25 December 2003

Merry Christmas 2003

Dear Fam and Friends,

This year we thought we’d try our hand at a form letter.

Quick stats on us:
– Current Home: San Francisco, East Bay
– Favorite Country besides US: Uzbekistan (with Azerbaijan a close second)
– Combined weight: 440 lbs.
– Least favorite politician: Tom Daschle
– Favorite TV show: Malcolm in the Middle
– Favorite new state motto: “Our governor can beat up your governor”

We call Sam our German baby. He is 15 months and just starting to use his yapper to expound on the finer points of being a “wee man.” When he wants to say “Daddy” it comes out “dawden” and has a German tinge. Other words in his vocabulary are: “doggen” – doggy, and “mama”. Sam is also a climbing machine and will do whatever it takes to get into anything he shouldn’t be into. Nicknames for Sam include, but are not limited to, Sammy, Sam-O, Sammy-O, Sammo-wammo, Sweet Sam, Little Guy, Sammy-yoyo (that was Jack’s idea), Samavonovich, The Wee Man, SamSam, SammySam, and Round Guy.

Jack is now 3 ½ . He loves reading books, going to the park, riding bikes, and doesn’t like wearing pants. He has developed a taste for the Beatles movie Help and can name each Beatle in a British accent. (Next project: all the names of Sly and the Family Stone. I think we’ll start with Sly). It’s good that we are preparing him with the knowledge he’ll require to excel in our modern world.

Being in our familiy he is a big music fan. Leigh and I are carefully steering his tastes to ensure he “chooses the right” in this medium. For example, P Diddy (aka: Puff Daddy, Sean Combs, Honduran sweat shop owner) and Hip Hop in general: bad. The Beatles, Cold Play, and Chopin: good. Jack’s current top five: (1) Jimmy Eat World: You’re Not Better, (2) I’m Trying to Be Like Jesus, (3) The Beatles: Help, (4) Cold Play: In My Place, and (5) Herb Albert and the Tijuana Brass: Whipped Cream and Other Delights (that’s not true, but I can’t think of a fifth that he likes.)

In addition to a slew of other projects, motherly duties, and wifely endeavors; Leigh spends her time sewing, making quilts, looking for fabric, and facing down the threats of the powerful quilt-making Amish mafia! One would think that quilt making would become repetitive and tedious, but in that you would be mistaken. Apparently there is no end to the number of colors, designs and styles one can apply to this craft. Of course, Dan’s only experience with quilt making was court appointed so an expert he is not.

Lately Leigh has been experiencing discomfort of the neck due to the strain of holding up her newly discovered high IQ. Note: couples should never take IQ tests, if there’s any sort of disparity between the two, you’ll never hear the end of it! Apparently her intelligence is not all encompassing. When asked to name the original members of Three Dog Night and sing the words to the popular Osmond hit “Love me for a Reason” she claimed ignorance and quickly became annoyed. High IQ indeed!

Dan continues working for Protiviti in their Technology Risk Consulting group. Dan’s typical conversation with others when discussing his job goes something like this.
Eager Inquisitor: “So Dan, what do you do?”
Dan: Wearing a velvet smoking jacket and sipping on a Double Gulp, he adjusts his fez and answers, “Glad you asked friend, I work for Protiviti, and specialize in disaster recovery, business continuity, and information technology audit and security engagements.”
No longer Eager Inquisitor: Looking at Dan with a glazed look in his eyes, “Huh…so, you tried that new Cheesy Gordita Crunch at Taco Bell yet or what?”

Besides work, Dan has taken a hiatus from the mountain biking scene as his wrist heals from the trauma inflicted earlier this year. While skillfully descending a technical downhill section, Dan’s normally cat-like reflexes failed him and 250 lbs of finely tuned flesh found itself careening over the handlebars and into the creek bed below. This delighted his biking compatriot to no end until both parties took in the mangled mess that was once Dan’s wrist. After hiking a mile to civilization, fire trucks, ambulances, and helicopters (yes, helicopters) all arrived on the scene to help. Luckily Leigh arrived as well with a bottle full of Vicadin and rushed our husky hero off to the hospital where doctors set the arm and promised he would be up and underachieving in no time.

May you all gain a plethora of pounds during holiday binging. Diet starts Monday!


Dan, Leigh, Jack, and Sam