A Christmas letter: From our home to yours

By Normita Fenn
Posted Dec. 24, 2012

bob&normita12092012 was filled with many happy and sad moments! We spent two weeks in Hawaii in January for Bob’s golf marshal at the Sony Open and visited with friends and co-workers at HECO. Many new faces greeted us there but with the same Aloha spirit as before.

Our hearts felt so empty over the loss of our dearest Lanz, so in March we welcomed a 10-week old pure-bred schnauzer from a breeder in Santa Rosa. We named him Harper , a very handsome, smart, lively guy. He turns one on December 21.

Normita has completed her journalism studies. In her final article she writes, “ At last my lifelong dream to become a journalist will be written, the unpaved and smooth road revealed. How does one put into words precious lifelong experiences toward the path of fulfillment? Where does one begin? Tough questions for someone who came from a big, close-knit family, the youngest of 12, always dreaming, always writing, always in front of the class ready to recite and sing at a moment’s cue – why hide all the beautiful poems and love songs  that fill the heart, she asks. “  With this ending, “The piercing sadness and the broken heart of the 16-year old are but a memory. Dreams are fulfilled. And now it’s time to build new dreams. This is destiny.”

A lot of sadness this year. Normita’s two nephews passed away unexpectedly, two weeks apart, leaving the family with so much grief. A Golden Gate University colleague and a close friend of Normita succumbed from breast cancer a few weeks ago. As I start writing this newsletter last week, the shocking event in Newtown, Connecticut, happened. No words can describe the loss of 20 children and six adults all in a single moment. In this Season of Christmas, let us pray for them and that their families may find Hope, Peace and Joy, that the memories of the Love lost embrace them forever.

Kaitlin and Ryan, children of Mike and Kristen, are both involved in a number of school sports. Avery and Conner, children of Dave and Laura, are much younger and also involved in sports programs at their school.   All of the kids are also doing very well in their studies,  we hope that with the academics and the sports that they will be able to attend great colleges, like Cal!

Bob continues to volunteer at the local library.  We still attend Cal football (bad year) and basketball games  and enjoy the experience.

From our home to yours, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
The Fenns—Bob, Normita and Harper
Visit Normita’s blog at: http://normitasnotebook.com/

Normita Fenn

55 thoughts on “A Christmas letter: From our home to yours

  1. “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.”

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of my friends here at the Village.
    Go, Six Toes and Buddy.

  2. Merry Christmas Eve. We are getting ready for midnight mass tonight. And I am sending this on my brand new iPhone. Santa came a little early.

  3. We had a lovely Christmas with the kids and we even had a light dusting of snow to turn everything white. Our son made us a birdhouse and I got a prism to hang in the window to make rainbows on the walls so I should feel like Pollyanna soon.

  4. Hope all villagers here and everywhere had a Merry Christmas. The weather, though treacherous in most places, gives a feeling of Christmas – rainy, cold and splash of white.

  5. Yes, Tanya, I believe we honor those who have died by remembering and sharing their stamp upon our lives. We all would love to hear more about your brother,

    p.s my husband just ordered another prism so that we will have a matching set for both window panes in the dining room. I love it.

    I think retail sales flattened this Christmas because the baby boomers have enough “stuff” ands no desire to accumulate more than what theyalready have.

    For the next thread lets try to find an good article about how regulations are drowing us. Just look at the volumne. This should be called Super Storm Obama http: //www.regulations.gov/#%21home;tab=search

  6. I found this little article from our local paper today, titled “News of the weird.” Here’s how it goes: “The former mayor of Flint, Mich., Don Williamson, who resigned in 2009 while being targeted in a recall election, recently erected a large bronze statue of himself outside his home in Davison Township.” Without even reading the title, that is weird. As long as he spent his own money, he can build as many statues inside his property anytime. Just don’t look! 🙂

  7. WASHINGTON December 28, 2012 (AP)
    Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is expected to return to work next week, almost three weeks after being sidelined by a concussion.
    Clinton spokesman Philippe Reines says Clinton continues to recuperate at home and will resume her office schedule next week. He says Clinton had no schedule this week because of a long-planned holiday.
    Aides and doctors say Clinton contracted a stomach virus in early December and became dehydrated, then fainted, fell and hit her head. She was diagnosed with a concussion on Dec. 13 and hasn’t been seen in public since.
    Clinton’s illness led her to cancel an overseas trip and scheduled testimony before Congress about the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya.

