Yule love this letter
Greetings friends, neighbors and genetically similar individuals! It has been several years since our last Christmas letter, so we figured it was time. As of the writing of this letter, Jenn, Ethan and Ben are still sucking precious oxygen out of the atmosphere.
Well it is 2008 and we still do not have jetpacks, transporters or commuter flights to the moon. But on the bright side, we have also not been conquered by a race of super apes.
Our year started out with us finalizing our plans to move. The old house was finally perfect, so it was time to leave. Seriously, our neighborhood was in rapid decline. Too many of the new neighbors were mortgaged beyond all responsible levels. As a result three of the houses in our small courtyard of 5 houses had become “high density rentals.” Basically that meant between 15-20 people living in one house. All of the surrounding neighborhoods were experiencing similar issues. Simultaneously the crime rate shot through the roof.
All that to say…It was time to move. Our house was on the market for three months, but we were lucky to find a buyer. For the most part the transaction went through smoothly.
We now live in the neighboring community of Ashburn. The house is in a more stable neighborhood, so we are feeling more at ease. We did not know at the time of purchase what the biggest feature of the house would be. We found out the first day I drove Ethan home from school. No sooner had I pulled into the driveway, when a mob of kids surrounded the car. Ethan had never had kids his age in the neighborhood. When they asked him to play, he was a bit unsure of what to do. I was blunt, “GO PLAY!” Turns out there were twin boys the same age as Ethan right next door. From what I can tell, we live in Northern Virginia’s breeding grounds. There are tons of kids in the neighborhood from every corner of the Earth. Ethan is a like a pig in slop.
Ethan finished out the school year (1st grade) at his old school and then transferred to his new school (2nd grade) in the fall. In the spring, he started playing baseball. He played for the Cardinals and had a lot of fun. In the fall, he was doing so well, that we allowed him to join a more challenging league. He was #13 on the Mudcats. Unlike his father, Ethan has natural talent at baseball. He got a hit almost every time at bat (without the tee). Ethan played kickball during fall intramurals. He also learned to ride a two wheeler. This winter he will be playing basketball in the local church league.
And speaking of church, Jenn is working at ours. Jenn is the music director at Crossroads UMC. She leads a worship band, directs adult choir and two children’s choirs…and other duties as assigned (funerals, weddings and Bar Mitzvahs).
Jenn is still running. She participates in races regularly. She recently finished a half marathon in Richmond. She improved her time over years prior. On Thanksgiving Day she participated in the church’s turkey trot in support of an African orphanage.
Ben continues to work at the College Board. Finally after working 14 years on the same project, he was able to transfer to another development team. He now works on Springboard a program that supplements high school AP courses. One day this fall, he decided to take up the ukulele. He can play about 15 songs…not well…but he enjoys it. He recently started studying for his PMP Exam (too boring to explain). He hopes to take the test in early April. Ben teaches Sunday school twice a month. Be afraid…be very afraid.
We hope that all is well with readers of this note.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
Ben, Jenn & Ethan