Dear family:

It is a nice quiet afternoon of Thanksgiving weekend, and we have much for which to be thankful. David is out at the YMCA Ė his antidote to back-to-back committee meetings at church. Daniel and Peter are turning over the garden soil. I donít imagine that was what Daniel expected to be doing with the holiday weekend, but it needs to be done before the ground freezes. Michael Carter is staying with us for a couple of days, too, but is out right now visiting his grandfather, who is on hospice care. There are plans afoot for a gang of about 16 friends to go ice skating later this afternoon and then see a movie. As usual, Stephen and Chris are playing on the computer, and Ben is taking a nap. Later, David is taking me out to dinner in honor of my birthday. Thanks to all of you for cards, calls, and gifts. I am truly enjoying this time of the family being together and sharing a holiday, and the fact that it coincides with my birthday is a nice touch!

Actually, for a while things didnít look so promising. On the morning of my birthday proper, I wondered if someone might bring me breakfast in bed. What really happened was that I awoke to hear Ben saying, "Mommy, I donít have a good feeling." Then you might say he delivered breakfast in bed, but not in the way I had in mind. All of the family members have had variations on some viral infection over the past two weeks except me. That made me hesitate to invite others to join us for Thanksgiving, and the few that we did invite had other plans. However, everyone was fine by Thanksgiving day itself, and we very happy that my brother David, Aaron, and Amy came over. David contributed a massive 21 lb turkey for the occasion, so those of you who donít visit until Christmas may still be presented with our leftovers!

We were very impressed to hear that Dad Green was baking pies and cooking the turkey for their dinner down at the farm. Ida Ruth has been in and out of the hospital, and had surgery on a facial nerve the day before Thanksgiving, so it fell to him to handle the meal. When we called they said she was feeling very much improved.

There isnít much dramatic news to report. I did have a close call driving home from a MAFA staff meeting late one night. A deer ran right out in front of me, and I had to brake hard and swerve to miss hitting it. That makes me think of other news we heard this week. Daniel noticed on an Internet news site that the man who wrote the Ping program died in a car accident on I-95 (the same night Daniel and David were driving back from Hopkins). Daniel told David this information without realizing that this man had been Davidís roommate at Hopkins. Mike Muuss was a computer whiz and wrote his own compiler in high school.

On a happier note, David went with Ben to Fatherís Night at nursery school. This annual event is designed to give quality bonding time to fathers and sons, since it is almost always the moms who do the daily commuting. David was concerned it would be way too "precious" but since the class is almost entirely boys, it was rather rowdy instead. To our surprise he learned that one of the other boys in the class is the son of our new doctor. I havenít learned last names of the children yet, so hadnít made the connection.

We had an overnight guest that evening, the former RUM national director, who called us up the day before and said he would like to drop by since he was in the area. We have enjoyed a number of almost spontaneous visits like that Ė two dinners with a former Lehigh students, a lunch with a former Disciplemakers colleague, and so on.

We have been teasing Peter that his school has had more days off this month than days in school. One of the school holidays was parent/teacher conferences. His school asks the parents to sign up for 15 minute time slots and so we signed up to meet with each of his teachers. We must have been one of the very few (if not only) ones to do this, as most of the teachers acted surprised we were there without any problem to discuss. We even met with the gym teacher, to his amusement! It was a very interesting time for us to get to know them a little bit, and they all had nice things to say about Peter. (Well, one of the comments was, "He isnít as crude as some of the other boys." Another began with, "As you must know, Peter is a character.") The recalculation of his grades did put Peter on the high honor roll, and we are very proud of him. He starts working back at KFC now that the soccer season is over, but we want him to keep his good grades.

One ministry note... Two years ago a student wrote an article in the Brown & White (Lehigh newspaper) which challenged Christianity as intellectually irresponsible. David wrote a response which was published and he received a lot of positive feedback from our RSF students about it at the time. Then last week David received an email from the student who wrote the original article, quoting his response, apologizing for his statements, and indicating he had become a Christian, and thought David would like to know! This week David is teaching a college Sunday School class in apologetics down at Proclamation Pres., and this makes a nice illustration of how we might never know (or may have a delay in knowing) the effect of our witness.

Christopher is happy because he now has a green light to play Christmas music. This will be a nice change from the same two CDs that Stephen likes to play over and over (one Sarah Brightman, another a brass choir). His happiness is tempered by the fact that French classes have started up again. He almost thought they wouldnít get off the ground this year.

Well, Daniel has come in and asked if I would cut his hair, so Iíll sign off now.



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