Family and Friends:
As we decompress from a hectic holiday, we are pleased to share a few highlights of our eventful year.
We received a wonderful Christmas gift as Reed “Returned With Honor” from a two-year mission for the Church in Uruguay. He immediately left in his newly refurbished 82 Cressida to resume his career as a student, this time at Brigham Young University, where he has reunited with he foster brother and bosom buddy, Tim Schmalbeck. Reed’s life-changing experiences are at the new family website with other news of the family. If you are interested, you may find out more at http://www.sueallen.org/allenfamily.html.
Ken was featured in the March issue of California Law Business Magazine, a magazine circulated to many attorneys in California. His patent law practice grew, and he still enjoys the challenge of doing a weekly cable television show. As the corporate secretary he has worked for the past year on the sale of Cable Co-op and the development of a community media foundation, as well as making many videos for the Church.
Sue continues teaching high school Seminary at the Church early each school morning. She helped organize and present the Christmas Creche Exhibit, now in its 13th year. She is active behind the scenes at both local high schools, in the PTA Council and with the school board in promoting improvements and funding equity in all the schools. She started parents' e-mail newsletters for both high schools, and now she actually works and gets a paycheck as a computer support specialist across the Digital Divide in East Menlo Park. She is helping to implement a major computer-based education curriculum effort to be launched next fall. She visits daughter and son-in-law Rachel and Brandon Mills and granddaughters Ashly and Megan in Utah as often as she can find excuses.
Julia, 17, is a senior at Palo Alto High School where she plays water polo and is on the swim team. Last Spring she was named the Junior Varsity Outstanding Swimmer for 2000, setting the school record for JV 200 yard Freestyle. She ice skates with the Ice-ettes and Advanced Jazz at the Winter Lodge. This summer she was a lifeguard at the University Club and she works at a candy and ice cream shop. For a school project she made a movie. She has her driver's license and drives JULICAR, a bullfrog green '72 Volvo 262 named Jeremiah.
Keith, 15, is a sophomore at Gunn High School where he is on the Junior Varsity water polo team where he was the most improved player. He swims for the Eichler Club Gators and played AYSO Soccer. He finished all his Eagle Scout requirements, drives a car, built an electric scooter and is looking forward to getting his driver's license. In August 2000, he spent his second summer at Bennion Teton Boys Ranch near Victor, Idaho.
As you may recall, in November 1999, Alex Ferreira de Silva joined our family from Campinas, Sao Paulo, Brazil. Alex was a student at the Pacific Language Institute in Palo Alto until he was called to serve a two-year mission for the Church in Boston. He left on August 23, 2000.
On September 23, 2000. Andrea Teal Pfeifer, 18, joined our family from St. Helena, California, passing up a student body presidency to complete high school with AP courses at Foothill JC. She just won a full music scholarship to Stanford and hopes to study medicine.
On July 8, 2000, Sue took delivery of a truly new vehicle, a "Personal Transit Module" called the Sparrow, a three-wheeled enclosed electric motorcycle. On July 12, we returned it, slightly worse for wear, and got our money back. Ken discovered a motor control problem and a stability problem when it suddenly sped up uncontrollably, spun out and tumbled. Ken escaped unhurt.
In May, Ken and Sue flew to Victoria, B.C. for a lawyer conference at the picturesque Empress Hotel. They enjoyed touring the beautiful gardens and proud Victorian estate. As a side treat, they watched the SwiftSure Regatta 2000 from a ketch in the Straits of Juan de Fuca.
In March, we spent a first-ever foreign vacation in Mazatlan, Mexico, at Grandma Mary Grace Wade’s timeshare condo with Aunt Kathy Bright. Highlights were a bullfight, a wild night at Señor Frogs, a bike ride to Witch's Beach, a boat tour to Stone Island and parasailing.
On January 14, 2000, Ken's stepfather of the past 15 years Daniel Leigh Wade, 88, of Washington, Utah, died peacefully after a brief illness. The family gathered for the funeral from all parts of the country to comfort Ken's mother. He, too, has “Returned With Honor.”
May we all live to Return With Honor.