Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Christmas 2007

Dear Family and Friends,

Greetings! It is this time of year again! The decades just seem to run together. We hope your year was happy, safe and fruitful. Here is our latest news…

Spring break in March took us to Virginia and Hank’s folks. We toured the US Capitol with a staffer from our Congressman, visited Chinatown and became separated half-a-dozen times in the Smithsonian. We managed a romantic getaway (for 2) in mid-week to Strasburg in the Shenandoah Valley.

Rachel is a teenager – turning 13 on June 15. She is in 8th grade at Thomas Jefferson Junior High (interestingly, Jefferson is well-represented in Missouri, not quite as much as Lewis and Clark, though). She stays busy throughout the school year with soccer, band and church youth group. Despite Hank’s tutoring she manages to do well in honors Algebra and shop and make the honor roll. She plays the piano and is playing baritone in the marching band which marched downtown in the MU and local high school homecoming parades and the Christmas parade. She plays in the city’s under-16 soccer league. Hank coached the team this year and Rachel was the leading goal-scorer. Luckily the team had great defense ;)

In July we vacationed at Cape Hatteras on the Outer Banks of North Carolina with Hank’s family. The surfing was good and the food was excellent. We celebrated our 16th wedding anniversary there on July 20th.

Jessica turned 9 on October 1. She is in 3rd grade at Rock Bridge Elementary. Her teacher does a great job with Jessica’s energy and temperament. Jessica played ‘up’ a league in soccer, in the 4th-6th grade league in Upward soccer. The field is longer and the action a bit more intense.

Mary’s father, Richard, celebrated his 80th birthday on October 2nd. Friends and relatives congregated for a shindig at the local winery. He is doing well within the limits of Parkinson’s and a small stroke he had in November and with the help of Mary’s mom, Sue. They are always up on the latest Wisconsin Badger and Green Bay Packer sports news.

Hank’s mom, Elise, broke her kneecap in October. After a month in a brace, she is into physical therapy, which sounds good for all of her, not just the knee ;) Hank’s father, Chuck/Charlie/Charles (depending on whose phoning) gets out on the golf course, into the ledgers and onto the church landscape. He and Hank give each other golf lessons during every visit. Eventually, they’ll improve.

Mary works MWF at the University‘s Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders adding numerous publications to her CV. Hank is working at the University computer department providing e-mail to the students, paychecks to the faculty and football for the alumni (well two out of three anyway).

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Mary, Hank, Rachel and Jessica

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