Okay… maybe a bit early but I’ll be traveling over the next 2+ weeks and will only have intermittent access to the Internet.
I’m using my blog to convey the normal, boring Christmas letter (read no further if you’re not interested). I usually post this on my family website but I’m experiencing technical difficulties tonight so here goes!
Highlights from 2006…
Jeff graduates from MHS, sets new high school diving record, and starts college! Jenny completes her freshmen year at K-State! & goes mountain climbing. Joel getting $s from ASCAP – tv show now on PBS! Char elected VP/Pres-Elect of NASIG!
2005 ended with snow but that didn’t mean we saw too much of the white stuff in 2006. We had a few flakes throughout the winter but nothing major. Ah well… We had some rain in the spring but not enough to stave off the very dry conditions. There were even a few tornado touchdowns within 30 miles in April/May but nothing serious like the year before. Weird weather in the spring – really hot, then incredibly mild for a good part of May. Summer – typically hot with a few days of 100+ temps. And since late November we’ve had crazy fluctuations – 71 one day and a high of 32 with a chance of snow & freezing rain the next. Ah, Kansas…
Library-land remains very busy – we spent spring through fall actively recruiting about 8 positions, including a new associate dean who will be my supervisor. We’re working on a new strategic plan and seem to finally be making progress with space planning as we attempt to consolidate information technology units (who aren’t part of the library) in our building. A major database (i.e., our online catalog) cleanup finally got underway and we’re implementing an electronic resource management (ERM) tool that will track licensing, acquisitions and cataloging data for ejournals & more – we hope to have that up in production by late January. The dean sent all her department heads to a 6 day seminar in August. The ACRL/Harvard Leadership Institute was taught by several professors from the Graduate School of Education at Harvard and included 90 librarians – deans, directors and dept. heads – from around the U.S., Canada, the Caribbean, and Hong Kong. It was a great experience. Work is generally just a blur… I’ve spent most of my time on licensing and acquisition of electronic resources. We are canceling print journals and moving to online-only formats because students and faculty want things quickly and at their desktop. They don’t want to deal with trudging over to the library to find their research articles in print format. My other major focus is on our collection statistics – how many volumes did we add to the collection this year? [over 250,000 (all formats); books only was about 48,000]; how many journals do we have current subscriptions to? [13,500+] . We have to report out these numbers (and many more) every year.
Then there’s that NASIG election… colleagues urged me to run for VP and lo and behold – I won the election! My term as editor-in-chief of the NASIG Newsletter ended in May and I moved into the VP slot at the end of our annual conference in May. Summer was fairly quiet, but my responsibilities have picked up the last few months. I work with our conference program planning committee and I’m on the site selection committee for our 2008 & 2009 conferences, so I’ve had the opportunity to travel to 3 different cities to explore hotels, meeting spaces, and entertainment activities.
Jeff graduated from Manhattan High in May! Joel came out for a few days to celebrate with us. Check out the guys hamming it up for the camera…
Jeff decided not to pursue college diving. He’s enrolled at K-State as a computer science major. We lucked out right after school ended in May and found him a perfect college student car. It’s a 1993 Dodge Shadow with 17,000 – yes, 17,000 – miles! It was owned by an older lady here in town. It’s held up pretty well the last few months except for the front driver’s side window which fell out… We’re hoping to get that fixed over the holidays.
Jenny is now a sophomore at K-State. Still hasn’t decided on her major but I think she’s getting closer. I think she has to declare by the end of the spring 2007 semester. She just enrolled for spring and finally got into the Marketing class she’s wanted to try. I believe she’s also signed up for Accounting. She moved into the dorms this fall and has a great roommate, who unfortunately, is moving into a sorority house in January. Overall, she’s surviving the dorm experience and hasn’t decided what she’ll do next fall. She has a few months to think about that.
Diving kept us busy throughout the winter. Jeff had a fantastic finish to his high school career by placing 2nd at the Kansas State meet! He also set a new Manhattan High record for an 11-dive meet. He broke the old record by more than 10 points! (Photo courtesy of the Manhattan Mercury.)
Keep your eyes on K-State football & basketball games on your television sets. Well, watch the cheerleaders!! Jeff is on the cheer squad tumbling all over the place. It’s a lot of hard work but he seems to be enjoying it and the cameraderie on the squad.
Cheer practice & games don’t leave any time for diving. I think he managed to get to the pool a few times during the summer but since classes started, he’s been a bit busy!
Other Family News
Joel stays busy at MG Studios in Florida where he continues his works as a video & audio production editor. His show “Gina D’s Kids Club” is airing on PBS stations around the country. I even saw part of an episode when I was in Kentucky on business! (Re those ASCAP $s: I don’t think Joel will be retiring anytime soon!) Joel and his old high school friend are still working on scripts for a show they hope to produce and make available on the Internet. We’ll keep you posted if that happens!
Jeff spent the summer working at Wendy’s and became an expert burger flipper! He can flip burgers with both hands at the same time!
Jenny continues to work at Gymnastics Plus teaching several classes a week and working many weekend birthday parties. It seems to be one of those jobs that you love at times, hate at others. She’s been getting some opportunities to work in the business office and hopes that will increase next year.
Jenny also fulfilled another personal goal this year. If you recall, last year she went skydiving. This year, she climbed a 14,000+ peak in Colorado.
Jenny with friend Scott
Business trips — too many!!
San Antonio, Wichita, Denver, Boston, Phoenix, Richmond, Louisville and Orlando…
Fun trips: I got to the Orlando area during June to see Mom, Joel, and my sister Carole & nephew Steve; 5 days in Colorado in July with 4 friends; a couple of long weekend trips to Omaha to visit friend Sarah; nephew Stewart’s wedding in Red Bank, NJ in August followed by 4 days in NYC with the kids; sidetrip to Charlottesville/Monticello after the Richmond trip to see brother George and his wife Elaine. I head to Orlando on Dec. 13 for business then will spend about 11 days with Mom.
Come January, it starts all over again with a business trip to Seattle.
If you want to see photos of my travels (the Hummer tour in the Arizona desert was pretty neat!), Jeff cheering at football games, my garden and more, visit my photo website on FLICKR.
HAVE A WONDERFUL 2007!
Char, Jenny, and Jeff