Gaskin Family Christmas Card 2007

Merry Christmas from the Gaskins! We hope life is treating you well and that you have received numerous blessings over the past year. We love you and think of you often and are grateful for your influence in our lives! Here is a small update on what’s happened to our family this past year. 

James is almost done with school at BYU! He will graduate in April from the integrated Information Systems Management program; he will receive both his bachelors and masters degree at the same time. He wants to get his Ph.D. in the same field or the similar field of Human Computer Interaction (HCI), so we have applied to different schools across the country, and will hear back from them in February or March. His top choices are Pittsburgh University and Iowa State University, but he also applied to Georgia State University, Case Western University, and Purdue University. We’ll see what happens! He authored a research journal article with a few other people in his program and the conference they sent it to nominated it for the best article honor! (That’s a big deal!) He unofficially retired from coaching gymnastics this month, but still keeps up his gymnastics skills when he gets a chance. James also finished making a Book of Mormon video game, as well as some other Bible mini games. Between school, work, serving in the bishopric, and making video games, he spends as much time as he can with his Gaskin Girls. 

Nikki is staying busy with being a wife and a mommy! She absolutely LOVES every minute of it! There’s nothing better than playing and laughing with sweet babies that love you unconditionally! What a blessing to take care of these sweet spirits from heaven! Nikki is also a math tutor to five students for four days a week. It’s a great little job and she gets to bring the girls along with her, and they seem to enjoy learning about fractions and algebra. When there’s a spare minute and the dishes happen to be done, she enjoys reading, sewing, and reorganizing all our stuff to “fit” in our one bedroom apartment! So, needless to say, she hasn’t finished any books or sewing projects lately, and our apartment can use some reorganizing! Oh, the dishes aren’t done either.  :) 

Lilly turned 2 in September and she is our little star! Earlier this year her Uncle Brady was called on a mission to Taiwan, and ever since we showed her Taiwan on the map, she hasn’t stopped asking about the map. She has a knack for learning where countries are, and she can correctly identify over 100 countries on any kind of map or globe, no matter how big or small. She has a video on YouTube, and there have been over 1.5 MILLION views! Her popularity on YouTube caught the eye of some national and foreign TV networks. The Rachael Ray Show flew us out to New York City to be on the show, and she was also on ABC’s 20/20, and local Studio 5 show. A Japanese network would also like to do a show with her early in 2008. Lilly won a trip to Hawaii from Rachael Ray and has kindly agreed to let us come along! We don’t know when we’re going yet, but Lilly frequently says, “Go to the beach in Hawaii!” (If you didn’t see her on Rachael Ray, they’re airing the show again on December 27.) She is also a great big sister and loves to make Maggie laugh, sing songs, jump on the trampoline at the gym, watch Veggie Tales, and read books! (She has memorized over a dozen books, including Green Eggs and Ham!) 

Maggie is our beautiful 7 month old! She was born on May 4, and is such a delightful addition to our family. Maggie absolutely adores her older sister and thinks that everything Lilly does is hilarious! Maggie is great at laughing, observing, and snuggling! She has a very special, sweet spirit about her and everyone who sits behind us at church loves watching her facial expressions. When Maggie cries, she only stops if Mommy picks her up, but her first word was “Da-da.” (Go figure.) She hasn’t started crawling yet, but we don’t mind in the slightest. Maggie loves playing with Lilly, spitting, eating, spitting, playing “noggins,” spitting, being cute, and spitting. 

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and hope you all feel the spirit of Christ in your lives. 

The Gaskins