Highlights 2009

November 10, 2009

Happy holidays to everyone, and YES, we have moved AGAIN!

Our new address: 85 Rio Robles East, Unit 2411, San Jose, California 95134-1660
(Until July: 185 2nd Ave Unit A, Lyons, Colorado 80540)

As we hinted in last year’s newsletter, we did sell our house and move back to California, arriving here around August 1. It was a terrible time to sell a house, but we were lucky to find buyers – coming from out of state like we did – and closed on the sale in February. Also lucky for us they didn’t want to move in right away, so we rented back through June when our long-term consulting contract finished up.

Helena and Miranda
Helena and Miranda
Archer and Gillian
Archer and Gillian

We made a trek out of coming back to California: We first drove (both our car and RV) up to visit the Blomquists in Minnesota, who continue to lead very busy lives. Mike won the PhotoShop guru award for photo processing at the annual conference in Las Vegas. Gillian’s law practice continues to grow, mostly by word of mouth. The kids (now 4 and 2) are thriving, as you can see from their photos.

Livengoods at Jenny Lake
Livengoods at Jenny Lake

Our next stop was Winnipeg, and from there we drove across the prairie to the Canadian Rockies, and then down to Yellowstone where we met the Livengoods who spent much of Ellen and Rick’s sabbaticals driving across the U.S. in a borrowed RV. We hiked, boated, and did other tourist-type activities with them, and finally headed for our apartment (rented sight unseen) in the very same complex we were in when we left for Colorado two years before. Go figure!

We’re glad to be “home” and are enjoying participating in local family activities, visiting family and friends, and running all our favorite trails. We even did a three-generation race in Mountain View by the SF Bay! Matt and Anna came in second in their age groups, Miranda was 7th, and Ellen and Dick were both 5th. Best of all, a good time was had by all. Miranda even won a plant in the race raffle.

Helen's 90th birthday
Helen’s 90th birthday

Another highlight this year was Helen Van Raaphorst’s 90th birthday party in early April, with friends and relatives coming from all around the country. We were happy that the Livengoods also made it down to Palm Springs for the event. And speaking of the Van Raaphorsts, there were new twins in the family (last November) and a wedding in June. Another baby is expected this December.

"Riedel Sisters"
“Riedel Sisters”

Also a big event for the year was the “Riedel Sisters” tour of several western states: Andi and Gretchen in Andi’s Roadtrek (same make as our RV) joined Dick and me for 10 days of driving, talking, and shopping. Dick was brave to join that lively trio, and he seemed to enjoy it as much as the rest of us.

One the consulting front, we not only completed the two curricula in June but also signed up in September to help FedEx (headquartered in Memphis, TN) move in a more strategic direction with their technical documentation. Dick’s programming skills have been very helpful on that front. He also just shipped off some work to a localization organization in Scotland. So we keep busy!

We’re looking forward to Thanksgiving with the Livengoods and a Blomquist visit between Christmas and New Year’s.