So for those that we missed on our mailing list, or the letter never arrived in your mailbox (which we have fallen victim more then once this holiday season...PO fail!) We would like to share our family letter that we sent out this year. We hope that everyone had a wonderful holiday season and wish you all the best in 2014!
Greetings from SAFB! 2013 marked a new addition to our family. No, we didn't have more babies, M really wanted a kitty. She made this clear to me by never mentioning wanting a cat, not ever, not even once. I took this clear sign as a message to get her one last Christmas. Bella is a Siberian Forest Cat who has grown from a wee kitten last January who liked to climb the curtains and sleep on the rod to a fluffy fatso who brings the curtains down with a thundering crash...literally. Diesel has adjusted to the addition and the two can even be caught occasionally snuggling.
The move to the midwest has brought new sports for the boys. M and J enjoyed floor hockey in the Scott AFB youth center league. No disrespect to soccer and baseball, but the entertainment value of a floor hockey game is through the roof. The only way it could be better is if we could bet on it. N was disappointed that he couldn't play, but he is old enough for the upcoming season in January.
Our California acclimatized boys had to adjust to several good snowstorms last winter. It was a reunion with snow for the older two boys, but it was N's first real exposure to the blessed white stuff. Helping him make his first snowballs, snowmen, and snow angels was a delight for us. What we would give for a decent sledding hill! M lost some skin and learned lessons about coefficient of friction versus inertia when he took his sled down a snow pile onto the asphalt road.M and I had flashbacks to childhood watching the boys dig out forts in the neighborhood snow piles made by the plows. As I write this letter, we are getting our first snow of the season. The novelty has worn off for me. Hopefully the magic remains for the boys and we can play in the forecasted three inches of snow tomorrow.
Another blessing of moving back to the midwest was increased visits with family. Both sets of Grandparents, M's sister plus family all took the drive down and visited this year. If anyone else would like to stop by, M would love to take you to see the St. Louis Arch and I will willingly take you on a tour of the Budweiser factory. We were also able to visit Minnesota in the summer where the boys got to try their hands at farming/country living. The boys stayed with grandparents while M and I ran off to Europe for 11 days. We visited London, Paris, Florence, Rome, and Naples. For more details of our travels (and loads of pictures), check out M's blog at www.detloff.blogspot.com.
Our family really feels at home at SAFB and being back in the midwest. Our neighbors have quickly become friends that we can borrow a cup of sugar from or depend on to watch the boys in a pinch. When the weather is pleasant on Fridays or Saturdays we host a bonfire in our driveway. All summer we had a parade of neighbor kids coming through our home to play with the boys. All three boys enjoy their elementary school classes with good friends they have made. M is in the 5th grade, finishing his Webelo 2 requirements, a member of the safety patrol and also joined band this year learning how to play the saxophone. J is a 4th grader and has once again been named as a student of the month for the second year and is learning how to play the recorder. Our tenured preschooler, N, is enjoying his second year at the same school as his brothers and has even started reading on his own. M is enjoying helping out at the school occasionally and walking with friends in the neighborhood when the weather permits.
I'm still flying Learjets for the Air Force.
We wish you and yours a Happy Holidays and all the best for 2014.