Sunday, December 16, 2012

Merry Christmas from the Claytors!

So…back for more, are you?  Well “insanity” has been defined as doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different result.  You should know exactly what to expect from these little Christmas updates…you only have yourself to blame.

Chris and Kelly had a year that can legitimately be described as a blur.  Of course the concussion Chris suffered in a snowboarding wreck last January might have something to do with that?  Anyway…after finding his pants everything got back to normal – immediately hosting the annual Vertical Endeavors Climbing Competition (what exactly does “against medical advice mean” anyway?)   A busy summer included 11 days with the kids in Seoul, Korea for little bro Jay’s wedding to Juliet (see earlier blogentry.)  They returned and hit the ground running right into an ever expanding work and home schedule, having to drop away from the climbing gym for the time being.  More travel as Kelly headed to North Carolina to meet her newborn niece Perrin, and Chris’s job took him to the UK for a week.  Kelly was able to tag along for a hodgepodge tour of London and Edinburgh and she’s still asking to go back (must be the haggis…or Chris in a Kilt?)       

The Boy has had an outstanding year, starting off strong with classes at Revolution Tae Kwon Do.  He’s working his way through the ranks and attends 3-4 days weekly, including “Beast Mode Wednesday” when full contact sparring takes place.  Once again he tried his hand at snowboarding in the winter (with better success than his dad…) and took a spring break golfing trip with Grandpa & Grandma in Arizona.  In the summer he feed the Wisconsin mosquitoes during 2 weeks at Camp St. Croix.  In addition to making the Honor Roll as a new Lincoln Junior High student, he joined the band (trumpet) Jazz Band (ummm…trumpet) and is a Lego Robotics Team member (…nope, no trumpet on this one.)  Not sure what kind of job openings there are for board splitting, butt-kicking, trumpet playing, engineers…?

Finishing out her junior year, Caitlin once again threw reason aside, ignored sleep and continued to build up her musical resume.  She’s a marching band Section Leader, a top singer in all her choir groups, and achieved IMEA All-State Honors Choir status…as a Junior.  The summer was spent as usual with daily 8 hour band and choir camps, The King’s Players summer musical “Guys and Dolls” and thinking about *gasp* COLLEGE.  Starting Senior Year, she was a finalist in the district’s Concerto/Aria competition and scored a rarely seen repeat for the IMEA All-State Honors Choir.  Did I mention college?  I try not think about it…or the bills…but she has been accepted to her first choice Illinois State.  Close to home AND in-state tuition?  Good Girl !!!

Sherpa, completely unconvinced by her experience last year that ALL skunks are bad, decided to test that theory by running up on Pepe le Pew once again (we now have an at-the-ready SKUNK KIT for such lovely occasions.)  At ten years old, she is taking on “old dog” personality.  Can’t see shit, can’t hear shit, don’t give a shit.  Otter, being smart enough to stay behind her when she goes skunk hunting, is doing great.  The new groomer in town is completely smitten.  The Canine Casanova.  Shameless. 

Well it ain’t Walden but it’ll have to do.  Wait, Ima letchoo finish…but last year’s Christmas letter was the best of all time…OF ALL TIME!  I’m sure we have an interesting year ahead of us…so until next time, keep hope alive!

Yours in perpetuity,
Chris, Kelly, Caitlin, The Boy, Otter and Sherpa