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The Reale Report…Then and Now!

December 1999


December greetings, friends and family! We hope you're enjoying these special days in anticipation of the celebration of the birth of Christ.

As I started my last Reale Report of this century's holidays, I took a look back at the letters I've sent out to friends since 1988, when I decided that group reports would offer the best chance of touching base with folks at this busy time of year. Out of this review is born our '99 Christmas note-- a comparison of ten years ago ('89) and now. I don't need to tell you that some things stay the same, and others change a great deal! Here's a look at the past and a look at the Reale family in '99.

Jeanna 1989…
4 year old Jeanna had just started at Polly Panda Preschool.

Jeanna 1999…
14 year old Jeanna and her parents have attended 3 high school open houses and are trying to decide on a good match for the next four years of schooling.

1989 Parent/Kid Report…
A tired mom was doing everything she could to keep up with her daughter, while "carrying" her little brother, to be born in May 1990, and learning the ropes in her first year as a school principal. Dad was a BIG help in accomplishing the many parenting tasks!

1999 Parent/Kid Report…
A tired mom (sound familiar?) and dad juggle kids' school and extracurricular activities and life in general! (But it's fun, for the most part!)

1989 Job Status…
Jay continued at Russell and Associates/Garuston Construction, where he began working in 1978. Deb was in a new job, her first year as principal of Christ the King School after 12 years of teaching.

1999 Job Status…
Jay continues at Russell and Associates/Garuston Construction, where he began working in 1978. (Is this guy loyal, or what??) Deb is in her 4th year as assistant principal at St. Monica School (23rd in education), and enjoys it very much.

1989 Family Reunions…
We looked forward to our annual summer family reunion in North Carolina, the only annual get-together we could count on for 6 busy grown-up kids and their own kids and the grandparents. Jay's mom, Claire, accompanied us when she could, and was one of the family, whom all the "Smiths, et al" loved seeing.

1999 Family Reunions…
We've continued the summer tradition, but also are in touch daily through the miracle of email, and because of it, planning other get-togethers is easier. (Thanksgiving visits, the annual Sisters' Reunion, and other visits…)

1989 "Jay Projects"
Walk-in closet to help out with our pitiful storage situation…was the work done by the time the Christmas letter was written? No-- too many interruptions and a pregnant Deb who required naps during closet work time!

1999 "Jay Projects"
See above, just add in replacement closets for Jeanna and Joseph too, a different house, and take out the pregnancy part-- please!!! The closets are still in the drawing stages, as are other house additions. (That's right, some things never change-- lack of time and limited financial resources being two of them!)

1989 Favorites…
Jeanna: Barbies, drawing and coloring, books, dress up games, walking down to the canal to feed the ducks, playing at CKS when Mom was working on weekends.

Joseph: Kicking mom and moving in utero A LOT!

Jay: Entertaining Jeanna, tearing out walls, drawing up plans, walking with the family, helping run a Broad Ripple and a Carmel household. (Well, the last one was a preoccupation, not necessarily a favorite!)

Deb: Reading to Jeanna, shopping for surprises for her, decorating my first office, organizing things, family walks, taking pictures and cataloging them, night meetings for my job (NOT!)

1999 Favorites…
Jeanna's main preoccupations: School work, kickball, volleyball, youth group, Kids for Life Club at school, parish choir, friends, music, and shopping.

A few of 9 year old, 4th grader Joseph's favorite things: Baseball, Scouts, playing with friends, Play Station, Nintendo, Game Boy, the computer, N.D. games with Dad, going to the library and (sometimes!) reading.

Jay: Enjoys drawing up addition plans for our house when he can find a spare moment. He's a great dad and husband!

Deb: Takes time out for "kid stuff", computer fun, rubber stamping, singing in a song group at church, writing petitions for Sunday Masses, creating web pages for the kids' school and maintaining the web site for St. Monica as well as a family web site (address included in next column), maintaining parent email lists for both schools and a couple of email joke lists, and putting together the monthly PTO Press for the kids' school.

This year's travels took us to Cleveland, Washington D.C., and North Carolina . Deb also participated in the 2nd annual Sisters' Reunion in Atlanta. Four word summary: fun and non-stop laughter! Our Washington D.C. trip was about four days long, and  was a wonderful experience for all of us. This spring we'll be going to Disney World as a family-- our first time with kiddos. Once Jeanna hits high school, there may not be opportunities, so we're going to brave the crowds over spring break and make an adventure of it.

Dear Friends,

This trip down "Memory Lane" was kind of fun for me as the writer of our Christmas chronicle. Hope it inspires you to think back on the past ten years of your own life. Our wish for you as we begin the new century is that you and those you love will enjoy many memory-making times together, and share them with us. We'd love to hear from and about you.

As I have for the past couple of years, I invite you to share your email address with us if you have one. It's such a nice way to stay in touch. Mine has changed to, so please add me to your address book if you "do" email, and send me yours. Our family web site address is .

We hope everyone receiving this letter knows that you're in our thoughts often. Hope this year brings health and happiness your way, and a letter or email from you our way! We look forward to hearing from you!

Merry Christmas! Take care, and God bless us every one.

~ The Reale Family

Posted on the Reale Web Site 12/4/99

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