Friday, December 30, 2011

Pictures to Share

Mike teaching in Chongquin

                                                      Our beautiful "little" Christmas tree.

Family and Christmas

The Christmas Holiday always makes me think of family. I really envy my sister, Chris, because all 4 of her children and all 5 of her grandchildren could be with her this Christmas. This is such a precious thing and special time. I would have loved to be there but got to see them all through Facetime - Ipad to Ipad. I carried mine around to show them my tree, my husband Len, son Matt, daughter-in-law Gwen, and our collective pets.  They carried my nephew, Dan's, Ipad person to person so we could talk to everyone.  What fun!  Everyone looked so great and I wished I could give them hugs all around.

Matt and Gwen were the only ones who could come to our house this year.  But what fun we had! They made Christmas dinner as a special treat for us.  Matt did the barn chores - morning and night - every day to give his dad a break. My husband Len gave us all a scare with chest pains that luckily turned out to be "spasms of the carteroid coronary artery" and NOT a heart attack (thank goodness, Thank You Jesus!).  He was at Yale-New Haven Hospital only one night and we got to bring him home Christmas Eve. We then launched into fun. We opened presents, watched movies, watched football (of course), and ate some great dishes prepared by Gwen. Her recipes are awesome.

Gwen and Matt are wedding photographers and took some engagement photos for a wonderful couple who lives nearby us. They came over to see our alpacas and had a great time.  Matt and Gwen couldn't stay for New Year's because they are photographing a wedding New Year's Eve (

Our youngest, Michael, is in Chongquin, China, teaching English.  We connected with him on Skype - sound and picture was clear although he is 7500 miles away!  It was so great to see and talk to him after almost a whole year.  We met his sweetheart, Kathy, on Skype, which was also great fun.  She is adorable and speaks good English.  She doesn't think so, but when she just talks English without thinking about it, she sounds great.  Mike showed us around his apartment in China. He has a cute little lighted Christmas tree.  Mike told us about a very funny tradition in China. On Christmas Eve, everyone goes around town hitting people with inflated plastic hammers!!

Our oldest son, Sam, talked to us on the phone.  He has a terrible cold, so his wife, Virose, and our granddaughter, Samantha, had to go to church without him. He keeps asking us to move to Georgia to be near him and because the cost of living is so much lower than Connecticut. I (Bobbie) am retiring now, but Len still has at least 2 more years.  In a few years we will be able to move closer to family, hopefully to a bigger farm.

All in all, Summer Brook Valley Farm had a wonderful Christmas.  I forgot to go to the barn at midnight on Christmas Eve to hear the animals talk.  Oh well...Maybe next year.  I think back on Christmases past, including the wonderful ones I had as a child, and the wonderful ones when our children were little and my mother was still alive. I miss my mother and grandmother so much at this time of year.  I know that Len misses his folks too.  We talked to his 3 brothers - 2 by phone and 1 on Skype.  The funny thing was that the pictures were clearer coming from China than from Toronto, Canada where Robert lives.  We all are praying for Kathleen who was seriously hurt falling down the stairs at home.  David is at her bedside at the hospital each day (in Utah).  We rejoice at the news that Steve is in remission! Our family like all families had our ups and downs this past year. We are a loving family and have great hopes and dreams for 2012.  We hope that All Your Dreams come True for the New Year. Remember to Love, Laugh, Share, and Forgive.  Happy New Year from Summer Brook Valley Farm.