2012 in Pictures


I love having time to reflect at the end of a year and at the start of a new one. Derran and I have enjoyed looking through pictures of 2012 and re-living the experiences we had last year. We wanted to share a collection of pictures from 2012 and some highlights of the year.

It was a year that we experienced Brynn losing four teeth, Dax getting eight teeth, and me having one wisdom tooth pulled (3 more to go! Gearing up.) A year that Meg learned to swim. Meg had a Spider-Man birthday party (4), Brynn had a Pig party (6), and Dax celebrated his first birthday, a “Firetruck” party (theme selected by his big sisters). We are now the proud owners of two cute little Chihuahuas, Pixie and Daisy, who, praise the Lord, are finally not pooping in their kennel every night and now sleep past 6:30 in the morning. I’m finally getting to the point of not threatening to give them away and actually being able to say, “They are pretty cute, aren’t they?”

Our family got to go to Malaysia for the Asian Mission Forum. We really enjoyed experiencing Borneo and Kuala Lumpur (and going to Chili’s!). We happened to be there during the time of Ramadan. During this month, Muslims fast from sun up to sun down and then break fast and eat together after dark. Not thinking of this beforehand, we got to Chili’s right as the sun was setting. Made for a long wait! And for months after that if we were going out to eat, one of the girls would say, “Hurry, it’s getting dark, we better get there fast!”.

Brynn graduated from kindergarten and started a new school for first grade. Meg and Brynn went to different schools for the first time. We decided to not homeschool and let the girls do full-time Thai school for this last half of the year. Their language skills are really improving, and they both enjoy being with sweet friends at school (except for the part where Brynn is afraid if she doesn’t finish her homework her teacher will hit her hand with a ruler….little different punishment techniques over here! But hey, she gets her homework done!). πŸ™‚

Dax is affectionately called “Big Boy” by our friends and neighbors. He loves people everywhere, loves to eat, and has a great smile. He especially loves being with his momma these days (and she loves it too!). Derran lost his dear grandfather, Leon Reese, this summer and was blessed to be able to go back to Texas to be with family at the funeral. I was also blessed with a free ticket to come back to see family in October for two weeks during the school break. (You know a girl misses home when she is willing to make THAT trip by herself! 21 hour trip one-way.) I believe I will carry the badge of “I took my three small children from Thailand to Texas and back all by myself” around with me for awhile! They did great, despite experiencing the very worst, plane-dropping turbulence I have EVER experienced in my life! My feet were covered in sticky orange juice for about 8 hours and the girls would not let go of my arms. The girl next to me was throwing up, the girl in front of me was putting her backpack on (not sure where she thought she would need that), Meg’s hamburger landed on top of the seat in front of us, and the lady behind me had her rosary beads out…it was an experience I will not soon forget. πŸ™‚ Despite that hiccup, it was such a fun treat to get to be with friends, family, and cousins (and a trip or two to Target and Sonic).

Derran joined a city basketball team and has played in two tournaments so far (proudly sponsored by none other than Brick Oven Pizza Phayao). We love going to watch him, and I think Brynn finally has started calling it basketball and not football (got some work to do on our sports identification skills). Brynn was a drum major for her school sports day parade. She loved every minute of the make-up and fancy dress-up. I lost twenty pounds last year (and only gained three back over the holidays–I’ll call it a win!).

We celebrated three years in Phayao in September. We painted our kitchen, our room, and the girls’ room. We tore down the back gate, “borrowed” land from our neighbor, and made a backyard (which has brought much joy to all of us and has brought new experiences like gardening and a compost pile). We enjoyed trips to waterfalls and beaches. I took the girls on a day-long 8th grade field trip to a nearby town with a teacher friend in which we rode on a double-decker bus and listened to middle-school karaoke blaring through the bus speakers and enjoyed disco lights and dancing on the bus for 11 hours–another badge for me. We made new friends and enjoyed friendships that have grown closer and dearer through our three years here. Our favorite meals here are grilled chicken, sticky rice, and som tham (spicy papaya salad), and pizza, of course! Brynn still lives mostly on peanut butter sandwiches, and Meg and Dax prefer grilled pork balls on a stick. I’ve actually started to like the taste of spicy papaya salad with fermented fish (tastes better than it sounds, I promise!). The girls favorite thing is having tickle fights with their daddy in the evenings and listening to the stories he makes up at bedtime.

It has been a long, good, full, lesson-learning, sometimes lonely, growing, stretching, short, patience-building, hard, rewarding, exhausting, lovely, challenging, perseverance-gaining, overflowing-with-blessings year. We are so thankful for your love, support, prayers, and friendship. You all bless us beyond measure. We end last year praising God once again for His faithfulness and presence in our lives and start 2013 with hearts ready to see where He leads us and a prayer of hope for strength, peace, wisdom, and deep joy in living out His call daily. God bless you all as you begin this new year. May we be people of ever-increasing love for our Lord and our neighbors.

Happy New Year from the Reeses!

Derran, Ann, Brynn, Meg, and Dax

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  1. Wonderful pictures! I love seeing all the beautiful smiles and getting a glimpse into the life of your precious family. And oh how I would’ve loved to be a fly on the wall of that double decker bus πŸ™‚ Love you so much! Happy new year!

  2. How beautiful !! I have watched that over and over again !! I am so very proud of all of you and love you all so very much !! xoxoxo

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