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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas!

This month, we wanted to tell you about North Country Clinic. Dede Duntze, a nurse practitioner, has been working in the clinic for 10 years. Dede came to Cross Road Medical Center 25 years ago as a missionary nurse, and stayed. She later went back to school to become a nurse practitioner and then moved to North County Clinic. She does a great job in the clinic and works in 2 native villages in the area. Russ has enjoyed working with her and will be at the clinic for 2 days while she is home for Christmas. The clinic is in a 2 room cabin (see the pictures, Dede is in the first one) at Grizzly Lake. Dede sees all kinds of people at the clinic and even provides prenatal care. If you need to given a urine sample, you have to go to the outhouse, even in the winter! Dede has lived in a cabin beside the clinic at Grizzly Lake since she started there. The clinic serves a great need in the area, as people would have to drive 1 and 1/2 hours to get to Cross Road Medical Center from there. Russ has been there once so far and really enjoyed it. Russ also just saw his first snowmobile accident. The patient was snowmobiling down a river and fell into a hole in the ice! He was hurt, but thankfully not severely.

We've had some different opportunities to share with people this month. Russ has been caring for some hospice patients lately and had the opportunity to discuss end of life issues. We particularly have been praying for one man who lives alone and does not seem to have any family involved. Russ has been praying with him during house calls and talking about a relationship with Christ. The kids have been attending a youth group at one of the native churches and met a girl named Hailey. Hailey told them that she like coming to church, but that she was an atheist. She said she came from a hard home life with alcoholism in her home. She prayed for things to change but they never did, "So I gave up on God". The kids have been talking with her some and we have been praying for her as well as the many kids here that are in similar situations. Sue, Luke and Ansley went to church at Chistochina last week, a small native church. They didn't have anyone to lead music so Luke played the guitar for them and Ansley sang "Mary Did You Know".

It continues to snow, but has not been as cold overall this month. It has mostly been above zero. We went out and cut a local Christmas tree from the forest. It's a little bit of a Charlie Brown tree, but we got it for free! The kids have been sledding and Luke has been snowboarding on the local sledding hill. We plan to have one or two of the single nurses over for Christmas. Sue's knee continues to heal. She has been released by her orthopedist and her limp is improving. The Copper Basin 300, a local dogsled race, is scheduled for mid January and we hope to at least watch it or maybe even volunteer! When Russ was up at Grizzly Lake, he was able to ride on a snowmobile with a trapper to check his trapline. You can see some of the furs in the pictures. It's been a fun Christmas Eve, it's been snowing all day!

Prayer Requests
- For the hospice patients in the area, for their spiritual and physical needs
-For Hailey, and the many other children in our area that are in difficult home situations and need to know that Jesus loves them even in midst of their situations
-That Sue's knee would continue to heal
-For Dede and her ministry at North Country Clinic
-For AWANA as it resumes in January and reaches out to many children in the area
-For the staff at Cross Road Medical Center, for wisdom and boldness to be a light for Christ in the area
-For nurses and a physical therapist to work at Cross Road Medical Center

Thanks to all for the many calls, packages, and especially the prayers.
Have a great Christmas!
The Meltons
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1 comment:

  1. Hi Melton's,

    Thanks for your Christmas letter! You are on quite an adventure!

    We've had some changes, too, but not quite as drastic. Nathaniel has been going to school inOgden, UT since August. He is learning 3D Computer Modeling (where you create stuff like the Shred movies). I helped him move out there inAugust and it's a beautiful area. He's been home for 3 weeks for Christmas and flies back tomorrow. I'm sad to see him go, but I'm glad for the life he has there. He is very involved with his church and the InterVarsity group and has a lot of new friends.

    Jeremy has one more semester at ASU where he's been majoring inComputer Science. He has an interview next week inSeattle at He's been living at home while going to school, so next May when he goes off to either his career or to grad school (he's considering both) we will have an empty nest. :(

    Gary is still teaching music. I have started a pet-sitting business. I'm also involved with 2 women's Bible studies and a prayer group.

    I suppose anyone on your blog who is reading this is probably bored, since they don't know us. Sorry! I don't have your email to send this to...

    Happy New Year!
    Catherine Mikkola