  8. Normita, how did you feel about the selection of Inouye’s replacement. It seemed a bit odd to me. This is what HP reported:I wonder why they did not honor his wishes.

    Former Hawaii Lt. Gov. Brian Schatz (D) was sworn in to the U.S. Senate on Thursday by Vice President Joe Biden.

    Schatz was chosen by Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D) to succeed the late Democratic Sen. Daniel Inouye, who died Dec. 17 after fighting respiratory complications. Schatz was chosen over Democratic Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, who Inouye had reportedly requested to be chosen as his sucessor just before his death.

  9. Hi, Villagers…I’ve been really sick for the past week…I’ve had the stomach flu…it’s been awful. I’m trying to eat some food today. I missed Christmas…health is everything. I hope you’re all well…I’ll be back when I’m stronger…take care.

  10. Hi villagers, I received all ur Christmas cards, and I am truly blessed, thank you all.

    Karel, so sorry, this flu bug is going around. I was supposed to spend yesterday with my niece and sister in law, but they too missed Christmas ( a family get together) and stayed away from everybody. No visit for me, my niece was hit the worst. Please take care, just recover.

    I have nothing to say about the news on the fiscal cliff. All of this would be funny if it were not so serious.

  11. Go, I can’t remember the last time I saw a hot water bottle much less use one. I’ve used heating pads but not a bottle. We lived on a farm when we were kids and luckily bypassed the flu because we just weren’t around that many people.

    As the oldest of my sisters, I was the one that brought home the mesasles, mumps, chicken pox and colds once I started school but we were spared the flu.

    Genger ale was my salvation when I had morning sickness. And I’m lucky that aspirin works well for me.

    First your tooth infection and now this. Karel, 2013 has to be better for you. Rest and recover dear friend.

  12. Hillary is admitted to NY hospital today with a blood clot from her concussion. She needs our prayers. I hope the clot dissolves and she can take time to just rest and get well.

    Karin, you be well soon too. Go is right..chicken soup and a hot water bottle; also much liquid so you don’t dehydrate like Hillary did. when I am feeling achy or unwell my heating pad always helps.

  13. One of my first symptoms is my feet get so cold, I can’t keep them warm. I used to ignore that and then get real sick. now when I know this is happening I put on multiple socks, and cover myself up with blankets if I am someplace I can. It seems to help my body fight whatever. I now carry a pair of socks in my purse. I don’t have a hot water bottle contraption.

    I have been trying to find out more about Hillary’s condition, but not much is known. It is critical where her blood clot is. But nothing I read clarifies it. She has had a serious blood clot before, behind her knee, a while back, and it really scared her.

  14. 🙂 no water bottle? Socks in your purse. Hope they aren’t holey. (just playin)

    I hope Hillary gets well soon. She is getting a much needed break. The body slows you down and stops you when you are ignoring your own signals.

    We had 6 inches of snow over night, quite beautiful out there. So quiet. Peace in the Valley!

  15. Happy New Year to you too. All is well here in the Electric City. I am so glad I have found you all again! Jackie is 13 now–a teenager–heaven help me! We are eternally on the go with basketball, soccer and swimming. How have you been?

  16. Where have you been?
    Happy to hear Jackie is on the go and engaged with her life. Good for her!
    I am doing just fine here, thank you.

    As for the new year, prepare for the worst and hope for the best, and stay in touch with those of like-mind.

