Saturday, December 31, 2011

For all that you are and all you will be in 2012, we march onward, together, into the future...
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Sunday, December 25, 2011

An Awesome Christmas Eve 2011

A business associate's unforgetable Christmas Party, at which we missed Mike, Mary and family who had left just before we arrived.
A moving, candle-light Christmas eve service at church,
with the S-C family joining us for our annual Christmas Eve Dinner...It was the perfect Christmas Eve, leaving us with great expectations for the morrow.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

P.S.  Mike: Tommy Malone, our host at Christmas Party, greeted me with; "your son is a great guy and I love him", making me feel so proud of your accomplishment.  It is so lovely for us when we hear sweet words like these about our children.  Sorry we missed seeing you, Mary and the children.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Elfin Mischief...

Wish for Elfie.

Elfie's thinking...

Elfie comes up with the answer!

Hark! The Herald Elfie Sings!

...and here ends another morning of Elfin magic.
Elfie goes back to the North Pole tonight with Santa.

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Monday, December 19, 2011

More Sights and Sounds of the Season

Annual Mother/Daughter Christmas Tea given by a mother of one of Kim's high school friend.  Note photo on bottom left, it was taken the year I had cancer (1990) and Terr took my place at the tea. 

After the Tea came our annual S-C Caroling Party!

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Christmas Day is almost here!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Sights and Sounds of the Season

Beth and Adrienne took the Pedersen/Kelley family to Horizon, a restaurant in Sausalito, to see and enjoy the holiday lights boat parade.

The S-C's invite us yearly to join them for brunch and a visit with Santa at their lovely country club.  William brings his list and the big kids see to it that Santa gets it!
A Christmas dinner with the S Crofts included all the lamb you could eat, good conversation and lots of game playing.

The Lawyers' Club Christmas Party was at the Fox this year.  We walked the red carpet, were greeted by wonderful carolers, toured the theater and met up with good friends (above is T's partner, Carlton).  One of the best parts of this party is running into my son Mike in the crowd.  It sure makes me proud (I would have taken a picture of him and his beautiful bride, but I didn't want to embarrass them).

Beautiful night of music at Westminster, hearing Kate sing Handel's Messiah.

I believe, I believe, I believe!

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Natalie's story

 I don't usually go outside our immediate family with my news and information on Chatterbox (others tell their stories much better than I do); but today I read my sister-in-law's blog, Patchwork Palette, and felt the need to share this post with you...I don't think she would mind.

Natalie is a self proclaimed "incorrigible optimist" and has been a wonderful influence in my life.  She came to us from Ukraine, became my brother's wife and a loving family member.  She has used her gifts and her courage to get through the hardest of times and is a pillar of strength.   Natalie's blog is written in her native tongue so I have used a computer translator for the link.  I hope it works:

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

A Little Elfin Mischievousness

Each year, the night the family Christmas tree goes up and is decorated at the Sabonis-Chafee house, a wish is made by one of the children and a magical elf comes to stay for the duration of the season to grant that wish and others made nightly until Christmas day.  Morning always brings an exciting surprise as everyone stumbles down the stairs to find out how their wish was granted…In Elfie style of course.

This morning was the first morning of Elfie’s return and he did not disappoint…

I'll let you know of any more mischievousness that is brought to my attention. :)

P.S.  I am hoping to let everyone see your Christmas tree!  Again this year I would like all our family trees to come together on Chatterbox.  Please send me a picture of yours.  I have three so far!

Monday, December 05, 2011

There is no Sorrow in this performance!

Andrew is the first soloist, number two "man" from the left and a pretty brave freshman, performing in front of the senior class, at a delightful concert this week at Wesleyan.  (Oh, it is his mother with the uncontrollable, contagious  laughter.)

Thought he might like to see the original...

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Our beautiful, Mary, has a birthday...

May it be a wonderful birthday.
May you know how much you are loved
and wished the very best life has to offer.

Happy Birthday to a daughter-in-law who lights up our lives and makes us smile.
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Monday, November 28, 2011

That's what the promise is for...

Indulge me, I love this and want to forward it on to the ones I love. That's what the promise is for...

Thursday, November 24, 2011


Add a little gravy, rolls and fresh bread (by William), phone calls, skypes from England and you have the perfect Thanksgiving dinner! My cup runneth over.

