It was also amazing to see all the castles and cathedrals, studying and seeing wonderful reformation sites and having WWII history come alive with the places we were able to visit.  Being able to honor those who have gone before and sacrificed their lives for our freedoms was a priceless experience.

Ellen and the children returned home from Germany the end of May with Phill joining the family the middle of July.  It was great to experience Europe and it has been great getting settled back into life in Oklahoma (I do think a little more settling is in order!!)  Phill is now preparing for his upcoming retirement from the Air Force May 1st.  After 23 1/2 years in the Air Force, it's hard to believe that this chapter in our lives is getting ready to close.  We await the Lord for His unfolding plan in our lives.

Since we returned home we have added:
a dairy cow and Muscovy ducks to our menagerie
more experience canning fruits, vegetables and pickles
more experience cleaning and organizing the home (woo hoo!!!)
successful experimentation in grain free food
as well as educational pursuits coming along nicely.

We were blessed with:
our church families taking such good care of us while we were gone
wonderful friends willing to take care of our animals
a fabulous visit from a dear friend for close to two weeks
visits to family
lots of hospitality
as well as an opportunity to go to a convicting and perspective honing conference

We remember also this year Phill's dear mother gone to be with the Lord.  She was blessed with almost 88 years of life and we are very thankful that she passed quietly in her sleep.  She had beautiful blue eyes, a ready smile and a song or saying for any occasion. 

We pray the Lord would reveal Himself to you this year in a way that He never has before.  Our desire for you in the coming year is best summed up by Numbers 6:24-26, "The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make His face shine upon you, And be gracious to you; The Lord lift up His countenance upon you, And give you peace.

Blessings to you all,

The Cochran's
Phill, Ellen, Savannah, Sabrina, Sienna, Stasia, Seth, Sayer and Shenandoah

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