Another year has zoomed by, and this Christmas seemed like the one to try this method of greeting. Our house will be bulging for a week this holiday season when family joins us. My mother will be coming up from Florida, sister Jean and her daughter Michelle will come in from San Francisco, and brother Jack, his wife Mary, and their daughter Hannah will come from Nashville, Tennessee. Hopefully, John's mother will again join us too for her birthday on Christmas Eve and the festivities of Christmas Day. I'm not sure we have twelve pillows, but it will be fun! None of my family lives in a snowy climate any longer, so we're hoping for good weather for ice skating, snowmobiling and cross-country skiing.
This year has really flown by, but we've done our fair share of flying through it ourselves. 1983 was a year of travel. After returning from Florida for Christmas in '82, John and I went to a telephone convention in San Francisco in the spring . Then John took his yearly 10-day fishing trip in June, only they drove that 2400 miles. He caught a 23 pound northern that presently hangs in our family room. It's big! In August the five Bishops went to Glacier Park in Montana in order to use up some free tickets from John's niece Debbie who was with Continental Airlines. The timing was perfect -- after their strike and before their bankruptcy. The scenery was magnificent, and the girls loved riding horses. We also had some free tickets from Eastern, so in September Sara and Shannon flew to see their grandma in Florida for a long weekend, and John and I went to Curacao (where?) for a week in October. Curacao is an island way south in the Caribbean, and it was a wonderfully relaxing getaway. And now all our free tickets are used up, so next year we'll see what the Midwest has to offer.
A big addition to our house last January was a piano. Sara started right in on lessons then, and Shannon and I joined her in the summer. Scheduling all that practice time was tricky! The girls are still taking lessons -- one likes it, one doesn't -- and they have a commitment to continue through sixth grade. We'll see! I intend to start again after the holidays.
In addition to piano lessons, the girls both are in Brownies and take dance - both activities together. Until this year I've tried to keep them in separate activities, but perhaps they can develop their individuality in other ways -- when I'm not chauffeuring. Jefferson goes to nursery school 1/2 day a week, and Sunday School is his other big activity. Life is delightful for Jefferson, and he spreads his sunshine over all of us.
You know what a mess the entire telephone industry is in, and that filters right down to Lakedale Telephone Company. John's work this year has been chaotic and confusing, but he has managed to keep his sense of humor ...most of the time. After all our travel in 1983, he has a 4-day trip to Las Vegas planned for January with 25 other men from Annandale. That's his answer to the stressful situation -- fly away from it all!
My work is still coordinating math and computers at the elementary school, though the responsibilities have shifted more to the computers this year. The main change is my schedule, still part time (22 hours), but now 3 full days instead of 5 partial days which is better both at school and at home.
So that's about it for the Bishops in 1983. How do you like this new mass-produced greeting? If it's too impersonal, let me know, and next year I'll Xerox one in longhand.
We wish you A Very Merry Christmas and all the best in 1984!