2002 Christmas Letter

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all from the Crossetts. We hope you. have all had a great 2002 and that the new year brings forth further blessings. You may have noticed that last year you did not hear from us. We actually did write a letter but it was late and then later and finally never was sent.

2002 was another fast-moving year, filled with wonderful joys in many areas, and some that were not so joyful, some downright devastating.

Robbie left in January to attend his first year at Brigham Young University-Idaho (the newly renamed Ricks College which has become a 4-year university). He had a memorable early April. He sang with the Men’s Choir all semester at BYU-I and was blessed to sing at the Priesthood session of General Conference in Salt Lake City. At the end of the month he was taken to the hospital for an emergency appendectomy. Way to get out of exams, Robbie!! He has a remarkable scar which interested Grace very much. Robbie came home from school early in July and started working at the DHMC in Users’ Support area. He and Jonathan went to work together. In August Robbie had his wisdom teeth removed preparing for his mission and finished all the pre-mission medical and other business and put his papers in late in September. Early in November Robbie’s mission call came. He and his parents went to Barre to celebrate this wonderfully exciting arrival and to open his call together with Grandmother Marjorie Crossett. His call was to the Utah Provo mission, entering the MTC on February 5, 2003. As an aside, shortly after receiving his call he had to have some minor surgery which was successful and benign, to our very great joy. This is the end of the good news on the Robbie front. On 21 December while Pattie was driving to Hartford, CT to pick up Megan and Jonathan at the airport, Robbie told his father that he was moving out of our home, moving in with some boys in the back woods of Corinth, and was bagging his mission and the church. You may imagine our feelings in the matter.

Jonathan was at BYU-Idaho during the spring semester and did very well. He is working toward a degree in Information Systems (I think that is what it is called…) and finding the class work very enjoyable. He came home from school at the end of April and immediately began work at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in the Computer Users’ Support area. During the month of May he spent lots of time setting up a computer network in our home so all the computers could be connected to one another and to the internet. This work continued over the summer. In July Jonathan flew to Reno, Nevada to attend the temple marriage of his friend Charlie King to Mindy Reid, and then drove through Yosemite National Park with Joe and Kim Mender, enjoying the scenery and the company immensely. Jonathan returned to BYU-Idaho in August for another year and a heavy schedule of classes. He worked several web design jobs for various entities at BYU-Idaho during the fall and came home for ten days in December to celebrate Christmas and to help with sheet-rocking, mudding and painting the upstairs as well as to work on a programming job creating a piece of gradebook software for use with the handheld device called an IPAC. He and Bob cooperated on it and hope to put it up for sale on the web soon. (Maybe he can support his final years of education with the proceeds�! Think optimistically!!)

Megan spent the spring semester at Utah State University in Logan, Utah working on her Family and Consumer Science Education degree. In the late spring she discovered that she had missed the GPA for the Education program by one-quarter of a point but that there are so many people in competition for the spots that she was not accepted. She spent time with her advisor figuring a way around this debacle, and they came up with a minor in Spanish rather than Education then getting her teaching credentials as she worked after graduation. This seemed so promising and viable since she had her missionary service in Caracas, Venezuela and is fluent in Spanish. She began an internship with the Utah Extension Service and worked with the 4-H agent and helped with several 4-H projects. Pattie remembers 4-H with great fondness from her own childhood. In August Grammie Crossett sent Megan airplane tickets to come home for a few days. We were all so happy to see her. She returned to Utah on the same flight on which Pattie and her friend Liz King flew to the seminary and institute teachers’ conference at BYU. It was so enjoyable to travel together. Pattie stayed with Megan in Logan for a short time after the conference. As the fall semester began Megan found that she had to change her school plans again as she was not able to get into a critical Spanish class. Stay tuned! But she is insistent upon graduating in August 2003! She came home for Christmas with Jonathan and then she and Pattie went to visit Janus, Laura, and Grace for 36 hours at their home in Clark’ s Summit, PA. As this letter is being revised she is in the air on her way home. . . .having waited for nearly seven hours in the airport due to the terrible ice storm last night/this morning.

