Christmas Letter 2016

“The Lord will protect you from all evil; He will keep your life.  The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forevermore.” This powerful promise from Psalm 121:6-7 was part of our lives just before Christmas a year ago.

Internal bleeding, spitting up blood, and losing consciousness earned Dave an ambulance ride to the emergency room. Evil came in the form of two golf ball sized tumors, one inside and one outside of his stomach. God brought the protection and blessing in the form of discovering these growths, removing them, and a toxicology report with zero mitotic cells (no cancer). The surgeon said he had never seen a report with no mitotic cells and referred to his recovery as a miracle from God.

That is why it seems like two years since you heard from us, and how we started 2016 being so thankful.

Dave was back in the wrestling room the day after getting home from the hospital volunteering as an assistant wrestling coach at Washington High School. He gets some additional mat time officiating as well, although he wasn’t healed enough internally to compete this year.

He is moderator of the Camp Board, and also serves on the Presbytery of South Dakota Council (the main governing board) and Nominating Committee.

He enjoys his garden at home and managed the 32 plots in the church mission garden, taking great joy in giving away bushels of produce. Tomatoes are his favorite food and eaten at every meal besides being his pride and joy to grow. The tomatoes tower over his head.

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Dave was honored at the State Wrestling Tournament this year for 25 years of officiating. We seem to be getting to the age when you start receiving awards just for outlasting everyone else.

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Judy’s year has been filled with grandma opportunities to help out with our 8 grandkids that bring so much joy in our lives.

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Randy and Terri Richmond came up in May for a week of vacation together at Cutty’s, Randy flew home and Terri stayed on for another week before Judy rode back with her to Louisiana for a couple weeks down south.

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We enjoyed a real family vacation with all but Ben’s family gathering in Branson, MO and we were also joined by Randy and Terri Richmond. We had a great time remembering trips to the area in different years as the boys were growing up. We enjoyed Silver Dollar City, spending time together, and the show Moses was fantastic.

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Dave competed again in the SD Senior Games at the end of August and did very well, coming home with 7 gold, 3 silver and 2 bronze medals. Placing in the top 4 in the state means qualifying for Nationals. Last year the National Senior Games were held in Saint Paul, MN and Dave competed in shot put and hammer throw placing in 18th and 10th places respectively. His goal had been to make the top 15, so he felt very good about his success!

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Judy was called on quite a bit this year to help out in watching most of our eight grandkids. A couple times it seemed she just got home from one and they headed to another.  She also enjoys having the time to make cards and scrapbook through the year, and is involved with the youth programs at church, as well as singing in the choir and attending two weekly Bible studies.

We gathered in Flandreau October 7-9 to celebrate Bob and Lois’ 63rd anniversary. Highlights included digging potatoes and fun at the farm.

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Last Christmas we changed up our tradition a bit and the whole family gathered at Cutty’s to celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary while Dave recovered from having a slice of his stomach removed.

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This year our negotiated holiday (alternating between Thanksgiving or Christmas with the Ulloms and the other holiday the boys go to their in-laws) was Thanksgiving, and we moved the location to Nate and Amber’s home at Storm Lake, IA.

While we enjoy hosting the family at our house, the advantages of greater space for the growing number of bodies as well as other activities like splitting wood, riding on the 4-wheeler, horses, video games, and activities in the shop like basketball and a hot tub, make their place a better option. Mat brings his adjusting table along to make our spa time complete.

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Mat has his Chiropractic practice in Fort Collins, CO and we have mentioned that the whole family appreciates bringing his portable table along every time he visits. Noah is now 10 and Levi is 8. They enjoy the hiking and camping opportunities that begin at the edge of town.

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Nate has his construction and snow removal business in Storm Lake, IA. He keeps adding to his fleet of equipment. He and Amber are learning to balance work and family with the addition of Kyler to the family on March 9 (brings the grandkid count to 8).

Josh and Danielle are in Apple Valley, MN, and have really enjoyed their big back yard in developing a garden as well as enjoying their great play area for the kids. Aliyah is 6, Lance 4, and Cooper 1. Josh works at Ecolab and does computer and website work in his “free time.” Danielle is with Blue Cross/Blue Shield.

Ben and Christina are in Tea, just south of Sioux Falls. Ben is back working at the Penitentiary and Christina is teaching preschoolers in Tea. Jace is 5 and Avalynn is 3.

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Again this year we have been blessed wonderfully by God. We hope you enjoy these highlights. It was fun looking back over the year in pictures, but difficult whittling them down to sharing just a few.

We extend the invitation for you to stop and visit or stay over with us any time you are in Sioux Falls at 4920 E Brennan Dr.

May you find as many blessings as we enjoy.

Dave and Judy Ullom

515-341-0132(Dave) or 515-341-2383(Judy)

pdullom@gmail.com or jaullom@gmail.com

You can find more pictures included on my blog at www.pastor-dave.com

 

 

 

2 Comments

  1. Clair Hein

    What a surprise to hear from you. And what a challenging year. Good that you’ve recovered. We moved to NC a year ago to live with family. It was a good move. Will send our Christmas letter for a bit more detail.

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