Happy New Year 2005


Dear Family and Friends,


Once again, another year ends in what feels like the blink of an eye! This whirlwind of a year has been filled with all sorts of fun events! A highlight was our trip to Disney World in June. We all had a great time – and Dora developed a rather intimate relationship with Goofy!


 Unlike most 2 year olds who are frightened by, or at least a little hesitant with those big characters, Dora was fascinated and could not get enough. It was quite a site when she stood on her chair to scream across a restaurant,” Hey Minnie Mouse! Come here! I need to tell you something!”  Mark and Carolyn celebrated their 15th anniversary and tripped the lights fantastic in Chicago this October.


Mark has spent the year hard at work continuing to build Real Time Strategy. He continues to work with clients who are both interesting and remarkably nice people. This year’s travels took him to Silicon Valley, New York, Chicago, Brazil, Germany and Canada.  He has also taken lead of a local transformation effort – our temple, with another that is across the street, are combining to form a new congregation. Mark is President of the implementation board of the new combined congregation, working tirelessly on implementing the merger.  Mark continues his woodworking hobby.  This year’s projects were a rocking airplane for nephew Alex and a doll bed/closet nightstand for Elise’s dolls.


Carolyn began the year teaching her first classes as a professor at the Fletcher School. The students and faculty colleagues are fascinating people with the most interesting experiences.  And with all those years of graduate school, a few details had managed to escape her notice – how much work it truly is to put together a new course – especially an interdisciplinary one for which there is no standard textbook providing a path to follow. Also, she has learned that professors often do not have the luxury of teaching subjects in which they have expertise. So putting together new courses these semesters has been overwhelming – but otherwise great fun!


Elise turned 8 this year. For all the hours she spends rereading those Harry Potter books, we celebrated by transforming our house into Hogwart’s Castle and conducting summer session of wizardry school – complete with Diagon Alley where supplies were purchased, a sorting ceremony and great feast, Care of Magical Creatures, Transfiguration, Charms, History of Magic, Defense Against the Dark Arts, and Potions class. Our little witches and wizards had almost as much fun as we did! Elise has had big changes this year, attending a new school. We are very pleased with the change and think this school can better meet her needs and challenge her. While she would be in third grade this year in public school, she is many months too young for 3rd in her new school so she remains in 2nd grade. She now seems to be enjoying school, making new friends, and running a full mile in PE! She continues to be busy with all her activities at home – soccer, softball, Hebrew School, dance and piano. This month she performed in the New England Ballet Ensemble’s Nutcracker for the third season – this time as a Polichinelle! Such a fun and beautiful part! We were all so proud of her – but no one more than Dora!


Dora just turned three last month and is truly growing into her own. She is now in true preschool – three mornings per week. She also has begun dance class – a very big deal as she has been practicing with big sister ever since she could walk! Dora talks nonstop – though her favorite thing to say is, “I can do it myself. You don’t need to help me.” Her favorite activities are falling, puzzles, dancing with her sister, doing the computer, and manipulating the rest of us. And she has many playdates with friends none of the rest of us can see.


In all, the year has been a great success.  We cannot wait to see what 2005 brings us!  Warm wishes for a wonderful new year.