Christmas Greetings '06

 

            Everyone has to someday decide what they want to be when they grow up. Given that we’ll both start drawing Social Security next year, I guess it’s become more of an assessment than a decision. We’re entering a new phase of our lives and we’re very happy with it. I’ve been retired for five years now and Elmeda will retire this coming April. We are healthy and active and want to make the most of our retirement. We each have our own avid interests – my wine making and her quilting – which we don’t share but actively support each other in. Then we have many mutual interests which we enjoy together – music, travel, hiking, and socializing with friends. We’re trying to broaden our horizons, learning some new skills – more about that next year, maybe.

            We took two trips this year, a week in San Francisco in January to visit Elmeda’s nephew Isaac and then several days in North Carolina in July to see Mark. My  broken back is pretty well mended but it appears my shoulder won’t be regaining much strength after the rotator cuff surgery. It is amazing how quickly I’ve learned to compensate. I’ve gotten back to landscaping and gardening and “Janpark” is really looking good for a change. I put in several new trails through the woods and harvested fifteen tons of firewood this spring. I’ve been teaching some wine making courses at the New York State Wine and Culinary Institute in Canandaigua and various evening computer classes at Schroeder High School in Webster. I’ve continued my literacy volunteer work and I’ve been consulting on a project to open a small winery in the area – incredible how long the bureaucratic paperwork takes. It was a great year for wine competitions – three gold medals at the State Fair and a Best Hybrid in Show at the AWS National. I’ve also tackled my first big home remodeling project in a number of years – the living room. When I say remodel, I mean gut, rewire, new ceiling, new walls, and replace the windows. They joke about one arm paper hangers but I found dry walling a ceiling with one good arm is even more challenging.

            With just four months to go, Elmeda is really looking forward to not getting up at 5 AM and commuting to the city. She’s taken over the large upstairs “bunk room” for a quilting studio and plans on buying a large quilting machine when she retires. She’s been prolific this year, even quilting part time, making five large quilts plus many smaller projects. She was also pleased to host a 60th birthday party for her brother Skip in September.

            Mark and his significant other, Tracey Morgan, have been busy landscaping and decorating their new home in Mooresville, NC.

            Matthew and Wibke got married in January. Because of Wibke’s academic schedule and visa restrictions, eloping to a B&B in Vermont made the most sense. Matt is still working in the Trauma Unit at Strong Hospital. Wibke is attending U of R’s Warner School while teaching courses in German at RIT and U of R. They are living in an apartment near Strong Hospital and are looking for a house in the area.

            Michael bought Matthew’s house on Irvington Rd. in the city. He’s still working for ITT Corporation testing satellite payloads.

            Aaron has made a career change – long haul truck driving. After attending truck school, getting his class A license, and putting in the 30 days supervised driving, he now has his own assigned truck, driving for Swift Company. The time on the road has been hard on him and Colleen but after a year, there will be more local driving options available to him. In the meantime, the frequent opportunities to talk with him on the phone while he’s driving have been nice.

            You can review the year in pictures on our web site  - www.elmeda.com.

 

                                                            Wishing everyone the best of holidays,

 

                                                              Jan and Elmeda