January 4, 2004

My first news update of 2004. What a year 2003 was!!! Let's start with some events since October 19, which is the last entry. Forgive me... it's all in random order.

We had a great Halloween. Both girls wanted to be vampire bats, so they got matching costumes. We went trick-or-treating at Glynis and Susan's house, where they had lots of visitors and ghoulish snacks. Elizabeth and her moms joined us.

Of course, the biggest news after that was moving into the new house on November 7. It absolutely poured that afternoon, but luckily it was after all of the furniture had been moved in, so only boxes (and the moving guys) got wet. I *highly* recommend the movers I used, Delancey Street. On time, courteous, hard workers, and they definitely know how to move things without damaging anything. Of course, somehow during the day I managed to injure my back, so I spent the following weeks going to the chiropractor and hurting.

Val moved in officially on January 6th. We're still working on unpacking and fitting everything in.

Since moving in we've been dealing with:

Val and I and the kids spent Thanksgiving with her stepsister Jenny and her family.

Val took a trip to the UK to see her mom and friends December 10-21.

Susan and Lee came to visit on December 12th/13th. We had fun exchanging Chanukah gifts, as well as birthday presents for Katelyn and Lee.

Speaking of birthdays, Katelyn's party had a disruption. A few days before, Val and I started itching horribly. Two separate doctors diagnosed scabies, a little parasite which burrows under the skin. We had to wash all clothing and all bedding in the house, and cover ourselves head-to-toe in medication. As a precaution, we did it for the kids also. But it didn't seem to get better. A visit to a dermatologist corrected the diagnosis to a simple case of poison oak. Sigh. But in the meantime, we had Katelyn's birthday party and had to tell all of the parents about her possibly exposure. Most chose not to send their kids. Luckily Elizabeth and Ty were there, and lots of grownups, so it wasn't too bad. But we're planning a followup get-together for her friends on January 17th.

I continue to be active with my Menttium group, a bunch of us who went through the mentoring program at the same time many years ago, and still keep in touch and encourage each other in our careers and our lives. We had dinner at Santanna Row in San Jose on October 29. If you haven't been there to check out the shops and restaurants, it's worth the trip!

I've had a number of visits with my friends Michelle and Giovanni and their adorable twins Ariella and Miriam. Hats off to Michelle for dealing with two babies at a time, especially since Giovanni had a contract job in Seattle 4 days a week for 6 months!

Val and I attended her company's holiday party on November 6 at ???. (What holiday is on November 6?) It was very fun, as usual, even though we were exhausted from having been preparing for the move, which happened the next day.

Since mom was away at Susan's, and Val was in the UK, the girls and I celebrated the beginning of Chanukah on our own. Well, almost; we were joined for the first night by Aunt Glynis and Aunt Susan, who accompanied us to Peninsula Temple Sholom for the Tot Shabbat service. It was a busy time, with Christmas falling right in the middle of it, and not having school or day care. We had a visit from Judy and Donna, as well as Glynis and Susan, on the 27th, to have some holiday cheer and wish each other a happy new year.

Katelyn had her yearly doctor's checkup - no problems. She's now 47 inches high and 47 pounds, which is all about in the 50th percentile.