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11 December 2009 Click on the pictures to enlarge them.
Christmas greetings! We are finally able to sit and prepare this Christmas
letter. Last weekend our choir and orchestra gave four performances of our
Christmas program at our church. We had been rehearsing for nearly three months.
It is good to relax now. We are a little late getting this letter started this
year. The main reason will be mentioned near the end of the letter.
MOTOR HOME TRIP PLANS
Before August, we had not been out in our motor home because we took the
month-long trip to Ireland in June. We then planned a trip for August and early
September to take us north through Utah, Nevada, and Idaho to Montana. Then we
were to return through Idaho and Utah and Colorado.
We left home on 5 August and joined Linda’s brother’s family at Navajo Lake, New
Mexico, for three nights. We had fun traveling around the lake with them. Linda,
however, injured her back which was probably still sore from climbing Skellig
Michael in Ireland.
Rainbow over Navajo Lake.
Linda and Norma Jean on Jet Ski.
Moonrise over Navajo Lake.
Robert and Chris on Jet Ski.
We then headed west from Navajo Lake and made an overnight stop in Page,
Arizona. The next day we reached Cedar Breaks National Monument in southern
Utah. We have desired to visit Cedar Breaks for years, but we usually visited
southern Utah in early springtime. Since the monument is at 10,300 feet
altitude, it does not open until mid May. (Winter can put it under 12 feet of
snow.) Cedar Breaks is similar to Bryce Canyon National Park which is directly
to the east. The scenery is beautiful and we enjoyed the day there.
Cedar Breaks National Monument.
Cedar Breaks National Monument.
Many spires at Cedar Breaks.
Red rock fantasy.
Linda and Derry.
The National Monument, which was established in 1933, is a natural amphitheater
eroded out of the western side of the mountains. We were surprised to learn that
the mountains were the site of much relatively recent volcanic activity. There
are many recent lava flows and cinder cones in the area.
Robert and Derry.
Sunset at Cedar Breaks.
After touring around the monument all day, Linda’s back was in more pain. Sleep
was impossible that night, and therefore Robert drove back to Albuquerque the
next day. Linda saw our doctor the following day. Later she received some
myotherapy treatments, and rapidly got better.
LABOR DAY TRIP
Since Linda was feeling good by September, we did complete the last stop on our
planned trip in Dolores, Colorado. Our local chapter (Chaparral Chapter) of the
Family Motor Coach Association (FMCA) had a rally at an RV park there. We were
the assistant wagonmasters and helped out with some meals and other activities.
It was nice to meet with some of our friends whom we had not seen for a while.
Linda is the treasurer of the Chaparral chapter.
Our Trek (right) next to its Safari big brother.
Dinner at the rally.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN RAMBLE
The Rocky Mountain Motor Coach Association of FMCA held their annual rally in
Farmington, New Mexico. We went there in October. It was our fourth Rocky
Mountain Ramble. We have been to all that have been held in Farmington. The city
is in the northwest corner of New Mexico by the Animas River.
Afternoon snack time.
Cottonwoods along the Animas River.
The cottonwood trees along the river were turning golden as they do throughout
New Mexico in October. We also visited the Salmon Ruins and museum in
Bloomfield, New Mexico. These are the remains of an ancient abandoned Native
A portion of the Salmon Ruins.
TRUTH OR CONSEQUENCES RALLY
Our Chaparral Chapter November rally was held in Truth Or Consequences, New
Mexico. We spent 3 nights at the rally and then went further south to Las
Cruces, New Mexico, for two nights to visit our niece who is a senior there at
New Mexico State University.
On 23 November we went to choir rehearsal, and when we got back home we
discovered that our home had been broken into and robbed. The thief broke the
window over the kitchen sink to get in. Derry, who was confined to the kitchen,
was OK. Cash was stolen as well as our small computer, computer bag, and small
printer. Unfortunately, the small computer was acting as our main computer, so
we lost 18 days of new e-mail and photos, since the last backup was done on 5
November. (Restoring our data and some programs to an older computer has caused
a delay for this newsletter.) Most of Linda’s jewelry was also stolen. We have
provided police with an extensive list of items stolen, but do not expect
anything to be recovered. Linda lost inherited jewelry from Robert’s mother and
from her parents, which is very upsetting. However we also realize that it is
just stuff that will burn up in the end. We are very relieved that Derry was not
harmed. We also have our greatest possession which we celebrate at Christmas and
can never be taken away – our Lord Jesus Christ.
Linda has been teaching a class in our church’s women’s ministry this fall. She
will teach next semester also.
THE BOTTOM LINE
We continue to be thankful for the Lord's providing for us in all ways. We trust
in Him, and pray that you will do likewise and enjoy a blessed Christmas season
and New Year as well.
Robert & Linda
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
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