Dear Friends and Family;

Amazingly, no one in our family changed cities in 2012, but two households did change residences. Susan and Rich moved into a better space, a wonderful loft with room for house concerts, about three blocks away; Jared and Seema moved to a new apartment in the same building. Hilary and Josh and Andrea and Bobby stayed put but busy in Richmond and New York City respectively. All the grandchildren, Nina, Ben and Vishnu continue to thrive, becoming more brilliant, cute and highly accomplished.

Andrea and Bobby still pursue their artistic endeavors. During 2012, Andrea appeared in performance art works and continued work on a series of video pieces, along with her fiction writing. Bobby, who recently played a series of concerts in Italy, continues to compose and to perform in Europe and North America. They returned to the Montalvo Arts Center in California, as artists in residence, for the month of October 2012. Their stay was extended nearly a week thanks to Hurricane Sandy. Follow them on and

Hilary and Josh are now settled into their 1870s house in the Church Hill section of Richmond. Hilary continues her telecommuting job as a government contractor in the organ transplant field. Josh remains on the staff of the Virginia Commissioner for Public Health. They both contribute mightily to their business Ravenchase Adventures. Nina is now four and loves dressing up as a princess and/or ballerina and the colors pink and purple. She continues to enjoy art activities and pre-school. Ben, who turned two in August, is now in pre-school. He loves the movie Cars and goes nowhere without a collection of small wheeled vehicles.

Jared and Seema are still in Washington, DC, where Jared is a second year law student at Georgetown University and on the staff of the Georgetown Journal of International Law. Seema is pursuing a Master of Arts in Writing from Johns Hopkins at its DC location and continues to work on her writing projects. Vishnu, who turned two on October 28th, is turning into a verbal little guy, still enamored by wheeled vehicles.

Rich works at the same location but has a new title (Manager of Ecommerce Development) and a new employer (Ascena Retail Group) who acquired Charming Shoppes, Inc. in mid-2012. It will take a couple of years for Ascena to absorb this acquisition. Watch this space for future developments. Otherwise, Rich remains an active contributor to independent singer/songwriters efforts to produce new albums, continues to seek out new talent and keeps our concert calendar full. Rich and Susan hosted a small house concert in their loft where Namoli Brennet, a singer they know from their days in Tucson, performed. They hope to host more concerts as time goes on. Rich still supports the website for Marina V.

Susan had another very busy consulting year in 2012, finishing her project at President Eisenhower's Birthplace and being awarded contracts for work at two more Texas state historic sites. She and her consulting partners are now at work on interpretive master plans for the Sam Rayburn House Museum, home of the influential mid-20th century Speaker of the U.S. House, and the Levi Jordan Plantation, a sugar and cotton plantation with an extensive African American archeological presence. Susan traveled to Texas six times in 2012. Even the annual ALHFAM conference took place there. She invites you to take a look at the much–improved website for her business, History Behind the Scenes, also new in 2012. Susan continues her work on a private project transcribing a Civil War soldier's letters, as a volunteer at the archives of Christ Church, an Episcopal Church in the Old City neighborhood founded in 1695 and (since Spring 2012) at St. Christopher's Hospital for Children, where she works in the Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit. She still truly enjoys her role as a grandmother and singing with the large active Sacred Harp [shape note singing] community in Philadelphia.

We wish all the very best to you and yours for 2013.

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Ben & Nina