January: We had a short visit from our friend Jacqui who had come from New Zealand to a conference in Missouri. She stopped in for a few days on her way home and we had a good time catching up.
February: Nathan turned 7! Just a quiet family birthday at home this year. We were still in the apartment and there wasn’t enough room to have a big party. Maybe next year! We did a lot of mineral and fossil hunting at the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show.March: The waiting for our new house purchase continued. When they say “short sale”, they lie! All up it took 6 months.
April: Finally we got the keys for our new home at Sahuarita! Not long after we moved in our friend Helen came from Australia to spend Easter with us. Paul had another birthday and is now a “Miner 49er” much to Nathan’s delight. Annette got promoted at work and is now in charge of the Geology department.
May: At Nathan’s end-of-year dance recital he received the Selected Student of the Season (Student of the Year) award from his dance school. We are very proud of him!
June: We headed north and did a cruise from Anchorage (Alaska) to Vancouver (Canada). What an amazing trip. The scenery was incredible and we loved every minute.
July: Annette continued working on her biggest project of the year at work, the resource model, which consumed almost every Sunday this summer on top of her normal work week.
August: Nathan started second grade and has a fantastic teacher, Mrs. Herndon, this year. He is in a class with other advanced learners and is thriving in that environment.
September: Paul’s brother Greg and his family visited us from Australia and we did a 10-day road trip (Flagstaff, Grand Canyon, Las Vegas) with them. The highlight of their visit was being with them when they renewed their wedding vows for their 20th anniversary in Las Vegas, with Elvis as the celebrant.
October: Halloween fun and games. We decorated the house and had a party with our neighbours. Paul started going to aikido again after a few months’ break. Nathan played soccer again (his team was the Gila Monsters because of their orange and black uniforms) and did really well.
November: Annette had a birthday and is now a little closer to 40. At the end of the month she was lucky enough to attend a short training course in Vancouver. Two trips to Canada this year!December: Gearing up for Christmas and another dance recital. Nathan is having lots of fun with his hip hop classes. We are eagerly anticipating having Paul’s mother Pat, his sister Sue and our niece Stephanie arrive in mid-December and stay with us for a month. Another road trip, a bit further afield this time (California, Las Vegas and northern Arizona).
Plans for the New YearHopefully we’ll get to see New York and some of the eastern US in 2012. It would be great to go back to Canada again. There’s so much more that we want to see while we are here. It was wonderful to have so many visitors this year and we hope to have more next year. Maybe we’ll even get all our boxes unpacked! Nathan will be starting intermediate school and we look forward to seeing how he does there. We wish for continued, health, happiness and employment in 2012.
The Arizona Gelfis (Paul, Annette and Nathan)