It’s that time again, folks, and
we look forward to hearing from and about you and your family, and
learning what’s happened in your life since we were last in touch. If
you didn’t have email last year, but do now, please be sure to be in
touch with us to share your address and/or a holiday note.
All is well at Rancho Reale, with
the usual mixture of change as well as status quo stuff to report. The
year 2001 might be described as a “year of new beginnings” for us,
and I’ll clue you in on those changes and other events via this note.
16, a sophomore, and a licensed driver! (Be still, my heart! Actually,
she’s good at it… just have to give her grief since she’s a newbie!)
Another new activity in her life this year: being a member of the
Chatard High School Swim Team. She’s enjoying it, and is in the best
shape ever due to all the hard work. When not out socializing with
friends from school, she’s (you guessed it) on the phone socializing
with them, or studying… her second choice, but she actually is
conscientious and her teachers remark on her effort. Now if that same
effort were directed into cleaning her room, we’d be all set! Stay
tuned next year for news on her adventures as an employed person (we
who can depend on more than the occasional sitting job for income, and
maybe some fringe benefits as well!
is 11 (and a half J)
and entered the world of middle school this year as a 6th
grader. Both he and Jeanna are doing great in school, and we’re proud
of both of them. Another first for Joe (he gave up being called Joseph
sometime last year) is playing the trumpet in the school band. He’s
still at St. Maria Goretti, and played his second season on the football
team this fall. He played strong safety and two back, and enjoyed every
minute of it. He also played baseball again last spring (still his all
time favorite sport) and his team won the championship. He was in heaven
about being on a championship team two years in a row. Even if it
hadn’t gone that way, the guys worked well together, and it was fun to
watch them grow during the course of the season.
“new beginnings” (I promised to update you on those) include
starting up his own business, and he’s in the beginning stages of
that, having purchased some new equipment and “set up shop”. His
office is based in our home, and is called Reale Design-Build. He’s
doing what he’s been doing for years, but on his own. His partner had
bypass surgery in May, and did not recover. Jay finished all the
projects they’d been working on, and is just now in a position to
start new ones as head of the new company. Things are looking good.
(Prayers are still welcomed—always!) This is an exciting time for him.
We both love it that when Joe gets home from school now, someone is
there. More new beginnings will be in store for our household, as we
need to do some house renovation, especially with Jay’s office being
added (for now, it’s in the basement).
new beginning involves Jeanna too. She and I were inspired last spring
to get healthy and get fit… In late April we talked to someone at
church who had clearly made some lifestyle changes and was looking
great. She told us about Weight Watchers, and we began the program the
last weekend in April. We started making some positive changes regarding
what we ate, in what amount, and in activity levels, and at this point
each of us has lost about 36 lbs. It’s been great doing this with
another family member, and Jay and Joe have been very supportive.
We’re learning a lot, have met some wonderful people, and are really
pleased with this “new beginning”! We continue to exercise and have
made it through Halloween and Thanksgiving making healthy choices.
I’ve reached my Weight Watchers’ goal and have maintained the goal
weight, so am now a “lifetime member”. Jeanna isn’t far behind.
Just because I needed something else to do (right!), I’m also working
part time for Weight Watchers now. They’re very busy, and needed help,
so… there you go! It’s fun, actually, and I like being involved with
the company and being able to help others on the program. Since
employees have to be weighed monthly and stay within 2 lbs. of goal
weight, working for them also keeps you honest! Here’s to healthy
changes! I feel like I’ve regained my youth and energy! Also on the
“changing front”, I’ve moved administrative offices twice since
June, and am in a new office in the brand new administrative wing of St.
Other family members’ milestones
and beginnings this year include freshman year of college (Dan, my
sister Patty and her husband Guy’s son, became a student at Frankin
and Marshall in Lancaster, Pa this fall); a relocation (My sister
Ann’s husband Don has a new job in Connecticut, and Ann and son Rob
will join him at the end of this school year); and an anticipated
addition to (brother) Tim and Megan’s family next May (and baby will
make 5—7 if you count the parents!). Nephew Geoff began driving this
year… where does the time go?
I realize that our new beginnings
pale in comparison to those that so many have had to face (and not of
their own choosing) since September 11th. We can only pray
for strength, courage, wisdom, and God’s continued guidance for all
whose lives have been changed in recent months. God bless us every one.
Still awake?? Must be the
caffeine! We wish you a wonderful Christmas and much happiness in the
coming year, friends! You’re in our thoughts and prayers. Please be in
Deb, Jay, Jeanna, and Joe Reale