Happy New Year!!

This year’s Holiday eGreeting comes to you from the comfort of our new home in Austin. If you haven’t updated your address books, please do: 2909 Creeks Edge Parkway, Austin, TX 78733-6351. It’s been a great year and a remarkable one as our first full year as parents.
When we last wrote (and we’re sorry that it was so long ago), we were looking for nothing but sleep as baby Dillon rang in 2003 in Nebraska.

Sara returned to work part-time in February at EnviroMedia and Dillon started going part-time to a daycare facility a few blocks away. They both are benefiting from the experience. Sara has rejuvenated her creative juices with lots of exciting challenges in the way of writing and producing broadcast materials for water conservation, tobacco prevention, flu prevention and childhood obesity prevention.

Mark had his cheese moved this year. In a political circus, his team was asked to relocate to Apple’s headquarters in California. When everyone declined to move, they were terminated at the end of September. Lucky for Mark, he parlayed the situation into a new job at Apple with a different team. Although he misses the camaraderie of his former team, he is enjoying his new challenge and glad to still be in “the orchard.”

Dillon celebrated his 1st birthday on October 27 and has been discovering all the joys life has to offer –pajamas with built-in feet, plastic cars, visits to Aunt Lilo’s ranch, and a limo ride for his Grandpa’s 70th birthday.

He’d probably like to fire his camera-click-happy parents for snapping all the photos, but it’s worth it. Plus, we have enough ammunition ready (i.e. him in the buff with gold lamet angel wings) to keep him well behaved all the way thru high school. If you want to see him grow up right before your eyes, check out our little experiment of taking a photo of him once a week for a year.

Our family enjoyed many fun adventures this year. We spent spring break on a ski trip with the Beechners and Wylies at Wolf Creek in Southwestern Colorado. A good time was had by all and no medical insurance cards were harmed in the execution of that vacation.
In May, we closed on our new home just a mile down the road in Austin and spent weekends selling the old one, which closed in August. Sara’s folks came for a visit in June and helped us handle the nuts and bolts of packing. They also planted our first batch of tomato plants in the new garden. Since the move, we have spent our free time painting walls and discussing the finer points of how to organize the garage. LEAD Technologies Inc. V1.01
Mark’s cycling trip through the Blue Ridge Mountains was postponed (forever) by the organizers but he still managed to meet his 2,004 mile cycling goal for the year. He continued to “compete” in sprint adventure races and gave the paraplegic category competitors a run for their money. He also did his first open water swim sprint triathlon (swim-bike-run) and achieved his goal of not drowning-crashing-dying in 1 hour, 44 minutes.
Sara had a blast reuniting with old friends at not one but two High School reunions. The first stop was in Columbia, Missouri at Rockbridge/Hickman reunion. The following weekend, she went to Pullman, Washington to walk down memory lane.

October brought a cameo appearance on America’s Funniest Home Videos (announcing “we’re pregnant” to Mark’s folks), a camping trip to Garner State Park with friends and a family excursion to the Texas coast where Nonno and Kiki enjoyed grandparenting 24/7. Dillon discovered the joys of his first speedo, glorious sand, surf and key lime pie!
A Thanksgiving road trip to Kansas City united Sara’s extended family during an ice storm and challenged us to do turkey day like the pilgrims and Indians did -- without any electricity. It was a perfect reminder of how thankful we are for what we do have…each other and of course, access to generators from Y2K-prepared families.
In December, we enjoyed Lea’s visit and strolling down Austin’s Trail of Lights with Mark’s family. AppleMark
For Christmas, we stayed in Austin and celebrated in our new home – a first for Mark and Sara, who usually are on the road visiting family this time of year.
As this holiday season winds to a close (hopefully with a Rose Bowl victory for the UT Longhorns), we hope you are recharged for a New Year. With our country at war, tsunamis closing in on distant shores, we should all live and love each day to its fullest. Carpe Diem!

Mark, Sara & Dillon