December 25, 2008
Dear Family & Friends,
This Christmas marks Mike and Charissa’s tenth Christmas together. Our family has resisted the pull of the “Family Christmas Letter” bandwagon for the last ten years. It’s always been a question of time: “When should I write it? When should I send it? When will I have time to write it?” Fortunately, we’re both on shore duty and we the have time.
The biggest change for our family this year was the July transfer from Pearl Harbor, Hawaii to Panama City Beach, Florida.
Mike left the Seal Delivery Vehicle Team One and is now an Instructor at the Naval Diving & Salvage Training Center. His primary job is to train Navy personnel in dive operations and procedures. He still dives, but not as often as he would like to for fun. He now directs his “free” time to his rifle marksmanship. His first match will be sometime in the beginning of the New Year.
Charissa has been released from Pharmacy Purgatory and is now assigned to the Navy Experimental Dive Unit. Her primary duty is to be a basic corpsman, be a task leader and assistant in research protocols and equipment testing. She likes to call it “Hero Support.” This new job has presented a few challenges like forcing her to attend a diving convention (DEMA) in Las Vegas, and making her wear a blue and gold t-shirt, diver shorts and sneakers instead of a button-up shirt, skirt and heels.
John (13) misses his friends in Hawaii and elsewhere but keeps in close contact with them via MySpace and texting. Florida weather is fickle and prevents John from skating (skateboard) as much as he did on Ford Island. He works hard on learning the Saxophone and has his recital on the 16th of December.
Caite (4) has had a tough time transitioning from Hawaii. She has to wear socks with her shoes! The first time she saw the Gulf of Mexico she said “Eww! That water is dirty and infected with allergies (algae)! We need to go back to Hawaii!” She misses her Aunties at her old daycare very much and speaks of them often.
Molly (2) has spent the last year learning how not to wear her food on her clothes and color inside the lines. She loves shoes and has been known to leave the house with two different ones on! Her newest project is Potty-Training. She’s so close… yet so far away!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all! With much love,
THE FLORIDA DUFF'S