Dear Family and Friends!
Jane and I are reflecting over the past year today on the first Sunday in Advent – a year of great joy and much sorrow.
Joy with our little Janey,
1 year old in
January 2002 – Jane was over for that important 1st birthday
party – and our many conversations and
good times with Kajsa, Rich, and Janey
in September during our three weeks in
Sorrow at losing, all too early, two good friends, Jane’s nursing school friend, Boel, and Gail’s boss and colleague, Leif. Our thoughts today are with families.
We are also so much wishing for peaceful solutions to arise out of all the sword rattling in the name of fighting terrorism. Certainly it is the underlying causes of terror that must be addressed, not just the terror acts and perpetrators themselves. And certainly we must address those causes of terrorism with international solidarity and not just with a “might makes right” policy.
The highlight of the year was celebrating
Jane’s 60th birthday in
After coming home, there seemed to be birthday party after birthday party (all that we were suppose to avoid by going away!) with old colleagues and friends – including a secret visit with Åsa and Sten to a charming bed & breakfast in Österlen –southeast coast of Sweden – that included a fantastic asparagus buffet center of Swedish asparagus growing country. We never knew asparagus could be prepared in so many ways. So now we are even trying to grow asparagus here in Norrbyggeby with a few “imported” plants. You know it’s fun to turn 60!
And as usual Gail’s year was filled with a
good bit of business travel –
Jane continues to work with Andreas and his staff. Andreas had a great 30th birthday theme party with all his friends and family in March. It is always so warming to see Andreas in such good spirits.
June-July- August were also our “take care of the farm” months! Lots of potatoes and tomatoes, cucumbers, corn, pumpkins, sunflowers, berries etc. Finished painting the car port, took down lots of trees so that we have winter fire wood for the next 3-4 years and opening our views out into the village and neighboring forests. Even participated with a specialist team of guys to erect about 175 feet of classic old Dalarna fence (called a gärdsgård) around our greenhouse and garden area. It is said it might even keep the deer away!
Most disappointing about the summer, however, was that Gail had to miss the long planned 40th reunion of the Warren High School Class of 1962. He really had planned on attending his first high school reunion, but sad events here just didn’t allow him to get away in July.
Unfortunately our egg production diminished this year. Down from last year’s 100 eggs per month to about 30. We lost 3 of our 6 chickens, but will renew our flock this coming Spring! Our cats are still very spry bringing into the house, to our consternation, almost daily, their proud catches of field mice.
Last Christmas and New Year we spent
quietly in Norrbyggeby with the most snow since 1985 – 30-40 inches. What a nice Winter wonderland!
And just three weeks from today we will be in
We look forward to hearing from you all, and as always, you are most welcome to our Norrbyggeby.