This year has been very busy for us with house renovations, Loren’s extracurricular activities, graduate school, work and Patti’s formation of Brownie troop 5833. Luckily, as the year comes to an end, things have calmed down – the house is mostly done, the semester is over, and Brownies are over until next year. Hopefully things have gone well for everyone – we wish you all a happy Holiday season!

Extracurricular Activities

Loren at soccer.

Loren had a very busy year – from becoming a Brownie, to horseback riding, ballet, soccer, tennis, chess, and chorus… whew! She has really gotten into being a Brownie – especially with helping Patti come up with new craft activities for the troop. Loren has also discovered a love for horses - she was trotting by the end of the summer! Loren had her first Penance on December 13 2003 at Blessed Sacrament where she will also be making her first Communion on April 17, 2004.

Doug Is Inducted into Academic Honor Society!

Doug is now only one semester away from earning his M.A. with honors! The next semester will be busy with two classes, but it will be well worth it to finish with school after 3 ½ years… Patti cannot wait – Doug’s first job after he graduates will be to read to Loren every night for the next three years!

Patti Becomes Brownie Leader

Maggie, Patti, and Hannah

Patti decided to start a new Brownie troop at Loren’s school last spring. The other parents were incredulous, but stepped up to provide support and encouragement for Patti and her co-leader.

Loren on Brownie harvest day.
The troop initially included all of the 2nd grade girls and has since expanded to include many of the 1st grade girls as well. Our activities in October included picking fresh produce for the hungry and a Brownie overnight campout. The most memorable part of the campout was the cold.
Loren's first day of 2nd grade.

Loren Begins 2nd Grade at Blessed Sacrament

Loren is continuing to advance academically showing an aptitude for creative writing and math. Loren has decided that she would like to be a childrens book writer and illustrator when she grows up – she has the full approval and backing of her parents! Loren’s favorite class is math and her favorite specials (classes) are art and gym.

Kitchen and Basement Renovated!

Last year’s kitchen renovation was finally finished in January of this year – the kitchen is beautiful and much more functional than before! Unfortunately, before the family checkbook could get much of a rest the ice and snow of February created a new problem – water began to leak into the basement, initially through the bathroom air vent. This initial flood was followed by several other disasters including a washing machine drain hose problem… in the end the basement carpet was thoroughly ruined. We decided that replacing the carpet was pointless unless we fixed the leaks and proceeded on an

Doug dismantling the kitchen.
ambitious remodeling of the whole basement. Four months later we finally finished, except for the bathroom. We couldn’t have done it without help from family – especially Patti’s brother Vinnie and Doug’s uncle David – thanks guys!

The Mudd Summer

The Mudd summer was calm compared to last year, but still involved a lot of travel. Patti and Loren vacationed in Vermont with Patti’s friend Lynne and her 3 year old daughter, Mandy. Doug did his usual week in Colorado teaching a class at the American Numismatic Association’s Summer Seminar. He also presented several slide lectures. The local branch of the Costello clan (Vinnie, Joanne, Jenny, Kimmy, and now David) spent lots of good times with the us. The highlight of the summer was a fun visit from the Kirkups. Doug and Patti took advantage of the free babysitters by taking a day to play in a frisbee tournament while the rest of the crew went to a water park.

Loren's foot.

Happy Holidays,

Loren, Doug and Patti

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