Michael & Danielle's 2014 Newsletter

We are so blessed to be able to live in such a beautiful place. The background photo for this year's newsletter was taken during a springtime, "aroma-therapy" session: a drive in our open-top Miata out Carmel Valley road, when the wildflowers were in bloom and the air sweetened with the fragrance of wild lupine.
Another blessing is living so close to our two beautiful grandchildren, Aria (age 4) and Karaleigh (age 2), who brought us constant joy throughout the year. With more joy to come in 2015! Click pictures to see larger images.
With them living so close, they come to visit almost every week. They love having grandma read to them, and riding "Merrylegs" (above, right), a rocking horse that belonged to Danielle when she was a child. And we enjoy taking them to special places. One of their favorite places is the Monterey Bay Aquarium (below, left). In July, we took Aria to her first baseball game, to see the SF Giants play the St. Louis Cardinals. While driving to the game, Danielle told her the names and nicknames of many of the players. Her favorite was Pablo "The Panda" Sandoval!
In the Fall we took Colin, Jaclyn, and the grandchildren to the NorCal Renaissance Faire. Danielle worked with a local seamstress to make a new outfit for Aria, while Karaleigh now wears one of Aria's old costumes. And for the "Fantasy" theme weekend, grandma and the grandkids all sprouted pairs of fairy wings.
Oftentimes throughout the year we'll meet up for dinner or a Sunday brunch at one of our favorite 'mid-way' meeting places, the Haute Enchilada or the Whole Enchilda restaurants in Moss Landing (below, left). In December we took Aria and Kara to San Francisco to see a production of the "Nutcracker" ballet especially for children. Posing for pictures afterwards, Aria with the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Spanish Dancer (below, right).