Greetings once again to all of our family and friends! We sincerely hope this finds you healthy, happy and prosperous, or at least on the road to a better place.
Another hectic year has come and gone. Time passed in a flurry, and it does not look like things for the Allan’s will slow down any time soon. Activities and projects continue to keep us busy, which helps to promote “togetherness” as a family!
Anne is now a freshman studying Animation and Illustration at San Jose State University up north. She has her own dorm room and is making new friends; thriving in the creative atmosphere. She is enjoying college and taking to life away from home quite well. After graduating from Whitney High School this past Spring, she and her sister took a trip to an animation convention in Austin, Texas. This counted as her graduation present. Now that Anne has received her Gold Award from the Girl Scouts, she is a lifetime adult member, and is, at least for now, out of the cookie sales business.
Emily began her Junior year at Whitney this year. She is the president of the Drama Club, and has dazzled us in their first play, “The Curious Savage”, in which she played the lead. She is currently working toward her GS Gold Award to be completed in time to hopefully march as a banner holder in the 2016 Rose Parade. She had a great time in Austin with her sister, just the two of them unsupervised in the Lonestar State. Emily is enjoying having her own room, and when she has free time, plays Nancy Drew mystery games on the laptop. She is also starting to think about colleges and the possibilities that await her.
Rita is getting the household ready for the big move to Pine Grove in 2016. Twenty-five years of accumulated stuff will have to be dealt with. The barn built at the property up north is slowly filling up, but Rita made great strides flooring the upstairs mezzanine, one square at a time, all 576 square feet this past November! Some furniture can now make its way up there, which will be challenging given the lack of stairs to the upper level. Girl Scouts is still a major focus in Rita’s life, with Emily working toward her final goal, and helping out with a younger troop whose leader is Rita’s cousin. The Caltrans work continues from the upstairs room over the garage thanks to telecommuting, which will also be the case after the move north. Some health issues did crop up for her this year, but she came through with flying colors, and doing much better now.
Chris started the year on a low note after suffering a minor stroke in March. A bit scary to say the least, but he takes it as a wakeup call. Diet and exercise are given more attention, and Chris is much more cognizant of how lucky he is to have a great family and a happy life. The restoration of the steam locomotive in Portola is going into its ninth year, and will hopefully progress a great deal soon. Chris’ main focus is getting out of LA in a year and a half and finally making the move to Pine Grove. The barn structure he and his friends put up is all but complete. The latest addition is a deck in front at the level of the second floor, built to resemble a railroad trestle. Work will continue on the property in the spring of next year. Building O scale railroad models is also one of his new interests, something he hopes to continue after the move.
Missy continues to slow down, but still enjoys her daily walks with Rita, and lying in her spot in the backyard waiting for gophers to pop up.
The Allan’s wish each of you a happy and prosperous 2015! Please stay in touch if you can, we love to hear from all of you. We look forward to our last full year here in Lakewood, which should fly by in no time!
All the best,
Chris Rita Anne Emily and Missy the Dog