Christopher continued working as an accountant for Hertz Corporation in Ogden, Utah this year, as well as attending night school classes for his MBA. He participated in many running and biking races this summer as well as some Ironman races. In August he put his beautiful Jeep at Pattie’s disposal while she was in Utah for the CES Conference. It was much appreciated, and so very comfortable. At the end of August he was informed by his boss that his company would support him for the rest of his MBA courses. . . .only the third person in the history of his company to receive such support. We are all pleased for him. He expects to graduate in July 2003. He came home for Christmas also, and while at home he realized one of his great desires. . . .to purchase a beautiful used (1994) Toyota Celica that he had seen on the internet and which was located in Winooski, Vermont. He went up to inspect it with his dad and ended up driving it home to Thetford, the first stop in his trip west driving home to Utah with Jonathan. At this writing they are on their way to Pennsylvania to visit Janus’s family and then will start out early in the morning for Utah. We pray for clear, dry roads. While in Vermont during the Christmas break he gave lots of help with the sheetrock project and snow shoveling.

In January Janus, Laura and Grace completed their move to Clark’ s Summit, Pennsylvania where he took a job as Facilities Manager for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He cares for 26 buildings and one historic site. On February 28, Grace turned a big five years old! Her grandmother Crossett had the fun of making her a soft satiny purple dress with handmade fabric roses along the belt to celebrate the event. During the spring Laura worked on producing a pageant commemorating the appearance of John the Baptist to Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery and conferring the Aaronic Priesthood upon them in 1829 in Harmony, PA. Bob and Pattie as well as Laura’s parents, Norman and Elizabeth Oliphant from Salt Lake City, were on hand to celebrate. Aunt Jessie Corwin, Julius, and Jessie’s friend Johnny Mullinex also attended the pageant on a glorious day at the end of June. Janus and family came to Vermont several times over the course of the summer and fall. . .the most recent being for Thanksgiving at Great-Grammie Crossett�s house. Laura was under the weather and stayed home in Pennsylvania rather than making the trip while so ill. Janus and Grace went to the lighting ceremony at the Joseph Smith Birthplace Memorial the Saturday after Thanksgiving as well as continued his help with the sheetrock project that he had done over the summer. A few more Christmas and July vacations and we may have the job done!!

Pattie continues to teach institute at Dartmouth College and has been giving significant support to the Blankets for Bangladesh project which aims to make 100 blankets for the boys in the Char Fassion Orphanage on Bhola Island, Bangladesh which will be taken over there by a group of Dartmouth students next year. Her health has not improved but has not gotten a lot worse even though she stopped taking the medications last year and also stopped seeing her specialist�figuring that since nothing was getting better she might as well not spend the money every two weeks any longer. She did have a sleep study done and was told she had severe sleep apnea and was started on a C-PAP machine but very shortly she developed a terrible cold and had to stop. She has not re-started as of this moment but will shortly.

Bob continues to teach at Thetford Academy. He hikes when he can and runs a loop near home fairly often in an effort to remain strong and healthy well into retirement. He also continues as an ordinance worker at the Boston Temple. He had some minor surgery in July which was successful. In September, Bob went back to school for the 34th time. During the summer and fall he had been researching the iPAC handheld computer and late in the fall he purchased one with the grant he received from the Bruce Keefe Fund. After two weeks he realized that it did not fill his needs so he returned it and got a higher-powered model which he is now filling up with data and on which he will use the new grade-book program he and (mostly) Jonathan wrote.

Great-Grammie Crossett has had a down and up year, and now, at the end of the year is doing very well.. .even attending senior fitness classes and lifting weights twice a week . Among other activities she attends Bible study as well as serves at a volunteer in her church’s office on Wednesdays.

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