U-R-L*tide Greetings!

Ancient yuletide tradition meets the Internet age.

*Uniform Resource Locator, the standardized address format for Internet sites.



Beth & Keith reflect on 2008 & wassail the World Wide Web
in this electronic end-of-year epistle!

Braced for 11 more months of political campaigning by attending a performance of The Capitol Steps, who lyrically lampooned every presidential candidate with bipartisan buffoonery. Click on the Huckabee campaign button for a Beatles-themed sound bite of their political humor.


Escaped the ice & cold of the Illinois winter with a short trip to South Carolina to celebrate Bette Black’s 20th birthday, on which she turned 80, as only a Leap Year Baby could do… [Photo: Bette Black, taken the day after her un-birthday, while on a short mini-vacation in Florida.]

Began an Italian for Travelers course with our favorite Venetian, Monica, in preparation for a summer buon voyage.

Buon giorno!
Vorrei due bicchieri di vino rosso, per favore!



Celebrated Colin’s new full-time job as a Web programmer for Active Media Architects, where he writes PHP code for the back-end of web applications. Helped Colin relocate to St. Clair Shores, Michigan, where he has a nice apartment in a complex right on Lake St. Clair. If he were running for Vice President, he would tell you, “I can see Canada from my apartment.” [Photo: Colin on move-in day at his new apartment.]

Celebrated Emma’s graduation from UW-Madison, where she received a Bachelor of Science Degree, majoring in English, minoring in adventurous international travel & charmed living, and receiving Certificates in Global Studies, Women’s Studies, and Leadership. [Photo: Emma on the terrace in her pre-party pose.]

Enjoyed a fabulous Italian adventure with friends Tom & Tracy, exploring the canals of Venice, the coastline of Cinque Terre, the museums of Florence, and the sensual pleasures of Tuscany. Sampled countless flavors of gelato; learned to make pici and focaccia; ate our weight in pecorino, pizza, and pasta. [Photo: Taken in our hotel room by the harbor in Vernazza, Cinque Terre, a location where the word “breathtaking” truly applies. For more, follow the link & click on View Photobook, then Play Slideshow.]

Veni, vidi, sudo: We came, we saw, we sweated. Spent a glorious week ducking inside cool, dark, treasure-filled churches to recover from hiking around Rome in the blistering heat uncovering layer upon fascinating layer of ancient history. Concluded that, aside from the decision to live in the uncivilized heat of Rome, the ancient Romans had this civilization thing figured out millennia ago. [Photo: Ruins between the Colosseum and Palatine Hill.]

Relaxed at Ravinia, our neigborhood outdoor music festival, with great music, cheap wine, and mildly competitive Scrabble. Beth gave Keith a folding bicycle for his birthday, which he slings over his shoulder using an appropriated strap from a laptop bag to board the train on days when he needs to commute to Chicago and can’t make his normal (mountain) bike commute to work in nearby Lake Forest. Before the summer slipped away completely, found time for A Midsummer Night’s Dream and other plays at our other favorite venue for erudite entertainment, American Player’s Theatre. [Photo: Taken on a day-long bike ride along the shore of Lake Michigan in Chicago.]

Started back to school, with Beth starting her 3rd year as Director of Development at Chiaravalle Montessori School, Keith his 5th as Director of Information Technology at Lake Forest Country Day School, and Emma her first year of graduate school. As the first student accepted into UW-Madison’s dual Master’s degree program in Public Health and Public Policy, Emma is enrolled in both the UW School of Medicine and Public Health and the LaFollette School of Public Affairs. She also was awarded a full tuition waiver with a half-time program assistantship doing an evaluation of a state public health policy initiative.


Embarked on our own dual dueling Master’s degrees [following Ben Franklin’s economic advice]. Keith, who has a Master’s in Information & Telecommunications Systems Management, started the evening MBA program at the University of Chicago. Beth, who has a Master’s in English Literature, started the Masters in Learning and Organizational Change degree program at Northwestern University. Since turning our salaries over to universities in an uncertain economy was not risky enough, we also chose this fall as the time to spend money remodeling our basement.

Celebrated Obama’s historic victory. Throughout the Bush nightmare years, we were compelled to watch episodes of The West Wing in order to see a White House that reflected our values. Can we once again respect our elected leader? Yes, we can. Also gave thanks for family, hosting Emma, Colin, & Keith’s mom Rita on Thanksgiving for tons of tasty turkey, sumptuous sweet potatoes, & Beth’s patented home baked vodka-crust squash and apple pies.

Changed our new household phone number to 224-765-4085. Created this year in review to communicate that change and our holiday sentiments:


Much love to all of our family and friends.

Hope to spend time with you in the New Year.


Bah, Humbug!


Happy Holidays & Best Wishes for 2009!

This holiday greeting created with 100% recycled electrons.
Save a tree. Read digitally