Garden Veggies

Garden Veggies
Made into tile for my stove backsplash

Portland Rose Garden

Portland Rose Garden
Mike and my 2 youngest sons Ian and Leif

Grandson Michael's Birthday 2014 throwing water balloons

Grandson Michael's Birthday 2014 throwing water balloons
With son Beau, Grandson Luke and his mom Jennifer


I cut this out of a wedding line. I must take more pictures of her.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Merry Christmas Family and Friends,

We are enjoying our new home and all of our new feathered friends in the trees in the wooded back yard. Mike came home one day with a big bag of birdseed and several bird feeders. We have our binoculars, bird books, and birdbath. This summer we had breakfast on the deck with the birds most days. Is this what old people do?

Mike is still working half time and since our 401K has turned into a 201K we may have to stretch it out as long as possible. We thought we might be planning a mission by now but Mike began having problems with his hips after the move last fall and the Dr. has confirmed that he needs hip replacements. He is trying to see another Dr. for a second opinion on when the best time to do it will be. I told him I am not sure I can go on a mission with him groaning so he needs to get an answer before we go.

Other than a couple of trips to St. George and a small jaunt to LA we have been pretty close to home all year. Mike has played golf regularly. He is keeping busy making frames for my paintings in his new workshop. He has a nice set up for working now and has recently started making two large stained glass panels for our master bath.

Mike is still our fearless Spanish discussion leader. In about 10 years I may know something but Mike knows Spanish. He even read the Book of Mormon in Spanish this year. He just needs an opportunity to immerse so he can actually learn to speak. I am sure we will get that opportunity in time.

I taught my 5th Family Writing class in February. I had a great group of writers and we have organized a monthly writing get-together to keep ourselves motivated. I started a blog last November and enjoy the opportunity to write and connect with other bloggers. It is another world and I think I am addicted.
Stop by and leave a comment now and then. The Mormon Times section of the Desseret News published 3 of my essays this fall. They are all on my blog.
I try to paint most days and love it. I have photos of my recent paintings on my blog. I may pursue getting into a gallery this year or at least have a home show. The paintings are piling up.

Mike and I put in a flagstone patio in the woods behind our house, which was more work than we wanted to do but it is nice. We have a fire pit for roasting marshmallows and are working on a Tarzan swing off the hill. I planted and maintained a little flower patch in the front. That was the extent of our gardening and we are not missing it at all.

We are enjoying our new neighbors here. We have a group of about 10 empty nesters that meet once a month for Family Home Evening. It has been a nice bonding event especially since our Ward is full of young people.

Beau is still in LA working for Electronic Arts making video games. He has a new little boy Luke, who is 6 months old living in LA.

Maren has been putting together a new Tai Pan store in Rancho Cucamonga, California off and on all summer and fall. We went to see the store. She did an awesome job. She went to the temple this year, which was a joyful experience.

Ian is still in Portland working as a bellhop. He had several showings of his artwork this year. He did a series of crashing horse pictures in a watercolor like medium called gouache. I need to get one posted on my blog.

Leif was accepted into the University of Washington’s photography program in Seattle. He is leaning toward teaching on a high school or jr. college level.
My grandson Michael started first grade this year. He suddenly started reading everything in sight. It has been quite amazing to watch. I have never seen anything like it.

Life is good. We are content and we keep busy. What more could we want?
We wish you all a Wonderful Christmas and the happiest New Year.
Love, Charmaine and Mike too

1 comment:

Alicia said...

I am not much for Christmas letters. I do enjoy reading some of them though. Yours is enjoyable and even though I know you guys well, I still learned things about you and Mike. Great job - thanks for sharing. Alicia