Thursday, December 18, 2014


Dear family and friends near and far,

We hope this joyous season finds you all healthy, content, and rejoicing in the blessings our Lord has provided this past year.  He has been most gracious to us this year, and we are very thankful. 

Let’s start with the Wiese 4.  Leo started kindergarten at Vista Academy, a wonderful local charter school.  He is enjoying school immensely and is doing very well, especially with reading.  His extracurricular activities include Sunday School, soccer, and being sweet, gentle, and kind.  Leo is the family peacemaker.  His sister, Etta, is a little darling, still our crazy wild child.  She is enjoying her preschool very much and has embraced the structured academic world with an enthusiasm no one was expecting.  She would love to go to class every day if it was available.  Erika is enjoying her days of chauffeuring Leo to school and volunteering at least one day a week teaching art and music in several of the classrooms at his school.  Josh continues to thrive in the graphic design department at Irving Bible Church, and he has special moments with Etta as he drives her to and from preschool at the church.

The Cribbies are all doing great as well.  Precious Zoey is a 2nd grade teacher’s dream.  She is reading at least 2 grade levels ahead and absolutely loves everything about school.  She is social but very well behaved.  Ruby is in kindergarten, and both girls attend Vista Academy along with Leo.  Ruby also loves school and is making rapid progress.  I have the feeling she will be our math genius.  I am amazed at how academically advanced today’s elementary kids are compared to those I taught back in the 1970s.  In a few years I’ll have trouble keeping up!  Maggie Faye is our adorable little pixie, full of life and fun.  She, Ruby, and Zoey are becoming real gymnastics pros at Ms. Rhonda’s All Stars.  And then there’s Sam.  He is the most fun little guy, charming and sweet and funny.  He’s starting to talk a blue streak, and he adores his “Mimi” as much as she adores him.  Jenni artfully balances family, home, chauffeuring, and extracurricular activities with enviable ease.  Dave continues to excel as physics and robotics instructor at Parish Episcopal School in Dallas while holding down the daddy fort after hours.

Tony and I are contentedly sailing through retirement.  I do continue to work an occasional fill-in shift at Curves, and Tony enjoys building model rockets and doing a few people’s taxes at the first of the year, but mainly we fill our time with grandkids, home projects, and travel when we are able.  This year we spent a long weekend in the spring visiting the Leo clan in St. Louis, enjoyed a lovely week with the Wiese 4 at Blue Mountain Beach, Florida in May, and recently had a most delightful week in Jacksonville surrounding the November 15th marriage of our beautiful niece, Erin Deason, to Greg Taylor.  The wedding festivities were over-the-top fun from the bridesmaids’ luncheon on the rooftop at Black Sheep and rehearsal dinner at the Sandollar on Friday, the spectacularly magical evening wedding at the Jacksonville Zoo on Saturday, the after-wedding party at Lisa’s and Bob’s on Sunday, and everything in between.  It was great to spend good times with cousin Pat and her husband Jeff, Lisa’s high school friends Michele and Elaine, and other family and friends.  We also had a couple of very enjoyable spontaneous meals with my College Singers friend, Beth Thompson Doyle, and her husband in Amelia Island, and with my high school friend Beth Wilson DePhillip in St. Augustine.  It was truly an unforgettable week in every way.  And we’re all very happy Greg’s part of the family.

As we look forward to Christmas and the coming new year, we reflect on our abundant blessings and the many wonderful people in our lives.  Thank you for being part of the amazing life God has given us.  We wish you a very blessed Christmas season, a prosperous 2015, and plenty of health and happiness always.  May God bless you all.


Family photo, l to r: Josh, Erika, Etta (almost 4), Leo (6) Wiese
Tony and Mona Leo (Papa and Grammy/Bammy)
Jenni, Dave, Zoey (almost 8), Ruby (5¾), Maggie (almost 4), Sam (2) Cribbs