Greetings to our friends and family and the very best wishes for the holidays and the New Year. Just to be right upfront, we did not win any Powerball lotteries this year; we are all sharing in the uphill side of the economic recovery.
Anne became a junior halfway through her second year at Hamline, and in consideration of her parent’s credit cards is hoping to finish a semester early. Latin American Studies is the official declared major with possible minors in Spanish and Political Science. Despite her ongoing denials of fluency she seems quite conversant with her Hispanic friends and subordinates at work. Wendy’s continues to benefit from her diligence to work and an ongoing desire to buy even more accessories for her car. I forgot to mention that she was made a shift manager the day after she turned 18, so she is a big part of the ‘management team’ (read ‘holiday bonus’ which means even more shoes).
We all know that most politicians are, in fact, actors, and Thomas has put those together. As a member of the State Coordinating Committee for the Green Party he’s managed to convince even hardened politicians that he knows what he’s talking about. This past year he was in several community theater productions, and has launched a new career at Cub Foods as a checkout guy. Thomas is a junior in the 2003-2004 year, passed a handful of AP tests last year as a sophomore and hopes to be in the Post-Secondary Enrollment Option during his senior year at Mounds View, meaning that he’ll actually be at college.
Linda spent quite a bit of time on the road this past year in her position at the Office of Rural Health, traveling to small towns in MN that are struggling for financial survival in their hospital and ambulance/EMT services. Her evaluation work has been nationally recognized. This was another active year for the farmer’s market, and Linda continues to be a sought-out regular with her new spun honey creations and home-made dog biscuits (taste-tested regularly by our neighborhood canine friends Hannah, Liberty, Pineapple, Sydney and Rowdy).
This was not a good beekeeping year for John, who struggled with numerous re-queening attempts, bad weather and a number of other excuses. For the fourth year in the a row we’ve heard “that’s it, I’m done with this.” We’ll see. There have been some real highs and lows at Ryan Companies where he’s rolled out some new creative applications but has also been challenged by the increasingly complex challenges of technology interoperability (whatever that means).
As we wind up 2003 and look to 2004 our thoughts are particularly with our friends and family who’ve had losses and challenges this past year. With our military forces spread though out the world we wish for leadership that will bring them all home, work to create job opportunities here, and focus on accepting the increasingly diverse U.S. population, just as our grandparents were welcomed here in the early 1900’s. We extend our best to you.