Melanie is 13 now and she's in the eighth grade at her Middle School. Can you believe that she'll actually be "graduating" in the summer? Melanie has been babysitting just about every week now. She also helps watch both Brian and Michael. And she sings in the choir at The Chapel just about every Sunday.
Brian is in the fourth grade and he just turned 10 in November. He did another season of Upward Basketball last winter and he's doing that again this winter. Brian also did the little league thing in the summer. Cub Scouts continue with Brian working towards his Webelos badge. He also continues to excel with his artistic talents. Brian keeps himself occupied with Play Station 1 here and he has Play Station 2 at his Dad's house. He surprised both Wendy & I when he offered to share his room with his little brother Michael. So now the kids have a play room in what used to be Michael's room.
Michael Victor had a birthday in November too and just turned 4. We continue to do our singing and praying every night before bed. He also continues to take over an hour before he'll actually go to sleep. This year I taught Michael how to spell his last name and his phone number. I also taught him the Act of Contrition (as I remember it). And since I'm a math geek, I taught him Pi to 10 digits. Michael is currently going to school 5 days a week. On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays he has his regular pre-school. Then on Tuesdays & Thursdays he attends Brian's elementary school in the class with the special needs kids. He is considered a "peer buddy" and he helps the teacher by having these kids interact with someone who is different from them. Michael is also a "Buddy Scout" and he already knows the Cub Scout promise and the Boy Scout Law. For more details on "potty training" than most of you might be interested in, click here.
Wendy has completed all of the classes she needed and she has officially received her Associates Degree from Villa Maria College in Buffalo. She chaired the Fall Craft Show again in October and she is now the Parent/Teacher Committee (PTC) President. Along with Melanie, Wendy is also in choir at The Chapel. Through a contact made at choir, Wendy has also become the Marketing Director of an online newspaper where we live. It is called The Aboite Independent. She is one of only three people involved so far and she can set her own hours and do most of the work out of our house.
I continue as Committee Chairman for our Cub Scout Pack and I still maintain the web site for the Pack. At work, I volunteered to be the Program Process Engineer (PPE) for my program, AFATDS. For most of the year I was helping the Raytheon Fort Wayne site in achieving something called CMMI Level 3. This is the Systems & Software Integrated Capability Maturity Model that should help us compete against other contractors. We successfully achieved CMMI Level 3 on December 8, 2004. Our program, AFATDS, also received a "Top 5" national award for software quality. In August we went cabin camping at Letchworth State Park. The scenery was beautiful. Wendy & I also got turned on to "Texas Hold'em Poker" and we've played in a couple of friendly tournaments. I continue with my interest in history and politics. I still check out eBay every now & then. And I have a huge backlog of "stories" I'd like to put up on my "The Best Time Was..." web site.
We are thankful for all of our friends and family. We wish we could see you all more often.