Christmas, 1996
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Christmas, 1996

Dear Family & Friends,


As this year comes to a close and we celebrate the holidays with those we love, the Franklin Family considers this year a success, if only for the fact that we weren't swept away in the fires, wiped out by floods, car jacked, hijacked, or jacked around.


Joe continues to find work challenging. He had to change jobs this year as customers were actually starting to call him on the phone, interfering with his enjoyment of the kids, beach, "The Equalizer" reruns and afternoon nap.


Continuing to pursue the dream of NBA stardom, Joe joins the neighborhood men, every weekend, in a rousing game or two of driveway basketball. It is an astounding display of deficient athletic prowess, only exceeded by the great heights each man will attempt to reach in outdoing the other on the severity of aches and pains which each man feels. As one wife put it, after watching her husband execute an amazingly graceless sky hook: "Oh, honey, I'm moist!"


After nearly seven years with the same company, Nancy finally got that big promotion. All that backstabbing, brown-nosing and sucking-up finally paid off. When the big layoffs hit, Nancy was still standing. Of course this is litigious California and it helps to be both chronologically and gender-challenged.


Jimmy and Taylor continue to astound both their parents and teachers alike. Jimmy entered the much-touted "Pre-Elementary Preparation" program in September, after a stupendous failing effort during his kindergarten screening. But

we’re happy to report that Jimmy is now getting the kind of report cards which, until now, we thought were limited only to his grandfather Boynton... words like "needs self control" and "working on attention span" come proudly to mind.


Jimmy also started soccer this year. His team went undefeated this season. Nancy was ejected from the field only twice for throwing halftime snacks at the coach. Joe is recovering nicely...


Taylor continues to excel in the verbal skills. In fact, we've been told she's quite "gifted" in this regard. Credit goes to Daddy Joe who has taught her such wonderful freeway driving expressions as "!@#$" and "%1\&*" and the ever popular "@#$%I\&* idiot!". Why, not a day goes by when teachers aren't leaving notes for us about her colorful and expressive language. It looks like she might have the Franklin teaching genes as the teachers particularly note how much Taylor is teaching the other preschoolers. It makes us proud!


On a sadder note, Joe's mother passed away this April. It was a peaceful death; expected, and she was cared for at home to the end, surrounded by loving family members. In scenes reminiscent of "Weekend at Bernie's" Mrs. Franklin hung out on several mantels until October, when Nancy and Joe made a trip to New York, with Mrs. Franklin as a well-behaved carry-on item, stowed neatly in the overhead bin. Useful to the end, she doubled as a door stop and centerpiece at the Long Island hotel around which her clan gathered to knock back a few in her honor. She was buried on a sunny, warm, fall day next to her beloved Irving. After an amorous marriage, ten children and many grandchildren maybe now Mrs. Franklin can get that much-deserved rest.


This was the year the Franklins also decided to remodel their kitchen and guest bathroom. This can be, as many of you are aware, a time that tests the strength of a marriage. Many find that their marriages are stronger and that they are able to face any challenge after a remodel. For some, it is best not to ever go there.

So, as we close another year, we give thanks for our health, such as it is; our mortgage, which gives us a reason to get up in the morning; and our creditors, to whom we are always in debt. Oh, yes, and to you, our friends and family, who know that a great faith, a sense of humor, the power of love and eight hours of sleep a night are our most precious gifts.


Happy Holidays! And may you have joy, health and happiness in 1997!




Joe, Nancy, Jimmy & Taylor Franklin


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