    God Bless the USA

  17. Glad to see you Scranton and hear that Jackie is well. I believe the ages of 14-21 can be a struggle but there bright spots as well.

    I’m not familar with the term Electric City. Enlighten us.

  18. Happy New Year my Dear Village Family,

    May God Bless our Country in spite of all the things happening, and may all have good health, preace and prosperity!

    God bless our Hillary and her family.

    You all would have laughed so hard watching the 2 smaller kids trying to stay up till thr clock hit midnight, needless to say they didn’t make it LOL.

    Good to see you scranton, and her jackie is busy and doing well.

    I love you all very much and thankyou all for the support in 2012!

    Teri and the sleeping Village Kids

  19. Happy New Year. It is 2013. What will it bring? All I ask is that we put aside our divisions, class warfare, race warfare and behave as one group united in spirit. Can that happen?

    I am getting really concerned for Hillary’s health. It is time for us to see her. If she is well, we need to see her face again.

  20. The Telegraph had an articles about the five worse things Obama did during 2012 but the following one sums it up quite well. I still have extreme difficulty imagining Bill and Hillary supporting him, so I can only guess my previous judgement about them was flawed. Here is the fifth point the Telegraph made:

    5. His ego grew another thousand feet. When Americans gathered in December to honour the memory of Hawaii’s Senator Daniel Inouye, they probably expected the President to use his eulogy to talk about the late Democrat’s service to America. Instead, he described how Inouye had done the world a big favour by inspiring a young Barack Obama to shoot for the presidency. This was illustrated with a looooong description of a vacation the Obamas took across America, during which Barack saw Inouye on TV and decided that he too – glory be! – might run for office some day. Even the usually sympathetic Slate wrote, “Someone needs to tell Barack Obama … that his own birth is not Year One, the date around which all other events are understood.”


    • He has an insatiable ego–completely lacking any semblance of humility. And that is why his character is so fatally flawed. His arrogance negatively impacts his ability to negotiate with anyone who is not in agreement with him. Dispatching Joe Biden to hammer out a fiscal cliff deal in the Senate only illustrates how Obama’s inexperience and limited bi-partisan dealings have left him woefully prepared to negotiate successfully with Congress.

  21. During my life, I have never heard a president give such a degradeing speech as the one Obama did yesterday. I feel pain for anyone who voted for him. The USA Today had this Opinion:

    Lately, President Obama has been floating the idea that the reason he can’t work with Republicans is that they have an irrational aversion to working with him. It’s a pretty convenient excuse when you think about it. It automatically means any failure is someone else’s fault. But it fails to account for the possibility that maybe there’s a reason Obama is so bad at closing the deal.

    For instance, yesterday, when Biden and McConnell were grinding out the final details of a budget deal, President Obama had nothing better to do than hold something like a campaign event in front of a cheering audience of supporters. The president mocked Congress during the most delicate moments of his own administration’s negotiations with Congress. Moreover, he gloated that if Republicans accepted this deal it would amount to a surrender on taxes. And while that’s a defensible position on the merits, it made things politically harder for Republicans to agree to the deal. He also decided to announce before the deal was signed that any future deficit reductions would require yet more tax hikes. Senate Republicans didn’t take the bait, but it was clear that Obama was baiting them.

    Indeed, at times it seemed like the stunt was designed to sabotage a deal he allegedly wanted. At other moments it just seemed like Obama needed to preen in front of the cameras, as if he were jealous of all the attention Congress was getting. Either way, it was an amusing spectacle given the desperate and ridiculous movie-buzz conversation inside the beltway aimed at likening Obama to Abraham Lincoln. Just the day before, Meet the Press host David Gregory hopefully asked Obama whether this was his “Lincoln moment.”

    Obama has proved himself to be many things, but “Lincolnesque” isn’t one of them.