GRANDAD'S Thanksgiving Prayer:
Father God,
thank you for the gift of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Thank you for life, for our lives and for the lives of our loved ones.
Thank you for our health, our food, our homes, our work and our schools and teachers.
Thank you for our Church.
Thank you for this day of family and wonderful food, prepared by loving hands.
Thank you for the 102 original Pilgrims, who came to Plymouth Rock on December 11, 1620, of whom only 56 survived that first, harsh winter. Thank you for the bounteous harvest in 1621 which they celebrated with a great feast, along with 91 Native American Indians, who had helped them survive that terrible winter.
We are grateful that President Lincoln, in 1863, established the last Thursday in November as our National Day of Thanksgiving.
Help us to be ever mindful of our many blessings and of the needs of others.

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Mike, Mary, Joe and Isabelle went to Washington DC this year for a Thanksgiving, educational holiday. They have been exploring all day and were headed for a Thanksgiving dinner when we caught up with them by phone.

Shannon and Molly were also in Washington, visiting colleges and having Thanksgiving dinner with 33 members of Molly's family and their friends. What a celebration that must have been!!!

Kristin cooked for her family, Beth and Adrienne. Adrienne is healing nicely from her recent surgery; and she and Beth brought a delicious squash casserole to add to the table.

"We're going out on a limb this year, adding some new dishes to the rotation...cauliflower gratin and roasted brussels sprouts with red onion and bacon.  I can't wait to set the holiday table!" - Kristin

Kate did a reverse Thanksgiving in England! She prepared a traditional Thanksgiving dinner for Simon, her hostess (Simon's mother) and I am not sure what other family members were there. What a treat that must have been and I love the idea of our Kate sharing our family traditions in the mother country. The circle is complete and thanks to God for Skype!

Let me take a moment to thank, Kim, Tom, Andrew, Emily and William for giving thanks in church with us this morning, for bringing wonderful food to the house to add to the sumptuousness of our beautiful Thanksgiving table and for filling my heart and arms with love the rest of the day.

I am a blessed mother; you all honored me today in ways untold. I love you so much and in every way I am grateful. It has been the best of Thanksgivings and so good to think about all of us under the same bright sky.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I am thankful for beautiful, bright students that I call GRAND

Grandad and I were treated to a very special day today.   First an early morning stop for Grandparents' Day at St. Martin’s.  Isabelle greeted us, and confidently did her job as hostess, showing us the elementary students' art work and the plans and progress of the school’s new building program.  We were treated to a lovely breakfast, songs from the children and touching stories about their grandparents, told by a number of selected students.   It is plain to see why Joe and Issy are doing so well academically!

After leaving, we headed for Roswell to have turkey dinner with William at his school.  As he came off the play ground and spotted us, we were again greeted with a big smile and a welcoming hug.  It was pajama day at River Eves (last day at school before Thanksgiving break), anyway, William promptly pulled clean clothes from his book bag and hurried into the bathroom to change so he could properly take us to lunch.   It was a good thing too, since his classmates thought Grandad (dashingly dressed in a dark three piece suit) might have been a “presidential candidate”!  William follows suit on tie-day Friday and everyday he just plain shines.

These are indeed precious moments.  Ford, Andrew, Joe, Morgan and Emily, no longer have Grandparents Day; too old you know, but blessings abound and I wouldn't take a million dollars for one, past, present or future day with any one of the Magnificent Nine.

Joe's picture made it again in St. Martin's school magazine called Patterns.  This time he got a full page!  Looking good JOE! 

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Starting the college tours!

Kim, Tom and crew hosted Shannon, Molly and Ford to Berry College for one of many College visits that Ford has been (and will be) making before deciding where to go to school next year.

The perks of this visit was that you could horse around with your cousins instead of working hard to look like you know what your doing!

Ford even tried out the baseball field while the others cheered. this could be an Omen!

Anyway, it was a good experience; Tom and Kim got to go back to where they spent much of their happy youth, Andrew got to start his tours early and practice his driving, Ford broadened his knowledge of how schools can look different, I'm sure William got to run around and the family had a lot of fun together!

Good luck Ford! We know you will do well where ever you land and we'll keep a light on for you.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Kate with Simon in Cornwall, England

Kate at Tintagel, Cornwell

Simon and Kate at Tintagel Castle

Tintagel, Cornwell

Finding her own fairy house.

Luxulyn Valley

Kate and Simon

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Just another wonderful day in Neverland. :)

DISCLAIMER:  All of these photographs were stolen off facebook.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Get Ready!

Hey! Over the mountain...A thousand indians are coming for dinner! Don't worry, they are bring Turkey and corn!!!!

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