Here's to another year.
Melanie is now 19. She's a sophomore at Ball State University. She dormed on campus her freshman year. But, this year she and four other girls got a house off campus. She is a member of the Phi Mu sorority. They are a philanthropic group that supports Riley's Children Hospital in Indy. And since Melanie had back surgery there a couple years ago, they used her story and picture to promote their annual dance marathon. Melanie also has a job on campus working with the Ball State Band.
Brian is a sophomore in high school and he just turned 16 in November. As his sister did when in high school, Brian was a member of the Homestead High School Spartan Alliance Marching Band. He is so good at drumming that he made the drum line this year playing the snare drum. His freshman year he was on cymbals, so he is definitely moving up. Scouting took a back seat to band and also to Lacrosse. Brian really loved playing Lacrosse, but one hit too many really put a strain on his back. He may come back to it after taking a year off.
Michael Victor also had a birthday in November and he just turned 10. He's in the 4th grade now. He continues to participate in little league baseball in the summer, flag football in the fall, and basketball in the winter. His little league baseball team came in 2nd in the playoffs. And his flag football team won the championship this year. He is active in Cub Scouts and he earned his Wolf Badge and his Bear Badge over the past couple of years. He is a 1st Year Webelos Scout now and he just completed his requirements making him eligible to receive his Webelos Badge too. He still loves Star Wars and The Clone Wars. And he loves video games so much we don't see him some days as he is in the basement playing the Wii.
Wendy is working at Lincoln Financial Group in downtown Fort Wayne. She works in a call center taking calls from financial planners around the country who use Lincoln's financial planning systems. She is now a 5 1/2 year cancer survivor and she got a survivor tattoo on her ankle to commemorate the occasion. Wendy's passion has always been singing. She currently has two songs complete with her own original lyrics and music produced by a company in Nashville. She has a third song in the works. And she has many other compilations of lyrics just waiting for a tune and refinements as necessary. She has competed in the Colgate Country Showdown and hopes that the exposure will get her noticed.
I am still working at Raytheon, but I am back on the team I originally started with and I am one of the team's Tech Leads. I was working as the site Software Measurement Analyst, but with our company comfortably performing at CMMI Level 5, each program is able to focus on software measurements on their own. So, I am back to performing duties as a Software Engineer writing code in Ada on the AFATDS Program. I continue my duties as Committee Chairman for Cub Scout Pack 3333. I have also taken over duties as Den Leader for Michael's Webelos Den. I will cross over to Boy Scouts when Michael does in February 2012.
Wendy & I started 2010 on a great note. We participated in the 40-day Marriage Challenge via email through The Chapel at Crosspointe in Amherst, NY. It was patterned off of The Love Dare from the movie Fireproof. We also attended a Retrouvaille weekend in Fort Wayne. And on our 11th Anniversary July 3, 2010 we renewed our vows.
We are thankful for all of our friends and family. We wish we could see you all more often.