Eshrink’s Annual Christmas Letter

Introduction: E-shrink’s proud editor here. I’m high-jacking dad’s blog because his annual Christmas letter was just too funny not to share.

To all you yuletide lovers and Bah Humbugers,
Yep, we are still here and in the upright position most of the time. We are said to be fat and sassy, and I can confirm the former. It has led to some embarrassing moments as I have found that a protuberant abdomen makes it difficult to keep track of the position of one’s zipper.


It seems we are very busy but not particularly productive. Barb is very involved at the art museum, playing bridge, and supporting our friends whose health is failing. She is disgustingly agile and energetic, and I have given up on trying to keep up with her. My health remains fairly good except for a touch of cancer. For the past year I have been the recipient of monthly infusions of poison into my bladder, and plan to celebrate my last one next week. The nurse who administers the treatments (not as much fun as you might think) insists she is using the smallest size catheter available, but I am convinced it is an ordinary garden hose. Did I mention that my view in that direction is anatomically obscured?
Editor Maggie keeps me busy with my blog, which keeps me off the streets and out of Barb’s hair. By the way, note the enclosed card with my blog address. I would appreciate it if you could add your name to the 8 or 10 people who are regular readers (I still want to be famous). Maggie continues in her dual roles as super mom and executive. We have suggested she find a husband, but she says she doesn’t have time for that. Caroline is sweet sixteen, an apt metaphor, and Simon is a senior at Indiana University, majoring in environmental science with a special interest in the honey bee crisis. 
Trudy still spends much of her time in airplanes with a territory which covers a fourth of the U.S. Husband Jim’s territory has been enlarged which has made it more difficult for them to juggle schedules. Sofia continues to delight, but is growing up too fast as kids are wont to do. 
Peter seems to be spending more time traveling in his job than he had anticipated, but seems to enjoy the challenge. In spite of severe back problems Sue continues to work full time and still make time to care for her demented stepmother. Emma is a dietician for the WIC program, and enjoys working with the children. Carter is a senior at Stonehill College in Massachusetts, and their star basketball player. He completed 93% of his free throws last year, which was the best in the nation.
Our year has been relatively uneventful. Barb suffered no broken bones for the second year in a row. The year was marred by the loss of best friend, companion, and protector, Lilly our pit bull.

We did manage to find one week out of the year in which everyone was available, and were able to enjoy the 21st annual Smith vacation at the beach. There were no serious injuries, and only one minor fender bender. Caroline was learning to drive and took the wheel briefly. She received a lot of help by a vanload of relatives all shouting instructions simultaneously. Interestingly, she did not request any more driving time for the rest of the trip. 

vaca 2015 cousins victor puzzle

Eshrink’s grandchildren (left to right): Simon, Caroline, Carter, Emma, Sofia

cape san blas view from beachvacation 2015 cape san blas group croppedvaca 2015 group at dinnervaca 2015 fender bender caroline
This will be our second Christmas without Molly. She is missed even more at this time of the year as she was the personification of the joy of Christmas. This was her time. The season’s memories are often bitter sweet since those joyous times have usually been shared with those we love, many of whom may no longer be with us. With that in mind we will honor Molly’s memory by enjoying our family’s Christmas traditions, and thanking God that we had her all those years. 
Barb and I wish for you and those you love to make joyous memories to last a lifetime this Christmas., and peace and happiness throughout the coming year. Love Good.

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