The Year is Dying, Let It Die!

Now that I am a family man and all, I have picked up the long standing tradition of composing a Christmas letter. Below I present the Miller Family's Christmas Greeting:

To our dearest friends and loving family,

At the dawn of this year, the two thousand and sixth of our Lord, the Randal and Theresa Miller family was yet to be formed. Sure, they had spent the better part of the previous year blissfully enjoying their courtship, and the ring-watchers had had their sights set on Theresa’s left hand for at least 11 months, but as of January, the couple had not formalized their marriage plans with an official engagement. During this first month, Randy’s arms were practically overflowing with his many Law School applications, and Theresa spent her time fretting more about whether her seemingly dead-beat boyfriend will ever muster up enough courage to finally ask for her hand in marriage than completing her full course-load at Grant MacEwan.

Unbeknownst to Theresa, Randy’s engagement plans were already in there final stages as February opened, and on the first Monday of the month, Theresa received a small note under her door that began a week-long scavenger hunt with the reported goal of asking her to the big sweethearts dance. The hunt sent Theresa on a whirlwind review of their relationship, as each note lead to a different location around Edmonton where she and Randy had shared a significant memory. The trip ended in Hawrelak park, with Randy not only asking Theresa to accompany him to the dance, but to accompany him throughout eternity.

In the next few months, Randy and Theresa hurriedly prepared for their forthcoming nuptials and were able to spend a wintery weekend in Whitefish with Theresa’s family, where hearts were knit and bottoms were bruised (on the ski-hill, of course). They also made the decision to spend their next three years at the University of Virginia School of Law, although they had to consult an atlas to discover where their new home would be.

Not wanting to end his single days quietly, Randy and his roommates escaped to Mexico for a seven-day bachelor celebration in late April. After he returned, on the thirteenth of May, the long-awaited wedding occurred, with Theresa and Randy exchanging sacred vows in the Alberta Temple. Following a family brunch at the Cobblestone Manner and a Calling reception in Taber, the newlyweds hopped a plane to Victoria to begin their eternal voyage among the lush foliage of Vancouver Island. After six days of kayaking, sightseeing and fine dining, the couple returned to Edmonton for a second reception and to begin their married life.

June was a month of long workdays, but the new family was not one to stay in a single city for too long. On Sonic 102.9’s illustrious traveling game show, “What’s In The Van Man?” Randy won a trip for two to Vancouver, and for a few days in July, he and his wife took in the sights and sounds of the harbor city. After this trip, however, they did not return home; instead, they traveled straight to Meadow Lake, Montana to spend a week with Randy’s family. That was the end of their fun.

August was Randy and Theresa’s big move—or should that be Randy’s big move. Because Theresa was waiting for her Visa and despite the couple’s valiant efforts from almost the moment they were wed, the new bride was barred entry into the USA, leaving Randy to travel to Virginia and make a home for himself alone. This was the twilight of their year and tears were shed on both sides of the 49th parallel. For three long months, the couple’s only communication was distant telephone conversations and one brief visit at Thanksgiving. Fortunately, The University of Virginia is a great school, so Randy was able to effectively fill his days with both legal studies and social gatherings that, more often than not, involved softball and/or much drinking (by his classmates). Theresa worked at Boston Pizza. Finally in November, the last piece of the new family’s life became realigned when Theresa made a daring (yet legal) run for the border and was able to satisfy the port official enough to join her anxious hubby in Charlottesville, proving once and for all, that Virginia truly is for lovers.

So, this tale ends happily for all. Although Theresa is still waiting for her immigrant visa, the couple is together and enjoying Virginia’s mild winter. This was truly a momentous year for us, full of great change, good times, a few hard times, but overall, much jubilation. We hope that 2006 treated you as well as it did us. Happy Christmas.

The Millers