Thursday, December 22, 2016

The 2016 Darrel and Joanne Hammon Family Christmas Newsletter

Merry Christmas! We have had an incredible 2016!

From Hawaii
In April, we were able to go to Hawaii for the first time for Joanne’s birthday. We went to the island of Oahu and spent about five days.     We went to the Polynesia Cultural Center, attended the Laie Temple, soaked up the sun on the beach (several times), went snorkeling, toured the Dole Pineapple Plantation (a few times because of their delicious pineapple whips), climbed Diamond Head, shopped in Honolulu, strolled Waikiki Beach, and visited various other places along roadways we took to see the sights. We took—or should we say, Darrel took—lots of pictures.
Waiting on the wagon for the ride through the cornfield and pumpkin patch
Emiline and William were able to spend a couple of weekends with us. We had a ton of fun. Springville has a new little lake with a beach. They loved going there. Also, we went to the Springville pumpkin patch this year. Instead of a sand box, they had a huge corn box, filled with kernels of corn. They didn’t want to leave. Anna Rose and Christiaan were able to go on a river cruise in Europe and spent some extra time going to Norway.
On our way to the Grotto
Hailey and Joseph did a major move this summer, moving from Kansas to Washington. Joseph is now a math teacher at Eastern Washington University in Cheney, Washington. On their way to Washington, they were able to come for a week or so and spend some time with us. When they were here, we went on a hike up Payson Canyon to a little waterfall. Plus, we went to the little beach here in Springville. While the water was freezing cold, they still played and played and played. They came out popsicles; yet, they loved it.
At the pumpkin patch
Darrel was able to go to his 40th high school reunion, one year late, at the Rigby Lake in Rigby, Idaho. What a great experience to see many of his friends whom he hadn’t seen in years. They are all looking pretty good for being a little older, some a little grayer, and most way wiser.
Darrel took a watercolor class. 
Darrel was promoted to Associate Vice President, Academic Outreach and Economic Development at Utah Valley University, Utah’s largest public university. He is having a good time. In January, he was called to serve as a counselor in one of the Young Single Adult Wards (YSA) in Provo; then, in August, he was called to serve as a Bishop in a newly organized Provo YSA ward. We are enjoying our time with these YSAers. Our ward is a little older than most. Many of them are young professionals or going to graduate school although we do have a few of the 18-year-olds but not many. They have something going on almost every evening. They will keep us young.
The little dudes this summer
Joanne continues to work part time at the BYU Health Center. She also volunteers at the new Provo City Center Temple on Thursday mornings. Plus, she has taken several cooking courses through UVU’s Professional and Continuing Education program. Darrel is definitely the beneficiary of her class projects. She has been successful in learning how to cook new, delicious entrees, desserts, soups, and pasta sauces.
Our family at Thanksgiving
We had Thanksgiving at Hailey and Joseph’s new place in Cheney, Washington. Anna Rose, Christiaan, and their little family drove up. We had a glorious three days with all of them. We walked the Turkey Trot, ate lots of food, played games, put together a puzzle, and did our traditional thing of going to a movie (Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them). The cousins got along amazingly well. Emiline (7) became the surrogate mother to Avonlea (2); William (4.5) and Clark (4) played well together. We did take a family photo while we were all there. Thus, we are using it as our Christmas photo. It is amazing how much everyone has grown this year. It was nice to be with them.
Emiline and Avonlea
Christmas will be quiet here as Anna Rose and Christiaan are going to California, and Hailey and Joseph are going to Seattle side of Washington—all to be with their in-laws. I guess we have to share. We may go some place warm. We are still deciding.
Hailey, Joanne, Darrel, & Anna Rose

We wish you all a huge MERRY CHRISTMAS and a Happy New Year. We know 2017 will be an incredible year for all of us. We love you all!


Unknown said...

Beautiful letter and family! Thank you for sharing with some of us that aren't family but most definitely are friends! Merry Christmas you two ������

Unknown said...

O how we love the Hammon Family! Thank you for sharing your events and travels of 2016 with us. You inspire me with all of your accomplishments! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the Yates Family!