The Kankelborg Kronicles
Volume 10, Christmas 2003
Dear Friends and Family,
If it seems like it has been a long time since you got a Christmas letter from us, that is because it has been. We enjoyed hearing from everyone last year, but we just didn't manage to get out our own letter. So, this year, we have to catch you up on two years of happenings in the Kankelborg family.
In some ways 2002 was more of the same and in other ways it had its own adventures. In February, Carol competed in the Montana Winter Fair and won the pie bake-off, pitting her apple pie against the winners in other categories. Unfortunately, this was the last Winter Fair in Bozeman, so she was not able to compete in 2003. But, she still enjoys trying new recipes out on friends and family. We also hosted another Japanese student, Yoshimi, for a few weeks. It was a lot of fun getting to know someone from another culture.
We did a fair bit of traveling in 2002. In the winter we headed down to Salt Lake City to visit some of Charles' family just after the olympics. We had the unexpected surprise of being there during the Paralympics, a competition of world-class disabled athletes. We attended an ice-sledge hockey game where the players sat in sleds and moved around the rink by poling with their (two) hockey sticks. It was an exciting game. Later that year Charles attended a conference in Albuquerque, NM so we all drove down and spent some time camping and hiking in Chaco Canyon with physics colleagues and their families. Emma has been camping since before she turned 1 and loves it.
We have camped several times in Yellowstone both in 2002 and 2003. It is truly a blessing to live so close to such a beautiful and interesting area. No matter what the season, you will always find something new. Last July, we went down to help with stargazing in the park. It was during the peak of the wild fires so the air was thick with smoke, but it cleared and Sunday afternoon Charles got to spend the afternoon helping passersby view the sun through telescopes and answering their questions by Old Faithful while Emma and Carol roamed the geyser basin, trying to get sprayed by geysers. We took Carol's parents to Yellowstone when they visited for Thanksgiving, 2003 and saw wolves, coyotes wrestling with a fresh carcass, antelope, and elk.
We have been out to see Charles' mom several times in the past two years. During one visit, we were able to see the Museum of Flight. Emma liked riding in the kid's flight simulator. She also enjoys the Point Defiance Zoo, especially the polar bears.
This year has been the year of weddings. We travelled to Boulder, CO for Craig and Lysandra DeForest's wedding and just one month later found ourselves in the Bay Area visiting friends and watching Bob and Lynn Relyea get married.
Charles is working hard on his MOSES sounding rocket project. It is scheduled to launch in August, 2004. Charles even visited England twice for meetings related to that project. Charles enjoys teaching one or two classes a year. This past semester he taught Electricity and Magnetism to undergrads. Fall of 2003 marked the beginning of his third year as a professor so he had to go through a Retention Review which is sort of a trial run of the tenure review process. Charles had to document what he had done over the past three years to convince the university it didn't make a mistake in hiring him. Needless to say, they let him stay. The full tenure review will be another 3 years from now.
Carol stays heavily involved at church. She will continue to serve as Adult Education Deacon through Spring, 2004. She also helps with music at Vacation Bible School and plays her flute once a month in the worship service.
Carol keeps up on the geekier side of life as well. She maintains her barbershop chorus' web pages and helped get her church's website up as well. She is always looking to learn a new computer program, so she learned to use scribus, an open-source desktop publishing package, to do the chorus show program this year on our new iMac. Yes, though our 9-year-old PowerMac still was going strong, it was not quite up to memory-intensive tasks, so we went with the coolness factor and got an iMac running Mac OS X. Carol is very happy to have a command line again. We also got our own domain so you can visit our website at http://www.kankelborg.net. Carol also added to her geek quotient by joining Charles as an Amateur Extra ham radio operator. She took all the tests, including the morse code test in one day to become AC7RS.
Carol's creative side gets a workout as she sings with Bridger Mountain Harmony. The chorus went to competition in Spokane this past Spring and puts on an annual show each fall. In their latest show, Carol sang in a double quartet. She also sang in the first Bozeman Messiah Sing-a-long in December, 2002. Carol also gets creative in the kitchen and the garden. Her dad helped us plant asparagus in 2002 so next year we should be able to eat some. Carol became a published author when an article she wrote, "Learning Your Barbershop Music" was published in the July 2002 issue of Sweet Adeline International's quarterly magazine, The Pitch Pipe.
Early this year we agreed to house-sit a friend's piano so Carol began teaching herself to play and Emma started taking lessons in September. Emma enjoys playing the piano and does a good job but does not always like the hard work it takes. Emma also likes to sing and dance. She took Gymnastics last year but decided to take dance instead this year. Her class does ballet, jazz, tap, and acrobatics. Her favorite is ballet.
Emma started pre-school last year which gave Carol a much needed break three afternoons a week. She started Kindergarten this year at Heritage Christian School, full days, three days a week. She loves school, especially recess. It has been an adjustment for our whole family to get her to school by 8:30 a.m.
Emma has seen the most changes over the past two years. She turned five last October. She still loves to dance, sing, read, eat snow, play princess, play legos with Daddy, and watch TV. She is reading simple words and doing simple math. She is a great problem solver. She has lots of interests. One week she'll want to be a trash collector and the next a dentist. Pink and purple are her favorite colors and spaghetti is her favorite food.
‘Tis the Season to count our blessings and remember the greatest blessing of all, God's Son Jesus sent to earth as a baby. God has truly blessed us and we pray He will bless you in the upcoming year. Merry Christmas!
P.S. The transition from our old website to our new one is not going as smoothly as we would like, so the photo section does not work yet. Check back late January to see updated photos from 2002 and 2003.