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The Morris Family Annual Christmas Letter - 2013...

Well, here is this year’s news… Not much and not very exciting but maybe something of interest:


Cathy is finishing up her last year as a teacher…  or so she says.  She was eligible to retire last summer, but decided to carry on for another year.  Her school is K-8, and she is teaching 7th & 8th grade Social Studies and History, as well as remedial reading for elementary students.


I haven’t done very much that I can point at and say “look at that!” I still take pictures and try to help out with a local living history outfit.  I did cut off my pony tail finally (donated it to “locks of love”) and I had a couple of minor surgeries - another one to fix my foot and one to fix my throat, which hasn’t quite solved the problem. BTW, if you can avoid throat surgery, I would advise it!


This past summer Cathy and I took a trip down to Florida mainly to swear my youngest son in for another enlistment in the Air Force.  He and Rebekah are doing well in their careers.  Greg tests for Senior Master Sergeant this year, and Rebekah was selected as the A-1 (Personnel & Services) NCO of the Year for the entire USAF!  Grandaughter Kirstin is quite the gymnast, artist, and reader too!


We also took the opportunity to go down to SW Florida to see Cathy’s brothers.  We tried our hardest to spend our kids’ inheritance by staying in nice hotels along the way, and really enjoyed the Edison Beach House on Ft. Myers Beach, the Gruene Apple B&B in New Braunfels, and the Sheraton on the corner of Bourbon & Toulouse Streets in New Orleans. If you get a chance to stay in those places, I think you’ll like them.


In September we once again attended the annual film festival here in Las Cruces.  As always there were some really good flicks, and some real dogs.  Best of all, Cathy got to meet one of her favorite actors, Lou Diamond Phillips, who turned out to be very gracious and personable too.


In November our son Chris got to stop by for a week en route TDY (TAD for you Navy types).  He and his family are still in Naples, Italy where he is a civilian working for the US Navy.  Janna is a full time substitute in the elementary school there, and Geoffrey (oldest grandson) is now in Boy Scouts.  Connor (youngest) is a Webelo Scout.  Both are on the honor roll at school, and we are very proud of them.


We had other visitors throughout the year (you know who you are) and in November my sister’s son, Jon, got married in Colorado, although we weren’t able to attend.


I suppose the really big news is that my folks moved into an Assisted Care community in September.  Dad’s 86 and is fully disabled through the VA.  Mom is 84 and has some dementia.  For quite a while they’ve been able to help each other out and make up a lot for the other’s disabilities. Over time though, they needed more help than my sister Kerry or I could provide on a daily basis. They are in a beautiful place in a 2-BR apartment with their dog and don’t have to do anything but show up for meals in the dining room.


As luck would have it, just a few weeks after they move in, Dad became very ill with a series of ailments and has been in the hospital or rehab since late September.  He’s doing well enough that they let him come over to the house for Thanksgiving and hopefully only a couple more weeks of rehab to go and he’ll be home for Christmas.


We had Eric home twice this year – for Christmas 2012 and again in September.  He is really doing well there in the home in Oklahoma.  His meds are well balanced, he can carry on a long conversation, and he’s got a girl friend too.


Now, here's this year's picture: