Happy New Year from The Chittister Family


Cassie and Jackson


Hello Friends and Family! We hope this letter finds you healthy, happy for this holiday season, and hopeful for the year ahead. In these newsletters, I try to focus on the positive. The past couple of years have been somewhat difficult. But, in the immortal words of Howard Jones, “things can only get better,” right? Without further ado, here are some of the happy happenings from the Chittister Family’s 2014.

The Top Nine Events of 2014

(Because Top 10 Lists are So 2011)

  1. Most importantly: We moved!
    Let me explain… No, is too much. Let me sum up. People were getting shot in Antioch, and that, combined with other factors, meant we needed to move. Robyn’s high school friend Annemarie and her family already lived in Salem. Our friends the McMs decided they, too, were moving to Salem. Robyn asked Christy McM, “Would it be really stalkery of us to move there too?” The answer was “No, that would be awesome!” so we left Antioch and migrated north in July. So far, it’s been mostly awesome, except for Max’s thrice weekly commute to the City and Cassie’s awful preschool, which we’ll remedy in January.
  2. Jackson turned 8 in January with his Minecraft-themed party. He enjoys sports, Legos, and the newfound freedom of being 8 in an apartment complex. He made it all the way to Sea Dragon—the highest level—in his swimming lessons. He has just started his first season of basketball and is in his third year of 4-H. In addition to raising and showing his rabbits, he has joined the Pygmy Goat Project this year, although he is not getting a goat. His favorite phrase is, “Seriously?” and his favorite pastime is talking incessantly, for which Robyn has no one to blame but herself.
  3. Cassie turned 3 in October, and was the beautiful, brave, smart, strong princess at her Princess Tiana party. She loves all things Princess, and can name all of the Disney princesses and My Little Ponies without any trouble. She is also a fan of doing whatever her big brother does, and of tattling on him when he’s doing something “noxious,” as in, “Jackson’s being noxious.” Her favorite pastime is not eating what we put in front of her, even if it is what she asked for and she liked it fine yesterday. She looks forward to taking gymnastics, ice skating lessons, and swimming lessons next year.
  4. In May, Robyn started working full time as a contractor for Not Bank of America. She writes banking procedures and can now explain payment floats, fraud applications, and DASH. If your Not Bank of America credit card is ever lost or stolen, she probably knows the person working the case. Technically, her contract is up in May 2015, so if anyone needs a full time technical writer or editor, she may be available.
  5. May was also the County Fair, where Jackson showed both of his rabbits, Zella (a mini lop) and Buttercup (a Holland lop). Despite biting a judge (again), Buttercup won 3rd place. Zella, a seasoned veteran, won 2nd place. Zella is a Grand Champion (which is nothing like a Blue Ribbon Bunny, for you Sofia the First fans out there).
  6. The week that we moved, Robyn attended BlogHer in San Jose, where she got to go all fan girl on Jenna Hatfield, a well-known blogger, who, to her credit, did not unfriend Robyn on Facebook.
  7. In August, Jackson started third grade. Most of his day is in French, which he is picking up amazingly fast. His teacher has been very impressed by his rapid language acquisition, especially of numbers and math. Robyn gets to exercise her high school and college French, and Cassie is learning French too. She can count to ten and say “Bone-joo” and “Or-vwa.” (That’s “Bonjour” and “Au revoir” or “Hello” and “Good-bye” for those who don’t speak preschool French.)
  8. Max wants you all to know that he finished the ironing. It’s quite an accomplishment. Truly.
  9. November was quite the eventful month. We went to Pittsburgh, PA for a week to see Grandma Sandy and Grandpa Clyde. Cassie had never met Grandpa Clyde in person, and she was very happy to do so. She also got to see her first snow fall and play in the snow. Robyn may have also made both children go to the park in 28-degree weather because she got so tired of telling them not to run through their grandparents’ house. While in Pittsburgh, Max thoroughly enjoyed his 20th high school reunion.

Happy Holidays and a Very Merry New Year!

Jackson Holiday Photo 2014 Jackson Ghost and Princess Tiana Cassie Cassie and Meme




Keep Christmas with you
All through the year

Christmas means the spirit of giving,
Peace and joy to you.
The goodness of loving,
The gladness of living,
These are Christmas too.

Wishing you the very best holiday season and the happiest of new years.

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