Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Letter 2008

Dearest Family and Friends,

We hope and pray our family update finds you well and happy. We are posting our Christmas letter this year to cover those we may have missed through snail mail. You probably will learn more about us than you ever wanted. Merry Christmas!

Brad’s mom passed in July and we are missing her so much. She was such a large and positive part of our lives. Her home was such a focus for our local family; it will be difficult to maintain as close a connection. Dealing with the house and property has kept us fairly pushed together. Now that those things are winding down the challenges will begin. Fortunately we are committed to try.

Chelsea has settled in Ohio. She has a good job with Best Buys and busies herself with her fiancé Kris and his daughter Shannon. Shannon visits them throughout the week. She is in Kindergarten and enjoys many activities like dance, tee ball, swimming and soccer. Chelsea recently headed up a food and clothing drive at Best Buys. She was featured in the Long Hauler Magazine for her outstanding community service!

Janette graduated cum laude from Lehigh University in the spring with a degree in finance. She has secured a job with Ernst and Young at their office at 5 Times Square, NYC. She started in October and we moved her into the city mid September with brother Bill and families help. It was Quite an experience for us all. She has a beautiful, albeit small, apartment in the heart of the city. She is right at the northwest corner of Central Park. It is Perfect for her as she loves to run, skate and bike. Hopefully she won't miss the country too much. She is a stone’s throw from Broadway and Uncle Bill is just across the river as is her cousin Poppy if she has trouble. She spent may weekends in the city while in college and has embraced city life with her usual passion. The second day in the city she had an interview as an extra in a movie, by the third she had secured work in a small boutique. Just something to get her buy till real work starts. No moss grows under this kid's feet. We are, as ever, so proud of her.

Orion is also out in Ohio. He is working hard at McDonald's in the maintenance department and enjoys trouble shooting and repairing the various mechanical issues that arise. He enjoys his friends, playing his music and writing graphic novels. He maintains his own apartment and car. Has no desire at this time for school or traditional education. He is his own man with the world at his feet and he loves it. Certainly he is doing much better than his Dad was at that age.
Danae is in her glory. She is all we have left at home and she loves it. She has always wanted to be an only Child. This year, her dream has come true. A senior in high school she will get plenty of Mom and Dad time as we do the college visit ritual. Ever the scholar and artist she will strive to balance her social life, education, and extracurricular music. She will do each one to perfection and settle for nothing less. Her activities will keep the Binder house from any possible hint of boredom. MJ and I will love and savor every minute of it. It is so Danae.
MJ's health and wellness business is going great guns. She has been top volume in the nation for about three months now. She so enjoys helping people look and feel better. She excels at the business end of it also. She loves to work the angles and make the most money she can for herself and more especially for those under her. We make several trips a year around the country to help her distributors build their business. brad loves having time with her in the car traveling from place to place. She works with good people and we have made many special friends.
Brad continues to work for the school system. He has moved mainly into the video/satellite distance learning and conferencing end of it. That has limited the amount of travel that he does. It is a very satisfying position and he tries to make the most of it. It is Always a challenge to keep up with the technology but he loves it.

We love having our Mom Irons next door! We try to have several meals with her throughout the week. She is healthy and doing great! She stays active with her church, Republican Women, and loves her Friday night fish fry outings with her friends.

We enjoy our CMA church. We enjoy being puppets from time to time. We lead a small group and Danae provides child care. We enjoy hiking and biking…and being with family. You can keep current with all our latest outings at
Brad and MJ belong to a couples Bridge club and MJ enjoys two other ladies clubs. Some evenings Brad, MJ, Janette and Orion get online and play bridge. Janette and Orion usually dominate!

We Hope you have a wonderful Christmas and Blessed New Year.

Love and Prayers,

Brad, Mary Janette, and Danae

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