The girls worked together to verify the spelling of each word and took turns announcing to the judges and audience.

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Congratulations to the Willard School Fourth Grade Spelling Bee champions. Maya and her team mates survived more than twenty rounds to win first place. The girls were magnificent, m-a-g-n-i-f-i-c-e-n-t, magnificent.

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Kyle accelerates around an opponent during indoor soccer last night. He had one goal and 2 assists helping his team to a 5-2 win. As the spring outdoor season approaches, Kyle is looking very strong. Still photos do not do justice to some of his unbelievable footwork. Half the team decided to spend the night at our house necessitating a midnight snack run for chips, soda, ice cream and cookies. God only knows what we are going to find to feed them all in the morning.

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I spent the day traveling from California back to Boston. The iconic flying saucer theme building featuring a suspended restaurant is undergoing renovation at LAX airport. I think it is even more interesting with all of the scaffolding surrounding it.

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In art class Maya has been working on block printing and she brought some of her work home this week.

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At 3:15am a freight train with whistle blaring woke me from a deep sleep. This is when I normally get up on the east coast so it was no real hardship. I arrived at the office by 4am, grabbed a nice shower, and worked until 9am. I then walked to a local cafe for breakfast and had my first dose of sunshine for the day. Back to the office and worked until 5pm with no time for lunch. Then I walked to the Farmer’s Market held each Tuesday in Santa Barbara and collected photographs of vegetables. Jeanine used a photo from a previous visit here for her marketing literature and I know she will like these. Back to the office and worked until 7:30pm and then off for a quick dinner and back into the tent. I lead such a glamorous life.

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The proximity of the ocean to the mountains here is very dramatic. I arrived at the park just in time to pitch my tent before darkness set in. Once situated I was treated to a beautiful sunset.

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I decided on a change of pace for my monthly business trip to Santa Barbara. Instead of my normal hotel I have opted for slightly more primative lodging. For the next three nights I will be staying in the Carpenteria State Park on the Pacific Ocean. In light of current economic conditions it feels like a good way to save my company money while adding a little spice to my otherwise routine travel regime.

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Nephew John William returns to New York today after an all too brief weekend visit.

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Is it soup yet? Jeanine creates another wonderful winter soup featuring root vegetables.

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Nico, his friend Greg, and I spent the day at the Gunstock Ski Area in New Hampshire. Naturally, the most exciting jump on the mountain was near the top and in order to get this shot I had to walk up the entire bloody mountain. I was rewarded for all the exercise with a nice image of Nicolai catching big air. Nico has abandoned his outriggers in favor of his normal crutches explaining that they are lighter and allow him to go faster. Hard to argue with results.

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My sister’s son, John William, arrived this afternoon for a weekend visit and was immediately enlisted to join Kyle’s indoor soccer team for a match. Although slightly younger than the rest of the players, Johnie scored two goals, one on an assist from Kyle which made for a nice family effort.

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I was greated upon my return home this evening with an appeal from Maya to inspect her toes. As much as I love Maya’s toes (and all her other parts) I must admit I was not prepared for green toenails. Thus it begins.

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Maya and Jeanine have attended a number of weaving classes this week. Maya is shown here on the loom she received from Santa for Christmas this year. I can’t wait to see the final outcome.

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