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Happy New Year!

Surprise!  I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted, and what better time to do so than New Year’s Eve?  We hope your Christmas was joyous and that each of you was surrounded by family and friends.

If you are reading this and did not receive a copy of the 2012 newsletter, drop us a line at and let us know.  We can e-mail it to you in the wink of an eye! 

I guess I’ll start where we left off.  My last week or so in Canada was busy.  We did take a couple of nice drives before I left (probably for Gruper to find us some grouse birds).  I took advantage of a couple of nice reflections one afternoon:



Check out this beaver shot:


Right before I left I took one of my favorite annual shots:  the tamaracks across from our house:


I arrived home in late Oct. and spent a week relaxing in Florida with Ruthie.  We had a nice time, staying in Ft. Lauderdale and roadtripping all the way to Key West!  I began teaching immediately thereafter and have been pretty busy since.  I am also volunteering a bit at church each week.

Our dear friend Pat celebrated a birthday Oct. 26.  I had to represent for both of us as Steve was still busy closing Camp.  The birthday girl glowed at the gathering:


Gruper came home while I was in Florida.  He took advantage of our unseasonably warm weather and gathered wood.  We have A LOT!  We cut and stacked and stacked and cut, etc.  I’m not sure where we would put more, but if it becomes available I’m sure we’ll find a place.

Thanksgiving was spent at Pat’s house.  However, craft projects were the topic at Rebecca’s where she, Jayme, Mackayla and myself exercised our creative talents:


Of course, Christmas was not far behind.  Mackayla and I made and frosted gingerbread people:


Mackayla is a big kindergartener now!  She reads like a champ and seems to genuinely love school.  She will be 6 this week and is a lot of fun.  A very special elf


did a very special thing the week before Christmas.  He hooked us up with a ride WITH SANTA in the Santamobile:


It was phenomenal!  The joy on her face…words can’t quite describe it.  Suffice it to say that Rebecca and I were on cloud 9!  Here’s Mackayla with Rebecca’s ginormous cat Sam:


They are best buddies!  I’ve also been able to spend some time with those 2-year-old great-nieces, but they don’t hold still long enough to get a good pic! They are adorable, talking up a storm, and busy!  Mya is going to be a big sister next August (again, those nieces and nephews of mine aren’t planning around MY schedule very well…).

Gruper and I roadtripped to Des Moines for a weekend with Kraig-the-bearhunter and Jenny-the-berry picker and dinner with Troy and Jen (of the island on 2nd Lake).  We had a blast!  Too much wonderful food to mention and lovely company.  Here we are with Kraig and Jenny:


Sport shows kick off in a couple of weeks.  We’ll be getting photos ready and making sure our info is up to date.  We are going to accompany Pat to Florida the first week of Feb.  That will be Gruper’s first vacation in almost two years–he’s ready.  We should have enough wood amassed by then for him to take a short break;)  I’m also contemplating having him paint the living room in case he has too much spare time.

Please feel free to drop us a line–we enjoy hearing from you.  If you can catch us at a sports show, by all means do so!  And we certainly hope to see you in 2013 at Tall Pines Camp! 

God bless each and every one of you. 

Andrea & Steve

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