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A Christmas card to my many friends

Bif Nowell Ho, ho, ho, y'all! Well, here it is the end of yet

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Ho, ho, ho, y’all!

Well, here it is the end of yet another year, and I have lots to tell about our great 2005. First off, last February, my wife Sheila was promoted from personal secretary to the president of Hostess Twinkies to the company researcher for the nutrient content of competing baked goods. Her office has been moved to an unused, out-of-the-way corner room, so she won’t be interrupted. Though she took a temporary cut in pay, we expect her salary to rise any day now. Sheila says it’s a great job; her stress level is much less than before. There are even days when she has nothing to do.

Then in May, our oldest daughter — Agatha — graduated summa come laude (note: If you see a misspelling here, I have to tell you it was deliberate; Sheila reminded me this was a “family” letter.) in business administration. Her degree came from a highly acclaimed online college. Just think: She spent two whole years acquiring all her knowledge and that degree in her chosen subject from her own desktop in her own bedroom! Times have sure changed. She’s now working in a rotating typing pool at Haliburton. Her career is launched! And as her boss recently remarked, “She can go nowhere but up.”

Last summer we had a great time touring parts of Europe. We couldn’t understand why more train conductors refused to speak American, though. Our youngest son — Egbert — had an interesting experience in Italy; he climbed to the top of the Leaning Tower of Pizza all by himself. (The only problem is that since then he seems to have a perpetual tilt when he stands or walks. If we try to straighten him up, he falls over in the other direction.) We liked eating in all the McDonald’s over there; it was like a slice of home. We didn’t go into any of their many churches though; none were of our faith.

Around Labor Day, our teen-age son — Skeeter — won our local skateboard contest by executing a triple flip at the bottom of a hill. (He’ll be out of rehab by next spring.)

Sheila and I want to thank you for your many letters. We appreciate the apologies from 50 of you saying you couldn’t make our big Halloween party.

Well, we’re looking forward to a great 2006, and we’re thankful to have so many friends we can share with (and I expect to be working again before the year is out).

Happy Xmas and Merry New Year’s,

Bif and Sheila

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