Thursday, December 16, 2010

Its that Time of the Year Again

Dear Friends & Family,

When we left off last year, we felt guilty for singlehandedly causing the world economic crisis, because we didn’t spend much in 2009. However we made up for it this year! More about that later……………..

Our first event of the New Year was Toni’s fun, loving (and fun-loving) and terrific nephew, “Mikey’s” 40th birthday celebration (organized by his wife Ilham) with lots of family and friends. It was a wonderful way to start the year to celebrate such a unique-in-all-the-world guy on this milestone birthday!

Later in January, we headed up to Tampa to see South Pacific with Sheryl’s mom, Pat, and stepfather Bruce. We got the tickets as a gift for them but it was just as much of a gift to us in our enjoyment of the musical and Pat and Bruce’s company.

In February, Sheryl left her job with “Time4 Learning” to go to Bank of America as Vice President of Digital Marketing. The company is huge, benefits are great and Sheryl gets to work from home! Kind of disconcerting for Toni, as she’s rushing to start her 45-mile commute each morning and Sheryl just stumbles out to her computer in her PJs.

This past spring the “Perogie Sisters” (sometimes referred to with other endearing terms) directed by JoAnn’s expertise, met at our house for the Third Annual Perogie Party! We made another world famous batch of Polish potato and cheese pasta pockets -more than pasta came together that day.

In June, most of the family gathered in Orlando for the weekend to celebrate Toni’s mom, Patty’s 85th birthday! We even had a special guest join the party -our friend Nupur- from India. We are so grateful for the opportunity for our families to get together to celebrate our mom!

So a little bit more about our efforts to jump start the economy. Once we realized last year’s dismal economic performance and unemployment could be our fault, we bought a new flat-screen TV so we could better view our Dolphin away games. Of course, it was too wide to fit in our old entertainment center, so we had to buy a new one. We were thrilled when we found out our new piece of furniture was manufactured locally in Medley, FL – job creation!

Next on our list – in July Toni was at the dealer to trade in her 2005 Prius (with 178,000 miles) on a new red one, when Sheryl drove up and announced she was trading HER Solara convertible on the red 2010 Prius! Toni still has her old Prius and lo and behold we are now a 2 Prius (or is it Prii?) family. Think of the fuel we save. We’ll have to drive more, just to increase our savings.

To keep the world economy going, Toni took Sheryl on a cruise for her 2010 birthday and Sheryl took Toni to Italy for her big SIX -0 birthday! We took a wonderful Olivia Cruise with two dear friends- and cruised from Istanbul (lovingly referred to as Islamabad by fellow cruisers) through the Greek Isles to Athens – then flew to Rome for a week in Italy. We both agreed the Greek island of Santorini was our favorite part of the Greek isles cruise (beautiful, romantic island formed on an active volcanic caldera) and the historic ruins in Ephesus and the island of Delos (where Artemis and Apollo were born).

After the cruise, we had an unforgettable week in Tuscany with son Jerry and his wife Tiffany. We will always remember the picnic along the road from Assisi and the delicious “panforte” that made us all grimace! It was a trip of a lifetime and an amazing treasured journey. It was especially good to spend time with the two of them, as Tiffany is now traveling to various countries in Africa for work, and Jerry left Orbitz (in Chicago) for a promising professional opportunity in Vancouver, Canada. So we didn’t get our usual doses of Jerry and Tiffany in 2010 until we met up in Tuscany!

We returned home from Europe to an amazing new bathroom – thanks to son Tom and his wife Mandy. Thank you Tom for the creativity in pulling it all together and perfectly incorporating all of our “wish list” items, and thanks for your meticulous attention to every detail – and for all of the extra cupboard and closet space too! Amanda was a huge help with interior design and her expert procurement skills! Who could have imagined we would love a room so much……..we just want to hang out in the bathroom all the time. Speaking of bathrooms, next time we see you, we’ll tell you about our “jaws of life” experience in the bathroom in Istanbul!
Sheryl’s dad Ron and step-mom Carol retired from the glass business in Delray Beach and moved to South Carolina and are now living near their two other daughters and their families, including some of their grandchildren and great grandchildren! That has to be fun for Ron and Carol and also special for the South Carolina Sandlin’s.

Sheryl’s brother Ron and his wife Selma, and daughter Isabella are moving from FL to Texas! It’s a new start for them, with a great job and an opportunity to go back to school. –This is great for them, but it does seem strange that Sheryl left Texas to come to Florida to be near her family and now all of her family has vacated South Florida!

We are both happy for our family members- that they are happy and enjoy being where they are – but we sure miss seeing them more often. Fortunately, we still have family in Winterhaven and New Port Richey – and can get there in a matter of hours.

One sad event was that Bea Cattell passed away at the end of November at the age of 78. She and her gracious and loving spirit will be missed.

The puppies (Maya and Gabriel) and kitties (Cassidy and Sundance) are good except for one traumatic event in November when the puppies underwent anesthesia and had their teeth cleaned. They were fine and it was not traumatic for the puppies – but Toni was traumatized with worry!

Well, between the car, the trip, the bathroom, the TV and entertainment center, we think we did our part for the world economy. Don’t expect us to shoulder this responsibility by ourselves next year – you need to go out and buy something- even if it is just an airplane ticket to come visit us in Florida!

Peace, love & happiness -now and in 2011 from Toni, Sheryl, Maya, Gabriel, Sundance and Cassidy

No comments:

Post a Comment