International Ministries

2011 Baits Christmas Quiz

December 29, 2011 Journal
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We’re thankful for the blessings of the past year, including your friendship.  Here is a little quiz to update you on the activities of Micah, Jamie, Mylinda, and Gary Baits.  Googling the answers is strictly forbidden.

In 2011 Micah

a. Turned 17, grew a lot, and sassed his parents.

b. Played soccer and basketball (champs!) and traveled to El Salvador for a b-ball tourney.

c. Applied to colleges (PLU and Whitworth said “yes”) and took AP courses (if only there were A.P. juggling).

d. Led worship at youth group and camp.

e. Frolicked and cavorted.

 In 2011 Jamie

a. Turned 21 and moved into a house with some good and goofy college friends.

b. Did very well on her “capstone,” a major academic Spanish project.

c. Helped kids learn to read, visited detained immigrants, made collages, played intra-mural volleyball, and ate pupusas.

d. Missed her parents tremendously.

e. Engaged in shenanigans and ballyhoo.


a. Saw an increase in crafts-womanship and sales at the candle cooperative, a ministry that uplifts women and helps them earn some income.

b. Designed and created a stained-glass window that will be installed in our church (here in Costa Rica) in January of 2012.

c. Taught, encouraged, created, and officiated at a wedding (fun) and a funeral (hard).

d. Hosted lots of guests and volunteers.

e. Was exemplary in her deportment and intentional in her quest to encounter the true self.

f. Also frolicked and gamboled.

SIDE NOTE:  We, along with our Costa Rican colleagues, were blessed by the presence of young, hip volunteers Sarah Nash, Hope Lambert, and Jennifer and Christopher Savage.  They learned more Spanish, ate lots of rice and beans, painted, built with wood and concrete, but mostly loved and were loved by us and our Costa Rican friends. Sarah and Hope are still here, but Jenn and Chris went back to Oregon, but as they say here left “their fingerprints “on our hearts. 

IN 2011 Gary kept busy 

a. Teaching seminary classes.

b. Coordinating volunteer groups and work teams.

c. Missing his ailing father, his beautiful daughter, dollar stores, and maple bars.

d. Working on a Master’s degree.

e. Losing lots of money betting on the Padres and Chargers.

f. Embracing the eschatological tension and practicing tomfoolery. 

Gary also attended his 30 year high school reunion where he reconnected with some old friends.  He also heard a lot of Queen, Devo, EWF, and:

a. “It’s okay, there were a thousand in our graduating class; I don’t remember you either.”

b. “Mr. Baits, you can eat when you pay your 30 years of accumulated library fines.”

c. “How did you wind up with a lovely wife and kids?” (Grace baby, grace.)

d. “Nice toupee Dude.”

Our 2011 travels included:

a. Pre-college visits with Micah in Oregon and Washington, where we saw Jamie too.

b. OR to see family and spread Mylinda’s father’s ashes according to his wishes.  (He died in 200?)

c. Puerto Rico (“Chevere!”) for the American Baptist Biennial (with both Jamie and Micah!)

d. Boston (wicked gorgeous) for Gary and Mylinda, Arizona and San Diego for Gary to see his Dad, St. Louis for Gary to be with some fine Baptists, and all of us to CA for Christmas  with family.


A. Celebrate 25 years of marriage in August.

B. Return to Washington for a six month US assignment beginning in mid-July.

C. Age like fine wines and whine about our age.

D. Attend Jamie’s graduation from college in May at the Tacoma Dome.

E. Attend  Micah’s high school graduation and miss him when he goes to college (we promise to only call twice a day) 

F. Enjoy Jamie and her friends when they visit us in January.

We usually try to keep these quizzes positive, but we have to admit that there have been challenges and pain this past year.  There have been family health issues, ministry struggles, the tragic death of a 12 year old friend, and all the stuff of which real life is made.  In light of these challenges, we appreciate the meaning of Christmas even more, assured that Jesus came to be one of us, that he still walks with us, redeems us, and wants the best for all of us, and that includes you.

Merry Christmas,

The Baitses