Lily Ann Fouts

2017 Holiday Letter

Happy Holidays from Minnesota! 

When the clock struck midnight on December 31st, 2016, and the sky in Loja, Ecuador exploded into color as we ate our 12 grapes (representing a coming year of prosperity), I had no way of knowing what a range of emotions we would experience in 2017—from grief we couldn’t imagine to excitement about all the possibilities of life.

Continue Reading

2016 Holiday Letter

Dear Readers, Friends, and Loved Ones,

Happy Holidays from Loja, Ecuador!  When I wrote the first draft of this holiday letter, less than two weeks ago, I had no idea that a few days later I’d be on a flight to South America!   Let me back up to the beginning of the year and fill you in on how we got here. […]

2015 Holiday Letter

Dear Readers,

As I write this, we’re in the final days of 2015. How was your year? I know for many of my loved ones, 2015 brought a large share of challenges. Difficult and costly projects, lost loved ones, health problems, hearts broken… For others, it was a year of joy and new beginnings. Weddings, new love and friendships, exotic trips, goals met… For us, 2015 felt boring compared to previous years. For the first time in ages, we never set foot outside the country. Yet as I browse our photos from 2015 I realize that our life, while not as exotic as usual this year, was still far from boring. […]

Vilcabamba Valley

Holiday Letter 2014

Greetings from Fort Collins, Colorado!

I started this 2014 “holiday letter” about a month and a half ago and things have been a real whirlwind since then!  Let’s see…where was I?

After many months of working on an earthbag house in Kansas, Keith is back to work in on an official, paying job.  He worked a total of less than 3 months in all of 2014!

We began 2014 in Blackwell, OK, greatly anticipating getting away from Keith’s worst job and our worst landlord ever.  We had tickets to Ecuador and spent many an evening watching Ecuadorian YouTube videos and dreaming of our escape. […]

Holiday Letter 2013

December 2013

Season’s greetings from Blackwell, Oklahoma!

South Pole Marker for 2013

South Pole Marker for 2013

We have just had our first snowfall and the ground outside is all sparkly under the bright sun.  By the end of the day it will all be gone and the brown winter landscape of the Oklahoma plains will appear once again.  It contrasts sharply with our landscape 12 months ago–all flatness and whiteness extending out beyond the curvature of the earth, with the exception of the South Pole Telescope, the Atmospheric Research Observatory, and a few other buildings in the foreground at the South Pole station. […]

Holiday Letter 2012

C-130 lands at the South Pole, Nov. 1, 2012.

Our C-130 lands at the South Pole, Nov. 1, 2012.

A few minutes before midnight, I left the cockpit of the C-130–vibrating on its giant skis, propellers buzzing–and placed my fat white boots onto the crunchy snow, blinking into the sunlight reflecting off the sea of white stretching ever outward to fall away with the curvature of the earth.  In the foreground, a small crowd of winterovers in puffy red coats, anonymized by their hoods, balaclavas and dark goggles, waited anxiously for the opportunity to climb into the noisy beast and escape their 8 1/2-month (or longer) imprisonment from this center of science at the earth’s southern axis.  Beyond them, several small buildings cluttered the landscape, dwarfed by the futuristic elevated Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station which we now call home. […]