  22. My New Year’s resolution is to not let potus screw up my days. He is a disgusting individual, and so is his wife. In day to day life, they are a couple I would avoid like the plague. I like his children, I hope they grow up with their own values and become true Americans. Let’s keep in mind that he has shown no leadership skills, except to act like a punk. He is being led from somewhere else. He does not make the major decisions. It is they to whom we should focus our attention. Whenever potus feels at a disadvantage he has these yo yo supporters line up behind him and cheer him on. It makes him feel like the man he is not. Every once in a while you will see the real punk show up, that speech yesterday was the real potus.

  23. I had a pleasant experience with Eddie Bauers today. Last week after Christmas, I ordered two items for my son which went on further sale yesterday. Even though the items have been shipped but not received, they honored the new sales price and credited my card today with no hassle. I thanked them very much. When you have really good customer service, you begin to realize how precious it is.
    I believe it is more important to thank the company when the service is good than to complain when it is bad.

    Happy New Year Villlagers.

  24. I was also bothered by the background at the totus’ speech – it looked he was on a campaign trail. I wonder now what he’ll do when he’s finally out of office. He has to be on a withdrawal mode.

    Happy New Year!

  25. Helllo Everyone,

    I hope you all are having a good New Year/

    I wanted to come and share some awaul news with you, We had some very close friends my family and my mom lived next door this couple for many years, As they had lived in the same house since the 1950″s 2 days ago the man who was 86 years and his wife was 84 he killed her with a knife, and then went out into the garage and hung himself. Their daughter when is close to my my moms age went by their home 2 mornings ago on her way to work as the manager of the DMV in out town as she did every morning and found her parents like that, Man you talk about a sad case, she will im sure never be alright again! I can/t even think about what woukd have cause him to do such a horrible thing and at that age.

    Times are just getting so crazy and it seems like some people are jusr so depressed i don”t know!
    So please say a word of prayer for their family.

    I love each and everyone of you


    • Teri so awful, what a horrible thing to happen. You need to talk to the kids now, they will be wondering, thinking things out on their own about what just happened.
      Old people who live alone get isolated from the world. They get depressed, decide it is not worth living anymore. Or they reach their limit on what they can stand from someone they see every day, have to live with it, they see no way to escape. I think it is wrong to not discuss bad behaviour in old folks because they are old, and we put up with their idiosyncrasies. No, they need to keep their attitudes in check just like everyone else. Who know what caused this man to break.

  26. Teri, so sad to hear about this loss. There is no way to guess the reason for this tragedy or for all incidents like this. I think it has to do with personal limits–we are all living on ledges, we just don’t know how wide ours is until there are severe challenges. Some find personal strength during challenges and others are lost. My prayers to the family and friends.

  27. A Psalm of David.
    1 The Lord is my ashepherd; I shall not bwant.

    2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he aleadeth me beside the still waters.

    3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of arighteousness for his bname’s sake.

    4 Yea, though I awalk through the bvalley of the cshadow of ddeath, I will fear no eevil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they fcomfort me.

    5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou aanointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

    6 Surely agoodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

  28. Good Morning, Villagers….dreary gray to start, wandering wet turns to partly cloudy skies, highs in the mid 50’s!

    This is the first day that I’m starting to feel like my level of energy is coming back…I’m still having trouble getting my body back on track. I’m being real careful with what I’m eating. I can hardly believe it’s taken me this long to feel “alive” again and that’s not even 100%.

    I hope everyone else is well…take care Villagers…we have many blessings to appreciate…

  29. Karel, glad to have you among the living again. Was it the flu? My sister lost 12 pounds when she had pneumonia. I hope you are able to eat enough to heal yourself.

    This solution to prevent unwanted criminals and shooters from entering a room seemed more fesasible than many solutions being discussed.

  30. Thankyou Mary and Go,

    yes i think this is one of those nobody will really ever know why, Thankyou Go for the Bible verse!
    Yes Mary and Taylor i will try and talk to the kids about this and i to believe that they just had to have hit a breaking point!

    Karel im glad your feelong better and are back among the living! I hope you get your energy
    back to the fullest really soon!

    I love you all


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